Coming in at #68 on Mark’s list is Nexus Ops. This may need to be played this weekend. My daughter and I enjoy it a lot. We’ve yet to get anyone else into a game yet. It may be the amount of amazing pieces and the cool module board, and the cards and dice that puts some people off. I remember we did get dad in on a game once, and he wasn’t crazy about it, and he’s usually up for anything. This one he never quite got his brain around, although I’m sure he could if he wanted to. So unlike many of the previous games on Mark’s list, Nexus Ops is not a great non-gamers game. However, if someone is willing to take the next step, to learn a couple rules, this is a great one. It takes less than an hour. There’s not all the waiting that I experienced in the one game of Axis and Allies (a game with a similar system) that I played–me: let’s attack now. Partner: we have to build up our forces more. Me 30 minutes later: now? Partner: we need more forces. Me more later: ok, I’m attacking. Partner: I donnnnt knooooow. Nexus Ops on the other hand rewards getting after it–exploring uncharted territory, capturing the monolith, and going after your opponent. Resource management is important, but if you sit back and wait until you’re ready, the game’s over and you lose.
Besides being fun, look at the cool neon soldiers and monsters (at least in the old version) you get to control over the barren, but pretty, alien world. Add managing your secret missions and surprising your opponent with a doozy to win the game, and you have a great game.
After writing this, I did indeed challenge my daughter to a game. She beat me last time our forces clashed, but this time I was able to come up with a victory.