Next on the Top 100 is pure exploration in a box! It goes by the name of 7th Continent. You begin the game afflicted with one of the curses included in the game and marooned on a mysterious continent. With only your wits and possibly your companions will you be able to survive long enough to get rid of the curse you carry with you.
7th continent is a vast game that once you understand the system can likely take hours upon hours to win or die. It comes with a great save system that you can do any time you choose to sleep in the game. You can also choose to just keep on playing when you camp in the game because it is very necessary in order to win. We learned that the hard way.
As mentioned the game is pure exploration - you won’t know what is awaiting you around the next corner. Will it help you or hurt you in your adventures. Also depending on certain factors placing might change if you visit them again. Or if you trigger some mechanism you might also permanently (at least for your current play through) alter your map. The curse you are afflicted with can also occasionally change the circumstances of your adventure making playing different curses all a little bit different.
The game is played almost entirely with cards. The map is made out of numbered cards so you know which ones to place in certain locations to build out your map. Your action deck is both your stamina pool as well as how to judge if you are successful when you take certain actions. For example going hunting might require you to turn over 4 cards and depending on how many stars you get out of those cards is how successful you were. However, if you have a weapon you might get bonus stars before you even start flipping cards making it more likely you will get the meat you need to survive!
Admittedly, despite playing this game quite a bit. We’ve never managed to beat the very first curse. We have gotten close though - it is challenging both to find all the objectives you need and to not die of exhaustion before then! That does not hold back our enjoyment of the game. If there was ever a board game where the journey was the point and not the end game this would be the one. It seems every time we crack open this box we are off on another adventure into the great world of the 7th Continent!