Top 10 Advanced 2 Player Games - Not For A Quick Session! -

Top 10 Advanced 2 Player Games – Not For A Quick Session!

The Broken Meeple
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Top 10 Advanced 2 Player Games – Not For A Quick Session!

FINALLY! Yes sorry this has taken so long but it’s time to start the 2 player game series of Top 10’s!! 3 lists, one for casual/new player friendly games, one for next step/middle of the road games and one for advanced players.



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Top 10 Anticipated Games of 2023 ►
Top 10 Next Step 2 Player Games ►
Top 10 Casual 2 Player Games ►

Who Am I?

One single batchelor from the UK talking about his passion for board games and the people who play them! I support small content creators, board game cafes and go against the status quo when it comes to the board game industry. I give my honest opinions without bias towards any publishers or designers and will not hold back if I don’t like a game.

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00:00 – Introduction and KIENDA Promo
01:06 – Background
02:21 – Number 10
04:04 – Number 9
06:24 – Number 8
08:40 – Number 7
11:37 – Number 6
14:28 – Number 5
17:06 – Number 4
19:28 – Number 3
22:17 – Number 2
26:00 – Number 1
29:30 – Honorable Mentions
36:56 – Please Share and Support The Show

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  1. I wouldn't have classified Five Tribes, Race for the Galaxy, or Pixel Tactics as advanced games, but each of them can be daunting in to play or to learn, so I respect your classification. I feel like once you understand them, especially Race, the games aren't actually too complex, although the decision space for Five Tribes and Pixel Tactics definitely can seize up anyone with even the slightest tendency for analysis paralysis, but I'm probably also biased because I play a lot of games.

  2. Have u ever tried those 3 expansions for five tribes? R they worth it? I love that game and would have to import it if I want to play it, it would be a lil bit expensive

  3. Love Race for the Galaxy so glad it's an honorable mention 😊👍🏻

  4. Great list, fun watch. Try putting honorable mentions before your #1 to build up some tensionbefore revealing it 👍🏼

  5. Sauron attacking a faction in Lord of the Rings will rally them to war, but it's not the only way to do that. The Fellowship player can rally these factions with diplomacy. It's actually very thematic when you consider the books. None of the factions are interested in working together. Some commit little or nothing to stopping Sauron (elves and dwarves), and the human factions require not only being attacked but the Fellowship convincing them to work together.

  6. Love seeing Spirit Island top another list. Stuff I personally like for advanced two players:
    Grand Austria Hotel
    Dune Imperium
    Ark Nova
    Terraforming Mars
    Spirit Island
    Too Many Bones

  7. Hi Luke not visited you for a while but this category really interested me. I play 2-player a lot and advanced I love!
    10>Through the ages, yep great game, good pick!
    9> MTG of course the king of card games I used to play a lot of this back in the '90's, yep showing my age now!
    8> Cerebria – never played this, might have to check it out, sounds interesting.
    7> Hegemony? Never heard of this one, investigation needed!
    6> Star Wars rebellion – been on my wishlist for a while, maybe time to pick up a copy.
    5> Five Tribes – I used to own this but after a few plays it ended up in the bring n buy at UK Games Expo
    4> IMPERIUM – this sounds very interesting but not played it
    3> FF LCG's yeah I really like these my favourites are Netrunner and Warhammer 40K Conquest
    2> Fields of Arle – is it that good? Maybe I should check it out
    1> Spirit Island – great game!

    Really enjoyed your list Luke, some of my favourites are here I also like 18XX games at 2 player, Terraforming Mars (with all the expansions), CHESS, X-Wing, SPACE HULK, Anachrony and Ark Nova.

  8. Hi Luke, great list – as always. My go-to Star Wars game (and I don't like the IP that much) is Star Wars Armada; granted it's a miniature game. This is also soo much better that X-wing imho. Off course SI would be your no. 1. 🙂 Just got my Horizon of SI and finally Feather and Flame. But my number 1 games of all time (by a mile) would be Go on this list – mind you, you can have this on all level-lists, as the Handicap-system is great, and the rules as easy as… (I can make you play in 2 minutes). Others Robinson Crusoe, Underwater Cities, Twilight Struggle. I haven't played it with 2 yet, but City of the Great Machine will for sure soon get right up at my top 5.

  9. Yes, Five Tribes is a 2p game, preferably with Artisans.

  10. 5 Tribes is absolutely better at 2 players, good call, good list.

  11. Fruity Ages sounds like an interesting game

  12. Glad you mentioned Cerebria.. what a hidden gem. One of the most underappreciated games of all time.

  13. Hi, Grand Austria Hotel is top 2 Player Games for me.

  14. Nice timing, since hegemony arrived yesterday. Looking forward to cracking it out. Got crisis and control too.

  15. Yai for you no1🎉 love it so much. And can't wait for the next expansion 🎉

    But generally nice list. Cerebria is definitely not getting enough love. Auch a wonderful game🤩

  16. My favourite: Dual Powers. 2-player only, area majority with dual-use cards, a beautiful board and a very fitting theme that is nicely integrated there.

  17. Link to the video where you played Hegemony?

  18. Some great games in there. Rare for us to overlap so much 🙂

  19. Was surprised that Innovation didnt make this list. I knew you were a huge fan and this works fantastically at 2p.

  20. I have only ever played through the ages in person and with three or four people, but can see that it would be really cool at two. It was such a costly game and I don’t mind set up, si I’m not ready to fire it for the app yet. Perhaps a good dream would be to have a cruise with a bunch of sea days with someone who would play it and then get rid of it and not bring it home and have space in the luggage for tropical souvenirs instead… and then get the app.

    Fields of Arle sounds amazing, but it’s rare that I know there will only be two of us, and I figure I should get my sorta-new Caverna to the table before I get a new game with all those wonderful choices.

  21. Great list Luke, some good games on there.

  22. Solid list. War of the Ring is number 1 for me at two player only, although admittedly it was a huge commitment to learn the rules. Once you learn it though, it is amazing.

    Probably Marvel Champions or Rebellion is #2. Champions is easier to get to the table though.

  23. I recently discovered my personal best 2p heavy game and that is Pax Renaissance 2nd ed. The rules can be daunting to learn but when you do the game flows extremely well and has layers to discover and is the best game time to depth ratio. It averages about an hour which allows for multiple games in a night with easier setup / tear down.

  24. I am having a hard time getting SW:Rebellion to the table lately but I love that game it is such an amazing experience.
    Five Tribes I love it at all player counts but I am biased… It is my favorite game of all time. I love it at two, but three and four is a different experience not better, not worse just different IMHO.

    Imperium… i really want to play it… but to be honest, it looks a little bit intimidating 😅
    I kind of appreciate Spirit Island digitally because I CAN play it with two spirits… on the table… my brain just melts and I start forgetting stuff when playing at two. One spirit… is the sweet spot for me two.

    Great list as always

  25. Not being a Euro board game fan at all I tend to gravitate towards different kinds of games. Descent 2nd edition works well as a two player and with the expansions it can get quite crazy rules wise. Sleeping Gods works really well two player although it's not insanely advanced. Star Trek Fleet Captains works extremely well and can have a lot going on at times. Robotech Attack On The SDF-1 is good 2player and if you do the campaign not only does it have a bit to keep track of but it can take quite awhile. But out of all the games I've played over the last 40 years or so of playing board games and even after 10+ years since it came out the number 1 is easily Mage Knight. Or Star Trek Frontiers take your pick. Nothing else,not anything new,comes close. Especially with all the stuff it's definitely one of the more advanced games out there. And talk about a time sink,maybe TI or a hardcore war game takes longer but not a lot else. I've done 8+ hour games and loved it. Still the number one game of all time for me. I'm sure Paul Grogan would agree. Lol.

  26. Nice list Luke, couple here to look into – I quite like Ark Nova at 2, doesn't really lose anything at that player count imo

  27. I personally consider Memoir ‘44 as advanced.

  28. Istanbul with long paths and neutral merchants is great with 2.

  29. You could debate which list it belongs on but Race for the Galaxy should absolutely be somewhere on either this one or the "Next Steps" one. I can appreciate your analysis and perspective though even if my tastes don't always align with yours. Thanks for the lists! And you're still making me want Hegemony even though I don't have a group to play it with…. 😧

  30. Props for Spirit Island. I feel it is best at 2 player instead of solo. I love the 2 spirit 2 mind synergy.

  31. YES! I only play Cerebria 2 players! I do not hear enough people talk about it as a 2 player game, I feel like an outcast…a smart one, since it is the best way to play it 😉

  32. You may not have played this before (recent crowdfunded game), but Tindaya plays EXCELLENT as a 2-player game. I think I prefer 2-player to solo, but both are great. I haven’t played with 3+… it is very heavy, so I can’t imagine teaching it to most people I know.

    My other favorite 2-player game (that isn’t ONLY for 2 players) is Feast for Odin. I love it solo, but it’s a little more fun with 2. (Not sure if it qualifies as advanced, but it’s certainly not light).

    Favorite 2-player only advanced games: agree with SW Rebellion… and that’s the only advanced 2-player only game I feel like we would play. We have Arkham horror LCG, but couldn’t get into it. We have a bunch of SW destiny stuff headed our way, so that will likely feel similar to MTG.

    I mostly only buy games that play very well at 2 players, but I can’t think of many that play BETTER at 2 than higher player counts. I prefer Feast for Odin at 2. Wonderland’s War is excellent at 2, but I slightly prefer it at 3. I’ve only played Destinies at 2, but I could see that being better at 2 vs. 3. And SW villainous is likely better at 2, but I’ve never played it at 2+.

  33. For the Advanced list, yeah it’s Spirit Island for me too – though I’ve only played it once at two players. All of my other plays were solo.

    I played Netrunner weekly for a few months, and in that time never managed to internalise the rules – so never managed to like it that much.

    Magic is good, but I never played it in an advanced way.

    Paladins would easily have made my list, but I know what you think about that.

    My #1 two player game would be Aeon’s End – but that’s probably “next step” rather than “advanced”

  34. I would add Stronghold as 2-players only advanced game. Also 51st State Master Set and In Too Deep plays the best at 2-players.

  35. I agree about Rebellion. Was my top game, but sadly I haven't played it in four years. It would take me an hour to set-up — which I didn't mind. When I knew someone was coming to play it, I'd have it ready. Goes a lot more quickly with players who don't have AP. Although, as it's hard to find anyone with which to play it, I'll settle with an AP opponent.

    BTW, Imperial Assault is great, too. It can be played 2 player in skirmish mode, but I think it really shines in full campaign mode. (Armada and X-Wing are also good 2 player games; I like Armada better than X-Wing, but I have both.)

    Along the lines of MTG (which I've never played) Dice Masters is (was) a great, customizable 2 player game, too. Like any customizable game, it could be a money pit, though. Now that they've changed the format, I won't buy anything new, but I have a ton of all the old stuff for which I can never find an opponent.

    Twilight Struggle is also a great 2 player game. Like Rebellion, it could go long, especially with the aforementioned AP opponent, and is a game which gets better with each subsequent play.

  36. Eternal kudos for including Imperium! My favourite 1v1 game, gripping theme, very asymmetrical and lots of replay value! Also a treat solo

  37. I guess that the game of go qualifies for advanced games? 🙂 This is a very deep game (with simple rules). Also, Mindbug is a very successful 2-player game, which is more advanced in that combos can be creative.

  38. Good list, note on the FF LCG list you didn’t name the only amazing one Netrunner

  39. Nice list. For advanced two player games – Colonial Twilight, Twilight Struggle and Labyrinth are great. Pax Renaissance is also fantastic with two and I would consider it advanced. Don’t pass on them!

  40. I love Five Tribes but I never play it with 2! It is very difficult to plan 2 turns in a row. With 3-4 players you just wait for your turn and you take the best option.

  41. What are those pink, yellow and red coin tokens doing in your picture of Star Wars Rebellion?

  42. Great list! I feel like Empires of the North could have made this list. Personally I don't like it with more than two, but it's quite snappy at two

  43. Came back to this as hegemony is really grabbing my attention and seeing it plays well at two (with expansion) really ticks the boxes. Games can be hit and miss with my partner so fingers crossed 🤞. I'm also waiting for vindication to deliver. Another game I liked the look of after watching your videos 🎉

  44. Really loved A feast for Odin at 2 !
    Recently i like Brass Birmingham at 2 more and more

  45. Around #5 I thought, “Luke has to mention Arkham Horror”. So glad it made 3rd place. I really hope to see your comments on Scarlet Keys after you play it.

  46. You should definitely check out “Pagan: Fate of Roanoke”. Great mix of deduction / worker placement / deck building elements. Pure two player game. Many regard this as the new Netrunner.

  47. This image of Magic the gathering cards that you had on screen is older than most of your viewers – not a good representation of the current look of MTG. 🙂

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