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Need a Recommendation: Gateway Worker Placement


I just finised the Tabletop episode and it was a good one. Game looks interesting and no overly complex concepts for it.

Thanks everyone for the recommendations and i think i might try Lords.


If it’s not too late, I’d recommend Viticulture. There aren’t many spots on the board or text to parse so it’s easy to remember how to play, and with 3 players it isn’t nearly as cutthroat as some worker placement games can be. It also helps that there aren’t that many things to keep track of. It was my and my partner’s first worker placement game, and I’ve taught it to my family (including an 82-year-old grandmother) with very few issues.


Second on Champions of Midgard. You get to place workers, you get to recruit warriors, AND you get to kill monsters! It’s a win-win-win-also sometimes die-win!


What’s He Building In There? is a nice one that tends to fly under the radar. Really simple, but effective. Only problem is it can go a bit long.

I do love the other ones that have been mentioned though.


I am personally interested in Viticulture just not sure my older son would appreciate the theme all that much but thrashing around with vikings he would for sure :slight_smile:


I Like Viticulture, but I don’t think I’d recommend it as a gateway game. There is more going on than meets the eye, and it’s definitely longer than CoM for example.


I thought Viticulture would be an instant hit for my wife and I. We played it once and it felt really flimsy and we both really struggled with bad luck with card draws; it soured me so much because I really wanted to like it but I felt as though it required a consistent, repetitive strategy of “draw all the cards so you can get the ones that work” rather than the sandbox I expected it to be. (to be fair, I have a similar complaint of Terraforming Mars which is widely loved despite this)


One way to mitigate that could be swapping the visitor cards for the ones from the Visitors from the Rhine Valley expansion, which are supposed to be less random and more useful in enhancing your engine.
Though spending around 15$ to try to make the game more to your liking might be a bit much to ask if you haven’t enjoyed the core game.


Yeah, that’s the problem I seem to have with many games. Needing an expansion to make the base game worthwhile? Hard sell for me. If one or the other was a gift, that would certainly be a different story and the reason why even though I bounced off of Viticulture the first time, it’s still on my wishlist.


Fresco, Fresco, Fresco!


Am I the only one who was running his own Tuscan vineyard by the age of 7? Weird…

That makes sense, though! I have heard CoM is a really good gateway game.


Yeah, but it’s a real drag for those of us who have full-time jobs as jarls of medieval viking settlements. I mean, spending all day worrying about the rampaging trolls just outside of town and how much food we need to pack into a longboat; last thing I want to do is sit down after dinner and do even more of it!


I think Viticulture struggles in terms of perception because it looks like a very thinky, strategic game (which it is to a degree), but a large part of being good at the game is being able to adapt to your cards, rather than wasting turns until you get the cards you want. My partner is alternatively excellent and terrible when we play each other because she spends forever planning a strategy for the game at the very beginning, but falls apart when she doesn’t get the cards she wanted. I was able to beat her without fulfilling any wine orders once, because I made good use of the cards I drew.

Obviously not a game for everybody, but I find it works better when thinking of it as a tactical game, rather than a strategic game.


Wow, you must hate Raiders of the North Sea, then!


Lovely game.


Alas, not a worker placement game.

Edit to add: It is a lovely game, though!


Uh oh. I sense a perennial “what is/isn’t a worker placement game?” debate coming along.


I believe, if I’m not mistaken, it’s any game that is about running a temp agency, recruiter, or working as a headhunter.


Well you do place workers…

Surely as a recommendation for someone who would like ‘to venture in the worker placement mechanism’ it’s ideal, no? (the OP never said it had to be ‘a worker placement game.’


I do hope not!