Board Game Geek Top 100 Checklist, Part 1

One of my favorite resources for getting exposed to, learning how to play, and discussing board games is Board Game Geek affectionately known as BGG. They have been around for a long time, especially counting in Internet Years. One of the things they do is provide an interesting mechanism for ranking games. Some people like it, some people don’t, but for the sake of this post I will leave that behind and just talk about a different topic.

Suppose I had a goal of owning all of the games in the BGG top 100 list, what would that look like? What’s on the list, what do I have, and if I don’t have something, will I eventually? If I owned a game and then sold it, does that count? Is this the questions only game?

The BGG Top 100 games can be found simply by going to their board game list which sorts by default by ranking. I captured the top 100 games and stored the information in an Excel file as I started to write this post. Over the coming weeks I plan to talk briefly about the top 100 games (starting from the bottom and moving up to #1, as all good countdowns should do). Are you ready for the journey? Let’s go!

100: Forbidden Stars
Released 2015
I don’t currently own this game, and don’t know much about it. Not exactly a way to start out a list with a bang…a big bang…like stars? Okay, maybe I tried too hard on that one.

99: Yokohama
Released 2016
I don’t currently own this game, don’t know much about it, and am not even going to try to work in a bad joke.

98: Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game
Released 2012
I have written quite a lot about this game already. Check out my X-Wing tagged posts if you want to see them. I really enjoy this game, have played for years, and have spent hundreds of dollars on the base game, expansions, accessories, and even storage options for the game. The game was originally released in 2012, and I think I have been playing for at least 3-4 years at this point. Fantasy Flight recently released the second edition of this game, which is not ranked, but I think mostly that’s because folks that already played and ranked the first edition did not bother go transfer their rank to the BGG entry for the second edition.

97: The Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle Earth
Released 2019
This should be a slam-dunk for me, right? I love fantasy, and I feel like I am as big a Tolkein nerd as anyone out there. But oddly enough, I do not own this game. Part of the reason for this particular game though is that it requires a digital app to drive the game. On the one hand it’s nice that you don’t need to sacrifice a player to be game-master and exclude them from the fun! But on the other hand, I look at my copy of Solarquest which is coming up on 40 years old and I still can play it today. I might be concerned for nothing, but for now this is not in my collection.

96: Lorenzo il Magnifico
Released 2016
Don’t know anything about this game, and don’t own it. This particular refrain is going to happen a lot at the bottom of the top 100 games. As we get closer to the top I think I will own a higher percentage.

95: Champions of Midgard
Released 2015
I own this one! In fact, this was my very first Kickstarter experience. I bought what they called the Jarl package, which included a mega-sized box that holds the base game plus two expansions along with the two new expansions to store in the box. I also picked up a custom play mat for this game because, well, I like custom play mats. 🙂 This is a viking-themed worker placement game that gets really high marks, and in my opinion is appropriately placed in the top 100 BGG games.

94: Kemet
Released 2012
I own this game too. I was buying a bundle of games via a Facebook contact, and this one was cheap enough that I asked him to throw it in. I have since picked up a couple of expansions.

93: Grand Austria Hotel
Released 2015
No idea what this is about, but as we’ve gone through most of the first ten games (the bottom ten to be sure) astute readers might notice that there is definitely a “cult of the new” thing happening here. Kemet and X-Wing are the two oldest games on this part of the list, and they’re from 2012! Where are the old classics? What are some of the old classics at this point? We’ll have to see if anything from the 1990’s (or earlier!) cracks the top 100 games.

92: Pandemic: Iberia
Released 2016
Pandemic (the base game) is fantastic, and will (spoiler alert) appear later in this list, and with a much higher ranking. Iberia is one of the special editions that was released to coincide with a gaming convention. I don’t actually own this one, and wish I had bought it earlier, because now it’s becoming much harder to find. Someone on Amazon has it listed for $129.96 right now. 😯 Anyway, Iberia is part of what they call the Survival Series, as detailed by a Z-Man games executive here:

Those games are part of the “Survival Series,” a chance for Matt Leacock to team up with a co-designer from the territory where that year’s Pandemic Survival World Championships will take place. They’re limited-edition releases, intended to celebrate the host country’s language, history, and culture.

91: The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine
Released 2019
…and we come to the end of the bottom ten of the top 100 games on BGG, and once again it’s one that I do not own. And don’t know anything about. Looks like I have some work to do!

The tally so far:
Games Mentioned: 10
Games Owned: 3 (30%)

I only own 30% of the BGG Top 100 games ranked from 100 to 91, and I really only hope to buy one of them at this point. Does that mean that I don’t like the BGG rankings? Or the games I like suck? 😉 Neither of those is true, and I expect my percentage owned to climb as we move up the ladder.

Stay tuned for more!

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