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Why Board Games Are Big Business ?

For as long as humans have been communicating with each other and living in communities they have been playing games. Today we are living in a golden age of gameplay and although one would think that with our addiction to screens, tabletop games would have fallen by the wayside, nothing could be further from the truth. Right now it is estimated that the global board game market is worth somewhere between £10 billion and £12 billion with growth rates on an annual basis set to exceed 7% over the next half-decade (data via Technavio and Imarc). But the numbers are even more staggering if you look at the previous growth of the industry, because by the end of 2022 year-to-date board game sales when compared to 2019 increased by 28% (data via the NPD Group).

Kickstarter Has Played a Big Part in Board Game Growth

From niche financial games that are a vast improvement to Monopoly to miniature-based games that allow you to fight “Weired War II” Diesel Punk battles across the globe, the Kickstarter crowdfunding platform has allowed both established and unknown designers to release new games that cover diverse themes on a monthly basis. It is currently estimated by BoardGame Geek (an industry-respected tabletop games website) that around 3,000 NEW games are released every year. And this excluded expansion packs for existing games! Thanks to Kickstarter’s influence this increase in game creation has seen the industry now offer more game categories and game themes than ever before.

Incredibly it has also meant that not just the quality of the games themselves has improved, but also the quality of the games pieces. Rules sets have also become easier to understand and use, and many new games have forgone the old competitive games structure in favour of a more cooperative gaming experience. This has allowed people who were previously put off by complicated rule sets to more easily become gamers. Added to this, many of the latest tabletop games are attached to some of pop culture’s most endearing licensed IPs and include everything from Star Wars, Marvel and DC to Dungeons & Dragons and Warhammer (and so much more).

More Than Your Old Monopoly, Risk and Clue Games

From blasting away your enemies in Games such as “DUST 1947” to bird watching in Amazon’s 2022 game of the year “Wingspan”, there is literally a game that covers anyone’s favourite interest and it is now so easy to find a point of gaming entry. This has allowed both young and old players to realise that there is more to tabletop games than the old Monopoly, Clue and Risk games which dominated the games industry for decades. Even more recent entries such as Settlers of Catan have to now compete with a new generation of games such as Exploding Kittens (yes that’s a real game – and it’s rather fun too!) that are easy to play and quick to get to the table.

Liscensing Deals Make Good Games Greater!

From merchandising and media tie-ins to video games and even slot games, the opportunity to add additional revenue streams to popular games is enormous through licensing agreements. Home favourites such as Monopoly and iconic pop culture phenomena such as Dungeons & Dragons are two such board games which have successfully made inroads away from the tabletop industry. With the latter having made the leap to the big screen on multiple occasions and both games being found in real-money online casinos in Australia as well as land-based casinos across the world.

But There’s Life in The Old Games Yet!

Don’t count these older games out just yet, because the nostalgic value behind household tabletop industry names such as Ticket to Ride and Pandemic (to name but two) have created a games category all of their own for those who still want to play the classics. This can be seen in their growing popularity thanks to companies such as Restoration Games who are in the process of revamping and upgrading older games with modern design, streamlined rules and better production values.

Tabletop Games Are Fun and Not Simply Fashionable

Games are essentially still toys, but unlike the rest of the toy industry, board games are not ruled by the whimsy of the market. Today’s toy fad is tomorrow’s old news when it comes to many toy lines, but board game categories and themes tend to remain popular for years and even decades. This means that the time and effort put into creating them continues to earn the creators revenue long after many other toy ranges have come and gone.



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