Board Game Discussion – Philosophy of Collecting

Let’s face a bit of harsh truth on board games – they’re big and bulky, run the gamut of themes and complexity, and are a tremendously niche market for the most part. Most people have ten or fewer while some people have thousands. What is it about games and collecting that’s different?

In this video I discuss my own philosophy for the board game collecting I’ve done over the years and, most importantly, how it can change. I also talk about some other methods/thoughts that others I know have had and a general discussion on board games as collectible items.

As always, I’m very curious what YOU all think. What’s your collecting philosophy and why? Is it based on your personal interests? Physical space? Simply getting what you love? Let me know in the comments!

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13 thoughts on “Board Game Discussion – Philosophy of Collecting”

  1. At first, I thought your friend was sane. Somebody who waited to buy games because they wanted to get fairly deep into the strategy, putting effort into a few good games to the point that they become truly rewarding. Then you revealed that they just didn't want to play games that didn't hand-feed a different experience each time. Pathetic. You are shopping addicts, consumers of passive entertainment. A million people have gotten more out of a chessboard than you have from your entire collection, because they put effort into learning and appreciating the game.

  2. Great video Dan. I have to admit I really like how you and your channel have matured over the years. I also like your " rambling " style better than your top tens. You seem way more in your element. Thanks for the video.

  3. Not quite up to 200. I buy and sell a lot of games, and game pieces. It helps dilute the cost of my acquisitions. I got rid of many games I had as a child/teenager, and a few I have regretted enough to reacquire. Some have really comeback to bite (Why did I sell Warrior Knights? esp since I got it SO cheaply before it went OoP???). Ultimately I would say I am more of a collector than a player. I like studying them, referencing them, curating them, upgrading them, storing them with care.

    So, at least for now, I don't have a mandatory disposal strategy. My collection is still contained within a modest closet so I'm doing OK 😀

  4. I've got quite a few games in my 'collection' that I keep purely for other people to play. I don't necessarily even like the games overly, but friends like them, so they stay on my shelf. I guess we all collect for varying reasons, which is great because it means we all love board gaming. 🙂

  5. Not counting going away to college, I've moved across the country about 3 times, and each time, I've had to trim down my gaming collection — last time when I did this, I actually gave away my entire gaming collection (which wasn't very big anyway at the time). So, essentially, my current collection is only about 5 or 6 years old. I occasionally will buy games out of shear nostalgia, over games that I've had to get rid of over the years. I now have a decent sized living space, so I do have room to grow my collection again.

    As far as getting rid of games, what I've done in the past is that if I have a game and a friend asks me to play it with him, and I decide that I really would rather never play that game again, I'll offer to give it to him (or swap it if he has a game that he no longer wants). But generally, if I ever think that I may want to play the game at some point, I'll hold on to it. Space is not yet an issue for me, but I can foresee it getting that way if I continue to buy new ones.

    I certainly have several games that I have not yet had an opportunity to play. It's not that I don't want to play them, but I I also don't have as much of an opportunity to play games as I did when I was younger. Every once in a while, I'll try to bring out one of those games for friends. Recently, for example, I brought out Clank!, which I've been anxious to try, and everyone really liked it. So that will definitely make it to the table now on a regular basis. I also brought out Machi Koro for the first time. Most people liked it but we found out that it takes a whole lot longer to play than is indicated on the box (at least with the deluxe edition, which includes both expansions). So that will come out again, but only when we have a lot of time.

    The fact that I do have so many games that I have yet to play with people (at least with the current edition), makes me sometimes hesitate about buying a new game. So I try to be a little bit more selective now. But it hasn't kept me from supporting games on Kickstarter, or rewarding myself with a new game when I feel I deserve it.

  6. Many boardgamers have a collection of boardgames. If you have the space and the disposable income many boardgames has no need to sell there old boardgames. Are they collectors? Myself got in to this hobby ten years ago, I started buying boardgames and playing them. I now have a collection of over 700 boardgames. I have never had the desire to sell any of my boardgames, despite some of them are bad games. I think a collector of boardgames have certain traits, like hunting down rare boardgames to play them, buying a boardgame you want almost no matter the cost, a must have attitude towards having a boardgame and an unwillingness to part them self from their "precious" boardgames(even the really bad ones). I will have to move before I get rid of any of my boardgames. Have I played my have to have before it goes out of print copy of Forbidden stars…no, have I many boardgames still in shrink…yes, have I hunted down rare and out of print games…yes, have I 50 games I have not played in my collection…yes, do I play more than one game a day in average…yes. Do I follow boardgame media for the latest in boardgames…yes, do I back several kickstarters a year…yes…..IT IS LOVELY TO BE A BOARDGAMER, WITH A COLLECTION. Yes, it is better to have, than to want what you have not.

  7. Gaming since 1973, my collection contains about 550 boardgames, with 375 being hex-and-counter wargames, and 1300 separate RPG items. If you include CCG's I have invested mucho dinero in MtG, Jyhad, Mythos, tempest of the Gods, babylon 5, Illuminati NWO, Quest for the Grail, and Wyvern. LCGs include Doomtown, ashes, Summoner Wars, I never get rid of games. A Life Misspent.

  8. As a collector, I often wonder about those people who get board games for free because they advertise them…..are they real collectors ? Would these people buy the games if they did not get free ? Again, real board gamers who can afford to buy will buy but if they cannot do so, they either save or await a present !
    It is not fair to say there are people who have a huge collection and get them free and these are collectors .
    Buy and enjoy your collection is the sign of a collector…..not advertising their games and not telling the public that the games were sent to them for free.

  9. My wife says any are too much and there can't be too few. She's not a fan of board games and only plays family or party games and only on occasion.

    I'd be interested to hear how other guys got their girlfriends or wives or any significant other to become interested in board games.

  10. Black Lotus is one of the Power Nine cards. Black Lotus, Ancestral Recall, Time Walk, Mox Pearl, Mox Sapphire, Mox Jet, Mox Ruby, Mox Emerald, and Timetwister. But yes, board games will never attain the cash value of other collectibles mainly because it inherently will lack one of 2 necessary elements that make collections worth money. If it is super popular it will not be rare, if it is rare it is not going to be super popular.

    Comic books by and large are not worth the cost of printing them, but every now and again you find a very rare valuable one. The most famous of course being Action Comics #1 that sold for $3,207,852 on Ebay. But that is rare because of WWII paper drives, mothers would sell their sons comic collections because they were off to war and that was kids stuff. It is Popular because it is the first appearance of Superman.

    Magic the Gather cards sustain value because as opposed to say Yu-gi-oh or Pokemon they tend not to cut the legs out of collectors by devaluing older cards. In fact MTG has a list of cards that will never be reprinted called the reserve list that was created to assure investors that their collections would not be rendered worthless. The reserve list is one of the most continuous parts of the MTG community with a lot of people hating it and others wishing that it would be revised to not include the original Duel-Lands (lands that can be used to generate 2 different colors of mana either one or the other when used).

    Board games tend not to increase in cost over time (usually the opposite) however MTG cards that are good (the minority most MTG cards are referred to as Jank or trash) will actually increase over time because of limited supply vs demand. I linked Danny a video done by a well known Magic the Gathering Youtuber The Professor at Tolarian Community College where he shows how many board games you can buy for the price of a 75 card Deck (60 main deck 15 sideboard) of Modern U/B Faires. I believe he got up to around 20 games for that 1 deck.

    If you are going to collect board games I would say do not go into it as an investment as you will likely never recoup the price in but that is not the only thing that makes a collection. If you are just getting games you love then it will be worthwhile.


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