Tuesday, 2 February 2010

shopping binge

I ended 2009 meeting my goal of buying less than 20 games in year. I acquired 19 games in 2009 - 17 bought, 1 was a gift, 1 was bought using vouchers. I didn't count 2 self-made games, and if I did I wouldn't have met my goal. Then in Jan 2010, I went on a shopping binge and bought 10 games. Oops, half my quota gone.

It all started innocently enough. After tracking a dozen or so games released at Essen 2009 (Oct), I have finally narrowed down to just a few I want to buy. When I heard that a friend is coming back to Malaysia from the UK for Chinese New Year, I decided to pull the trigger and asked him to bring them back for me. Buying games from UK online stores is actually not cheap, but at least I will get them soon, and I won't need to worry about taxes. I ordered:

  • Agricola: Farmers of the Moor - I've enjoyed Agricola a lot and the expansion sounds quite interesting, with new challenges to manage.
  • Factory Manager - I like Power Grid a lot and generally like this type of efficiency games. Somehow the theme appeals to me. Also I hear this is good with 2 players.
  • At the Gates of Loyang - Good with 2 players.

Last year I helped a friend in Taiwan with some translation work. My "payment" is in the form of games. I asked for:

  • Tales of the Arabian Nights - Simply because this is something very different. I eventually may not like the game as much as I hope, but I want to have it in my collection anyway.
  • Planet Steam - The "Power Grid-like resource market" piqued my interest. "Complex economic game" made me decide to get it.
  • Funny Friends - This needs more players, and has an adult / mature theme. I hope I will eventually be able to have a large enough regular gaming group for this. I find the theme quite amusing.

Chong Sean (of Carcasean boardgame cafe) was buying some games from Amazon.de, and asked whether there was anything I wanted to get. Shipping was a flat EUR14 (for the whole order). I ordered:

  • Keltis expansion (new board) - I quite enjoy Keltis and have always been interested in getting this expansion. It will make the game more complex, and hopefully more interesting and more fun too.
  • Uruk: Wiege der Zivilisation (Uruk: Cradle of Civilisation) - Card game with a civilisation theme. Since my wife Michelle likes Through the Ages (civ theme) and Race for the Galaxy (card game), maybe this can become one of our regular go-to games.

Then I received an email update from www.boardgamelifestyle.com, an online retailer in Singapore, that they were having a sale. Han, Chong Sean and I pooled together to buy some games, and I asked my friend in Singapore Chee Seng to pick up the games and bring them back to Kuala Lumpur. Free shipping! I bought:

  • Dominion: Seaside - This was actually not on sale, but Dominion: Intrigue was. This interested me more than Intrigue, so I decided to get it. I never really played Dominion much. I hope this expansion will make the game more interesting and will make me play it more.
  • In the Shadow of the Emperor - An older game about policital maneuvering in medieval Germany. It's probably best with four. I'm interested in how the many aspects of the game work together. It all seems quite thematic. It may be a bit complex compared to regular Eurogames though. There are quite a lot of details, but they all tie to the theme.

When I think about controlling my game buying, I ask myself why I'm doing it. I realise it's not really because of saving money. I am generally thrifty, but I can afford some more games, since I'm such a big fan and I don't spend much on other things. It is also not really about space. I still have space at home to grow my collection further. I find that the main reason I should control my game buying is so that I can spend enough time on each game to appreciate them better. Less is more. Quality over quantity. I will continue to as much as possible follow my self-imposed rule of 5 plays in first year of purchase.

One thing I should probably do is sell some games, or even give some away. I won't be selling because I want the money, but because I want to make sure the games will be treasured by the persons who buy them. I've always been too lazy to do this though - the hassle of packing games and going to the post office to send them off. Maybe I'll try to peddle some of my games to the Old Town Kopitiam gamers. At least they are near and it's convenient to meet up with them. Any of you want an old and slightly damaged but unplayed Advanced Third Reich?


I am now telling myself "No new games until the second half of 2010!". Let's come back in half a year to see whether I manage to stick to this.


family board games said...

Agricola and Race for the Galaxy are great games. I play them a lot with friends on the weekends.

Hiew Chok Sien said...

These two are among my favourite games too!