WHY ARE BOARD GAMES SO EXPENSIVE?
If you’re just starting to get into board games, you might be a tad surprised by the prices. They seem to be expensive, but there are many factors to consider when thinking about the price of a board game.
What goes into a board game?
There are many reasons why board games are seen as so expensive. Many board games, especially the newer ones, are made by small game publishers. This means that they usually don’t produce a huge batch of games. All the components that go into the game have a price, and when production is lower, then the cost will be higher.
Before the game can get to us consumers, it has to go through so many phases. Research and development are no joke when it comes to making a board game. It can take up to 2 years to come up with a final product that is ready for retail. Then there are the assembly and distribution costs. If a game is produced by a large company with games that are famous like Settlers of Catan, or my personal all time classic word game favorite, Scrabble, then they can produce their games in the thousands. Basic economy of scale tells you that this will lower the retail cost.
Thankfully for us in the age of crowdfunding, Kickstarter for example, board game developers find it easier to find people to back their projects. Usually, backers will receive exclusive bonuses like 3D figures and or coins made from metal rather than cardboard.
What makes board games “good value”?
Board games can cost anywhere from a few hundred baht to 3,000 – 4,000 THB. With any game you purchase, you can expect it to have a nice game board or player boards, some miniatures, meeples, currency, and cards with original artwork. It really depends on the type of board game you choose to buy. Card games will be cheaper of course, while larger games with more components will obviously cost you more.
When you’re considering what game to buy, there are a few things to think about:
Number of Players:
Board games are for playing with others, although there are a few solo options out there. If it’s a game that only allows you to play with 2 to 3 people, but you have a group of 5 or 6, then maybe it’s not for you. On the other hand, if you have a small group of people and it’s a game that is better played with a larger group, then it’s also not for you. It’s important that you do your research.
Board games are, by their inherent nature, replay-able. A good game will be different each time that you play it. And, hopefully you won’t get tired of it too quickly. Some games take a few tries to get the hang of, while some change each time you play with different people. Some games have multiple characters and scenarios for you to try out. In this time of social distancing because of the pandemic, a board game will be a good way for you and your family to stay entertained. If you have no one to play with, some of these games have applications that you can use to play instead. And, if you’re curious about what games are the most replay-able or what games might fit with you the most, drop us a message through our website or Facebook and we’ll see if we can help you with that. 🙂
This includes everything from the paper to make the boards and cards to the miniatures of the characters in play. The miniatures especially, can increase the price of a board game. They can be super detailed and it takes so skillful artistry to make them and particularly to paint them. And, everyone who makes them needs to get paid as well. The paper for a game board is thicker, while the paper stock for cards will be thinner and lighter. Basic plastic tokens and just generic shapes will be cheaper. It all depends on the game that you purchase, or even how it was funded. Some games with Kickstarter editions have specialized pieces that cost more but are way more beautiful to look at. That can be important for some collectors. It all depends on your personal preference.
So, what does this mean for your pocket?
In essence, this means that it all comes down to what you value. If you think that an activity which allows for endless fun, learning, and social interaction is worth it, then a board game is the way to go. Board games have also been increasingly used for the purpose of HR training and personnel development.
What I hope that you get from this article is that tabletop games aren’t meant to be played just a single time. They are a source of endless fun that’ll possibly last a lifetime. I still have the same board games at home that I had when I was 10 years old. That’s a couple decades now. Find one, or a few, that you like. They’re an investment in more than just fun. They’re a source of learning and development as well. And, if you purchase a game that is made by a new developer, you’ll be supporting someone’s dream as well. Invest in a board game. You won’t regret it.