It’s no mystery that as your collection grows your tastes will likely change.  As they do games may leave our library and move onto gamers who will play them (unless you’re Stephen and you keep everything).  Check out my list of games I don’t play anymore but keep for one reason or another.

5.  The Lord of the Rings

This game has always remained in my collection, if for no other reason than the memories I have of it.  It is a terribly hard game and I can count on one hand the number of times I have won it. I played this a lot throughout high school and early college.  This cooperative set collection game sets 2-5 players on the adventure of 5 little Hobbits making the journey to Mount Doom. As you journey you must collect certain symbols to progress or else you may end up becoming corrupt and be removed from the game.  If the ring bearer ever becomes corrupt EVERYONE loses.

Rating: 7/10
Weight: 2.5/5
MSRP: $39.99 (Out of Print)

Board Game Geek | Amazon

4.  Dead of Winter

Ever wondered what would happen if you had to lead a colony of survivors through the zombie apocalypse?  Dead of Winter puts 2-5 players in that exact position, taking the role of leaders of a struggling colony fending off the oncoming zombie horde.  This game is incredibly thematic and story-centric, with surprise decision making, possible back stabbing, and hidden cooperative elements to tie it all together.  Dead of Winter was one of the first games I acquired during the beginning of the board game renaissance and has remained since we are likely to play it around Halloween or before Walking Dead, but that is about it.

Be sure to check out our full review of Dead of Winter here.

Rating: 6.5/10
Weight: 3/5
MSRP:  $49.99

Board Game Geek | Amazon | Cape Fear Games (use code gethoppy to get 5% off)

3.  Crystal Clans

This unique 2 player card battle game was extremely interesting when I first saw it and I fell in love with it.  Players choose a clan and fight for control of the crystals. Each clan has unique armies and strategies, allowing for plenty of replayability.  4 clans come in the box and there are 4 expansion clans you can purchase as well. I don’t have anything bad to say about the game other than it’s simplicity and wish that there were more clans that acted reactionary to the other player’s moves.  Crystal Clans has been replaced by Dice Throne as my 2 player game of choice but it still makes it to the table every now and again.

Rating: 7.75/10
Weight: 2.6/5
MSRP: $29.99

Board Game Geek | Amazon

2.  Zombicide: Black Plague

Hordes of zombies, medieval fantasy world, tons of characters.  All of these things made me fall in LOVE with Zombicide: Black Plague, in fact this was my first large Kickstarter project.  Zombicide is a cooperative survival dungeon crawler with limitless scenarios to play. Fortunately since I went all in on this Kickstarter I have enough plastic zombies to fill a 5 gallon tub and ensure I never run out.  Surprisingly simple to learn, Zombicide features nonstop action and strategy requiring players work together to complete objectives, gather items, and, of course, KILL ZOMBIES. The tastes of my game group have moved away from this type of game but it is a great game to lead into some of the heavier dungeon crawlers.

Rating: 8/10
Weight: 2.5/5
MSRP: $99.99

Board Game Geek | Amazon | Cape Fear Games (use code gethoppy to get 5% off)

1.  Betrayal at House on the Hill

Betrayal locks 3.-6 players in a haunted house on the hill.  The players must explore the house by revealing tiles and completing the actions on the tile.  You may find magical items, cursed runes, or signs from the dead. Once certain conditions are met the “Haunt” begins.  According to the room the player was in and the omen revealed 1 of 50 scenarios are played. One of my shining achievements in high school was finally playing every betrayal scenario.  That is the sole reason I don’t play this anymore, I just played it too much. It will always stay in my collection though as it has many sentimental memories and some of the my cards are modified to our own house rules.

Rating: 6.5/10
Weight: 2.25/5
MSRP: $49.99

Board Game Geek | Amazon  | Cape Fear Games (use code gethoppy to get 5% off)

Honorable Mention: Magic the Gathering

This is slightly outside of the board gaming category but I go through bouts with Magic where I am super devoted, diving into deck building, learning different metagames, & really being absorbed by the community.  Then other times I couldn’t be more disconnected from what is happening. Magic was my first foray into trading card games, and even if I currently am not playing it, I still occasionally purchase cards to upgrade my decks, so that when the time comes to jump back in, I’m ready.

Rating: 8/10
Weight: 3.25/5
MSRP: AS MUCH AS YOU WANT

Board Game Geek | Amazon | Cape Fear Games (use code gethoppy to get 5% off)