I watched a great video review by Joel Eddy (Drive Thru Review) where he talked about his top games, but also why he dislikes making “Top ___” lists.
And I agree wholeheartedly with his opinion, that games depend so much more on who you are playing with, where and when, and under what circumstances.
I find one shortcoming of a simple ranking system is that you can’t properly take those factors into account. And those are huge factors for me.
Terra Mystica or Robinson Crusoe are phenomenal games that I will play as often as possible but I avoid if it’s going to be a group of distracted players, or I know a player will suffer from analysis paralysis (AP).
Conversely Nox or Guillotine both simpler games, can be lots of fun with a more social group but I would consider them a waste of valuable time if serious gamers were coming over.
What I attempt to do is choose a couple games from a genre I think my guests would like and let them make a choice.
Isn’t the idea for everyone to have fun?
Now that doesn’t mean everyone has to win 🙂
Could you make a “top 5 games” list if asked?