John OwenUnited States
BGG Top Ten June 2006
1 Puerto Rico ($54.95)
2 Caylus (currently out of print)
3 Euphrat & Tigris (currently out of print)
4 Power Grid ($49.95)
5 Princes of Florence (currently out of print)
6 El Grande (currently out of print)
7 Ra (currently out of print)
8 Die Macher (currently out of print)
9 Age of Steam ($89.99)
10 Wallenstein (currently out of print)
7 out of those 10 are currently out of print. AoS is available from Eagle, but probably only because they printed too many copies and there wasn’t enough demand, otherwise it would be out of print right now as well. Puerto Rico and Power Grid have been surprisingly popular, proving their longevity even if I personally don’t love either one of them. From this list, I think that they are the only ones that have been in print with no lapses for nearly a couple decades now. The rest have received occasional reprints, but have not stayed in print (I think that El Grande has maybe been in print throughout the years in Germany, but it’s been off and on in the States).
Let’s remember that hobby culture is ephemeral. No one outside our hobby cares about these games, which isn’t too surprising considering that relatively few within the hobby care about these games. And even if you care about these games from 15 years ago, do you care about the ‘hot’ games from 15 years before that, 1991? How about 1976? 1961? How much do you know about the gaming cultures of 1921?
15 years from now, will Gloomhaven, Pandemic Legacy, Brass: Birmingham, Terraforming Mars, etc still be the darlings of hobby gamers? We know that they will not. And even if I’d rather play any of the 2006 games over any of the 2021 Top Ten games, I don’t think that it’s a terrible thing that these 2006 games are mostly forgotten. The popular games that appeal to a broad audience will continue to be played. The ‘hobby’ games that this site champions will continue to be cycled through, mostly disposable. What games from the past 30 years will really survive and be played 100 years from now? I don’t expect to be around to find out, but chances are very good that most of the games that you and I love from the past 30 years will be forgotten. Just like you and I will likely be forgotten. So it goes.
I didn’t mean to write about any of this. This post was supposed to be about how much it would cost to buy every game in the BGG Top 10 right now at retail prices.
BGG Top 10 March 2021
1 Gloomhaven $140.00
2 Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 $69.99
3 Brass: Birmingham $69.99
4 Terraforming Mars $69.95
5 Twilight Imperium: Fourth Edition $149.95
6 Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilization $69.99
7 Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion $49.99
8 Gaia Project $99.99
9 Star Wars: Rebellion $99.95
10 Twilight Struggle $65
I was talking to a friend about the world of hobby gaming. He couldn’t believe that these were the most popular games among self-described gamers (it probably didn’t help that he was forming his opinions off of my descriptions of these games, and I’m hardly unbiased in my disgust at the bloat that my fellow gamers seem to love). Anyhow, to purchase all of these games, to get your ‘starter kit’ of the 10 most popular games according to those who ought to know, you’d be spending $884.80. That’s not to mention the Hotness. Our new-to-hobby-gaming enthusiast may want to also pick up whatever the Top 10 Hot games are to join in on the conversation of what is happening Right Now. That’s another $500+. Sure, sure, online discounts. Let’s say an even $1000.00 to get up-to-date with the “best” of what’s happening right now.
These are all fine games, sure, as good as the best of 1991 or 1976.
They will be forgotten.
You know what will still be played in 100 years? Haggis and Plus-Minus Jass and Hearts. Because my grandkids will have a cheap deck of cards and some freely available rules.
And so begins the campaign for Haggis and Plus-Minus Jass and Hearts to be included in the 2121 BGG Top 10. This is the long game, folks. Join me and we can change the future.
But now I will tell the lineage and the names of the heroes, and of the long sea-paths and the deeds
Just another bgg blog about playing games.
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