2022 is far from over, but there have been a plethora of board game releases in 2022. If one thing is clear, it’s that board game publishers are still going strong by releasing new board game titles. With so many to choose from WiscoDice wanted to drill into five of the best board games of 2022 (so far…).
We did put a few selection criteria in place to help create this list. For our selection we are only selecting complete board games, so no expansions. We gave preference to games we have actually had a chance to play. WiscoDice was not sponsored or received any review copies of the games in this list so any games that we have actually played it is because we played at friends or conventions, bought a copy ourselves, or were able to play them online.
That said, let’s take a look at the best board games of 2022!
Planet Unknown – Adams Apple Games
Planet Unknown from Adam’s Apple Games provides an interesting take on the tile drafting/laying game. In the game, players draft tiles that they will use to colonize their remote planet. Where this game changes things from other similar games is the fact that it utilizes a Lazy Susan for drafting tiles. The active player rotates it any facing and then draws one of two tiles that are immediately in front of them. All of the other players also have to draw from the selection of two tiles in front of them. Tiles have to be placed on their player board and resolve the placement.
This game ranks as Justin’s (The Meeples Champion) favorite game of 2022 for games released up to this point. Between its unique tile drafting mechanics and easy-to-teach rules, it’s obvious to see why this game stands out!
Phantom Ink – Resonym
Phantom Ink from Resonym is our party game choice. This game is a brilliant take putting a new option for party word games. Codenames brought attention that you can have great success with a word game. Phantom Ink really ramps up what Codenames brings to the table.
Players are broken into two teams with one person on each team being the spirit player and the rest being psychic mediums. The spirit players both know what the secret object is. When it is a team’s turn, the mediums will either submit a question to their team’s spirit based on cards that they have or guess what the object is. If a question is asked, the spirit will then answer by writing one letter of the answer at a time.
Dead Reckoning – AEG
Dead Reckoning from AEG was Suzanne’s pick to be on the list. Dead Reckoning is an exploration, territory control, and card crafting/deck building game themed loosely around privateering and pirates. Your deck represents your crew and using their card crafting mechanic you can slowly upgrade those crew to have better skills that strengthen your actions during the game.
This game does feature a decent amount of player interaction including direct player vs. player combat. Of course, you are all playing as pirates in this game. The game excels though at not completely breaking a player’s strategy and encourages combat. It doesn’t force a complete reset of a player back to a beginner state which is nice. Instead, there is a decent reward for winning combats but many ways to find the treasure as a pirate!
Nemesis: Lockdown – Awaken Realms
Nemesis: Lockdown from Awaken Realms is not an expansion, but a true stand-alone sequel game to the original Nemesis. In Nemesis: Lockdown players find themselves exploring a secret base on Mars. This station appears to be dedicated to research on these intruders. The Intruders have evolved though and of course, broken loose. Your character starts this game either as a survivor or as a person working at the station.
As in the original Nemesis game, this is still a semi-cooperative experience. Players will have hidden goals at the beginning of the game. These goals are similar to some of the goals from the first game, but also include immersive things in this game’s experience. With more ways to escape, but the power failing everywhere, it’s a race against the intruders and potentially each other to escape the research station and survive.
This game is outstanding for its thematic experience and immersive gameplay. Each play feels like a cinematic event and you can tell the story of the game as you play the game. There are very few games out there that match rules and game experience so closely together. If there is one knock against this game, it’s the fact that your character may be eliminated well before the end of the game. This can be a huge issue if a player is eliminated early for a game that can take longer playtime. All that said, this game is by far Conesy’s pick for the favorite game released in 2022.
There is still a lot of 2022 to go and several games that may yet come out such as Frosthaven and ISS Vanguard may find their way onto this list. Make sure you listen to our December 2022 episode for all of our year-end wrap-up thoughts!
Beyond the Show
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