We’re less than two weeks away, and I’m excited for Gen Con 2019.
This will be my fifth year at the event, and my now-annual tradition of scrolling through Eric Martin’s amazing BGG preview tool is complete. As I say every year, there are hundreds of games coming out, and finding the games to bring home in the always-too-limited suitcase space can be challenging. It feels like drinking from a fire hose.
I’ve been reading the BGG list, looking at rulebooks, and taking a second look at our chats on the OG mailing list.
But here it is: my top 10 most anticipated Gen Con titles.
I’ve excluded games that are already widely available and that I already own, just limiting the main portion of this article to games I’m looking forward to buying. I’ve also excluded games that are just being demoed at Gen Con.
Chris Wray’s 10 Most Anticipated (Alphabetical Order)
An art-themed set collection game! From the BGG description: “In ArtSee, you are the curator at an art gallery that is expanding. While you have fine tastes, it is important to be able to provide the experience that your customers are expecting. During the game, you will build out the art gallery with new exhibits among the four wings of your gallery. With enough prestige, you will earn the right to display prominent works, drawing in even more visitors. In the end, the curator with the most prestigious gallery wins!”
Renegade has been hit-or-miss with me, but this looks cool, and a couple of people I trust have said good things.
Cartographers (Thunderworks Games)
Cartographers is a roll ‘n write I first played at the Gathering of Friends, and I fell in love with it there. It is a bit of Kingdom Builder meets a roll ‘n write, with variable scoring adding greatly to the replayability of the game. This is one of the finest roll ‘n writes I’ve tried, so I’m eager to buy this new title from Thunderworks. In fact, this is one of my top 2-3 games I’m looking forward to!
Era: Medieval Age (eggertspiele)
I’d buy anything by Matt Leacock and eggertspiele, but even without those names attached, Era looks extremely fun. Billed as a success to Roll Through the Ages, Era is a “roll and build” game with cool 3D pieces in which players attempt to build the most prosperous city.
Kingdomino Duel (Blue Orange)
A Kingdomino roll ‘n write? Yeah, I’m totally buying that.
Las Vegas Royale (alea)
I enjoy Las Vegas, but I don’t enjoy a copy, so I’m looking forward to finally buying one via this reimplementation in Las Vegas Royale, which includes the original game and some aspects from an expansion. I’m digging alea’s new artwork redos of their classics!
Letter Jam (CGE)
I played Letter Jam at the Gathering, enjoying it. It is sort of word-based Code 777. It might seem, at first glance, to be a party game, but this is more think-y than that, truly approaching being a word-based deduction game.
Machi Koro Legacy (Pandasaurus)
I’ll admit that I made fun of the idea of Machi Koro Legacy when the game was announced last year, questioning why such a game should even exist. But who am I kidding: I’m totally buying this, and I’m almost certainly going to love it. I’m too much of a legacy fan to not find this fun.
Obscurio is sort of Mysterium-meets-hidden-traitor. In true Libellud fashion, players are trying to identify the meaning in Dixit-style cards, but this is a bit more dressed up than its predecessors. I played it at the Gathering, and though the copy we saw was frustratingly incomplete, the game had promise, so I’m hoping the final copy will live up the potential.
Pappy Winchester (Blue Orange)
Blue Orange is on a multi-year hot streak with me, so I’m taking a close look at all their games, and Pappy Winchester seems right up my alley. Players are dividing up Pappy’s possessions, bidding on them, but they each have secret goals. The description sounds good, but this is one that seems like it’ll be very group dependent, so I’m eager to see how it plays.
Silver (Bezier Games)
Silver is Ted Alspach’s reimagining of Cabo, a game I reviewed a few months ago and loved. I was lucky enough to be a playtester for Silver, so I’ve played it, and it is an absolute blast. In short, players are shedding cards and points, trying to have the lowest score when the vote is called. To do that, they exchange cards, taking advantage of the powers printed on the cards. The game will be part of a series, with players able to mix-and-match their favorite roles from various Silver decks. The next deck comes out at Essen.
An iOS app was recently released, so if you want to try the game before the convention, that is worth checking out.