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Subject: How to pace your game purchases rss

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Birkai Qutuz
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Hey guys, I've been into boardgaming for the last month and am thoroughly enjoying Eldritch Horror and Zombicide. However, I noticed that despite having fun during my plays of these games and being perfectly satisfied with my purchases, I have found myself scoping out my next purchase already.

I justify it by reasoning to myself that it'll scratch a different itch and I'd only need maybe 1, max 2 games to have a small collection where I can rotate them based on my strategic/thematic mood for the session.

However, I remember the saying that "If the son of Adam were given a valley full of gold, he would love to have a second one; and if he were given the second one, he would love to have a third" and I'd like your perspectives for how you take your time to enjoy what you have rather than rushing towards the next best thing.
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Trevor Sinnott
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You are on the wrong website to ask that question.
Most of us do the same thing you are doing, myself included. I like to have a variety of games, so I can rotate them to keep them fresh. I am always looking for new games.
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Steve C
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Step 1: Determine what "pace" you want to have for purchasing games
Step 2: Good luck
Step 3: If it actually works, tell us how you did it so we can try to do the same


Personally, after I went through a mini-binge right after getting into the hobby, I've cooled off now and decided that new games need to meet a bunch of criteria.

For example:

* A new game must be better than an already-owned game of the same mechanic/type/feel (no doubling up on area control, etc), or of a type that I don't already have
* A new game must be playable in my game groups more than once. One of my playgroups seems to be more Cult of the New, which means it is not a valid group for getting my games played more than once.

Basically, if I really think I can get the game played 5-10 times in a year and I don't already have a game I really like of that type, I'll consider it. If it doesn't meet those criteria? Probably won't get it.
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No One
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Here's how I currently pace my purchases:

1) Study the heck out of the game before buying. Blind buying is never allowed. Read/watch reviews, read the rulebook, look at the components, watch a let's play if possible, and play someone else's copy if possible. If I remain interested, move on to #2.

2) Put the game on my "consideration" list along with that day's date. Don't look up any more info on the game again for a minimum of one month... often 2 or 3. If after that time has passed when I look at the game I'm still interested, then move on to #3.

3) Answer the following questions: a) Does this game do something no other game of mine does? b) Can I see myself wanting to play this after a small number of plays? c) Do I know anyone who'd likely be interested in playing this with me? If the answer to all questions is yes, then I buy the game.

This vetting process keeps my buying at a measured pace without having to set spending limitations or other such types of limitations. #1 keeps me from making uninformed purchases. #2 keeps me from making hype purchases. #3 keeps me from making redundant or unplayable purchases.

I hope that helps,

~V
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maf man
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Saracen Knight wrote:
I'd like your perspectives for how you take your time to enjoy what you have rather than rushing towards the next best thing.

take my time? no no no, its take time. Take time away from other things and give it to playing more games.

But more seriously once I had a game to fit nearly every day I slowed down easy. My personal required amount turned out to be about 20 solid great games that were distinctively different for my SO and I to play.
I also changed my gaming budget, now the only money I can use on games come from selling other random stuff rather than just using some of my expendable income.
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Mark Myers

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Honestly? Don't frequent sites like this. Purposefully avoid the hobby. When you grow tired of your current collection, do a burst of research for 1 or 2 more games to add, get them, go back into radio silence.

It's really the only way I've found to avoid going overboard for any hobby I've had. I used to be big into video games, had a massive backlog of games I'd never hope to play. I purposefully stopped going to gaming sites and listening to podcasts. It did work. I still play games, own most consoles, but I buy them at a reasonable pace. When I'm done with what I have, I pick up something new. I'll sometimes have a couple games to get to in the backlog, but it's 1 or 2...not 40 or 50.

It's really hard for me to do with hobbies, but moderation...it's the key and hard (for me) to execute.
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Big Game
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Nice process!

Veero wrote:

Here's how I currently pace my purchases:

1) Study the heck out of the game before buying. Blind buying is never allowed. Read/watch reviews, read the rulebook, look at the components, watch a let's play if possible, and play someone else's copy if possible. If I remain interested, move on to #2.

2) Put the game on my "consideration" list along with that day's date. Don't look up any more info on the game again for a minimum of one month... often 2 or 3. If after that time has passed when I look at the game I'm still interested, then move on to #3.

3) Answer the following questions: a) Does this game do something no other game of mine does? b) Can I see myself wanting to play this after a small number of plays? c) Do I know anyone who'd likely be interested in playing this with me? If the answer to all questions is yes, then I buy the game.

~V
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Ryan Feathers
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There's plenty of good advice here. I honestly don't much have this problem and I have no formal system to keep me in line.

For me it is pretty simple. I most value getting to play games with a bunch of players that not only know how to play but know how to play well. And so that will only happen if I find a group and play a few games consistently. We can all try a few games from time to time to find more group favorites, but mostly new games only detract from the gaming experience by having everyone have to learn new rules and spend more time not gaming.

Once you realize that you'll have just as much fun gaming by owning 10 games as you will with 50 it becomes pretty easy to see continued purchases don't provide significantly more enjoyment.

But if you need more formal systems some of the other's suggestions here are great. I personally have a pretty long wishlist full of games that have caught my attention and they tend to stay there for a long time slowly moving their way up until I really decide I want to get a new game. This helps me avoid any temptation buys and gives me a long time to make sure I actually want the game and it's not a fleeting mood.

Finally, remember that most of the "hot deals" you see posted around are really not all that much. Usually just a few bucks lower than the game normally is. You don't need to buy the game right now to "save" a few bucks. You can hold off until you are certain you want that game and just buy it for whatever price it is selling at. You may spend slightly more on each game but you'll be doing better overall by ensuring you are actually purchasing games you are going to play and love rather than winding up with stacks of unplayed games you continue to convince yourself you will somehow one day get to.

 
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Bryan Thunkd
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Keep playing the games you already own and slowly introduce new ones. If you start getting bored with the ones you have or if it starts feeling stale, add a new game. But go slow. All too often, people get caught up in buying everything that sounds interesting. You don't need to do that. As long as you're enjoying the games you have, there's no reason to go chasing every shiny new thing that passes along.

There's lots of games you can get, but the majority of them are just "good" games and aren't necessarily better that what's already on your shelf.

Only you can decide how much variety you enjoy. It's better to err on the low side as it's cheaper to buy fewer games and add another than to buy too many games and have to purge some at a loss.
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Nestor Ivanor
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The only think you need is willpower! I lack that. LoL

good luck though. and if you want it, buy it.
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Stephen Williams
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Saracen Knight wrote:
... I'd like your perspectives for how you take your time to enjoy what you have rather than rushing towards the next best thing.


Find yourself a local gaming group. Go there to play games whenever they meet and make a point of not buying anything you haven't played previously. This will help you avoid buying games only to find out you don't really like them. It will also allow you to sate your curiosity and broaden your gaming horizons without hurting your wallet in the process. (There may be cover charges and there will probably be snacks, but that's cheaper in the long run than trying to buy every game you're curious about.)

Second, limit yourself to making game purchases at a rate you can afford. For example, one new game per month is a rule I used in my university days. Establish a rule that keeps you within your means and stick to it.

Finally, think LONG AND HARD about expansions to games you already own. It can be tempting to buy everything for a given title just to have it all, and game developers have figured that out. Ask yourself if this expansion really adds anything worthwhile to your gaming experience. Ask yourself if the base game has any glaring flaws this expansion may (or may not) address.

PS: Also, do your research online, both for expansions and new games alike. That's been said already, but it's worth repeating.
 
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Matt Brown
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Have a budget and stick to it.
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weesh ful
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I just track the value I get out of my purchases.

When I buy a new game, play it once (or less), and then can't get a crowd to play it, I start to think about what went wrong.

Is it to complex?
Does it take too long to play?
Have I already had enough fun with this game to justify the cost?

With these sorts of questions in mind, it isn't terribly difficult to temper your wanderlust. If the last three games you bought are metaphorical albatrosses, you feel more inspired to get them played then to get more games that won't be played.

The last mistake I made was Galaxy Trucker: Another Big Expansion. It is too long to play at lunch with co-workers, and too complex to play with new-ish people. It's a great game, but hard to get value out of.

I've been focusing on shorter games recently as a result.
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K S
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Hello, Devil's Advocate here.

I'm the primary game collector in most of my social circles, so I don't really get the opportunity to "try before I buy". There have been plenty of games which I spent a lot of time researching, thinking about and mulling over, only to finally buy them and then be disappointed. Similarly there are games I bought on a lark based purely on the strength of their reputation and finding a decent deal and have been thrilled to pieces with.

One thing I like about this hobby is that there are plenty of ways to sell or trade a game for at most a small financial loss. If I buy an hour-long 4-player game for $50, then decide I'd rather not keep it after 3 plays, I can easily sell it for $35. That means my friends and I just had 12 hours of fun for $1.25 an hour. I think that's a fair price to pay.

If you'd like to take this approach, remember to "play it safe" and only gamble on popular games (I use the "want in trade" listing on each game's BGG page as a rough metric) that are already on a bit of a sale. And if you buy used, then you can often unload it for as much as you paid to begin with. Even better if you can trade it, then you're essentially only paying the price of shipping for a new game that you'll hopefully like more.
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nat tact
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I pace my board game out to once every 2 weeks.

I mean one order every 2 weeks

I mean like right after I get my paycheck.
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Michael Sewall
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I give myself a personal entertainment budget each month (I actually put it in its own account). If I want to buy something big, I might save it up month over month. Otherwise, I buy what I want as long as I have money left in the account. If you limit your entertainment budget, you'll necessarily limit your board game purchases, especially if you use it as a general entertainment fund (books, movies, board games, video games, music, etc).

That works pretty well for me.
 
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Chris Graves
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Any attempt I've made at having a system has not worked to this point. I have slowed way down as of late, but it wasn't because of a plan. Good luck on your journey and enjoy whatever pace you end up traveling at!
 
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secoAce -
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Have your significant other control your finances and approve purchases.

Seriously, when all your best laid plans fail and you succumb to that "gotta-have-it" syndrome, it's time to be accountable to someone else with a more level-head.
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Dan
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Allow yourself a yearly budget, or a budget based on only spending what you can earn through online surveys (I get about $100/yr in Amazon vouchers).

Also consider selling or math trading games that are gathering dust.

Research games heavily and have a top 5 or 10 wishlist. If you can get a good deal on it, buy it or trade for it. Maybe I am lucky living in New Zealand. I can pick up older games, often oop, on our version of ebay or on Facebook buy sell trade groups for over 50% off retail price.

My best scores are:
Cosmic Encounter and Acquire for $30 total. Got my money back selling Cosmic, and later math traded acquire and got Glory to Rome black box.

Just sold a few filler card games to free up cash, and then bought Tobago for $30. This is in New Zealand, where Catan or ticket to ride retail for $80.
 
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Dan
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Don't worry about budgeting until you have at least 10 games in your collection. Just be wary of impulse buys based on hype rather than proper research. Always watch video reviews or runthroughs before buying.
 
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Cory Kelso
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the best piece of advice I read so far on this thread (and there's been a LOT) was the 'avoid BGG and sites like BGG' advice. Out of sight, out of mind. Here's what I do:

1) keep a budget, and don't go over it because I'm accountable to my spouse.

2) use my Wishlist tiers and try to be strict about it. If it's a 1 or 2, (and I've got the funds) I can look to buy it. If it's a 3 or 4, then I let it cool on the list for a while. if it doesn't move up to a 2, it gets culled. Out of sight, out of mind.

3) avoid the Hot Deals and GeekBay listings. Out of sight out of mind.

God forbid, if I ever go blind, i'll be incredibly wealthy.

EDIT TO ADD: I should also say that I succeed on number 1 consistently. numbers 2 and 3, sometimes yes, sometimes no.
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Rebecca Jensen
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Welcome to boardgaming!

Do you have access to a board game store, café, or group?

I LOVE learning new games, so to feed that hunger while quelling my purchasing, I make a point of playing games on my Want To Play list without actually purchasing them. I can do that by playing a copy out of board game store/café library, or by meeting up with other local game players who want to get their game played.

Also, I keep a spreadsheet of all the games I'm interested in, and I include a column for my interest level on a scale of 1 to 5. So when I'm trying to set up an opportunity to play, (whether by store, café, or group), I have a list to consult.

The list also aids in cooling off some of my initial excitement. I add notes to it if I come across reviews that sway my interest one way or another. I also keep a Cuts list, since I used to take games off my Want to Play list (see? the list is effective!), but then my interest would pique again and I'd forget why I had taken it off (I can be quite forgetful). So my Cuts list has notes like, "rules are a pain to teach" or whatever reason I finally decided to pass it over.

And finally, the simple answer: a monthly board game budget or limit. Not only does it implement pacing, but it should encourage you to choose games with greater care, resulting in collection that has more games you really love than just sorta like.

But have fun! Sample stuff and learn what you like. Also know that your tastes are likely to change over time.

Cheers!



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Matt Drake
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Want to save bank on games? Do reviews! Then look at how long you spent playing and reviewing a game you didn't like, compare that to the cost of the game, and see how low you value your own time. Compare it further to what you could actually get for the game you don't want. Discover that your time is worth less than coffee farmed by slaves.

Then buy games again.

I don't have a system, but I have 100+ games. A game has to be really impressive to make me want to spend my money because I have so many already. Of course, I follow a different path from many - if it's a dungeon crawl, I probably want it. But I still hold off, and so have not tried some big titles like Shadows of Brimstoneor Myth.

The net result is that I might go six months without buying a game, and then buy three in a week. I do my research and don't ever impulse buy (except Super Dungeon Explore expansions - I already know I love that one so I have to be pretty broke to pass up a new SDE product).
 
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Daniel Fish
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You can only have 10 games in your collection.

If you are over 10 games, pick your 10 and sell the rest.

To add a new game to your collection, you must be willing to sell one of your 10 games first.





*my fantasy. if you can do this, you have true grit
 
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To V's first step -,research - I'd add read the comments. All of them. From top rated to bottom. This has cooled my jets a few times at least- enough to go, needs further thought and prevent the impulse buy. Like V suggests, if after a month or two the interest is still there, then maybe it's time to go further.
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