Brawling Brothers Review System

Here at Brawling Brothers, we are all about FUN… But when it comes to rating games, we are SERIOUS!  Our reviews are an important part of our podcast/website and we feel strongly about our system.  While our reviews are a direct reflection of our tastes and values, we don’t want anyone to think these scores are the end of the discussion.  Rather, we want our process and scores to promote discussion and encourage our listeners to interact with the reviewers throughout the process in a smart, profession and passionate way.

There is no science behind a score.  No algorithm that can be run to “get it right”.

Our reviews evolve as a process from playing through a game, talking with others around the table and putting serious thought into why we feel the way we do and looking at how a game stakcs up against other games in the genere.  Reviews are very subjective and we do our best to get it “right” in our eyes, but encourage you to explore titles further and formulate your own opinions.

Our goal with EVERY review is to:

  1. Provide you with the information that will help you determine if a game is worth investing your hard earned money into
  2. Give you a critical view from 2 VERY different perspectives about the good and the bad that a board game has to offer

Majority of our review discussion takes place on our podcast, but here at you can browse our Final Scores as well as review our key points.

Our scoring system is simple and understandable to everyone.  We will each apply a % raging based on a scale of 10-100%.  This gives us the ability to be as expressive as possible, ie: ensuring that the users know the difference between a strong B (+) and a weak B (-).  We feel that elevating the dialogue about each game we review should NOT come at the expense of a score that doesn’t give enough room to include so many different facets (content, theme, components, rules, game play, interaction, art, etc).  In the name of precision, we have decided to adopt the very familiar 100 point scale  to our review system.

Our personal scores will be formulated by assigning a 10-100% to each of the following categories:

  • Game Play


  • Presentation and Execution


  • Theme



Gameplay:  77%

Presentation:  87%

Theme: 81%

Final Score:  82%


Gameplay:  92%

Presentation:  83%

Theme: 89%

Final Score:  88%

Brawling Brothers

Score:  85%

What each score means

Simply put: this is our highest recommendation. There’s no such thing as a truly perfect game, but those that earn a Masterpiece label from Brawling Brothers come as close as we could reasonably hope for.  This game was able to deliver EVERYTHING it said it would and more.  This game will stand the TEST OF TIME and be a favorite, always.

We enthusiastically recommend that you add these games to your to-play list/ buy lists. If we call a game Amazing, that means something about it seriously impressed us, whether it’s an inspired new idea or an exceptional take on an old one. All considered areas are great to amazing (theme, components, etc).  You WILL NOT be disappointed.

These games leave us with something outstanding to remember them by, usually great in certain areas of consideration: theme, rules, components, great game play, interaction, art, well designed flow to game, rule book  or some combination thereof. If we have major complaints, there are more than enough excellent qualities to cancel them out.

Playing a Good game is time well spent. Could it be better? Absolutely. Maybe it lacks ambition.  Maybe it failed to impress us in certain areas.  Maybe it has a few ambiguous rules or other bumps in the road.  Or maybe it’s game play it a tad ‘rough’.  Regardless, we came away from it happy. We think you will, too.

These recommendations come with a boatload of “ifs.” There’s a good game in here somewhere, but in order to find it you’ll have to know where to look and perhaps turn a blind eye to some significant drawbacks.

This is the kind of bland, unremarkable game we’ve mostly forgotten about a day after we finish playing. A mediocre game is not something you should spend your time or money on if you consider either to be precious, but they’ll pass the time if you have nothing better to do.

For one reason or another, these games made us wish we’d never played them. Even if there’s a good idea or two in there somewhere, they’re buried under so many bad ones and poor execution we simply can’t recommend you waste your time on it.

You’re welcome. We just saved you from making a terrible mistake by buying this collection of poorly executed, bad, or unoriginal ideas – even if you played it for free (you didn’t buy it). While even a Bad game generally has some bright spots, an Awful one is consistently unenjoyable.

The silver lining of these dark clouds is that they’re often so poorly made that they crap out after a certain point (if they ever worked at all), so we were spared from any permanent effects that playing a game this terrible might have on our brains.

One of the worst games ever made. Games that score this low are rare, because it’s reserved for those that simply don’t work or are outright frauds – they’ve really got to work for it.