Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Five & Dime 2006: Most Played Games

Thurn & Taxis32037.07%newnew
Ticket To Ride25028.45%43.94%73.64%
No Mercy/Geschenkt22025.86%21.21%new
San Juan22025.86%34.85%59.09%
Hey! That's My Fish/Pingvinas21531.03%2.02%0.00%
10 Days/Europa Tour21525.8611.62%27.27%
Settlers of Catan21525.00%20.71%17.27%
For Sale19023.28%30.81%7.27%
Liar's Dice18525.00%17.17%33.64%
Power Grid18524.14%19.70%33.64%
Loopin' Louie18521.55%6.57%9.09%
Lost Cities16018.10%26.26%23.64%
Take 6/Category 514019.83%21.21%18.18%
St Petersburg13517.24%23.23%55.45%
Can't Stop13513.79%10.10%18.18%

Tied for 25th place with a score of 130: Ticket to Ride: Europe, Ticket to Ride: Marklin & Crokinole.

"score" is computed by giving a game 5 points for each person playing it 5-9 times and 10 points for each person playing 10+ times

the percentage numbers for each year are the percent of respondents who reported playing the game 5+ or 10+ times

For the first time, there were actually LESS gamers who participated in the Five & Dime lists... 116 gamers (2 groups & 114 individuals) chimed in. In some ways that makes me a bit sad (more people make for better stats) but it also makes me do the happy dance as well (less people mean less headaches from compiling the results).

The Ticket to Ride franchise is a juggernaut... if you add the percentages together, 66% of the respondents played one of the three games. (No, I didn't track correctly to see if this really happened - this is one of those lies, d----d lies & statistics kind of moments on my part.)

Thurn & Taxis has enjoyed it's year in the sun... and should now drop out of the top 25, though still receiving some serious play. (That's my prediction & I'm stickin' to it.)

Yet another year to wait before Carcassonne reaches a saturation point - in other words, "When will the next Carc expansion cause the whole franchise to 'jump the shark'?" It's dropping off... but not as steeply as I thought it would.

I continue to be surprised by the staying power of St. Petersburg. I like the game myself, mind you, but I didn't think it would stay in the top 25. I'm also surprised by the resurgence of Pingvinas/Hey! That's My Fish - I was just "eh, ok" when I played it, but evidently a lot of you LOVE this game.

Memoir '44 finally dropped out of the top 25... but only by a couple of places. I expect to see Battlelore here in it's place next year - but Memoir '44 could hold on, as it has a devoted fan base.

I was correct (no surprise) about the disappearance of Shadows Over Camelot & Louis XIV. (It's nice to be vindicated... he he he.)

The big question: will Caylus hold in place or will it start to fade out? Puerto Rico FINALLY slid out of the top 25 (right next to Memoir) so no game is "sacred", right?

OK, maybe we'll have to make exceptions for perennial favorites: Ra, Settlers, Tichu, & Liar's Dice.

Well, that does it for my "quickie" comments - it's time for you guys to jump on board with your comments!


Mark (aka pastor guy) said...

I didn't notice this until I got it posted: there's only ONE brand-spankin' new game in the whole bunch this time - Thurn & Taxis!

Chris Farrell said...

It would be kind of cool if the game was called No Mercy, but Geshenkt/No Thanks! is actually No Merci in French. Funny that the German title ("gift" or "given") should be universally translated by the rest of us to "No Thanks!".

Although the full title of Geschenkt in German is actually "Geschenkt ist noch zu teuer", slightly tricky to translate cleanly but something like "Free would be too expensive". That makes No Thanks! look more faithful.

Obviously, Geschenkt and Diamant have something of an advantage over Ra and Settlers, both being so short. Makes the high placement of Ra look pretty good.

I have to think that Loopin' Louie probably is not rated so highly by a random sample of gamers :) On the other hand, it's great to see Settlers still doing well, even though just mentioning it on BGG is enough to draw almost as much ire as Monopoly (I exaggerate. Maybe).

Anonymous said...

Mark, thanks for all your work on this. I look forward to it every year. I think that another 2006 release will find its way onto the list next year: Battlelore.

huzonfirst said...

I predict that Thurn & Taxis WILL repeat next year. My reason? It plays best with two and two-player games often find their way onto the five and dime list. No guarantees after 2007, but I think it has at least one more year in it.

I'm a little surprised at Ingenious' staying power, but I think I've consistently underestimated the game. It appears to be deeper than I first thought. Not that I have any great desire to play it, but it looks like it'll be around for a while. Again, I bet most of those plays were with two players.

Transamerica's staying power is also surprising to me. I guess it's pleasant enough, but I honestly don't see the appeal.

St. Pete's lasted longer than I thought it would. The interesting thing is, a lot of its early fans have moved on, but I guess there's still a core bunch that's remained loyal. Looking at its trends, though, makes it clear that 2006 is its last year on the list.

I'm frankly impressed when any heavy game has two or more years on the list. It's just so hard to get those games on the table, other than when they're brand new. Probably the most impressive standing is Power Grid's 13th place finish. This is particularly true since it had a HIGHER percentage than last year. If any meaty game would have finished that high, I would have picked Age of Steam, due to the many variants keeping it fresh. But I guess PG has more popular appeal (and a few variants of its own).

Another great job, Mark. Have spreadsheet, will travel!

Marc Gilutin said...

re St. Pete's: I can't speak for anyone else but, in my case, a
friend got me a copy of the still- in-German expansion cards, which gave the game a definite boost in my circle of friends.

Anonymous said...

People play Hey That's My Fish with there kids, or other minor relatives. Thats the thing with that game, it's good for many ages. It have some Gateway potential to...

Anonymous said...

Since this is my first time posting on this blog, let say I appreciate you taking the time and effort to put together this information. I also have enjoyed your participation in GGG podcasts. And based on your name here, I guess I should call my self Dan aka missionary guy. But that is a story for another time.

I would like to comment about Carcassonne "Jumping the Shark". I believe that it allready has from a gammer stand point, but it will hit my table 10+ this year without a doubt. But only for the same reason Ticket to Ride does. Both games make perfect intros into the hobby and my family and friends request them over and over again. Carcassonne is only played with no expansions and Ticket to Ride never makes it to Europe or even 1910.

The truth is that I am just happy to play since I have so few chances (work, church, family, etc... take up most of my time) I only hope to get a chance to play Thurn & Taxis and be able to give my opinion to if we will see it here next year.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for taking the time to compile this wonderful information. I have not kept good records of my gaming during the year but I thing I will start just so I can help with the stats. Shorter and simpler games definelty do have an advantage here but I'm convinced that's as it should be. I used to play a lot of wargames and heavy strategy games but as I've gotten more involved in other areas of my life I find now I play mostly with family and freinds who are not "gamers" and wish to do it for the social aspects and simple "fun" of it. These charts accurately reflect that trend. It also shows that much like in video games the bigger "Gamer games " have a much shorter life than the simpler ones. The gamers that like them quite offen go on to the next big thing.