The BoardGameGeek’s rank list of all-time best games is a greasy pole – things go up, things go down. Yet, topping the list even temporarily is a major achievement in itself, and Brass: Birmingham managed to dislodge Gloomhaven shortly and make headlines as the first game to have done so in nearly five games.
Brass: Birmingham Gets Its Moment in the Spotlight
Of course, BoardGameGeek’s ranking system is hardly perfect. Gloomhaven fans may have felt the urge to log back in and make sure they vote the game up just in case, and as a result, Brass: Birmingham has been relegated to the second spot once again. However, there is no foul play, BoardGameGeek site owner W. Eric Martin said in a blog post, noting that both games have a lot of players ranking them actively.
The pair is likely to continue vying for the first spot, with the most threatening rivals outside of these two being Terraforming Mars, Twilight Imperium: Fourth Edition and Ark Nova, which have all been attracting a lot of interest. Brass: Birmingham has fewer votes than most of these games, but it has been doing well. The game is a sequel to the original published back in 2007 that is set in the Industrial Revolution in the United Kingdom.
In the game, players are tasked with developing logistics networks, producing and mining materials, and making the economy tick. Brass: Birmingham is unique in its scoring conditions as it enables players to collaborate and advance their personal agendas still. The core gameplay is beautiful and the game itself – is a feather in any player’s collection.
Still, the recent surge to prominence should definitely give Brass: Birmingham a bit of fresh exposure, which should give it a leg-up further up the ladder. Of course, many are sceptical about the objectivity of the scale, but so is Martin who has not denied some of the system’s flaws.
To him, topping the rank list is not absolute proof of a game’s greatness, but rather proof that a game is found great by a significant number of players who have put it through extensive playthroughs and their rankings reflect personal experiences which are overwhelmingly positive.
Brass: Birmingham is designed by Gavan Brown, Martin Wallace, and Matt Tolman and published by Roxley Games. The game is set for 2-4 players and plays over 60-120 minutes.