Designers: Adrian Adamescu, Daryl Andrews

Probably the only game about building stained glass windows you’re likely to play. At the start of the game, players will choose a window pattern for their stained window, and then attempt to complete that pattern via dice drafting. Along the way, they’ll try to earn victory points by completing objectives on a couple of randomly drawn objective cards.

Sagrada takes about 30 minutes to play, looks extremely attractive and inviting on the table, and is easily grokked by even non-gamers. The primary downside is that the tools (a side mechanic you can use to mitigate bad rolls) tend to be a tad complex compared to the rest of the game. I’d consider playing the first game without them, even though they are essential for more competitive play to mitigate bad luck rolling.

Key Mechanic: Dice Drafting. Each round, one player rolls dice equal to twice the number of players plus one (i.e. 7 in a 3-player game). They then choose one die to add to their window, and then other players will choose clockwise until everyone has chosen, and then it goes back around (thus the player who rolls dice will get first and last pick).

One of the reasons that I love this game is that I love rolling dice, but I hate just rooting for big numbers. In Sagrada, you typically have a good reason to root for almost any number on the die. Still, just a great, great game and one of my surprise hits.

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(Photo Credit: Board Game Quest)