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Alexandre P.
France
Strasbourg
France
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Hi,

When I began to buy boardgames in spring 2014 it was obvious to me to buy the "classics" I enjoyed (7 wonders, Small world, Dominion ...) and to buy as many expansions for these games as possible.

As I was discovering more and more games, I was buying more and I was filling my gaming library more and more I started to consider/realize that the "classics" are everywhere and so I can play them often without having them. And I also realized that playing as many different games as I do, digging "only" the base game is enough for quite a long.

Do you have any thought on this ?
Do you feel it's the sign that I only glance other most games I try while I should dig games I already know I enjoy ?
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Osiris Saline
Australia
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Absolutely.

I used to own somewhere around 200 games, now I own under 50, and it's due to me realizing friends & game group members will likely own most games/expansions I want to play.

In terms of expansions I also had the same experience, I realized at one point that I used to swamp Arkham Horror with a few small & big box expansions and it pretty much ruined the game, even if myself & other frequent Arkham players didn't realize it at the time (being TOO into a game can make you a bit deluded!)

Nowadays I only play with expansions that genuinely round out games & don't add a lot of new mechanics, so more often than not I stick with the base game.
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mortego

New Kensington
Pennsylvania
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I, too, wanted to own the "Classics" when I first started to buy hobby board games. But there were/are a few classics I know many others had/have so I didn't bother to buy them such as Agricola, The Castles of Burgundy, Pandemic, to name a few...

 
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Inappropriate Andy
United Kingdom
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Like most hobbies, once you dive in you do feel the need to buy everything and it takes a bit of time and maturity to realise you should be more selective.
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Candace Mercer
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Olympia
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My trajectory follows yours. Once you start collecting there are always more games than time and players who are willing. That being said having a nice collection, well, it seems like part of the hobby. Curation, curation, curation. Geektrading is very cool.

One rule I find with expansions: don't buy until you have explored the base game sufficiently. I am looking at all my Chvatils.

I find I would buy aspirationally. Also, I would have a great time playing with the group, but then the game fell flat cause it was the people who gave it life. That is what I have learned.

For a long time I couldn't afford to buy and I got on fairly well just playing other people's games. Then I learned how to buy at better prices, and smarter, and through trading I am at around 100 games, but only about 50% have been played. That being said, I feel some night will be just the right night for Mage Knight and I will be glad it is there.
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Kyle
Canada
Toronto
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6-7 years I'd classic now, dang.

I am now likely to try a game that has held up well over time, and I have never felt the need to own everything, my wife is coming around recently and we offloaded a bunch of long held games consequently.

Expansions I've mostly given up on, in most cases they detract from what was a good clean game. Not adding fun, maybe just complexity (which isn't necessarily deep, just more cogs to rotate). Failing that a lot of my favourite games are sans expansion (dominant species, the gallerist [OK, but the extra art pieces aren't really much in terms of expansion but are great], through the ages, knizia titles, most wargames).
 
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Mike Jones
United States
Gainesville
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I have found the opposite. I find that if I want to try the latest flashy game, someone will own it.

Yet very few people own or even know about the 'classics'.

For example, this Saturday is the monthly game event. I am thinking of taking Die macher, Um Reifenbreite, Black Vienna, El Grande, Indonesia, Big City and Container. No one else will have those and many will not have played them before.

*Edit for an autocorrect (I hate my tablet)
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Honestly, I still want to have the classics in my gaming library. That said, what has changed considerably over the years, is what I consider to be a classic.
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Dave Lartigue
United States
Springfield
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When I got into this hobby 10 years ago my collection grew and grew, but in the past five years I have sought to shrink it. I am much picker now about what I add to it and I don't have a problem getting rid of most stuff. I try to buy and own strictly for what gets played, not for what I *think* I "should" own or what I wish would get played.

I'm fortunate that many classics are owned by people I regularly game with, so I don't have to own them myself.

Honestly, I've come to appreciate the classics more. I don't care much for the current crop of overdesigned overcomplicated foolishness. As much as I love the designer and publisher of, say, Cry Havoc, I doubt there's anything there I can't get from Nexus Ops or from their own Neuroshima Hex. I'd much rather play Steam or El Grande or T&E or Power Grid instead of yet another Box of Obfuscation euro that isn't much different from the last one.
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Cornixt
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Guantanamo wrote:
I have found the opposite. I find that if I want to try the latest flashy game, someone will own it.

Yet very few people own or even know about the 'classics'.


When everyone expects someone else to own the classics, no one does.
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RJD
United States
Quad-Cities
Illinois
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Groups break up, friends move away, and unfortunately their copy of Twilight Imperium with all the coolest expansions is likely going with them. I've found that any game I love enough to consider a classic (or an expansion a necessity) is one I should probably get myself a copy of pronto. I've been in the Hobby a long time, and it doesn't surprise me too much anymore when a game goes OOP, vanishes completely from shelves, and then shoots up in prices online.
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Melody Klein
Israel
Tel Aviv
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I've never aimed specifically for the classics, but rather, for games that appealed to me. With time, experience, and the growth of my collection, the criteria for that have been refined (and continue refining).

Having duplicates in my collection of games my gaming partner has in his isn't a big deal for me, because I'm moving in a month. If I enjoy a game I've played from his collection, there's a good chance I'll get myself a copy.
In the future, when I make some more gaming friends after the move, if they don't have plans of moving away, I might have an issue with owning a copy of something they do as well. I'll deal with that bridge when I get to it.

Either way, that won't have anything to do with a game's status as a "classic" or the lack of same.
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John Burt
United States
Portland
Oregon
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When I started in the hobby, I bought only a few "classics", such as Catan, before I realized that we don't like most of them. After that, every potential purchase was vetted by "try before we buy", and heavy research as a fallback. Consequently, we have very few "classics" in our collection, and those that we do own, we either play regularly or will dump as soon as we need shelf space.

As for assuming that someone else in your group will have a game, that seems foolish: they or you could leave the group, and what if you want to play it with someone else? It seems excessive to buy everything, but it makes sense to own the games you really like, as well as whatever expansions you think will optimize your gameplay experience (and no more).
 
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K S
United States
Tonawanda
New York
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I own several "gateway games" (Catan, Dominion, Carcassonne etc.) not because they are particular favorites of mine, but because I am the primary hobbyist in my play group and 90% of the time I am the finder/purchaser/teacher of games, so I have to keep these on hand to play with new gamers or folks who just aren't interested as getting in "as deep" as I have. If I had a stable play group whose members already owned these titles, I'd probably get rid of them as quickly as I could.
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Chris Graves
United States
Oregon
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I'm lucky to have gaming friends with good libraries that include many Classics. When we play a game of theirs, I put in my One Note folder so I know I don't have to buy it. Like Melody, I can just concentrate on games that move the needle for ME. Even if I moved away, I would have a pretty fun collection of stuff to play with new friends...in an alternate reality...who would have their own games...that I wouldn't have to buy.
 
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Jason
United States
Ogden
Utah
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I've never felt a drive to "buy the 'classics.'" This isn't because the group I game with owns them, but it's usually because I don't have interest in them.

With my group, there's very few people who own hobby games. The ones that do only own a few. For that reason, I tend to purchase any games that I either want to play or have an interest in playing. The down-side of this is that I almost always have to buy before I try.

In regards to expansions, I tend to get them when I want to add a little bit more to a game that's getting a lot of play. I tend to add a Small World expansion fairly regularly, and only have one expansion left that's a "must buy." I love Imperial Assault, but the game gets so little play that it's hard for me to justify picking up expansions.
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Isaac Shalev
United States
Stamford
Connecticut
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I don't necessarily collect the classics, but I do try to play the new mega-hits (ie games that get into the top 50), and am happy to buy them in order to play them. I'll also be happy to trade them away if I don't love them. I don't know how many of the older classics I own, but I've got lots of the newer 'classics' if you know what I mean.

If I love a game, I want to own it, even if I won't get it to the table very often. If I love an IP, and it has a good game, I want to own it. When it eventually gets played, the investment will pay itself off, and every time I show it off to someone, I feel good that I have it, even if we don't play it right then.

Expansions? There are a couple that absolutely make a game, like Scoundrels of Skullport. Mostly though, I'm not that interested in expansions for gameplay. However, I sometimes acquire them because the package of base+expansion is worth more or is easier to move in the trade/secondary market than the base game alone.

I definitely have more games than I have a use for. Of the ~300 games I have, I probably have about 30 I haven't played. It wouldn't shock me if there were 50+ I will never actually play again. And these aren't bad games. I'm talking about games like Acquire, Brass, Cacao, Fresco, Imperial, Last Will, Seasons and Viticulture. But I don't know today which of these I won't play, I'm happy to have them sitting on my shelf, and I'm fortunate enough that I haven't needed to sell them for cash.
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Nicholas Palmer
United States
Athens
Georgia
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I buy games that interest me. Whether they are 50 years old or just came out today, doesn't matter much to me.
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Dave Lartigue
United States
Springfield
Massachusetts
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I have about 150 games and pining over "the one that got away" seems silly to me. If I like a game that someone else owns and they move away or explode or whatever, I'll be fine. If I still want the game I'll buy it then. If it's OOP or more expensive than is reasonable by then, I'll live.
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Alexandre P.
France
Strasbourg
France
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Thanks for all the answers.

candio wrote:
For a long time I couldn't afford to buy and I got on fairly well just playing other people's games. Then I learned how to buy at better prices, and smarter, and through trading I am at around 100 games, but only about 50% have been played.


I try the same thing: on my browser I have a "on sale ?" folder and from time to time I check if some games is now at a more reasonable price for me.

Guantanamo wrote:
I have found the opposite. I find that if I want to try the latest flashy game, someone will own it.

Yet very few people own or even know about the 'classics'.


True: on my boardgame group there are people buying ... a lot. But as they bring new games they may stop to bring the games from the previous month.
For the second part, it seems you're talking about "critics' classics" where I was thinking about best sellers.

quill65 wrote:
When I started in the hobby, I bought only a few "classics", such as Catan, before I realized that we don't like most of them. After that, every potential purchase was vetted by "try before we buy", and heavy research as a fallback. Consequently, we have very few "classics" in our collection, and those that we do own, we either play regularly or will dump as soon as we need shelf space.


The "try before you buy" is a very good advice and I try to apply it when I can but I know that I won't be able to apply this to some games (crowd-funded and/or in English mainly).

Quote:
As for assuming that someone else in your group will have a game, that seems foolish: they or you could leave the group, and what if you want to play it with someone else?


As my fistful of friends own 3-4 copies of Small world and/or 7 Wonders (and my gaming group should have a lot of copies too), I assume that as long as I know 10 boardgamers in an area I would see one copy once in a while and it will be enough.
 
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Jessica Bennett
United States
Oklahoma
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Touchfuzzy wrote:
I buy games that interest me. Whether they are 50 years old or just came out today, doesn't matter much to me.


This is how we buy games. We bought Carcassonne a few months ago, but we purchased it because we thought it would be a fun game. The fact that it's considered a 'classic' was just icing on the cake really. A nice bonus that the game holds up after so long.

All of the games we have we looked into and bought strictly on whether we would enjoy it or not. I really want to get Dominion, because I adore deck building. But I despise Catan for the trading aspect and don't enjoy it, so we've never felt a drive to pick it up.
 
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