Player Type Gift Guide

There are precious few days left before Christmas and hopefully you have most of your shopping done, but just in case you need a few more suggestions, we came up with our player type shopping guide.

The Collector

The collector takes pleasure in the games they own.  It may or may not actually be tied to rarity, or genre, or taste – each collector is different.  But for these dragons, the likelihood that you’ll randomly stumble into something that isn’t already in their hoard is probably rare.  So save yourself the heartache of picking out that one game in a hundred (or seven hundred…) they haven’t bought themselves, and think outside the box – the collector loves their games so much, you might as well effectively give their games the presents!

What to buy them:

Upgrades
Custom bits, upgraded components, metal coins, the works!  Meeple Source is an amazing site to grab upgraded bits to deluxify lots of different games.

Inserts & Organizers
Broken Token provides a ton of after-market in-box organizers for the games your collector loves most.  And if you want to go super-deluxe, check out the offerings from Meeple Realty.

FLGS Gift Cards
This isn’t the cop-out it might seem.  The Collector knows what they want – giving them a gift certificate to their Friendly Local Game Store (or Amazon, whatever) will help them give themselves the gift they want most.

Anything from this list
Josh put together a list of impossible-to-find treasures.  If you show up at your collector’s door with one of these, they a) may not actually own it yet, or b) will be impressed with your commitment.

Find more non-game gifts for your gamer here.


The Cuteness Addict

Does it have kittens? Bright fun colors? Tiny animeeples? Then it’s a big heck yeah! This player loves games with adorable art and cute themes. Games that bring a smile to your face are undoubtedly going to please them.

What to buy them:

Sparkle*Kitty
This a rainbowsplosion of silly words and awesome princesses. The evil Sparkle*Kitty has trapped the princesses in towers and they must use their magic words to free themselves. Playing 3-8 really well, this hand management game is great for parties, entertaining families as well as a bunch of relatively silly adults. You can see my full review here.

Doughnut Drive-Thru
You can’t get much cuter than donuts with happy little faces! This 2–4 Player game is actually a light worker placement mixed with dice rolling where you’ll be trying to out bake your opponents. Warning: This game will make you ravenous for donuts. Check out the full review here.

Tem-Purr-A
What happens when you take cats to an all-you-can-eat sushi buffet? A Russian roulette style feast where everyone is trying to pack in as much sushi as they can before getting a dreaded tummy-ache! Tem-Purr-A is a 3–10 Player push-your-luck game with some of the cutest kitties around. Watch it beat out Exploding Kittens in our video review here!


The Traditionalist

This player likes games that feel classic, rule sets that are thinned to preciseness. This player prefers to the antique art of gaming over the flashy cult of the new.

What to buy them:

Mexica
Iello’s recent reprint of this 2002 game is a gorgeous implementation of a relatively simple city-building simulation. It’s easy to learn, but still thinky in all the right ways.

Troyes
Recently back in print, this 2010 game features a mechanism for drafting dice that’s lean and efficient rather than fussy. This is the kind of game that reminds us how a pared-down set of rules can take you a long way.

Mangrovia
This game has flown under the radar since it came out in 2014. And even though it’s relatively new, it feels like an old classic. Sure, it’s a curiously abstract game of area majority and set collection–but these old-timey mechanisms feel as homey as a hearthfire.

El Grande
From 1995, this old chestnut still holds up. It’s got a bland board, a barrel full of colorful meeples, and a sparse set of rules–but it all comes together with a kind of minimalist perfection. A collection essential for those who like their games sophisticated and aged.


The Plodder

They often shun fast play and light rules in favor of fiddly mechanics and meticulous gameplay.
It’s not a matter of analysis paralysis so much as an enjoyment of slow, methodical play.

What to buy them:

Bios: Megafauna
A meticulous area control game about evolution and cultural advancement, with turns that span centuries and lots of random disasters. Plays 1-4, but is best with 1-2.
You can read our full review here.

Roads & Boats
A slow burn of a game about building up an empire by shuffling resources around and building production facilities, with a big emphasis on creating a network of roads and waterways to move everything around. It plays 1-4 but is best with 2 or more.
You can read our full review here.

Neanderthal
A game that pulls no punches (and arguably takes a fair number of cheap shots) as players work with or against each other as they attempt to help their chosen species of protohuman survive life in 43,000 BC. Supports 1-3 players with both co-op and competitive variants, though co-op is the better choice.
You can read our full review here.


The Art Lover

This type of board gamer is the first to comment on the look of a game. While how the game plays is also important the art lover will be put off by boring visuals and sub-par illustrations. Conversely a so-so game will get a slight bump to “good” if it looks stunning.

What to buy them:

Herbaceous
This gem of a set collection game has gorgeous illustrations by Beth Sobel and is a real crowd pleaser among both seasoned and newer players. You can see our Game in a minute on Herbaceous here.

Trekking The National Parks
This super fun game pits players against each other as they try and visit National Parks across the US. This game features a full deck of uniquely illustrated National Parks cards sure to delight every art appreciator. Watch our full review of Trekking The National Parks here.

What kind of gamer are you shopping for? Need suggestions? Ask us for help in the comments below!

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