Brandon Kempf – Surviving the Purge 17

Over the next few months, instead of going with my Three Games articles, I am going to take a look at my collection and try to discuss why certain titles survived the great purge of 2019. During this process I may take a look at some games that didn’t survive, but only as a measuring stick for what did survive. Since I am silly, like a lot of gamers, I use Ikea Kallax shelves to display the games that we own. This makes it pretty easy to break things down cube by cube, so that’s what we’re going to do, twenty-four cubes, plus a top shelf for games that don’t fit in the cubes, over the course of a few months. I hope you enjoy!

If you are a BoardGameGeek user, you can also follow along on the Geeklist I created.

Mr. Jack

Another one of my oldest daughter’s favorite games that we’ve probably held on to a bit too long, but sentimental reasons can be just as valid, right? There is no review for Mr. Jack on the OG, but there is a review of Mr. Jack in New York from Greg if you’d like to take a look at that one. I’ve never played that version. Mr. Jack is a simple two player deduction game where one person is playing Mr. Jack and they are trying to escape from all the other characters on the board who are looking through them. Each character can do something a bit different on the map giving the searching player some much needed mobility through the streets. It’s fun, it’s short and most of all, my daughter took a liking to it so it got played. Even when she cheated I had fun with it. How did she cheat? Well, the fine folks at Board with Life summed it up quite well, and she swears she didn’t watch this video before using the trick against me. 17 plays since July 2012. 


I love simple market manipulation games, and while Acquire is one of my favorites in the genre, it ultimately was not one that my family enjoyed playing, but Stockpile is. Dale has everyone covered with the review here on The OG. I love that Stockpile gives you insider information and makes you use it. More than a bit shady, eh? I’ve also been fairly succesful in teaching Stockpile to just about everyone, and had them understand it. Acquire can have a bit more of a learning curve, or rather an understanding curve. Stockpile feels far more modern and it plays that way as well. We’ve added the expansions to the box, but honestly, I’ve yet to play with them, the game is nearly a perfect gateway game as it is. 8 plays since October 2016.

Shaky Manor

Another wonderful dexterity game that uses the box as part of the game.  Shaky Manor is a game where players are trying to complete challenge cards by getting the correct things into the correct rooms. A manor is 8 different rooms of different colors and randomly there are wooden items in the rooms, from snakes to ghosts, spiders and eyeballs and each room has a doorway in between them. So, in order to actually complete the cards, you have to shake the actual manor and maneuver the items in your manor to the correct room. It’s lightweight, it’s challenging and even a bit frustrating at times, but ultimately, it’s a lot of fun to play. Would I have kept this one had my youngest daughter not requested it? Probably not, but we’re happy to have it around for some lighthearted easy to set up dexterity gaming. 3 plays since July 2018.


It’s a small world after all, it’s a small world after all. Sorry, now that song is going to be stuck in your head for the rest of the day, and I apologize. Would you believe there is no review for Small World on The OG? If there is, I can’t find it, but there is a review of Small World Realms, which is also on this shelf, but sadly, I’ve not even played it yet. Small World is Days of Wonder’s family weight area majority game that is a reimplementation of the lesser known Vinci. What makes Small World so endeared is the different way that the game will play based on the different combinations for the races and their powers. 14 races and 20 different powers create a lot of different possibilities and thus entirely different games. Combat is simple to explain and simple to perform making it a perfect family/gateway game. I really wish we played this one more often than we have, but everytime I go to get it off the shelf, something else grabs us. Days of Wonder has such a great lineup of these games. It’s weird that it may be the first one on this list so far though, but it will not be the last. 5 plays since 2012.

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