My small bag list ended up being Take It Easy, TransAmerica and For Sale. I could potentially make endless permutations of games like them but those were my initial, gut-level choices. They are all games with simple rule sets that are easy to teach. At the same time, they are also meaty enough to feel like a ‘real’ game and not just fluff (Your mileage may vary. I’ve met folks who consider Puerto Rico a filler but I also think they were posers) Finally, they are all games that I’ve been playing for years with a wide variety of players and people have always loved them.
You know, the next time I go to an event, that might be what I’d put in my bag. Heck, For Sale is already the game that I always make sure to pack.
Basically, I have shifted out of the Cult of the New and gone to the Cult of the Tried and True :D
And I tell myself that I would be happy finding a group that I could get together with once a month and play For Sale or Ticket to Ride but I know I would end up ramping it up, just like I’ve done in the past. If left to my own devices and without any judgement, I end up bringing a different batch of games every time. Just I’ve done every other time :D So if I find this imaginary group, I want to avoid that.
But one designer who I find myself thinking that, if I had a regular group, that I would really want to break out is Michael Schacht. (Knizia is good too but he’s more of a lifestyle) So many Schacht staples are great games that work on a work night.
Zooleretto, Hansa, China (I don’t have Web of Power), Paris Paris, Patrician, California, all are games that take less than an hour to play and I have consistently had fun with all of them for years. (I should look into what he’s done in the last five, ten years :P)
What all this tells me, beyond I’d like to find a gaming group, is that here’s something to be said for games that hold up over years of play.