Almost 5 years ago i’ve watched a review of a board game on the Internet. It seemed interesting, so i started looking for more videos. I’ve also found a few shops selling board games. One week later i’ve bought very simple, little card game (“Saboteur”). Tried it with my father and brother. Then i brought it to office and showed to my colleagues. And so it began 🙂 I’ve started buying more games, looking on the Internet about which games are considered the best, about newly released. Once per week after the working hours we were playing with my colleagues one or two games. Although, a few years later it all calmed down a bit (work, families, kids). But then a few new colleagues came to our unit and we recalled our tradition, so once in a while we organize gaming evenings. Also trying to interest co-workers from other units.
Even when our gaming group was broken up for some time, i haven’t lost interest in the modern board games industry. From the very beginning i liked Tom Vasel’s channel about games on the Youtube page – The Dice Tower. I try to watch every his video (game reviews, top’s, game plays, videos from games conferences). Also i have quickly found a site, which is the main portal for all board game fans – www.boardgamegeek.com. You can find information about a particular game, discuss it in the forums with other gamers from all over the world, rate games in the catalog. I always try to rate on this page every new game i’ve played, add to the list of games in my profile if i purchase new one (a link into my collection (without the expansions)).
When i didn’t have possibility to play live with my colleagues, i’ve started to look for variants to play in the Internet. And i’ve found a few wonderful sites:
Yucata.de – i spend much time at this page (more often with a tablet). I sign in during the lunch break, during my commute to work or to home, when i travel, just any time when i have nothing to do. All the games on Yucata can only be played in a turn-based way. There is no real-time game mode. For some it may look inconvenient and boring. But for me, after a few years of gaming, this seems the best way. You are not tied to your computer, you sing it when you can and make your move. You can sign in again in a day or two. Sometimes game sessions can last for a few days, weeks or even a month. I play around 10 different games at once, so it won’t get boring to wait for a next move. Therefore i have to do 10-20 moves per day and this is enough to quench my gaming thirst 🙂
Boardgamearena.com – this site is more suitable for real-time gaming fans, though they have also added a turn-based game play mode recently. I visit this page occasionally (it works a bit worse on my tablet than Yucata). Usually i go there because of a few games i like, but which are absent in Yucata system. Also, when i have an hour and want to play whole game quickly.
Both these pages are free, though Yucata is accepting monetary donations, and in BGA’s case you can subscribe to an account with extended statistics options and this way support the site.
Of course, no site can replace a live play with real people. You wait for every game evening with impatience. And the thing is not just about the games, but in socializing with your friends/colleagues when you do something together.
After all these years i’ve found and watch more Youtube channels (one of them from Estonia). I’ve subscribed to a few Lithuanian blogs about board games, though they are not active for a long time. Will try to write something on this topic, though my collection is not very large, i rarely play live and i don’t have the newest, hottest games.