We all have games we love and games we strongly dislike. Usually we get pretty good at our favorite games: we play them frequently, we learn the ins and outs of strategies, and our passion for the game carries us to victory.
But sometimes, sometimes we fall in love with a game that we just kinda suck at. It defies logic; you’d think getting hit over the head repeatedly would turn us off. But for some reason, these games continue to have a special grip on our hearts. It’s not that we never win, we just more often than not fail to end up on top. But we sure had a blast along the way.
What game do you love that doesn’t love you back? Answer in the comments!
I have a couple games that fit in this category. Kill Doctor Lucky is pretty much always a blast. It’s a good laugh, it keeps me engaged the whole way through trying to figure out how to maximize my turn or get Doctor Lucky alone in a choice room for a brilliant murder attempt… but in the end, I usually fail to win. More often than not, I draw out the last failure card from other players, only to have the next person in line strike for the victory.
Cosmic Encounter, currently my #1 favorite game, is also a game that I often lose. I’m probably victorious more often than with KDL, but I constantly find myself making terrible decisions (in restrospect), or letting someone else get great positioning, or otherwise losing the top spot. It speaks volumes that despite my poor record, this is still my favorite game; it’s just so much fun to play it doesn’t matter if I win or not.
Olympos is very new to me and hasn’t really been played enough to make a solid judgment, but I have yet to scrape a victory and it’s still a blast every time. I love the time mechanic that makes you try and perform your actions in as few steps as possible. It’s tense, it’s great fun, and I still haven’t nailed down a successful strategy. We haven’t reviewed this one yet, but we will get it up there soon.
Ascending Empires probably tops the list for me. For those not in the know, Ascending Empires is a dexterity space empire building game (which, incidentally, @Futurewolfie and I chose for 2011’s Game of the Year). I’m not very good at flicking my ships around or with negotiating with other players, but still, more often than not, it’s the game I want to play.
I’m also not terribly good at Power Grid and its various iterations, but I love economic games, and it’s hard to keep me away for too long.
I think most Euros. I’m not a Euro first player, but I really enjoy them. Even when I think I’m doing well or I have a great engine, I end up in third place if I’m lucky.
Macao consistently gets me a loss. I’ve won at all of the other Feld games. Most other games I win once, but that’s usually it.
I love Agricola, but I usually play with someone who’s unaccountably incredible at it, so I rarely win.