While my favorite way to play board games is face-to-face, playing games online has been a big part of my board gaming experiences, starting with Brettspeilwelt, which might end up as a series of blogs in and of itself. And I knew that moving across the country with an infant meant that online gaming was going to be my primary form of gaming. (Not that my wife and I don't play games, of course.)
BUT I also knew that online gaming could be a serious time sink. I knew I had to keep it under control. And Yucata was my best one stop, gaming extravaganza.
Three reasons. Turn-based. Selection. Community.
When I say turn-based, I mean that the games aren't necessarily live. I take a turn and the next person gets an email that it's their turn. The modern day version of correspondence chess, only a lot faster. Sometimes I do get in a live game but if I need to leave, it doesn't mess up the game.
With a small kid, it is really nice to have the freedom to get in a move when I feel like it with the flexibility of being interrupted at any time.
Selection? That just means that Yucata has a lot of games and a lot of them are ones I like to play. Some of them are really light games for when I know my brain power is low and heavier games when I want something to make me think. Can't Stop, Carcassonne: Hunters and Gatherers, Castles of Burgundy, there is a lot of solid stuff for someone into German family games and Euro games.
More than that, unlike some iOS sites, like Apple's Game Center, everyone who logs onto Yucata has access to the exact same games. That can make a big difference.
Which ties into community. The best interface in the world isn't any good if you don't have people to play with. And Yucata has a big international community of players. I usually have to wait at most a day to get any given game going.
On top of that, some of my friends from the Midwest joined Yucata to play with me. So Yucata provides me with community in that way as well.
Board gaming is one of my favorite hobbies and Yucata has let keep on doing it while focusing on what's important in my life.