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I often play risk and Axis & Allies. I don't like Settlers of Catan because bla bla bla ... What other games would I like?

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I was just wondering where/how members of this community discover new games. I have played a number of games including:

  • Chess
  • Monopoly
  • Multiple Risk type games
  • Ticket to Ride
  • Axis and Allies
  • Settlers of Catan

Suppose I want to find more games like this. Where/how should I look? What is a good way to discover new games?

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With respect to this site, I discussed this in a meta answer here. Have you tried our chatroom? –  ire_and_curses Jan 18 '12 at 22:39
    
Does the chat room have persistent posts and upvoting so that it is easy to identify the ones that were most recommended and one can look over recommendations that interest you, but you hadn't thought to ask (e.g. the dominion-lite question)? –  John Robertson Mar 22 at 7:09
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6 Answers

I found that site that has good price and a vast inventory : http://www.fungamescafe.com/fgcIndex.php. With BoardGameGeek they are our two major provider of idea for new games.

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The BoardGameGeek has a fun annual convention in the Dallas area in the Fall where you could get hands on experience with a wide range of games in a very flexible atmosphere. Getting tickets is hard unless you get them at the exact right time in the spring though. Their site is a must-visit for anyone interested in games in my view and I agree with the first answer on that.

Several other conventions might be a good place to attend and see many other games as well.

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I don't know about where you live, but over here, there are many board game clubs that welcome people once a week or so. The one near my place has more than two hundred games, and players to play with.

They also organize some events several times a year, where some clubs and shops come together and put their games in common. In these, you have more than 500 games and 100 people to play with. I think it's the best way to discover a new game.

Try and check in your area if you have such a thing.

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Online, I think BoardGameGeek is a great resource. It's kind of to board games what IMDb is to movies - tremendous repository with lots of rulebooks, user reviews, and more. It can be a bit hard to know where to start, but they also have a dedicated recommendations forum, and most people are happy to help.

If you live in an area with a hobby game store or a Meetup group, they're also a great resource for information, and more importantly, the ability to try things out before you buy them (as @shujaa points out).

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When VolcanoLotus first gave this answer, that was my first introduction to BGG. While it is indeed a tremendous repository of game information, and has many different ways games can be recommended, there are a couple of things newbies should be aware of. (1) Very complex interface and steep initial learning curve. (2) Game rankings reflect a bias for a certain sort of gamer that is most attracted to a site like this. To get the most out of the site in terms of recommendations, read next comment: –  Joe Golton Dec 23 '12 at 17:03
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There are 2 sections of reviews at BGG. The section that has thousands of reviews are generally a numerical ranking combined with just a few words which may be more of a personal note than a real review. However, there is another much better review section where I have found terrific information. To get there: Go to an individual game page. Scroll down to the Forums panel. Click on Reviews. Click on one of the reviews that has a high number by it. If you want to read more reviews after this one, don't hit back key on your browser - click "Reviews" link right about the Subject line. –  Joe Golton Dec 23 '12 at 17:08
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I've personally found that the user comments (the numerical ranking/terse impressions) can sometimes be more helpful than the full written reviews. Particularly those of people rating in the 4-6 range on a 10 scale; often people who love the game will just say "great game!" and people who hate it will just say "terrible game!", but the people who were lukewarm on it will often write the things they liked and disliked about it - both valuable pieces of information, and the full reviews tend to skew positive since it's all ameteur. I agree the UI is pretty terrible, though. –  VolcanoLotus Jan 29 '13 at 19:35
    
Agree that it's possible to find interesting comments intermixed among the hundreds (sometimes thousands) of reviews for a given game, especially ranks between 4-7. I've found it time consuming to tease out the better comments. For more popular games (anything in top 300 on BGG), there are usually many lengthy reviews from a variety of perspectives. Where it falls short is for unpopular games that have less than 5 reviews, possibly all from the same perspective of the typical "I own > 100 games including the latest shiny ones" BGG gamer. –  Joe Golton Jan 29 '13 at 22:02
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Staff in game stores (or other customers) are often very helpful. In my experience, small, independent game stores are staffed by people who love games and play lots of them, and they're happy to talk to you about it. Also, many game stores keep store copies so you can try it out before buying.

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By far my best source of recommendations for games that are new to me are my gaming friends. In the past decade, I also find myself using funagain.com for recommendations, as follows:

I start with the All Time Best Sellers list to see what has been popular with gamers over time. If I'm looking for a certain type of game, I choose one of the filters from the drop down menu, which are (various combinations of):

  • Board Games (Kids)
  • Board Games (Family)
  • Board Games (Strategy)
  • Card Games
  • Puzzles (Jigsaw)
  • Puzzles (Logic)
  • Toys

If you click on a certain game, in addition to the description and reviews you also see suggestions for similar games.

For example, clicking on all time best seller Carcassonne shows under the picture various classifications you can click on such as theme and genre, but most importantly "other" which shows things like "games for older children."

Whether or not you choose to buy your game from Funagain Games, you may as well use them as the great resource they are for game recommendations.

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