Before I started visiting Board Game Geek on a daily basis and blogging about board games, my board game collection was typical. My cupboards growing up and now contained all of the classic board and card games: Chess, Monopoly, Scrabble, etc. Then my brother got me a copy of Ingenious and told me about games that were ‘card driven.’ Since then my board game collection has improved. And because I love numbers, below is a numerical comparison.
Board Game Geek (BGG) catalogs 48,190 board games (as of this writing). From their website:
Every game can be given a rating from 1 to 10. These ratings are entirely subjective but the suggested guidelines are:
* 10 – Outstanding. Always want to play and expect this will never change.
* 9 – Excellent game. Always want to play it.
* 8 – Very good game. I like to play. Probably I’ll suggest it and will never turn down a game.
* 7 – Good game, usually willing to play.
* 6 – Ok game, some fun or challenge at least, will play sporadically if in the right mood.
* 5 – Average game, slightly boring, take it or leave it.
* 4 – Not so good, it doesn’t get me but could be talked into it on occasion.
* 3 – Likely won’t play this again although could be convinced. Bad.
* 2 – Extremely annoying game. I plan to never play this again.
* 1 – Defies description of a game. You won’t catch me dead playing this. Clearly broken.
Of these, 6,349 games have enough user ratings to garner a ranking based on the “Geek Rating.” That number but is basically the user average rating with some filtering/weighting/black magic to make the ratings more accurate.
Fun Fact: The highest rated games are Puerto Rico and Agricola at 8.20/10. The lowest of the ranked games is Tic-Tac-Toe with a score of 2.89.
So using that rating system, I rated my all the games that I own and compared those numbers to the BGG numbers. Here are the results:
18 “Classic” Games
Average Personal Rating of my Games Collection: 5.1
Average Geek Rating of my Games Collection: 5.8
11 “New” Games
Average Personal Rating of my Games Collection: 7.9
Average Geek Rating of my Games Collection: 7.1
All of my Games Combined
Average Personal Rating of my Games Collection: 6.1
Average Geek Rating of my Games Collection: 6.2
If I look back at the BGG ratings guide, I’d say I have to agree overall. That’s not to say all of my games were bad – I had some good games. But previously, board games were merely an ‘average’ activity or even ‘somewhat boring’. Generally when friends would come over we might have played a board game but it usually wasn’t my first choice.
Now when I get together with family and friends I’m usually bringing a board game (or two) along because I know it will be played. People find these games ‘fun’ and are ‘usually willing to play.’ I’ll still play “classic” games, but the “new” games are certainly going to see more playing time.
My games collection has certainly improved. That’s not to say all of my purchases have been winners, but I’m glad I’ve found this hobby. I just wonder what my kids will think of the games that have always been in their cupboards…?