2009 in Review

According to the data at boardgamegeek.com, I played games 626 times in 2009. I played a game about 52 times each month, which isn’t bad at all considering these are almost all played face-to-face with other gamers. I think I played five games online at BrettspielWelt, maybe less than that. I played 235 different games over the course of the year, and more than half of those games were new to me. I cannot imagine that will be the case in 2010. November was the worst month for gaming at only 25 plays and August was a total game fest at 89 plays. 2009 was my first complete year where I was really involved in the hobby, so I’m curious to see how things change over time.

My friend, Mark Jackson, compiles a list of five and dimes for the gaming community. These are games that have gotten at least five or ten plays throughout the year. This is the first year I’ve participated, so here are my lists.

First the dimes:

  • [20] Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age
  • [19] Vs. System
  • [15] World of Warcraft Trading Card Game
  • [14] Cheese Snatching
  • [13] Escalation!
  • [12] Finito!
  • [12] Ra: The Dice Game
  • [11] Duck, Duck, Bruce
  • [10] Big Points
  • [10] Crokinole
  • [10] Harry’s Grand Slam Baseball Game

Now the fives:

  • [9] For Sale
  • [9] Monopoly Deal Card Game
  • [8] Cities
  • [8] Hop Hop Hurray!
  • [7] Archaeology: The Card Game
  • [7] Cheeky Monkey
  • [7] Mow
  • [7] Rat-a-Tat Cat
  • [7] Sushizock im Gockelwok
  • [6] Battleline
  • [6] Hive
  • [6] Power Grid
  • [6] Race for the Galaxy
  • [6] Tier auf Tier
  • [5] Blink
  • [5] Can’t Stop
  • [5] Hey! That’s My Fish!
  • [5] Lord of the Rings – The Confrontation: Deluxe Edition
  • [5] Make ‘n’ Break
  • [5] Marrakesh
  • [5] Sleeping Queens

Looking back on my lists, I think the biggest surprise is just how many games have an exclamation mark in their title. I wonder if that’s normal for board game titles, or if I am somehow drawn to games with an exclamation point. Come to think of it, I have included an exclamation point in the title of the game I’m designing, so maybe I am drawn to them.

If I had to make some predictions as to how this list will change in 2010, I would imagine that Roll Through the Ages and Ra: The Dice Game will be the only games that remain dimes in 2010. Race for the Galaxy will probably move into that list, since I recently taught my wife how to play. My game group usually plays RftG at the end of the evening, often after midnight, which is just too late for this guy to be out on a Tuesday night.Battleline may move into the dime category as well, since that has become a favorite two-player over the last few months.

New additions to the dime list will be Piece o’ Cake and Keltis: Der Weg der Steine, if the last few weeks are any indication of the rest of the year. Both Power Grid and For Sale will stay in the fives, I think. Cheese Snatching and Hop, Hop, Hurray! will also be in the list somewhere. Everything else is anyone’s guess.

2009 was a rough year in many ways, but I really do think that being able to play games regularly helped me get through the tough spots. I plan on playing just as much, or even more in 2010.

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