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Subject: Spiraling down the board gaming binge buy rss

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Tal Lavi
Israel
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Hello my friends at bgg.
A couple of days ago I talked about getting into the hobby, and ordering 3 (4?) games.
Those are Smash Up (+Expansion), Rex, Cosmic Encounter.

The games haven't even arrived yet, I still haven't checked if I even like any of them and I have no idea if my group of friends are even willing to play some table top games, and I already find myself browsing different shops and looking at so many games I can't help but buying.

I wanted to start with just 1 game and ended up with 3 + and expansion, now that I saw someone recommend Cutthroat Caverns and watching some reviews / gameplay, I already have the game in the checkout window on my 2nd tab.

How do you stop yourself from binge buying? is there a rule of thumb for how many games you can buy per month / per games completed?

I just can't stop and have a mental image of how cool its going to be playing this or that game.
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Monica Elida Forssell
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Yeah, that road is very painful to go down.....I struggle with it too. My luck has it that I am running out of space to store my games, and I won`t be moving any time soon.
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Greg
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This question came up a few months ago, so I'm just going to copy and paste what I wrote then.

I treat board games like any unnecessary item and I show them the same policy I do towards any large purchase. I never impulse buy. If I have a desire for something that I don't need, it gets filed away and it has to go through a vetting process before I finally pull the trigger. Through that time, I research a game to see if it's something I will truly play regularly. I read and watch reviews. I watch playthroughs and read the rulebook. If it's on Tabletop Simulator or VASSAL, I download it and play a turn or two solo. Or I'll play on one of the online sites. If it has an app and it's only a couple bucks, I'll purchase that and try it out. I'll check it out from the library at my local board game cafe if they have it and get it played. If my friends buy it, it immediately comes off the list.

After I understand and have a feel of the game, I look back over those months and honestly evaluate how many times I would have played it. There are many games that I know I would love, but I just don't have the players to support it. I would own every Vital Lacerda game out there, but I don't have the group to support that.

Also, I restrict the amount of space I allow my board games to take up in my apartment and that space is tiny, so I have to consider what game I would get rid of to make room for the new one before I buy it. If a game hasn't been played in a year, out it goes. It's an easy choice.

Once I decide that a game is worth purchasing, I wait for it to be on sale. I know what the prices normally are and I wait for the price to be discounted a decent amount. This search can take months by itself. Then and only then do I purchase it.

This whole process can take months, even a year or more. Most games die in that process somewhere. And all the research and time I spent learning the game actually feeds my addiction in some ways. Just playing with the rules system in my head is oftentimes enough.

Anyway, that's how I handle it. It's not so much the money as I just don't like having a ton of things in my apartment.
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Daily Grind
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The more I play, the more discerning I get. I bought similarly when I first started, but once I realized what worked for me and my group, I really started to get more critical about my purchase decisions.

So I tend to tag a game I'm interested in, and then I'll revisit it in a week and see if I feel the same way about it. I also don't have unplayed games in my closet.

But then again I also don't have an addictive personality, so what works for me might not work for others
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maf man
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TalLavi wrote:

How do you stop yourself from binge buying? is there a rule of thumb for how many games you can buy per month / per games completed?

ask yourself what negatives there would be if you kept buying and figure out how to get rid of those.

My only negative with buying games is the loss of money so I put a cap on how much I spend. I now am working on getting around that with the help of pnp games (thats "print and play" games, free games you find here but you have to make them). So not only do I buy less games but the money I spend on supples not only gets me new games but also a fun crafting hobby.

I don't like the buying limit that most people suggest that says you can't buy if you haven't played a game because I have a handful of games I buy knowing full well I wont play them till next year when I see the group of friends that I see only once a year.
 
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Chris Graves
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It is a very hard thing to keep in check for me too. I seem to find a way to justify these purchases and then I feel guilty for buying them. All I can say is you have to tell yourself NO. Many people, including myself, have a bunch of unplayed games on the shelf when we make additional purchases. The ideal situation would be to play the games before buying new ones. Since you have several new games, and you don't actually have a solid group of players yet, I'd make sure to hang tight before you buy a lot more games, especially until you figure out what kinds of games your group likes.
 
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John Burt
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If you feel you're developing an "acquisition problem", it may not help to deny yourself, which can lead to the very binge buying you're trying to avoid. Instead, follow Greg's advice above, and develop the attitude that, 1) you're for sure going to buy games, and that's OK, and 2) if you're going to buy games, you're better off only getting the best, most playable games you can buy. Finding the best games for you will take some research, time and effort, and you should also be playing more games to know what you like. All of that will slow your buying down and increase the chances that you own fewer games, but most of the ones you own will be great games that you can play.
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TalLavi wrote:
Hello my friends at bgg.
A couple of days ago I talked about getting into the hobby, and ordering 3 (4?) games.
Those are Smash Up (+Expansion), Rex, Cosmic Encounter.

The games haven't even arrived yet, I still haven't checked if I even like any of them and I have no idea if my group of friends are even willing to play some table top games, and I already find myself browsing different shops and looking at so many games I can't help but buying.

I wanted to start with just 1 game and ended up with 3 + and expansion, now that I saw someone recommend Cutthroat Caverns and watching some reviews / gameplay, I already have the game in the checkout window on my 2nd tab.

How do you stop yourself from binge buying? is there a rule of thumb for how many games you can buy per month / per games completed?

I just can't stop and have a mental image of how cool its going to be playing this or that game.


If your friends will not join in your journey down the road of gaming, then there is a high chance your purchasing will greatly diminish.
 
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Tal Lavi
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@maf man
I already made a P'n'P version of The Duke and CaH.
The Duke since it looked super cool, but I know it won't see much play and CaH for the sole reason of me working at a printhouse so I can just print it for free and save the money + shipping.

@Greg
Its my nature to research everything from every angle before buying.
Be it my phone, my PC, or even my games, they all have at least 3+ hours of videos, manual reading, play through and reviews before I decide on buying.

About the price, I live in Israel so everything is super expensive, there are a few cheap websites that do work and are already at such a low price, that I doubt anymore sales are going to happen, and even if they do I wont wait for a 5$ discount on a 30$ game.
That being said you are right about waiting for me to play with my group and figure out what games will fit with us, though even if they don't like a certain game I do, I think I'll still buy it and play with other people from MeetUp or Facebook.

My reasoning behind Cutthroat Caverns is that its a different type of game from the other 3, a co-op "take that" kinda game, though it has some elements with the other games since they feature some sort of "co-op" and have they're own share of "take that" moments.

Also how many games should I get to establish my taste?
Is 3 enough? I thought of adding a co-op game in the mix just to see how it works, but no matter how many co-op games and euros I check, none seem to catch my eye.

co-op just seem boring and not so well done, while euros just bore me to death.

Thanks for the advice guys, if you were in my shoes would you order the 4th game and call it quits be it now or after the other games arrive and my curiosity still hasn't abide, or should I just make do with 3 games (2 seeing as Rex isn't something thats going to come out anytime soon with inexperienced gamers).

Cheers.

BTW, like I mentioned most games in Israel are ridiculously over priced and I am buying most of them for about 1/2 ~ 3/4 of the market price here.
So even second hand, I can sell most games for a profit.

For example I bought Rex for 40$ when it sells for 90$ at stores.
Smash Up + AL9000 for 50$ while the base game is 45$
Cosmic Encounter 40$ compared to 80$
Cutthroat Caverns is 30$ when its not even being sold here, I did see someone selling a second hand copy for about 40$ online, and it got snatched.

So yea, I have a feeling that even if it goes bad, I can still sell it to one of the retail stores (most of them buy and sell second hand) and even make a bit of money.
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James Thompson
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I lose all the games... It's fun but!
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I know the feeling mate...

I started out only wanting the MB Gamemaster series (Axis & Allies, Fortress America, Conquest of the Empire & Ikusa (forget Broadsides & Boarding Parties)...

... for (get this!!) a cheaper alternative to buying more and more miniatures and codexes etc for Warhammer 40,000!!

I now have all those... and a buuuuuunch more that I had no idea about until a stepped off into the boardgaming abyss!!
 
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Rebecca Jensen
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Do you live close to a Friendly Local Game Store? (FLGS)

A good FLGS typically has a big library full of games that you can sit down and play in-store. There may also be a 'meetup' board, where you can post that you're seeking other players to play a particular game, or that you're seeking a regular board game group. Plus, the FLGS may also have special game nights that feature new (to you) games.

Playing (but not buying) games at your FLGS can help scratch that "I want to play a new game" itch, for the lower cost of the drinks and snacks you consume while at the store.
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Tal Lavi
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PlayBosco wrote:
Do you live close to a Friendly Local Game Store? (FLGS)

A good FLGS typically has a big library full of games that you can sit down and play in-store. There may also be a 'meetup' board, where you can post that you're seeking other players to play a particular game, or that you're seeking a regular board game group. Plus, the FLGS may also have special game nights that feature new (to you) games.

Playing (but not buying) games at your FLGS can help scratch that "I want to play a new game" itch, for the lower cost of the drinks and snacks you consume while at the store.

Not really, there are a few one hour drive places, but they usually only do it on holidays.

There is a MeetUp group and another Facebook group, but since its a small country and board gaming usually stops at monopoly, I think my best chances of meeting a group is starting one.

I think the MeetUp group is about 350~ people, if I see my friends aren't into it I'll schedule a session in the local library, if the people are normal I might get the ball rolling with them.
 
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Mauricio Montoya
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You may be a pure collector (gotta catch 'em all) and you actually want to HAVE a lot of games fast, but if you actually prefer to have a collection of games that get played you'd better avoid this particular trapping, specially at the beginning:

"I'm gonna buy X because I don't have that type of game in my collection"

Not every game is good, not every type of game or mechanic is gonna work well with you, and even if you like them your gaming group may think otherwise. Buy after you have tried/investigated enough and you're sure you and your players are gonna like it beyond the first play.

My advice to people that are just getting into this hobby (and any other hobby) is that they don't buy a lot of stuff at the beginning. Every game looks interesting and so good at first because you really don't know any better and don't have standards to compare them against, and a lot of those "fist few months" games in every collection end up gathering dust because you realize a bit later that they were not so good after two or three plays, or you buy a much better game that uses the same mechanics and takes their place before you got the chance to play them more than once or twice.

It's also very important to keep in mind that most detailed reviews online tend to be from people who already like the game, because people who dislike them don't bother to write a lot about them, so you will always find at least a shining review (or ten) about every game out there regardless of its real quality, be careful.

So, ordering 3 "take that" games at once and then discovering that the first one is bad and the other two are okay but you don't like that mechanic very much, leaves you with 3 duds instead of only one.

It's better to look for a store or gaming groups in your city where you can go and try a few more games, actually play them with other people, and share your opinions with more seasoned gamers that can recommend you better alternatives or confirm your initial impressions about the games that interest you.
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Tal Lavi
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@Mauricio Montoya
First of all, I know I can trust the taste of a man with an Okami profile picture.

I understand the dont buy X because I don't have it in the collection.

Like I said I never buy anything without doing proper research, Like I said I wanted a co-op or euro game since I don't have it in my collection, but after proper research.
I gotta agree with you, some people are biased and unless its hands-on you can never know.

Like I said, very hard to find games here, only a handful of stores sell games along the line of 3~4 BIG stores that will have game nights and those are usually on holidays.

I'll try and see if I see something interesting on MeetUp, but again super small group spread across the country, I'll be lucky to land something thats in an hours drive.
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Rebecca Jensen
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TalLavi wrote:
PlayBosco wrote:
Do you live close to a Friendly Local Game Store? (FLGS)

A good FLGS typically has a big library full of games that you can sit down and play in-store. There may also be a 'meetup' board, where you can post that you're seeking other players to play a particular game, or that you're seeking a regular board game group. Plus, the FLGS may also have special game nights that feature new (to you) games.

Playing (but not buying) games at your FLGS can help scratch that "I want to play a new game" itch, for the lower cost of the drinks and snacks you consume while at the store.

Not really, there are a few one hour drive places, but they usually only do it on holidays.

There is a MeetUp group and another Facebook group, but since its a small country and board gaming usually stops at monopoly, I think my best chances of meeting a group is starting one.

I think the MeetUp group is about 350~ people, if I see my friends aren't into it I'll schedule a session in the local library, if the people are normal I might get the ball rolling with them.


I would be optimistic about forming a game group out of your friends. That's what I've done. None of my friends are as obsessed with games as I am, but I often bring games to social gatherings, and invite small groups over for game nights. So while my friends aren't as rabid for games as I am , they really seem to enjoy what I bring to the table. The key is to choose games that you think they would enjoy as well. Generally, the "gateway game" category is good for this.

This doesn't really help you in terms of your first question though. Haha.
 
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James Lautermilch
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For someone who has spent over $3,000 on games so far this year and has over $2,000 worth of games on pre-order when you figure it out let me know.
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Mauricio Montoya
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Thanks for the trust. This is still a relatively new hobby outside the US and western Europe, but be patient and you'll start finding people.

I live in Colombia, in Medellín. Until only two or three years ago there was only ONE store in my city that sold modern boardgames (a 40 minute drive from my home, and I don't drive), but we've had an exponential increase recently to a grand total of 3 (sadly, not joking).

But still, a small group began forming from that single store and we found more people online that were interested, people who came from other cities with their own collections and wanted to meet players, people started importing games on their own from online retailers, organizing meetups and finding abouth the hobby and other local players online. Nowadays, besides my regular gaming group (wife, 2 brothers, a cousin and her husband) I have about a 20 gaming acquaitances with their own collections that I can contact through a facebook group to organize games close by. That has slowed down a lot the amount of games I've bought in the past year.
 
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bort
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Yay - go the Spiral!

And then, one day, you'll wake up, homeless, jobless, living in a crude shelter of board games, and you'll think to yourself

"This is awesome!"

And break out a wicked air guitar solo
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And if it hasn't been already mentioned... stay away from the type of games that have a ton of expansions (Miniatures, Living Card Games, and Magic The Gathering especially) if you want to hold onto your cash.

Also try to avoid playing and then wanting a game that is no longer in print...

Getting Married doesn't seem to have help either.

But lets be serious, the only real way to save cash is to shop smart.

Make sure you are checking the various sites for the best prices. Go with Amazon if you have prime and you just want a single game as you will probably save on shipping.

Coolstuffinc usually has the better prices, but you have to have $100 in your cart to qualify for free shipping. (I usually load up my cart over a period of time to get free shipping and then pull the trigger when I see their stock dropping on one of my items. I Leave some in stock games in my cart if I can't afford to get it all in one purchase)

There is also minaturemarket.com and Cardhaus.com (5% off pre-orders) to look at.

Check those sites for sales. They usually drop another 5 bucks off when on sale. Most also have a points program to get you some small savings.

Use the BGG marketplace to get out of print games. They are usually cheaper then getting them off Ebay and the sellers aren't looking to make a fortune off out of print games. Remember this is the community trying to let everyone enjoy games and not trying to get rich.

If you have a Barnes and Noble nearby, check them out once in a while. They have Red Dot sales for games at usually %50 off retail. Thrift stores can have some surprises too. Half Price Books is another place to find some good deals or rare finds.

FLG is a good place to demo games. Throw them some cash once in a while as they usually can't compete with online prices but they are the community hub where you can find peeps to actually play all your games with.
 
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Alison Mandible
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Playing lots of games is the best way to figure out what you like and expand your horizons. And if your only way to play lots of games is to buy them, and you can afford it... I wouldn't kick yourself. Games are fun. Some of those games which were fun in your imagination will turn out to be not so fun in real life, and that is also okay.

If you find yourself buying games, then being disappointed in them (or not playing them) and thinking "I basically knew this was going to happen, but I bought the game anyway because I was HOPING it wouldn't happen," that is the time to rein things in. But you may not develop that sense until you've been disappointed several times.

(Again, assuming you can afford it. If you can't, then set yourself a budget and stick to it.)
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A Deal with Death
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I'm not trying to be a downer but have you considered why you're suddenly interested in making a bunch of board game purchases.

Have you shown a similar pattern of purchasing behavior in the past?

Lot's of people struggle with this be it clothes, electronics, car upgrades , home improvement, etc and it can sometimes indicate some underlying issue.

I don't want to turn the thread into amateur psychology hour, but I think from a board game perspective you've already received a lot of solid advice.

I've gone down this spending rabbit hole myself in the past (not with board games) and accumulated quite a bit of debt.
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Anna F.
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I feel ya - I was on a game-buying moratorium while I finished my dissertation, and since then I've had so much disposable income I've been like "BUY ALL THE GAMES"!!!!

I should really stop.

But anyway -

Try what we used to do in my childhood home. Whenever we wanted something, my parents told us to "put it on our birthday/christmas list". This taught us to save up for or think about what we really wanted and cut down on impulse buys.

Or try considering how much of board games eats up your overall entertainment budget. With professional sports tickets going for $200 on a good day, you are spending way less than an afternoon of pro sports.

Thirdly, if it's storage you're worried about, try the one-in-one-out strategy that many people on here employ. SU&SD had a post about this recently.
 
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Shawn Harriman
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TalLavi wrote:
I just can't stop and have a mental image of how cool its going to be playing this or that game.

Two words








Brace yourself......



















Spoiler (click to reveal)
Self Control


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Tal Lavi
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Thanks everyone.
I decided to just put my board gaming interest on hold, since the deeper I go into it the more I want.

I'll just keep CC in mind and take a break from board game research until I have a full run of both Cosmic Encounter & Smash Up and if the group is into it I'll show them the game and buy it.

I'm also planning on having a gaming night with food and drinks, and if I'm lucky after covering up the costs I might be up 10$ or so towards buying new games, since most games are about 40$ if I keep it up to 2 game nights a month I get 50% participation on my games from the friends.
 
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Iori Yagami
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Step 1. Play that you have.

It might be possible that you'd realize that bg aren't THAT great actually. Fun, smart, yes, but obsession worthy? Nah. Worth time space and money? Depends. Better than sliced bread? Who knows.

Also, a few good games can easily take up all available gaming time and make you free of desire to buy more. (deckbuilders, I am looking at you) Better than 20 game boxes gathering dust.
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