2022 in Board Games

20 February 2023

BG Stats 3 x 3.Play count:

I was going to make more ‘review of the year’ posts following 2022 in Instagram, 2022 in Veloviewer and 2022 in Books, as keeping records to look back on is one of my favourite things. But then I got involved in revamping the site. And now it’s February. But well, why not, the year is yet young, let’s carry on where I left off.

Courtesy of the fabulous Board Game Stats app here’s the roundup of what I played in 2022. I played 71 different games over 176 plays. Those were very similar numbers to 2021 and way higher than 2020, though a lot less than the few years before that.

1. Cartographers


My most played game of the year was this excellent flip n write game. Maps, polyominoes and colouring in. What more do you need? The game keeps rejuvenating with new map packs which are pretty cheap to pick up. I kind of wish there were more new cards and objectives too - but my friend bought the Heroes edition that has new cards for both. We used to play Patchwork Doodle for a bit of end of evening colouring in, with a tiny bit of strategy, at our board game night, but it’s been ousted by Cartographers this year which has a lot more game to it.

2. & 4. Doppelt So Clever and Clever Cubed

2nd and 3rd in the series of roll n write games from Wolfgang Warsch. They both make things more complicated than the original Ganz Schön Clever game but the reason we play these two more is that me and the friend who own them turn up at board game night more often than the friend who owns the first one. They just come out week after week. We never seem to get much better at them though! They both have score charts telling you how well you did and we regularly get told things like “You’re not actually very clever are you?“.

3. Cahoots

Another end of the evening game. These are the ones that rack up the most plays over the year. This is a pretty simple cooperative card game where you try to play coloured numbered cards onto piles to meet as many objectives as you can. Very easy to play when your brain is tired and quite entertaining.

5. Encore

A much simpler game from the same publisher as the Clever games. Roll dice, cross out coloured squares, try to be the first to finish columns of squares or all the squares in a colour. Another quick game, nothing too taxing.

6. Wingspan


An absolute favourite; I wish I owned this game but am glad I have a friend who has bought it all so that I don’t have to. Gorgeous artwork and components. Whilst I have no problem with being educated I often find that when board games try to be educational they also get boring. This one is done right, make the game interesting and thematic enough that you learn stuff just by enjoying it. That’s a Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher on the box cover, my friend thinks it ought to be “Chopsticks-Tailed”.

7. Parks

More gorgeous artwork. This one has you hiking through the US national parks. That’s an occupation that’s far more cut throat than you think it is at first. There’s more camera left than you would expect but thankfully no one gets eaten by bears. My only problem with this game is that I consistently muddle up which coloured hiker I am as the game comes with various pastel shades and the colours just don’t stick in my head.

I’m surprised by how little I played both Parks and Wingspan in 2022, I’m hoping to do better in 2023.

8. Castles of Burgundy: The Dice Game

Not the most exciting of roll n write games, it got played a few times and then mostly forgotten about. Like it’s big sibling full size version it suffers from looking very dull.

9. Magic the Gathering

A surprise entry at the end of the year as my teenager started playing Magic with their friends and I got a few games in with them as well.

Honourable Mention: Azul

Azul: Summer Pavilion

Everything else I played last year had three or less plays, I’m rather surprised by that. There are a stack of good games with three plays. Special mention for Azul. I played all four versions of it at some point in the year. Summer Pavilion is my favourite, though I’ve only played Queen’s Garden once and would like another go.