Do People Still Play Board Games?

Board games are a booming industry. In 1955, around fifty board games were published. In 2015, over five thousand were published.

This is because board games are now vastly better in every way. Classics like Chess, Go, and Scrabble stand the test of time, but things have come a very long way since 20th-century mass-market trash like Monopoly, Sorry, and Trivial Pursuit. Long-dead are things like rolling dice to move a pawn around a board, and drawing a card that says "Lose a turn." Newer board games are rapidly displacing the mass-market ones.

Today's board games are simpler, more engaging, more beautiful, and more strategic. Modern board games appeal to everyone, not just children, hobbyists, and bored people during a blackout.

Board games are not nostalgia, made obsolete by video games. They have advantages over their digital cousins. Board games are a social experience, which digital games are not. People want to get away from screens.

A board game is also the best way to play that specific game. Would you rather play Chess on a computer screen, or with a real Chess set? The best board games often also become apps, but that's secondary.

Catan? Never heard of it

Have you heard of modern board games Catan, Ticket To Ride, or Codenames? If not, please give them a go. They're a fantastic activity.

In any industry, most works are built on the shoulders of previous works. If the only games you're familiar with are from 50-100 years ago, and you're designing a game, your chances of creating a great game by today's standards, and getting published, are zero. You're also probably creating something that already exists. If you're just designing for your class, for friends, or for fun, this isn't a problem. If you do want to get published, you'll need to join a board games club, and do some catching up.

People who make great board games are passionate about playing and designing board games. If you're designing a board game as some kind of ill-conceived business venture, but you're not actually interested in board games, you shouldn't be here. You will definitely not succeed.


Welcome to the wonderful world of modern board games (and board game design.)

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