Today the 138 Games series finishes out the year 2000 with five more games from that year that you’ve just got to try. We have two more Knizia games for you this time, but only one more to go for the rest of the series. Rounding out today’s five recommended games are a Schacht classic, a Burm abstract, and another Joe Huber obscure special. Make sure to check these games out and then check back next week for the games from 2001 that you simply must play.
- Taj Mahal -
Rick Thornquist: Here’s an indication of how good I think Taj Mahal is: it’s my favorite game. Why is it my favorite game, you ask? Well, there’s tons of strategy, almost no luck, lots of player interaction, almost no downtime, and with the card draw and sequence of provinces changing every game it’s always a new challenge. What more could you want? My favorite thing is that after almost every game I see a strategy that I hadn’t seen before – that always keeps me coming back. I played it again just a few days ago and though it’s my zillionth play of the game, I still found it to be awesome.
Nathan Beeler: Taj Mahal is not my favorite game, but I do love it. I’ve heard many folks complain that the game comes down to whether or not your opponents decide to fight you over the critical things you need for your plan. I can understand what they’re saying, and it can be annoying when things don’t come easily. But in my experience that always seems to happen to everyone at crucial times. Subsequently, the game becomes entirely about picking your battles. If you’re paying attention, there’s plenty of warning when a major showdown is going to break out. Players generally have time to plan for it, or to duck away and fight again later from a position of strength. To me, this is fun. Whatever the case, Taj Mahal contains a lot of experiences you can’t get from other games, and must be tried at least once.