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Subject: My New Normal:Filler Gamer/Light Gamer rss

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Carl Garber
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Crazy realization today! I took a look at all my games played since Jan 1st and discovered these plays for games weighted 2.7 or higher:

Macao: 1 play
Castles of Burgundy: 1 play
Strasbourg: 1 play

That's it! 3 games total! And two of those were just last Sunday!

On the bright side my plays of lighter games have gone up(what I mean is that since moving to a new town about 2 years ago I haven't played games as much outside of holidays).

Not counting fillers I have played:

Settlers: 11 plays
Alhambra: 2 plays
Carcasonne: 2 plays
Pandemic: 1 play
Scotland yard: 1 play
Stone Age: 1 play
Thurn and Taxis: 1 play

And I have played a ton of fillers:

King of Tokyo: 36 times
7 Wonders: 11 plays
For Sale: 8 plays
The Resistance: 7 plays
Jaipur: 2 plays

So there you have it! I am firmly in the filler/light gamer category! This data makes me happy about my purchases for the year(I only purchase once a year and won't be ordering again until Sept 2014). I decided on getting the 15th Anniversary Settlers and Thebes. Being that Settlers is my highest played non-filler I will enjoy that experience more playing it on a nicer board. Also Thebes will fit right alongside those other light/medium games!

In the past couple months the various social circles I have been hanging with have been getting more and more open to games! Some kids in my youth group have taken to games and are eating up everything I throw their way(so far, Settlers, King of Tokyo, Tsuro, For Sale, Jaipur, The Resistance, and Amazing Labyrinth). They are still quite young(only grade 9) but gamers in the making they seem to be!

In my men's Bible study we have gotten into the habit of playing games after the study and prayer time! So far we have played King of Tokyo, Carcassonne, Get Bit, and Tsuro. Among this group there is one guy that is starting to get into gaming through kickstarter and another guy likes games and seems to like more strategy. Also, another guy has just come back into the area(the guy who I played CoB and Strasbourg with) and he picked both of those up quite quickly(finished 2nd in both).

So while today I embrace my filler/light gamer ways I look forward to the future where it looks like I might get to return to the medium weight games that I like the best!

Hopefully by Sept 2014 my gaming ways will have changed enough to justify getting something like a Glen More, Amerigo, or Ginkgopolis. Here's hoping!(If not, PitchCar here I come!).

After that wall of text have any of you experienced the same realization? How have you dealt with it? Denial? Fight against it? Solo gaming? or have you embraced it?

Have you let it affect what you purchase? Or have your buying habits stayed the same?

It has affected my purchases in this way:

I traded Trajan which I realized wouldn't get played for 7 Wonders and The Resistance. Instead of purchasing Ginkgopolis which I was leaning towards, I decided on Thebes instead. Also, my next purchase/gift request will be Biblios.
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Dan Edelen
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CarlG wrote:
So there you have it! I am firmly in the filler/light gamer category!


New normal indeed. I suspect you are not alone.
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Geki
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I like short (50-120 minutes) but still prefer meaty over light.

Glad you found your way, though.

Best
Geki
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Jennifer Derrick
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I've tried to get into the heavier stuff, but I've decided that I'm just a lighter gamer. And I'm cool with it. With the exception of Castles of Burgundy, Dungeon Petz, Yedo, and Railways of the World, I'm just not into the longer, heavier stuff.

Most of that comes from the amount of time I have to play. Mostly we game in the evening after work, so that's not a long stretch of hours. And the other thing is that I've learned that I really don't like totally frying my brain. Sometimes it's fun, but not regularly enough that I need to own a lot of those types of games.

I think part of the evolution of a gamer is going from "I want everything" to knowing what you will realistically play and enjoy. It's like I may know that cauliflower is a perfectly fine vegetable and good for me, but I'm still not going to eat it. I know that games like Twilight Struggle are good games, but I also know that they're not for me. At least not at this point in my life.
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Carl Garber
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Yeah I hear you! I have found that medium weight is my favorite(2.6-3.1 weight), but that I'd rather go lighter than heavier when I get out of that region. Unfortunately(or maybe fortunately?) there are not very many eurogames released each year that fit into either of those categories that are highly rated(top 500). I find there being less and less games on my radar. I can probably count on my two hands the amount of Eurogames in the top 500 released in the past 3 years in that weight range!
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David B
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Hope you are able to get Macao and CoB some plays soon. I have played both of these again recently. Will be playing both again soon.
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Jeremy Heilman
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CarlG wrote:
Yeah I hear you! I have found that medium weight is my favorite(2.6-3.1 weight), but that I'd rather go lighter than heavier when I get out of that region. Unfortunately(or maybe fortunately?) there are not very many eurogames released each year that fit into either of those categories that are highly rated(top 500). I find there being less and less games on my radar. I can probably count on my two hands the amount of Eurogames in the top 500 released in the past 3 years in that weight range!


I have similar weight preferences.... Euros from 2005 or so and earlier seem to work best for me, since I like elegant mechanics and relatively simple rule sets. A lot of contemporary games sacrifice simplicity for theme or extra mechanics it seems.

BGG indeed tends to skew heavier.... Check out The Palaces of Carrara, Libertalia and Keyflower if you haven't yet... They all sit in my middleweight comfort zone.
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OP, I'm exactly like you. Nice to hear I'm not the only one.
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Martin G
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Embrace it! Here's my blog post about having the same realisation: I am what I play - 2012 in review
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TJ
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I have had a similar realization as well. As part of my efforts to cull my collection down a little, I realized that it's not really logical to quantify your game collection purely by the number of unique titles that you own. Owning 40 light-weight games is vastly different than owning 40 heavy-weight games. Lighter games are easier to get to the table, so you'd probably have less unplayed titles. Lighter games are typically quick to teach and play, so you'd probably play them more frequently. I'd also venture to guess that your collection would take up much less physical space, and would also probably have cost you less money.

So when I'm now considering what's the ideal collection size for myself, I'm not really factoring filler/lightweight games into that equation. More than half the games I own nowadays I'd consider to be filler/lightweight/party games, and I love it.

I still have long and heavy games that I like to play, but I limit those to a handful that I'd like to really explore and master. Lightweight games allow me to try something new and fresh, without the headaches of learning/teaching a new complicated ruleset.

I've also realized that medium weight games really serve no purpose for me unless they're truly unique or really fun to play. More often than not, I've found that medium weight games suffer from being a little too complicated to just break out and play, but not deep enough to really reward repeated play and mastery.
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Adam Kazimierczak
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At the risk of sounding like an elitist snob, I find this trend sad in a way: as hobby board gaming becomes more mainstream the intellectual/time investment becomes more mainstream.

I like medium weight games and aspire to heavy weight games once I and my group are ready for them. But time constraints and rule-shock/inertia have actually skewed my group toward lighter and lighter fare over the past 2 years. Now a new guy joined and games like Agricola are passed over in favor of For Sale because "he can't handle that yet."

Hello! Agricola was the second game our group played together (after Carcassonne)! Now we're suddenly all sucking on pacifiers and limited to games with 2 or less pages in the rulebook? Our once great gaming group just grinds through as many games of 7 Wonders, Biblios and the filler flavor of the month as we can in 3 hours.

shake

So in protest I ordered The Great Zimbabwe and Descent... devil
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Martin G
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kaziam wrote:
At the risk of sounding like an elitist snob


At least you were aware of the risk
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Jennifer Derrick
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kaziam wrote:
At the risk of sounding like an elitist snob, I find this trend sad in a way: as hobby board gaming becomes more mainstream the intellectual/time investment becomes more mainstream.

I like medium weight games and aspire to heavy weight games once I and my group are ready for them. But time constraints and rule-shock/inertia have actually skewed my group toward lighter and lighter fare over the past 2 years. Now a new guy joined and games like Agricola are passed over in favor of For Sale because "he can't handle that yet."

Hello! Agricola was the second game our group played together (after Carcassonne)! Now we're suddenly all sucking on pacifiers and limited to games with 2 or less pages in the rulebook? Our once great gaming group just grinds through as many games of 7 Wonders, Biblios and the filler flavor of the month as we can in 3 hours.

shake

So in protest I ordered The Great Zimbabwe and Descent... devil


To be fair, there is a difference between someone new to the hobby having to take time to "ramp up" to the harder stuff, and someone who's been in the hobby a while and simply realizes that, due to jobs, kids, chores, etc. that they just can't squeeze in too many heavy games.

I think many of the people here are saying, "Hey, I'd like to play the heavier stuff, at least sometimes, but I just don't have the time or desire to totally fry my brain after spending a day at work and then helping my kids with their homework and handling the household accounts and cooking dinner." That's not saying that people are becoming more stupid as the hobby moves more mainstream, that's just life getting in the way of fun stuff.

Maybe what's sad is that gaming is now going more mainstream as many of us are into our more "adult" years where we just have too many other responsibilities. Where were these games when I was in high school and college and had more time to waste? I blew all my time then playing Zork.
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Martin G
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OxfordRow wrote:
To be fair, there is a difference between someone new to the hobby having to take time to "ramp up" to the harder stuff, and someone who's been in the hobby a while and simply realizes that, due to jobs, kids, chores, etc. that they just can't squeeze in too many heavy games.

I think many of the people here are saying, "Hey, I'd like to play the heavier stuff, at least sometimes, but I just don't have the time or desire to totally fry my brain after spending a day at work and then helping my kids with their homework and handling the household accounts and cooking dinner." That's not saying that people are becoming more stupid as the hobby moves more mainstream, that's just life getting in the way of fun stuff.


I'm not saying any of those things. I'm saying that I want to play the light stuff because I enjoy it more and have more fun!
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How do you sort Games by game weight?
 
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Enrico Viglino
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kaziam wrote:
At the risk of sounding like an elitist snob, I find this trend sad in a way: as hobby board gaming becomes more mainstream the intellectual/time investment becomes more mainstream.


Yeah. The big blow was in the early 90's though.

It's nothing recent.
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