Table for One Episode 16 – Top 100 Solo Games Commentary Part 1

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Every year for the last three years, Kevin Erskine has gathered votes from hundreds of solo gamers on Board Game Geek and created a gamer-voted Top 100 list of solo games. The 2016 edition of the list had nearly 400 voters and saw a bunch of interesting new games make the cut.

In part one of a special two part interview, Anthony and Jason welcome Kevin to Table for One to discuss the first 50 entries in the list, what goes into creating the list each year and some of the biggest surprises we spotted in this year’s rankings.

To see the full list, visit the Geeklist on BoardGameGeek here: https://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/217988/2016-peoples-choice-top-100-solo-games

And of course, make sure to connect with us on Facebook, Twitter (@BGAPodcast), and on our guild on BoardGameGeek.

And if you haven’t yet, we really appreciate your reviews on iTunes! Help more people find this podcast and discover the world of solo gaming.

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About Author

Anthony lives and plays games in Pittsburgh, PA. A lover of complex strategy, two player war games, and area control, Anthony is always eager to try a new game, even if he's on rule-reading duty.

  • Gizensha

    Can’t agree with Chess being weird to see on the list. While I don’t play it solo myself, it’s… Kind of the original Play Two Handed Against Yourself game, predating even wargames for that. Though here’s a thought – Do Chess Puzzles count as playing chess solo?

    Voted Mice and Mystics quite highly, myself, actually – While I definitely agree that it’s better with multiple players, I’m in the middle of a solo campaign of it, and not only am I enjoying replaying the base set in that format, but it was one of the games I credit with getting me into solo gaming (Robinson Crusoe being the other one, which I’m blaming on the rulebook while Mice and Mystics was probably just me) due to a mechanism not clicking from the rules and Rodney’s video so needing to solo the first chapter to figure out that mechanism, and… That was the first solo experience I’d enjoyed since solitaire variants in sixth form.

    (As for Pandemic Legacy – I’d file it with TIME Stories; if you’ve got a group for it, it’s best playing with that group, but if you don’t… It’d be perfectly fine solo. Actually when I get Pandemic Legacy S2 I’ll be finding out if my husband wants to play it through with me like he did S1 or if I’m soloing it, since he’s not that big on co-op games generally and while he enjoyed the Pandemic Legacy experience he isn’t sure he’ll want to go through it again.)

    • Anthony Chatfield

      Chess is a tricky one. I have a series of Chess puzzles that I run through with my kids to help them learn the pieces (and sometimes alone on the harder levels because they are fun). Does that count at the core game or is it something different, I don’t know. But it’s a good solo exercise to be sure.

      Mice and Mystics is one of my favorites games of all time – I love it and play it often with my kids (and friends), but just had a tough time getting into it solo. I do wonder if I had the recorded narrative though and tackled it like a storybook if it would be more of an experience playing solo. I’ve gotten obsessed with a few games after learning them via solo play too though. Several that don’t even have solo variants, haha.

      I’m in the exact same boat with Pandemic Legacy S2 – I am absolutely going to play it, but if I can’t get the same people back to the table, it’s solo all the way!