Crusaders Games

My Top 20 Board Games

It is really difficult to compare group campaign games against solo games, however this is my ranked list of favourite games, based on how i feel overall about them including gameplay, components, co-operative or solo experience, or offering the most ongoing excitement of expanding content. These are the games i own that stand above the rest and against which newcomers are judged (end of last year positions bracketed).

lotrlcg11 (1). Lord of the Rings LCG – my go to solo card game which offers so much variety from all the different quests and deckbuilding support cards. It requires some expansion collecting to really shine, but offers a relatively quick game with an element of story included. The artwork and theme is amazing, and is the most money i have spent on one game product.
tmb12 (6). Too Many Bones – a unique chip and dice based adventure, with high quality components and heroes that each feel completely different in their skills and play style. This game offers a blend of character progression, adventuring, and tactical battles, and now has a campaign option. With great production and neat dice building mechanism, it is amazing.
gloom23 (7). Gloomhaven – a legacy style co-operative adventure game with dungeon exploration and branching storyline pathways. It features an excellent card based combat system, choosing two cards to combine and play each round, and each character feels very different to play. It is a huge adventure box and remains one of the best group co-op games.
descent14 (2). Descent 2nd Edition – the most versatile dungeon crawler with many different expansions, and allowing you to play in many different ways, with or without an overlord, or with an app to control the enemies and create campaign storylines. Great artwork and production quality, and this admittedly gains extra love as i have painted so much of it.
runebound15 (8). Runebound 3rd Edition  a co-operative or solo adventure game across a world map, where you will gradually level up your hero by completing quests and obtaining new equipment. Combat is undertaken by token throwing, and this game has a tracker counting down your final enemy encounter. A superb adventure game that i really enjoy playing solo.
city6 (3). City of Kings – a clever mix of hero development and worker resource strategies, with battles against enemies that change their abilities each game. This has a really nice artwork style and some of the best hero play boards with branching character progressions. A great game design with quests and a storylines built in, and is a favourite of mine for solo play.
everdellicon7 (-). Everdell the most beautiful card worker placement game in existence. Not only is the artwork stunning but the gameplay is simple but excellent and building your village of interactive dwellings and creatures is so satisfying. It works pretty well solo too.
thunderstonebarricades8 (9). Thunderstone Quest – my favourite in game deck building experience with a dungeon exploration, and Quest packs expanded in themes. The artwork, simplicity of play and the ability to customise each dungeon makes it a game i really enjoy. It is better than ever now with the new barricades solo and co-op mode.

sword19 (5). Sword & Sorcery – dungeon crawling with storylines rather than random adventures, this great game has superb tiles and nice models. It manages to offer neat ideas and great enemy intelligence and is still currently expanding its content with a new adventure being released within the frozen wilderness.

mageicon10 (-). Mage Knight – this exploration game is considered one of the greatest solo games, and is a complex beast to learn, but its card play is so rewarding and addictive. The newer ultimate edition is really nice bringing together all the expansion content in one place.
nemesis111 (4). Nemesis – a co-operative survival game set on a dark space ship, and with revealing rooms and a strong aliens theme. Each character has their own secret missions to complete, but co-operative play is also key to escaping. This game is filled with tension and drama, and it features exploration with card based actions unique to each character to provide a strategic game.
darkest112 (11). Darkest Night 2nd Edition  a co-operative or solo game, where the world has been ravaged by the evil necromancer, and is covered in blights, tainting the seven core locations. With amazing production this game presents strategic choices, co-operative interplay and has some great hero characters with excellent variations of card skills.
wqicon13 (14). Warhammer Quest (1995) – the original definitive dungeon crawl with excellent expansions and additional articles and the best additional roleplaying book within a board game. It remains a light co-operative hack and slash, but has the random room and monster encounter elements that is adored.
hexploreit14 (-). Hexplore It – a free form solo or co-operative questing adventure where you search for relic fragments to overcome the realm nemesis. This series tells a great adventure story, with strong theme and large map exploration. It has its roots in roleplaying so you will be building up your stats and the various unique skills are really neat.
black15 (12). Blackstone Fortress / Silver Tower – a co-operative quest game set in a spacestation which requires painting and modelling. Using a slight enhancement to the Silver Tower dice allocation mechanics, this has entry level gameplay, a great theme and currently has regular expansions and new content. This series form the latest hobby interest of my gaming.
nemoicon16 (19). Nemo’s War – a strategic solo game, where you navigate the oceans in the nautilus having an adventure, finding treasures, sinking ships and risking your ship and crew. With lots of dice rolling, together with a lot of mitigation it is a really great but tough solo game with an amazing theme and nice artwork.
allianceicon17 (-). Dungeon Alliance – a dungeon crawl and a strategy game with light deckbuilding touch, this is a great solo game which has improved over time with the addition of quests and storylines. Hero characters have unique cards which bring constant drafting choices throughout the game.
7thicon18 (20). 7th Continent – an exploration adventure card game where you reveal an island whilst searching for clues to banish a curse. Mixing a clever mechanic of combining items you find, you are faced with continuous choices, and the combination of its puzzles and storyline is so unique.

sinetemporeicon19 (-). Sine Tempore  a co-operative campaign space game and recent arrival being played by the group. The faun inhabited world of Primevus V is enjoyable and the gameplay has proving strong within the main story campaign which is fun and interesting. The side missions are more hit and miss and we skipped them but components and artwork are all excellent.

vindicationicon20 (10). Vindication – a competitive island exploration game with cube resource management, this game combines strategy with a storyline journey of your hero. The components and artwork are amazing, and the combinations of different places to go and companions to recruit will mean every game feels a little different, it is a great game design.
Bubbling under …
wqacgicon21 (13). Warhammer Quest Adventure Card Game / Heroes of Terrinoth – a smaller box co-operative card and dice game with neat character and player interaction, as your heroes support each other to complete quests. It is a relatively quick dungeon experience, and mostly about combat, and the mechanic of using your card actions and dice rolling works beautifully.
gloomicon22 (15). Gloom of Kilforth – some of the best artwork in any game, this is a solo or co-operative quest game where you navigate around a world where gloom is descending. Complete quests and build your abilities to take on the monster before the world is lost forever. A beautiful adventure game.