Thursday, September 20, 2018

Taking another look at Target shelves

I periodically check out the game shelves at Target. While I have grown used to seeing designer games at Barnes and Nobel, it is fascinating for me to see what Target will take a chance on.

The last time I looked, I was surprised by some of the things I saw. Century:Spice Road was pretty surprising. We are looking at family weight games but I view those as one of the bedrocks of the gaming industry. And they are also what got me into designer board games.

However, here’s a few things that really struck me on my last look.

Shadows in the Forest... is that a remake of Waldschattenspiel? A game that was a grail game when I first started collecting because open flame was a major component. And it’s in Target with an electric candle? (Well, I guess I can add my own live candle if I wanted to)

 Voltage is a game I bought when it first came out almost ten years ago. It was one of a couple games that Mattel (!) put out, presumably feelers to see if their market was ready for designer games. It’s still in my collection and I think it’s a nice, almost Balloon Cup game. I just never thought I would ever see it in print again, let alone in a place like Target.

Ticket to Ride:New York is something I didn’t even know existed until I saw it at Target... and I still don’t know how I feel about it. I love short games but Ticket to Ride condensed down to fifteen minutes might be cutting out too many choices.

That said, I’d have bought in an instant in my hording days but I’d get more out of it now either as a ‘the kid’s asleep, let’s game’ or introducing a preschooler to Ticket to Ride. I’d rather have New York than First Journey.

I’m not sure how I feel that three of my top ‘really need to buy’ games  are available at Target (Kingdomino, Santorini (which a friend bought for me), and Azul, by the way) are all available at Target. That really dings my gamer rep :P However, I think that it also says a lot about designer games becoming more and more mainstream in the United States.

Which isn’t the first time this has happened to me. When I started watching Doctor Who in the mid-80s, it was an eccentric thing to do :D

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