The Complete 2018: Board Games and Numbers

Jobby looks back on the previous 365 days and summarises it all in nice, neat, numbers…

I’ve been doing this for a few years now and it’s one of the highlights of the holiday break. Alas, this year, there was little break but I’ve still found time to round up those numbers!

Last year felt a pretty good year for gaming. Sarah and I discovered and lovely, friendly bunch of people in the form of the Bury St Edmunds Board Games Group, UK Games Expo was as great as ever, and I seemed to get even more games played. My only complaint of the year was that there seemed to be less heavier gaming played this year. Dungeon Lords, Panamax and Euphoria: Build a Better Dystopia all glare at me from the shelves whenever I am in our games room.

I mustn’t grumble, though. I think there will possibly be less gaming next year as it is looking very busy – what with Sarah and I getting married and the resultant time away honeymooning. Actually, who am I kidding? I know full well there’ll be loads of 2 player goodness packed in our holiday luggage! 🙂

As usual, these stats have been put together by recording my plays on BoardGameGeek and then using Friendless Extended Stats site to pull out the numbers. The plus or minus percents are comparing the numbers to last year


(+2%) The number of board games I have played in 2018. This is total plays, even if a game has been played more than once. Nice to see that this is up a little bit even if it didn’t make the dizzying height of 2016’s 466 plays! For the past four years my plays seem to hover around the 400 mark and this feels about right; it’s a number I manage to attain without ‘forcing’ it and deliberating trying to play loads.


(+7%) This is the total number of hours I have played board games in 2018. Interestingly this is up a little more as a percentage than the number of games played which would indicate I’ve been playing more longer games. That’s weird because it doesn’t feel like I’ve been playing more of those types of games!


(+11%) This is the total number of board games I own as at the end of 2018. Oh gods, this is up way more than I planned! I was actually trying to be sensible this year and we even got rid of a few less-played games from the collection. I do wonder if this is the point where things will start to level off… Ha! Who am I kidding? 😀


(+25%) The number of different board games I have played in 2018. This has probably risen dramatically due to my exposure to lots of different games with the BSE Board Games Group. As much as I enjoy repeated plays of the same games, I do also really enjoy seeing stuff that’s new to me. I’m happy this is up.


(+61%) The number of games in 2018 that I’ve only played once. Again, part of this will be due to finding a board games group to play with although that won’t explain such a dramatic jump. I would like to see this come down a bit – I would like to think I’m more of a deeper rather than wider kind of guy (oo-er!)


(+2%) The percentage of my board game collection I have played in 2018. Note that I record plays of games I own as well as games I don’t own; this figure is only looking at games I own. Very happy that this is on the rise. I always say that I’m a player rather than a collector. It would be nice if I can get this figure up to 60% this year (or possibly next year).


(-47%)The number of games I’ve played by designer Bruno Cathala. Interestingly, even though I played less of Bruno’s games this year he’s still the most played designer for me this year both in terms of number of plays (29) and in terms of how many different games of his I played (12).


(+60%) How many games I have played between 5 and 9 times this year, aka Nickels. With my thinking that I’m trying to play each game more this is a good increase to see. As might be expected, a lot of the games in this category are smaller games but still, it’s good to see.


(-39%) The number of plays of games by designer Antoine Bauza which puts Antoine joint third in terms of raw plays. He sits alone in third place of number of different games of his I have played (7). Really weirdly, whilst looking up these numbers I discovered both Antione Bauza and Bruno Cathala are listed amongst the designers of Conan which I played once in 2018 – I had no idea!


(-46%) The number of times I have played my most played game this year. This was a joint win for The Mind and Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle. The first of these I have enjoyed showing to lots of people. I really don’t know how much longevity this game has but it’s a fun 10 minutes. Hogwarts Battle is far more meaty and has been a really enjoyable romp for Sarah, Angelise and me. Although we have beaten it I think this has got staying power because a) we’d all be happy to play the last game again and again and b) the expansion looks a lot of fun!


(-) The most games played in a single day. This was a good day with Sarah and my daughter which saw the three of us get through a couple of plays of Kingdomino, a play of Cottage Garden, a play of Battle Sheep and a play of my favourite: Agricola. Then Sarah had some errands to run and Angelise and me played Patchwork twice followed by Pagoda. A great day of gaming!


(+0%) The number of games I’ve played ten or more times so far this year. This included the expected light fare The Mind (mentioned previously), Rhino Hero and Dobble. Hogwarts Battle is in there as was the god-awful (in my opinion) Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skulls & Shackles which I tried so hard to like but just couldn’t. I’m never going to manage one of those 10×10 challenges but that’s fine. 🙂

Thank You!

As always, I’d like to finish with a really big “Thank you!” to all those people I’ve played with. Of course there have been all the regular friends and family, plus all those demo-ers and designers at UKGE who do a stirling job. I’d particularly like to thank the Bury St Edmunds Board Games Group who have been incredibly welcoming and amongst whom I feel like I’m making some firm friends.

Here’s hoping 2019 will be as great!

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