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Three Times Three Spiel des Jahres Nominees for 2011

W. Eric Martin
United States
North Carolina
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From gallery of W Eric Martin
The Spiel des Jahres juries have spoken, issuing the nominees for Spiel des Jahres (SdJ, Germany's game of the year award), Kinderspiel des Jahres (KdJ, children's game of the year) and the new-for-2011 Kennerspiel des Jahres (KndJ, enthusiast's game of the year). The nominees are:

Spiel des Jahres nominees

Asara, by Wolfgang Kramer and Michael Kiesling (Ravensburger)
Forbidden Island, by Matt Leacock (Gamewright, Schmidt Spiele)
Qwirkle, by Susan McKinley Ross (Mindware, Schmidt Spiele)

Kinderspiel des Jahres nominees

Da ist der Wurm drin, by Carmen Kleinert (Zoch)
Die kleinen Zauberlehrlinge, by Thomas Daum and Violetta Leitner
Monster-Falle, by Inka and Markus Brand (Kosmos)

From gallery of W Eric Martin
Kennerspiel des Jahres nominees

7 Wonders, by Antoine Bauza (Repos Production)
Lancaster, by Matthias Cramer (Queen Games)
Strasbourg, by Stefan Feld (Pegasus Spiele)

Apparently the juries decided to mix things up for 2011. (I say "juries" instead of "jury" as one panel of jurists handles the children's games, while another handles the other two awards.) From 2004 through 2010, the juries have named five nominees for the SdJ and KdJ, while also issuing a list of recommended games and the occasional special award, but for 2011 the juries have reverted to the format used from 1999 to 2003, that being a list of three nominees. For the SdJ, that choice makes sense as a list of five nominees of varying complexities has effectively been split over two awards. For the KdJ, well, now your odds of picking the winner have improved...

Here's the list of recommended titles from the SdJ jury, which includes both simple and more involved games:

Die Burgen von Burgund
Skull & Roses
Sun, Sea & Sand

The SdJ and KndJ winners will be announced on June 27, 2011, while the Kinderspiel des Jahres will be award on July 25, 2011.
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