The 10 worst things for anyone who loves board games

Who I am
Steven L. Ken
@stevenlken
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What are the 10 worst things you could do to a board game lover? Let's find out together in this new study

A premise before going further: obviously, the following list is the result of the tastes and experiences of the writer. It may be that things hated by some, for others they are tolerable or even to be encouraged: let's try to give voice to the majority trend and let's take it lightly in any case. Happy reading with our 10 things… worst for those who love board games!



1. Welcome to the Hunger Games

For those who don't know what the Hunger Games consist of, these are brutal competitions that end when only the last participant remains alive. And it is with the same spirit that some people face the evenings of games: animated by a hatred and a competitiveness that would be capable of ruining the pacifist intentions of Gandhi himself.

When one of these people sits at the table with us, there is never a killing of a miniature; a “Ah, did you see? But I had already calculated two turns ago that I would have killed her, now that I have this territory I can do the combo that allows me to have the bonus ... "And he continues pompously for a few minutes to self-incense his brilliant strategy, while you disconnect the brain in a rush of self-preservation. Yours or hers is unknown, because you are on the verge of giving him a slap and you are not the only ones at the table.

2. Honors and Charges

Were you able to make it to the end of the evening without tragedy at the table? Did you manage to contain the Hunger Games and was the victory peacefully awarded? Then the time has come to spoil everything one step away from saying goodbye with a simple phrase: "Whoever has won, makes up for it". Typically this is a phrase reserved for those evenings in which games rich in materials and miniatures are played; however, these games are certainly not famous for their limited duration.



Well, after four hours of play, with your brain melted and sleep dragging you down, you hear them: “Well come on, bravo! Now that you've won, however, put it in order, huh? Eheh ". In an instant the world collapses on you, the miniatures seem to you 400, no longer 40, and the cards are completely shuffled ... "Next time - think disconsolate - I propose Taboo".

3. Bacchus and tobacco 

Everyone is welcome at the game table, but it happens that some behaviors make us question the dogma of hospitality. For example in the case of those who insist on proposing and offering snacks; which are rarely simple and harmless crackers, but involve greasy fingers, scattered crumbs and flying sauces. At this vision the miniatures tremble, the cards flee and the planks call for a merciful end.

The same goes for drinks: I state that a refined glass of wine to accompany a German or a foaming beer to be gargled with an American are blessings. However, these blessings often turn into curses for our games: smudges on the table, overturned glasses and damp hands risk ruining more than food if bad luck assists us. These are risks that we tend to tolerate more willingly in playrooms (where permitted) or when we are guests of friends: in short, we are all alcoholics with the games of others.

Finally, tobacco: of course this topic is very particular, because if you play in playrooms or clubs we can already exclude it. However, it happens that the host of the evenings also coincides with the chimney, or the steamer, of the group: in this case we must arm ourselves with patience and hope that the game chosen for the smoking does not come from our collection. If so, out of all 10 things, smoking is probably among the worst for anyone who loves board games.



So let's continue in this top 10 on the worst things for a lover of board games with ...

4. Failing to complete the campaigns  

Campaign games are the ultimate test of a gaming group's strength: finding dedicated and consistent people to experience adventures over multiple evenings together is one of the reasons why board games are so fascinating. Nice to say, but in reality it works very differently. Unfortunately the average stay of a person in a play group is a few months. This does not mean that she will abandon us, but that she will probably change her habits slightly, will be busy that evening and will be seen more and more rarely. Except then maybe return a few months later on a permanent basis to take the place of another renouncer.

This is the normal chemistry of groups, and in its own way it's also nice, but when it comes to running a campaign it's a catastrophe. We can tell each other what we want, but once a campaign is stopped, the chances of actually ending it are slim. As proof of this, more and more campaign games include the drop in-drop out mechanic, which allows you to vary the group without interrupting a story.

5. Among the worst things: All a balance above the madness 

Sooner or later we had to get there: a joy to the players, it's all about the dice. But it is not the dice in themselves that I want to talk to you (for what already the article that talks about the differences between German and American); rather than their launch. Have you ever noticed that people often have dice-related rituals? There are those who give the typical tip, those who do not want to throw them over the bridge, those who use only one hand, and those who have more, but one category is really hateful: the equilibrists. Yep, because if a nut doesn't rest completely on the surface of the table, but also leans slightly over a drop, it needs to be rolled again. Sometimes, it can be a legitimate request, but there are scenes during games where these people claim to reroll the dice up to 10 times in a row, which the rest of the table hates.



6. Fortune is blind 

... but Bad luck sees very well! We always stay on the subject of dice and alea and think back to those games of Risk and Monopoly in which there was no way: the dice hated us. And it is useless for you to deny having played with it, almost all of us started with these two old friends. It was they who taught us how frustrating it can be to live an evening in which the nut just does not favor us; probably the popularity of these games in Spain also explains why so many of our more experienced players prefer German: childhood trauma. In any case, if you really want to get rid of the whim, you can find out if a nut is rigged by immersing it in water: by doing so you will have the proof that you are simply suffering from chronic bad luck, but at least you are in good company.

7. Unfulfilled expectations 

The more you are, the harder it is to get many heads to agree. This often also translates into the choice of the game: are there new guests, so party game? There is the guy who hates nuts, so German bello tosterello? Is there the chick who wasn't in the countryside, so she folds up on something else? Nonetheless, it is also legitimate to set expectations, indeed it is inevitable. Before the evening we do the count of those present: yes, the right group for Nemesis is excellent. You extract it from the shelf with immense care, already laughing at the thought of the unpredictable deaths that await you. Relive that satisfaction when you manage to save yourself. Read the WhatsApp group, no one has proposed a game ... Great, it's time: "Raga tonight I'll bring a couple of games, ok?". Vaguely interested assents follow.

"Damn how much traffic, what's everyone got tonight?" You'll arrive ten minutes late, never mind. You ring, they open you up. You walk through the door and your heart freezes in your chest: everyone is already sitting around a party game. “Hey welcome! Listen tonight Tizio has brought this new game, it's light and very funny, come by ”And while you repeat to yourself that making scenes and stepping on your feet is to be excluded, because it would betray a mental age of compulsory school, you smile and you approach; you have already decided within yourself that you will not like that game. It might be the new 7Wonders, but you're not going to like it, period.

8. Prescription risk games 

Behind "Unfulfilled expectations", there is actually "Prescription risk games". Be honest, how many of your games have you played more than three times? And how many do you still have to try ever? Sad to say, but the answers can border on numbers close to 50% of the collection in far more cases than any of us would be willing to admit. But what causes this problem? Maybe not having a fixed gaming group: in this case even just putting people together is a business, so if you are a compulsive shopper, good luck starting all your purchases. If you had a steady group, all your problems would be solved, right? 
Wrong, unfortunately. It is even more difficult to come to an agreement, when everyone has a backlog, and what's more, the evenings have to meet everyone's commitments.

There is only one solution, however painful: stop buying games, close the wallet, until, with patience and constancy, we have not really tried all the games in the library. Among other things, we may also discover that many of those we have purchased, convinced by a flamboyant presentation, are decidedly mediocre; which will act as a warning in the future, helping us to spend less and better.

9. Patience is the virtue of patients 

And it takes a lot of patience if you choose to support a game on Kickstarter. The crowdfunding mechanism allows, ed, to "buy in advance" a product, actually financing it, paying for it much less than the commercial price and having access to exclusive content. The problem lies in the fact that often the advance in question is really excessive and a Kickstarter can easily take several years to complete 100% of due shipments. 

This would not be a problem in itself if it were just a matter of waiting; the problem arises when the same game is released in large-scale distribution that we are anxiously awaiting and that will not arrive for a year or more. Unfortunately, this situation affects a large part of the so-called Kickstarter backers, who observe the games on the shelves with their mouth watering, craving their copy that in the meantime has not even been printed in China yet.

And in point 10, the worst of the worst things that can happen to you ...

10. The boss of the worst things that happen to those who love board games: Alea Iacta Est… 

Cesare said once he crossed the Rubicon; this expression does not serve to return to the topic of dice, but to express the agonizing feeling that the step we have just taken cannot be canceled in any way. It's the feeling of tragically ruining a board game. That chill that blocks our legs and crystallizes the present moment, between mutual mute glances. Whether it is a fallen and broken box, whether it is a marvelous mutilated miniature, whether they are components that have flown away or are irrecoverable, it will still be the cause of deep mourning in the heart of the owner; and if they have a hint of empathy, even in those of his friends. 

Like the others, this point is also the result of real life, but in this case it was particularly tragic to endure: one evening, at the end of a grueling game in Kemet, misfortune sat down at the table. Laughing and joking we were tidying up, so I picked up the game board quite casually and with horror I heard the sound of cardboard that tore first and then collapsed. In the first game, I had sliced ​​the board of one of the best games I own in two. I'm still trying to process the trauma today, but I'm afraid it will take a lot longer. That trauma that I hope few or none of you have ever experienced.

Hoping that there are a good number of you who hate these 10 points as much as I do, I wish you a nice evening with your games! 

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