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Subject: [reporter request/CNS] story about adult board games rss

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Joyce Tang
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Hello,
I am a reporter from Columbia News Service. I'm interested in writing a story about adult strategy board games, typically of the European variety, such as Settlers of Catan and Ticket to Ride (not traditional games like Taboo or Monopoly).

I'm interested in speaking to:
-players
-experts
-marketing/sales people who can provide statistics on adult strategy board game sales (I'm looking for a timely hook to the article and want to know if there's any recent changes, introductions, or a trend happening with adult strategy board games)
-suggestions for other associations, companies, or sources to contact

This story would be a light news feature exploring the rise and evolution of adult strategy board games. I'm also interested in a bit of sociology behind what happens when adults revert to playing board games. Does serious competition arise? Do fights between friends ensue?

Please contact me if you can help. Thank you!

Joyce

--
Joyce Tang
Reporter | Columbia News Service
Email: jct2136@columbia.edu
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brian
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journalistang wrote:
I'm also interested in a bit of sociology behind what happens when adults revert to playing board games.

You make it sound like that's a bad thing....
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Everett Scheer
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
journalistang wrote:
I'm also interested in a bit of sociology behind what happens when adults revert to playing board games.

You make it sound like that's a bad thing....


Suprisingly (or unsurprisingly dependent on your view) a lot of people feel this way (games are for kids; Therefore adults playing games is adults reverting to children)
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Trampas Johnson
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
journalistang wrote:
I'm also interested in a bit of sociology behind what happens when adults revert to playing board games.

You make it sound like that's a bad thing....


I felt the same thing when I read this.. revert is not the best word. Though people would say that I never LEFT childhood, so there was nothing to REVERT to.

But still.
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Old School Gamer
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Welcome to BGG, Joyce!

By now you've come to realize that you can spend days going over this website educating yourself about adult strategy games.

I would like to kindly ask you to keep an open mind and realize that you MAY get contacted by or receive information from some fringe elements of our gaming community. With any minimal research of this website you will already have realized that there are many of us and we come in many shapes and sizes. That is to say we have many different backgrounds from scientists to piss-boys (reference to Mel Brooks' History of the World Part I). I would really like to avoid a national story akin to past stories of Dungeon and Dragons and its deranged players which circulated many years ago.

I hope that you will find we are hard working, tax paying, law-abiding regular guys and gals who enjoy getting together with friends around a table matching wits on a Friday night instead of hitting the bars or movie theaters or 4 hour dinner parties.

We like many different types of boardgames but mostly we like to have fun - whether that be from sweating over a decision to play a card that might affect the game 10 turns in the future to feeling the excitement of a random die roll that can spell victory or defeat.

I hope that you will come to appreciate adult strategy board games. I hope that you will have a chance to play several as well.

Once again, welcome and good luck.

-Johannes Haar

BGG members: I have confidence that we will rise to the occasion and help Joyce learn about the myriad of positives of our boardgame gaming world.
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Frank Feldmann SoFrankly
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haarja wrote:

I hope that you will come to appreciate adult strategy board games. I hope that you will have a chance to play several as well.


Joyce:

I completely agree with Johannes. I sincerely hope you will seek the opportunity to play a few of these games with mainstream members of our community. I firmly believe first hand experience would give you an appreciation that will enhance your article.

Good Luck!
Frank Feldmann
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Richard Sampson
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Joyce, I am a student at Columbia, and I know several other students who I regularly game with. If you would like to stop in and play a game some time to get a first hand perspective, let me know.
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Joyce Tang
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Thanks, all, for the helpful replies. Sorry, didn't mean to use "revert" in a negative way. I play board games myself and love them! To refine my previous post: I'm interested in focusing on the social dynamics of what happens when adults play board games in a context different from childhood, especially considering these European variety board games involve a lot of strategery, but also interpersonal dynamics. Does serious competition arise? Do relationships between friends change? I'm perhaps most interested in relationships changing as a result of playing these types of board games, so if you have a story about that, please email me at jct2136@columbia.edu. Thanks for all your help!
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Mike Nelson
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I just recently started playing adult strategic style board games, and consider them a great way to hang out with friends, have some fun, and it doesn't cost that much (only have to basically buy a game once and then keep enjoying it). We play weekly, and I look forward to it every week...

My favorite type of board games are the Euro style complicated games (Age of Empires III, Puerto Rico, etc).

On your question about relationships changing or getting competitive - things can get heated occasionally during some games. Though in general we are always calm and are just trying to enjoy the game. Even if sometimes things do get heated, we say that "Everything happens on game night, stays in game night" =)
 
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journalistang wrote:
Does serious competition arise?

Yes.

Quote:
Do fights between friends ensue?

Not really. No moreso than with sports, or any other competition.
 
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My experience, as far as conflict goes, is purely that of friendly competition.

I have a regular group of friends that meets weekly to play boardgames. Often games get quite competitive, and my friend Matt and I often are quite vicious in game against one another, but none of this continues outside the game.


Of late we have become more enamored of games which are either not directly competitive or outright cooperative.

Classic American board games, as the general public think of them are always directly competitive. Monopoly, Chess, Trivial Pursuit, Scrabble, and Clue are all directly competitive. You try to out do the other players, often take things from the other players, and the often the only scoring is who manages to meet the "Win" criteria first.


In indirect competition games like Agricola and Carcassonne, you compete to score points, but there is little or no way to take points or resources from the other players. Rather than trying to push back the other players, you work to score as many points as you can to get ahead of the others.


More so, cooperative games really break from the classic board game mold. In games like Pandemic and Arkham Horror, all the players work together. This is not a game of who wins. Rather, all the players win or lose as a whole. The mechanics of the game present the conflict, and you work together to try to overcome a hostile mechanic/system rather than fighting the other players. I feel games like Pandemic and Arkham Horror make good team building exercises. If you don't work together, failure is almost certain, while good teamwork is rewarded.
When you win a cooperative game, you don't just feel a sense of accomplishment, you also feel a sense of camaraderie with the other players.



Something I would recommend. Find out if there's a game store in your area that has a game night. Go and play some of these games for first hand experience.


Good luck with your story.
 
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Linda Baldwin
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Actually, Columbia does have a board game group; I'm on their mailing list, although I haven't had a chance to go.

I was the one in my original group of friends who got them playing games (other than card games.) I haven't lost any friends through gaming, but I've certainly gained an awful lot of them -- over a hundred from board games, many more from roleplaying games.

Some people do get stressed, it's true. But it doesn't take long to realize an individual player's limitations. Many people have games that don't suit their temperments -- make them angry, or frustrated, or what have you. You simply try to avoid playing that type of game with that player, or have some type of coping magazine.

Honestly, I've found gaming an extremely bonding activity. The competitive aspects are generally friendly; I admire a player who beats me, and I'm pleased when I manage (rarely) to win myself. And you can't take it too seriously, because ... it's time for another game!

(Yes, there are occasional jerks, as in any activity. They're best avoided, in my experience.)
 
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