Chances of Getting Published


A room with 100 designers, each with their game. Imagine you asked each designer how likely it was that their game would be published. You could add all these numbers up, and work out roughly how many games the designers themselves would expect to be published, out of the group of 100. I'd say the answer would be, very roughly, about 50.

The actual answer is less than 1.

Well under 1% of games are accepted for publication.

These seem like poor odds. What are my chances of getting published, if not even 1% of games are accepted? Should I just give up now?

1% is not your chance of getting published. It's not a lottery. Your success will be overwhelmingly determined by your skill, effort, and attitude, not by chance.

There are all kinds of easy things you can do, to push yourself into the top 50%, then the top 25%, etc.

Publication isn't enough

Getting a game published is a great achievement. However, more than 5,000 games are published every year. Most get a first print run, and then aren't reprinted.

I don't just want to get published. I want to get into the top 100 on BoardGameGeek, and have a game that stands among the giants of the industry. To do this, requires a serious amount of work and introspection. You should not be aiming to make a game that's just good enough. You should be aiming to make a game that's amazing. If you only ever create one such game, you have still excelled.

For the vast, vast majority of board game designers, they will never see one of their games published. That probably includes you.

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