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Bugs: Recent Topics Paging, Uploading Images & Preview (11 Dec 2020)

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Paring down

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07 Sep 2021 00:00 #326358 by oliverkinne
Paring down was created by oliverkinne
For me, the biggest driving force behind getting rid of...

As someone who has a slightly addictive character, collecting pretty much anything comes quite easy to me. "You never know when you might need it again," is what I tend to say. The same is true for board games, of course. "We might play this again at some point," is how I justify not letting a board game go that I haven't played in months. So, in this article, I want to talk about how I overcome my own excuses to keep my board game collection to a manageable size.

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08 Sep 2021 00:33 - 08 Sep 2021 00:44 #326359 by mc
Replied by mc on topic Paring down
Space, space, always space, and don't give in to the extra spots, that's the thing that is most effective for me. I try to either trade OR sell to make room. The trouble for me is always family members who want to keep things that I wouldn't myself. It would be easy otherwise.

I think it's worth always reflecting on why you (I'm speaking generally here) want to get rid of stuff (as much as why you want the new stuff). Why do we (often after a few years collecting) feel that urge to get rid of stuff, especially if we DO have room? Partly I guess it's because the more games we have the less likely they are to get played. Partly, for me at least, it's kind of a reminder of mindless consumption. Like, I love games, but I feel uncomfortable thinking about just buying these things that sit there. People say "hey, there's no harm" - and there isn't, but I shouldn't need to buy all of these things to have fun, should I, especially if they don't get used, new box smell dopamine rush complete. Another part, again for me, is that I feel like there's a bit of an emperor's new clothes thing with games. Oh sure, they are all different in their own ways, and there are certainly ones that really grab you and you enjoy a lot more, when they combine their elements to really do something you like. But the majority are not that different from each other in any major meaningful way. No, I don't need Isle of Skye or whatever, I've got Carcassonne, you know?I don't care if it's "better" - the difference is actually marginal. And I feel we kind of kid ourselves about that a bit. Most people go through life with one or two games in the cupboard and a pack of cards, if that. All those things kind of combine to be - far out, I have too many games.
Last edit: 08 Sep 2021 00:44 by mc.
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08 Sep 2021 09:57 #326362 by san il defanso
Replied by san il defanso on topic Paring down
Space is a consideration for me as well, since we have had a couple international moves, and are about to embark on another one. The thing I always have to remind myself is, "who am I going to play this with?" There used to be a time when big multiplayer games were way easier to play than anything for two people, but as I've gotten older and my older son has become more interested in games, the inverse has proven true. And anymore I only do roleplaying games with bigger groups. Those tend to not take up as much space, but they can absolutely be a huge money sink just like board games.

The truth is that left to my own devices I am inclined to be rather prodigal with my funds. I do better now than I did when I was young, and I've managed to rein it in quite a bit. (It helps to have a thrifty spouse.)

One thing I've had to accept is that sometimes it's okay for a game to have sentimental value for you, even if the chances of getting it played are pretty remote. The two examples I always have are Duel of Ages II and Dune, neither of which get played nearly as often as I'd like and both of which have kind of big boxes. But I love both games dearly, and they aren't going anywhere. It's okay to have a couple games that are there just because they mean a lot to you. New games with incremental improvements are nice sometimes, because some games really do have irritating issues that are just waiting to be addressed by later games. But otherwise I'm fine playing the same stuff I played back in, say, 2015.

I love TWBG, but there has been in the past an undercurrent of trying to see who can get the most minimalist collection. It's been driven by a couple of prominent users, including myself. While I think it's admirable to only keep stuff you actually play, the truth is that not everyone has the same priorities, and not everyone moves as often as I do. (It's looking like January will bring our fifth "transition" since 2014.) I don't understand the appeal of lots of unplayed games, but I don't need to.
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08 Sep 2021 11:21 #326366 by dysjunct
Replied by dysjunct on topic Paring down

san il defanso wrote: I love TWBG, but there has been in the past an undercurrent of trying to see who can get the most minimalist collection.


This is a feature for me, not a bug. There aren't many hobby spaces (for any hobby, not just boardgaming) where this is actually a core value of a significant chunk of the userbase. Mostly it's about cult of the new, "ironically" complaining about the size of one's Steam library, chasing the next Kickstarter, etc.

I sometimes struggle to resist that mentality myself -- I have a distressingly normal primate brain that likes new shiny stuff just fine -- so having a regular, low-level drumbeat to help counteract that is really helpful to me.
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08 Sep 2021 16:47 #326372 by the_jake_1973
Replied by the_jake_1973 on topic Paring down
My wife and I are angling for a move abroad after her post-mastectomy reconstruction is complete, target being Costa Rica. With that in the back of my mind, I have a few collections to pare down, plastic models, miniatures, and games. It promises to be both sad and liberating at the same time I think. All this while staring down the barrel at multiple KS games coming in. Yikes.

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08 Sep 2021 17:06 #326373 by n815e
Replied by n815e on topic Paring down
How have those of you who have moved to non-English speaking countries fared in finding people to play with?

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08 Sep 2021 18:21 - 08 Sep 2021 18:24 #326375 by san il defanso
Replied by san il defanso on topic Paring down
This definitely applies to me. I was in the Philippines for three years, and since they speak a lot of English there I was able to find some locals to game with semi-regularly. It took a little effort, and driving across Manila to play was no joke, but it was pretty fun. They spoke a LOT of Tagalog around me, but there was plenty of English too.

We would play games with a number of seminary students near us from a variety of places, like Korea and Japan. Usually they spoke decent English, but I tended to stick to simpler games that were more social. That usually went really well.

But if I'm honest the vast majority of my gaming time overseas was with other expats, mainly through my kids' school. How easy that is depends a lot on what country you live in, since some places have way more expats from various countries, depending on wherever you're from. I kind of lucked out with the Philippines, since there are a lot of Americans there. We'll see what the future holds though.
Last edit: 08 Sep 2021 18:24 by san il defanso.
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08 Sep 2021 21:31 #326376 by Jexik
Replied by Jexik on topic Paring down
Been a crazy couple years for me. Divorce, my father’s death, two moves. Then of course the pandemic making it harder to play multiplayer games. After emptying my parents’ basement of countless magazines and a fair number of books, it really made me look at the way we and those around us connect with our things. I have kind of in the back of my mind a sort of ‘Death Test’ for my games now. If I were to die, would my friends and family want to keep any of this stuff? Would they know its value? Is it valuable? How much of a chore would it be to clean and sell or donate?

That said, Carcassonne was 50% at Meijer (local grocery chain) and I totally picked it up this week, because “it’s a classic.” I hardly even like it and I’m pretty bad at it, but I feel it’s accessible and interesting enough.
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09 Sep 2021 18:21 #326385 by mtagge
Replied by mtagge on topic Paring down

n815e wrote: How have those of you who have moved to non-English speaking countries fared in finding people to play with?

Moscow was okay if I just wanted to play Magic the Gathering. Ouagadougou it was just the people at the Embassy. Frankfurt was good. Malta (despite being English speaking) was a dead zone, Guangzhou theoretically possible but too much effort and unsustainable.
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09 Sep 2021 18:56 #326389 by n815e
Replied by n815e on topic Paring down
I’ve never heard of Ouagadougou or Burkina Faso before.
Thanks!

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09 Sep 2021 23:08 #326394 by Jackwraith
Replied by Jackwraith on topic Paring down

mtagge wrote: Moscow was okay if I just wanted to play Magic the Gathering.


Ha. One of my favorite MTG stories was from back in the 90s. We used to play on an app (we called it a "program", then) called Apprentice. You'd find someone in the various rooms on ICQ and link up on Apprentice and play a few rounds. One night, I got a few games in with someone and he asked where I was and I told him and I asked him the same and he said "Bucharest." I was like: "Oh. I guess I didn't even think of how Magic might have spread to Romania since Ceaucescu was overthrown."

He responded: "????"
I was all: "What?"
He said: "You know Romania?"
I said: "Sure. I know about the country."
He was like: "Usually when I play Americans and tell them I'm from Romania, they ask if I can see the Colosseum from my house."
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10 Sep 2021 04:51 #326401 by mezike
Replied by mezike on topic Paring down

n815e wrote: How have those of you who have moved to non-English speaking countries fared in finding people to play with?


Not so great tbh :dry:

Dubai - absolutely nothing going on except some expat kids playing Warhammer at the cities (then) only hobby store, although this was back before gaming websites were a thing and even widespread internet was still something of a new-fangled novelty. Monopoly was a huge deal, copies of it were everywhere and on the shelves in some of the most unlikely places, to the point it was almost a literal translation for "game".

Hungary - very lively scene in Budapest, unfortunately I was in a fairly remote location at the other end of the country so couldn't find anyone to game with, or at least anyone with enough English given that my handle on the native tongue is poor.

Cyprus - I found a single willing partner and together we made enough noise for a handful of others to come creeping out to join us. Pretty much all the action was in Nicosia and, again, I was too far away from it. Enjoyed a couple of game nights and I'm pleased to see that there remains a core group that are still connecting with game nights and even math trades nearly a decade later.

France - over the past few years I've been sporadically spending a few days at a time in Paris where there is an active gaming scene, but not one that is easy to find on English-speaking media (i.e. you won't get anywhere looking for clubs or meets on BGG). I tried but admittedly not very hard as I was always preoccupied with work and wanting to get back home as quickly as possible. I should have made more effort learning French I guess!
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10 Sep 2021 09:40 #326405 by Shellhead
Replied by Shellhead on topic Paring down

mezike wrote: Dubai - absolutely nothing going on except some expat kids playing Warhammer at the cities (then) only hobby store, although this was back before gaming websites were a thing and even widespread internet was still something of a new-fangled novelty. Monopoly was a huge deal, copies of it were everywhere and on the shelves in some of the most unlikely places, to the point it was almost a literal translation for "game".


Monopoly was actually a plot point in Comrade Detective.

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10 Sep 2021 10:23 #326407 by san il defanso
Replied by san il defanso on topic Paring down
Oh, and we just found out for sure that we'll be moving to Kenya next year, so I guess I'll be able to report on the scene in Nairobi then, Covid-permitting.
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10 Sep 2021 17:47 #326418 by DarthJoJo
Replied by DarthJoJo on topic Paring down
Of my current collection , I could probably lose a third without blinking. Another third I need some more plays to decide or are pretty good but not getting played. So, if my calculations are correct, I could be pretty happy with somewhere between a third and a half of what I own without regrets.

Two things hold me back from a fire sale, though. One, I don’t want to go to the trouble of selling. If I could donate to the library or something, they’d be gone this weekend. Two, my oldest son is almost six. He’s really enjoying simplified Carcassonne right now. Hope springs eternal that in another five years he and his brothers might want to play Imperial Assault or SEAL Team Flix or K2 or whatever. So, since space isn’t an issue for me, I hold on to them, waiting and hoping and preparing.

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