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Popular Worker Placement Board Games (Mechanic)

These are the board games with the Worker Placement mechanic.
Scythe board game
Rank: 3
Trending: 51
Viticulture: Essential Edition board game
Rank: 5
Trending: 55
Carcassonne board game
Rank: 14
Trending: 62
Everdell board game
Rank: 26
Trending: 13
Architects of the West Kingdom board game
Rank: 31
Trending: 136
Lords of Waterdeep board game
Rank: 35
Trending: 283
Orléans board game
Rank: 47
Trending: 112
Raiders of the North Sea board game
Rank: 48
Trending: 137
Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar board game
Agricola (Revised Edition) board game
Rank: 50
Trending: 265
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Both of those are excellent game in my opinion. Having played them both this would be my summary:

#Architects of the West Kingdom - Possibly my favourite worker placement game. The mechanics interwine in a really satisfying way, there are multiple paths to victory and there is a really nice dynamic set up with people capturing each others workers which is engaging but never feels mean. It is a bit of a point salad, but personally I don't mind that at all. You get to build something of an engine which is enjoyable and the fact that you just have this supply of workers with no 'collection' phase means the game has a nice flow rather than being broken up into rounds. The artwork is great and it's never failed to lead to a fun evening.

#Cry Havoc - A very different creature. It is highly asymmetrical and has a wonderful dynamic built in between the factions, however, due to the variability in the powers you choose, within that dynamic there is plenty of room to maneuver so I've never felt like I couldn't choose my strategy. The game is incredibly tight, you only get 15 actions the whole game and each one feels significant and usually involves a difficult choice of what to pursue. The deckbuilding aspect adds a nice sense of customisation on-the-fly and all of it comes together in a really clever way. The combat system (along with #Rising Sun) is the best I have come across, it is quick and can be surprising but there is no luck involved. Similarly both players can come away with what they want or neither which is kind of cool as there are different ways to 'win' a battle.

While I think you'll be delighted with either, my gut feeling says you might enjoy #Cry Havoc a little more. Both play best with higher player counts but I think CH does a better job at 2 or 3 than AotWK which is in turn a better solo game. Basically I think you;ve made an excellent short-list.

Tzolk'in can be a bit intimidating, but it's actually fairly simple. I think Dinosaur Island is a solid choice. It's got amber dice, worker placement, and dinosaurs eating people. What more could you want? haha

Okay so..

#Similo with my fiance. Was part of my giveaway win that should have the picture for by now ;)

Then I introduced #Spirit Island on TTS to a friend of mine. We had a good run but ultimately lost.

Also played a few games on Board Game Arena: 
#6 Nimmt! - first time I've played this. I think way too many factors make this one completely random so I'm not sure if I would play again outside of a way to pass some time.
#Yokohama - also a first time for me. I'm actually very interested in this game after this play. I definitely played like I had no clue what I was doing but I like the strategic decisions you have to make. Might add this one to my wishlist.
#Stone Age - I've played this before also on BGA. Nice simple worker placement game with a lot of hidden scoring at the end which always catches me by surprise.

Of course had to revist #Spirit Island solo after the loss with my friend lol. I tried branching out (finally) to the more "difficult" spirits and loved it. I played with 2 spirits and had a long hard battle but I eventually won! This play really made me want to pick up the expansions and keep exploring more spirits in the base game for sure.

Ended the week at my future inlaws. Introduced them to #Similo which was a surprise hit. If we didn't have to eat dinner, they probably would have played all night. Of course we played #Monikers too. So many laughs - at one point we were all crying we were laughing so hard. Can't recommend this enough!


Design diary #1:

They took more questions on this thread:

  • "Won't be released via kickstarter, but we will have a direct pre-order as well as a general release to stores." - Scarlatch
  • I asked about meanness and got this response from Scarlatch:
    "There's obviously some bias here, but I was a little surprised to find that my wife and kids love it (and talk about it away from the table). It's slightly heavier than Clank! (and the theme and content is clearly not light and whimsical) and obviously worker placement has some inherent 'gotchya' (you took my spot!), but in a way that we find fun to roll with. There are also surprises (coming up in the next design article) and some combat battling with winners and losers, but overall it feels tense without feeling mean (to us, anyway)."

Thanks for the video! I appreciated getting your thoughts as well as Phil's. Do you guys think that if the real-time bit was implemented in a different game that you would enjoy it more? I do think that the real time worker placement is an cool concept, but the game outside of that doesn't seem too interesting to me, which it sounds like is how you guys feel about it.

I felt like it was a great implementation of combining timers and worker placement. I bet with a couple changes the game could move up in my desire to play. Although, I'd normally think Stonemaier would be the publisher to do it. The sandpaper player mats felt strange. I'd rather have the fort style thick player mats, wooden components instead of plastic and the theme would need to change to somewhere where I feel like the actions I'm taking are part of the theme (not sure what that would be though). It's probably needs to be something that shouldn't be explained like a fantasy world. OH! I bet a theme around cooking in a restaurant would work really well actually. Lots of cooking dishes that take separate amounts of time...

#Architects of the West Kingdom is a good choice if you want a worker placement game with a different flavor and one that plays very quickly even at higher player counts. Another plus is that it has a nice solo mode that you can enjoy, but if soloing hasn't been all that frequent for you anyway, then I don't see this changing up that pace all that much. And you have #Pax Pamir (Second Edition) coming your way anyway and I personally think it has a more compelling solo mode.

For #Dune, everything about it seems to suggest that it's your dream board game. And especially since you're thinking Architects will maybe see 5-6 plays, I think your 1-2 plays with Dune in a year will be more than worth that.

I would go Dune. It's the perfect game for you and even if it only sees 1 play in a year, you're getting it through the giveaway anyway :)

Now, any idea how soon a Dune night could be arranged?

Unfortunately i also have never played any western themed games but #Western Legends #Great Western Trail and #Flick Em Up! are all on my board game bucket list. 

GWT in particular speaks to the worker placement economy nerd in me. 

Who do you typically play with? By gateway games, if you're looking for games that are very easy to introduce to non-gamers, then here are some that come to mind:

  • #Century: Golem Edition - Great art, fun crystal-like components, and teaches the concept of engine-building
  • #Azul - Another very attractive game for newcomers because of the awesome tiles. Great tile laying/pattern building game
  • #Just One - Co-op word based game that gets people laughing easily
  • #Skull - Simple bluffing game that's easy to teach and doesn't put a lot of pressure on new gamers
  • #Santorini - Abstract strategy game that plays like an expanded 3d tic-tac-toe, best for 2p
  • #Welcome to... - If you want to try roll and writes and want a theme that's relatable and plays at near limitless player counts
  • #Pandemic - Staple co-op game

Here are some games that I consider a slight step-up in terms of complexity, but still very approachable:

  • #Wingspan - "Tableau-building" game with the theme of birds. You place cards in three different rows that give you different benefits such as gathering resources, laying eggs, or getting you more bird cards that have different powers. You can pull off satisfying chain reactions of combos that build off of the different bird powers. It's an attractive looking game so it's easy to wow a wider audience
  • #The Quacks of Quedlinburg - "Bag-building" game where you're creating a potion by randomly pulling out various ingredients from your bag and placing them into your cauldron. Some ingredients will help you create a higher quality potion while having too many of the white ingredients will make your cauldron burst. By creating and selling high quality potions, you'll be able to purchase better ingredients that will help your future rounds. Nice mix of long term strategy with an element of pushing your luck just before the point of bursting your pot
  • #Viticulture: Essential Edition - Good "intro+" for worker placement games. Players manage a handle of workers to accomplish various tasks to tend to their vineyard, produce grapes, and sell wine to your visitors
  • #Tiny Towns - Great spatial management and pattern building game where you're working with a highly limited grid space to build a town by making polyomino shapes

Similar to R0land, I tend to be pretty patient and good about resting on any games that suddenly pop up. #Marvel Champions: The Card Game was one that for some reason seemed absolutely irresistible and I just kept thinking about buying it. I guess it was the idea of having a non-pandemic like co-op game where we could really team up and fight some baddies together with a theme that we'd both love. I cooled off on it after a week so I knew it wasn't a necessary buy.

I think the closest one for this cateogry is #Atlantis Rising (second edition). It looked good! And I liked the idea of a co-op game that's different from Pandemic and one that has a familiar mechanic (worker placement). I had heard several reviewers raving about it so I decided to add it to the cart along with two others games after watching 1 or 2 videos. Got free shipping! xD