Loaded Dice 2013 Update

(Part of Loaded Dice.)

Introduction

In July 2013 I fetched the BoardGameGeek dataset a third time. My main goal was to see if the trends I discovered in 2012 had continued. I was especially interested in rating inflation and the cult-of-the-new effect.

Before we get started I'd like to point out that a lot of games from my 2011 list of Pre-1990 games still greatly in demand have now been re-released or remade. I think this shows the practical value of my analysis.

Newly added games

5712 games were added to the BGG database since I last checked in 2012. (Back then, I found 7328 new games since I first checked in 2011.) 56% of these (3204) were "new" games, with publication dates in 2012 or 2013.

In the 2012 dataset, 3520 (48%) games were "new". This isn't a valid year-on-year comparison, because I took the 2012 data in August, not July. Adjust the data to account for that, and it looks like about 3200 games are released every year.

This graph shows how many games from each year since 1900 were added to BGG since the last Loaded Dice update. The graph looks almost exactly like last year's graph, shifted over a year. The most popular release years were 2013 (1677 games added) and 2012 (1527 games added).

718 games were added without any publication date, and 736 were added with a known publication date earlier than 2000. The oldest game added to BGG since last time was Jarmo, which supposedly dates from 1227. There's also Minchiate, a deck of cards that can be traced back to 1466.

Here are a few interesting older games that were added in the past year:

Rating inflation update

The story so far: In 2011, the mean rating of all games on BGG was 6.82. In August 2012, I used my initial cult-of-the-new calculation to establish that the mean rating handed out since my first data collection (to a non-unknown game published after 1960) was 7.00, significantly higher than the overall rating for the mean game, which was 6.85.

In July 2013, I calculated the cult-of-the-new effect again and found that the mean rating handed out in the year since my last update (again, to a non-unknown game published after 1960) was 6.97.

YearMean new ratingMedian new ratingStandard deviation
-20116.826.950.88
2011-20127.06.980.87
2012-20136.977.10.80

What I didn't expect is that someone who likes a game in 2013 gives it a slightly lower rating than they would have in 2012. Rating inflation is still happening, relative to the 2011 baseline, but it seems to be slowing down. In fact, rating inflation may have been on the decline even in 2011. We'll never know, unless someone has been collecting BGG rating data from earlier than 2011.

Last year I said the median new rating hadn't gone up, but it actually had; just not very far. This year, the median new rating went up a lot. The high ratings are not evenly distributed, with some games getting lots of high ratings and low ratings. The high ratings are accruing to the top half of games. The opinions of BGG users are converging over time.

Here's the effect all these individual ratings given by BGG users have had over time on the aggregate ratings of games.

YearRating of the mean gameRating of the median gameStandard deviation
2011/076.826.950.88
2012/086.856.980.87
2013/076.977.000.86

The mean rating continues to increase. The mean new rating was lower in 2013 than in 2012, but it's still higher than the 2011 baseline. The median game is rated higher than in 2012, though still very close to the 2013 mean, and the 2013 standard deviation is slightly lower than the 2012 one.

Again, this tells me that BGG users are coming into closer agreement about which games are good, and how good they are. I would really like to know whether this has any objective basis or whether it's the result of groupthink. (This is why I'm so interested in games whose ratings change a lot year-over-year.)

At this point, the rating of the mean game exactly equals the mean new rating given to a game. Is this just a coincidence, or will this hold true from now on? Check back next year, I guess.

Formerly underrated games

Almost the same deal as in 2012. I looked at all games with at least 20 ratings in my 2012 dataset, plus at least 200 more in my 2013 dataset. This eliminates obvious attempts to game BGG's rating system, as well as games that that have only been played by a few people at cons. For each game I calculated the "cult-of-the-new effect": the difference between the rating an average person gives the game now, and the rating an average person was giving it a year ago.

My first list shows the games with the highest positive cult-of-the-new effect: games that people rated much more positively in 2013 than they did in 2012.

GameReleased inVotes as of 201208201208 ratingNew votes from 201208-201307201307 ratingCotN effect
Zombies!!! 2001 5030 5.60 4217 6.39 1.73
Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game 2012 22 6.90 3719 8.01 1.12
Indigo 2012 87 6.15 258 6.71 0.74
Star Trek: Catan 2012 39 6.70 356 7.30 0.66
Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective 1981 1013 7.32 384 7.49 0.61
River Dragons 2000 1110 6.29 304 6.42 0.59
Mansions of Madness: Forbidden Alchemy 2011 133 7.59 267 7.90 0.47
Gloom 2004 2958 6.30 942 6.41 0.44
Ground Floor 2012 47 6.99 571 7.39 0.44
Railways of the World 2005 6180 7.67 1287 7.75 0.43
Sentinels of the Multiverse 2011 750 7.43 1864 7.73 0.42
Tsuro 2004 4632 6.53 1597 6.63 0.39
Tammany Hall 2007 425 7.25 566 7.45 0.35
The Game of Life 1960 3926 3.97 510 4.00 0.28
Magic: The Gathering 1993 11504 7.36 1822 7.39 0.28
Blood Bowl (Third Edition) 1994 2898 7.56 345 7.59 0.26
HeroQuest 1989 4918 6.88 563 6.91 0.25
Abalone 1987 2858 6.41 299 6.43 0.25
Dungeon! 1975 1017 5.90 382 5.96 0.24
The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game - Conflict at the Carrock 2011 440 7.59 209 7.66 0.24

The same point I made last year applies: these games were underrated in 2012 relative to their current rating. "The Game of Life" went from a really terrible 3.97 to an also-terrible 4.00. But that's a pretty big jump for a game that had almost 4000 ratings to begin with, so there's probably an explanation for it. (I don't know the explanation.)

If you look at the BGG pages for the older games in this list, you'll find that most of them were republished in 2012. This is especially noticeable for "Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective" and "Dungeon!". This makes the old game appear "underrated" in two ways: the reprint usually has better production quality, and it's evaluated by a new group of people who judge it by 2013's inflated standards. Apparently even a poorly-rated game like "Dungeon!" benefits from rating inflation if it gets reprinted.

This year's list of underrated games has no overlap with last year's. Six of last year's underrated games didn't even meet the criteria for this year's list--that is, they didn't get 200 new ratings between 2012 and 2013. Most of the rest proved to have been somewhat overrated in hindsight. 2011's most underrated game, "1989: Dawn of Freedom" was highly overrated in 2012, obtaining a 2012 CotN effect of -0.49. However, "Castles of Burgundy" and "Get Bit!" were underrated two years in a row, with 2012 CotN effects of 0.11 and 0.07, respectively.

"The Resistance" seems to have settled on a stable rating. That game got 3336 new votes between my 2012 dataset and my 2013 dataset, but its CotN effect was -0.01 and its rating is unchanged at 7.54.

Formerly overrated games

Same deal as the underrated games, only I'm looking at the games with the highest negative cult-of-the-new effect.

GameReleased inVotes as of 201208201208 ratingVotes from 201208-201307201307 ratingCotN effect
Briefcase 2012 22 8.27 270 6.61 -1.79
War of the Ring (first edition) 2004 7384 7.94 321 7.89 -1.17
Among the Stars 2012 23 8.00 644 7.06 -0.97
Thunderstone: Dragonspire 2011 1587 7.77 337 7.63 -0.82
Yomi 2011 1520 7.59 308 7.45 -0.81
Descent: Journeys in the Dark 2005 7918 7.52 630 7.47 -0.79
Blue Moon 2004 4167 6.87 218 6.83 -0.78
BattleLore 2006 7331 7.54 346 7.51 -0.75
Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) 2012 369 8.66 3397 8.01 -0.72
Power Grid: Factory Manager 2009 3804 7.08 404 7.01 -0.72
Farmageddon 2012 28 7.17 289 6.53 -0.71
No Retreat! The Russian Front 2011 471 8.27 241 8.03 -0.70
1960: The Making of the President 2007 5208 7.65 422 7.60 -0.69
Dungeon Run 2011 713 6.78 327 6.56 -0.69
GOSU 2010 1522 6.93 310 6.82 -0.68
Earth Reborn 2010 1552 8.18 438 8.04 -0.67
Apples to Apples 1999 9017 6.36 1015 6.29 -0.67
Puzzle Strike 2010 1039 7.11 254 6.98 -0.66
Campaign Manager 2008 2009 1542 6.95 238 6.86 -0.66
La Città 2000 3759 7.24 220 7.20 -0.65

Again, these games were overrated in 2012 relative to their current rating. They're not necessarily bad games; twelve of them have ratings higher than the median rating.

Unlike the list of underrated games, the list of overrated games has a lot of overlap with last year's list. "Thunderstone: Dragonspire", "Dungeon Run", "Yomi" and "Puzzle Strike" have proven to be highly overrated two years in a row. Last year's most overrated game was 2010's "War of the Ring Collectors Edition", and this year, the same thing nearly happened to the 2004 first edition of the same game. "A Few Acres of Snow" didn't make the top twenty this year, but it's at #27 with a CotN effect of -0.55.

At this point I feel pretty confident in saying those are games that were incredibly hyped upon their release, and that their initial high ratings will take several years to cancel out.

But at least people are still playing those games. Nine of the games on last year's top-twenty list didn't get 200 ratings this year, so they weren't even considered. The best news from last year's list was "The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game - The Hunt for Gollum", which maintained its rating of 7.35 despite 231 new ratings, achieving a CotN effect of zero.

Games growing or shrinking in popularity

Last year I called this section "Late Bloomers", but that didn't really capture what I wanted to find out. I'm interested in seeing which games became significantly more popular over the past year.

Now that I have three years of data, I can calculate this a lot more accurately. Using 2010 as a baseline, I know how many new ratings each game got in 2011, and how many each game got in 2012. The ratio of those numbers will show how much more popular a game became in 2012.
GameReleased in201208 ratings201307 ratingsPercentage increaseAverage rating
Sorts 2006 12 80 68.00% 5.94
Unexpected Treasures 2002 31 245 53.50% 6.29
Polis: Fight for the Hegemony 2010 20 427 50.88% 8.31
Extra! 1989 166 253 14.50% 6.50
Arctic Scavengers 2009 170 311 14.10% 6.82
Pax Baltica 2009 18 74 14.00% 7.62
Midway: Turning Point in the Pacific 2002 73 86 13.00% 7.11
Kapitän Wackelpudding 1994 146 158 12.00% 6.24
Kingmaker Variant Event Cards 1977 96 108 12.00% 7.08
Crude: The Oil Game 1974 388 587 11.71% 6.90
Mad Scientist 2000 80 91 11.00% 4.43
Western Town 2005 14 153 9.93% 7.50
Der Herr der Ringe: Die Zwei Türme 2002 69 78 9.00% 5.93
Zombies!!! 2001 5030 9247 8.75% 6.39
Gold Connection 1992 107 115 8.00% 6.45
Midgard: Das Brettspiel 2007 56 64 8.00% 6.87
Battle Hymn: Leatherneck 1988 108 115 7.00% 7.60
Wapi 2003 53 60 7.00% 5.03
String Railway 2009 211 553 6.98% 6.66
Merchants of the Middle Ages 1999 783 1039 6.56% 6.99

I don't really have any comments on this, except that I saw "Merchants of the Middle Ages" on the discount shelf at a game store yesterday. Maybe overstock has driven its increase in popularity.

Surprisingly, there were no games that had drastically fewer new ratings in 2013 than in 2012. Here are the 20 games that lost the most popularity last year, judging from number of new ratings. The difference is never more than 1%.
GameReleased in201208 ratings201307 ratingsPercentage increaseAverage rating
I Don't Know, What Do You Want To Play? 2007 82 81 -1.00% 6.76
Sergeants! On the Eastern Front 2004 77 76 -1.00% 6.23
History of War 2003 92 88 -1.00% 5.88
Battlecards: World Conflict; Pacific Theatre; Starter Set 2003 65 63 -1.00% 5.69
Pirate King 2006 227 201 -0.90% 5.87
One More Barrel 2008 124 111 -0.87% 6.65
The Three Days of Gettysburg (second edition) 2000 67 64 -0.75% 7.04
Hong Kong 1999 65 63 -0.67% 5.84
Medievalia 2007 120 114 -0.60% 5.89
Santa Fe 1992 192 189 -0.60% 7.01
Treasure Fleet 2006 61 60 -0.50% 6.13
BattleBots: Kickbot Arena 2001 51 50 -0.50% 4.09
Grav Armor 1982 55 54 -0.50% 6.36
Ultimatum 1985 58 57 -0.50% 5.75
Mausoleum 2000 89 88 -0.50% 4.63
6 Billion 1999 125 124 -0.50% 5.32
Bulp! 2007 57 54 -0.43% 5.07
90° 2008 55 54 -0.33% 7.63
Warmachine Prime Remix 2006 144 141 -0.33% 8.28
Ekonos 2004 94 92 -0.33% 6.74

What about other measures of popularity? For instance, how about seeing how many people actually bought a given game in 2012? I couldn't do this calculation last year because I'd be comparing one year's worth of data against a baseline that went back ten years or more. But now I can compare 2012 numbers to 2013 numbers.

Here are the games with the biggest percentage increases in ownership in 2013, versus 2012:
GameReleased in201208 new owners201307 new ownersPercentage increaseAverage rating
Unexpected Treasures 2002 34 362 328.00% 6.29
Polis: Fight for the Hegemony 2010 18 801 195.75% 8.31
Arctic Scavengers 2009 122 454 110.67% 6.82
Pax Baltica 2009 25 305 93.33% 7.62
Western Town 2005 4 282 92.67% 7.50
Sorts 2006 8 121 56.50% 5.94
Locomotive Werks 2002 181 370 27.00% 6.88
Extra! 1989 133 271 19.71% 6.50
Crude: The Oil Game 1974 368 799 18.74% 6.90
Chainmail 2009 155 205 16.67% 5.87
Anathema 2003 237 278 13.67% 5.55
String Railway 2009 163 868 13.30% 6.66
Tammany Hall 2007 472 1661 10.25% 7.45
Objective: Kiev 2010 65 295 10.00% 7.17
Hansa Extrakarte 2004 184 193 9.00% 6.59
Railways of the World 2005 5309 7451 8.24% 7.75
Zombies!!! 2001 5688 11044 8.18% 6.39
Merchants of the Middle Ages 1999 925 1626 8.15% 6.99
Rockband Manager 2010 75 306 7.97% 6.37
Hanabi 2010 444 3425 6.76% 7.57

As you might expect, a big increase in ownership corresponds to a big increase in the number of ratings. But a small increase in ownership doesn't seem highly correlated with a small increase in the number of ratings. Here are the games with the smallest percentage increases in ownership in 2013:
GameReleased in201208 new owners201307 new ownersPercentage increaseAverage rating
Piraci: Córka Gubernatora 2006 57 54 -1.50% 5.97
Hexxagon 1992 9 8 -1.00% 5.51
Fan Tan 0 42 37 -0.71% 5.44
Knockabout 2001 122 120 -0.67% 6.87
The Three Days of Gettysburg (second edition) 2000 210 204 -0.55% 7.04
Mustang 2007 56 53 -0.50% 5.11
Tortuga 2003 119 118 -0.50% 5.38
The Aztec Market 2009 81 78 -0.33% 7.17
CrackeD ICE 2002 56 55 -0.33% 5.53
Battlecards: World Conflict; Western European Campaign; Starter Set 2001 201 200 -0.25% 5.50
Cannonball Colony 2008 69 68 -0.20% 7.06
My Little Pony Hide & Seek 2005 40 33 -0.19% 5.11
Age of Steam Expansion: Austria & India 2007 163 162 -0.17% 7.32
Martinis & Men 2007 85 84 -0.17% 5.10
Ultimate Werewolf: Whitebox Edition 2007 88 87 -0.17% 6.51
Taktika 2007 177 175 -0.15% 7.20
Start Player: A Kinda Collectible Card Game 2006 206 205 -0.12% 6.64
Alien City 2002 59 58 -0.12% 7.14
Brawling Battleships 2003 104 103 -0.12% 6.39
6 Billion 1999 248 247 -0.12% 5.32

BoardGameGeek also has a wishlist feature. We can see which games people started disproportionately putting on their wishlist in 2012, versus what was happening in 2011. Several of these games also enjoyed high positive cult-of-the-new effects.
GameReleased in201208 wishlists201307 wishlistsPercentage increaseAverage rating
Railways of the World 2005 1188 2122 66.71% 7.75
Zombies!!! 2: Zombie Corps(e) 2002 68 121 53.00% 6.11
Zombies!!! 3: Mall Walkers 2003 70 121 51.00% 6.20
Mare Nostrum 2003 599 639 40.00% 6.79
World Without End 2009 632 667 35.00% 7.36
Black Spy 1981 12 45 33.00% 5.97
Chez Geek 1999 88 153 32.50% 5.78
Unexpected Treasures 2002 20 80 30.00% 6.29
Warrior Knights 2006 720 778 29.00% 6.92
Caesar's Gallic War 2009 32 57 25.00% 6.80
Zombies!!! 2001 207 465 21.50% 6.39
Memoir '44: Air Pack 2007 366 383 17.00% 7.64
Operation Jubilee: Dieppe, August 1942 2010 42 58 16.00% 7.30
River Dragons 2000 111 292 15.08% 6.42
Ys 2004 441 471 15.00% 7.04
The Princes of Machu Picchu 2008 304 319 15.00% 7.02
Baltimore & Ohio 2009 128 143 15.00% 7.34
Intruder 1980 107 121 14.00% 6.51
Munchkin 7: More Good Cards 2008 82 110 14.00% 6.76
Masques 2010 104 157 13.25% 6.83

And here are the games there were added to the fewest wishlists in 2013, proportionately speaking.
GameReleased in201208 wishlists201307 wishlistsPercentage increaseAverage rating
Confucius 2008 292 271 -10.50% 6.94
Wings of War: WW2 Deluxe set 2009 102 94 -8.00% 7.38
Tannhäuser: Ramirez 2008 54 46 -8.00% 7.29
Gheos 2006 374 361 -6.50% 6.58
Thunderbolt/Apache Leader 1991 108 89 -6.33% 7.12
Let's Kill 1997 59 53 -6.00% 5.37
Typo 2004 42 36 -6.00% 6.16
WFF 'N PROOF 1962 37 31 -6.00% 4.88
Cosmic Wimpout 1975 57 51 -6.00% 5.93
Code 777 1985 307 279 -5.60% 6.80
Bangkok Klongs 2010 49 38 -5.50% 6.28
Covert Action 2007 97 86 -5.50% 5.30
Nightfall 2011 523 497 -5.20% 6.78
Order Up 2009 17 12 -5.00% 6.10
Chainmail 2009 80 75 -5.00% 5.87
Sultan 2007 27 22 -5.00% 6.14
Infernal Contraption 2007 177 167 -5.00% 6.00
Genesis 2006 80 75 -5.00% 6.48
Wacky Wacky West 1991 112 107 -5.00% 6.34
Wiz-War 1983 455 418 -4.62% 6.96

"Chainmail" had a big relative boost in ownership, but a big relative drop in being added to wishlists. That's the only game here that bears out a naive model of BGG usage--that people put games they want on their wishlist and remove them when they buy the game.

Changes in excess copies: the market in action

Back in 2011 I introduced the concept of excess copies: the difference between the number of people offering a game for trade on BGG, and the number of people who want to receive that game in trade. A game with a negative number of excess copies is in demand.

A game with a positive number of excess copies has negative demand in the trade market. This is different from low demand in the market as a whole. If a game is readily available and not too expensive, people would rather buy a new copy than get someone else's used copy. Popular games like Dominion have a lot of excess copies, but new copies still sell very well.

To straighten out that wrinkle, I'd now like to introduce the concept of the excess copy percentage: the percentage of total copies owned that are excess. If this percentage is a large positive number, it means the community as a whole is sick of this game. If it's a large negative number, it means there aren't nearly enough copies of the game to meet demand

In point of fact, this percentage is usually low or negative. Some games are in oversupply, but there's never a big increase in supply that's not met with demand. When I look at the change in the excess copy percentage between 2012 and 2013, I see games going from a high negative percentage of excess copies (much more demand than supply) to a low negative percentage in 2013 (a little more demand than supply) or a low positive percentage (demand has been met, and then some). This "supply" is supply on the trade market. It may be coming from a reprinting of the game, or from owners of existing copies deciding to put the game up for trade.

GameReleased in201208 excess copies201307 excess copiesPercentage increaseAverage rating
Western Town 2005 -675.00% -14.89% 660.11% 7.50
Polis: Fight for the Hegemony 2010 -127.78% -17.35% 110.42% 8.31
Pax Baltica 2009 -108.00% -9.18% 98.82% 7.62
String Railway 2009 -95.09% -16.82% 78.27% 6.66
Unexpected Treasures 2002 -79.41% -10.50% 68.91% 6.29
Arctic Scavengers 2009 -74.59% -20.26% 54.33% 6.82
New York 2011 -18.37% 9.81% 28.18% 6.76
Mr. Jack Pocket: Goodies 2011 -31.45% -4.37% 27.08% 7.16
Tammany Hall 2007 -36.44% -11.98% 24.46% 7.45
Crude: The Oil Game 1974 -39.67% -16.40% 23.28% 6.90
Medieval Mastery 2011 -36.17% -14.10% 22.07% 6.14
WeyKick 2001 -56.10% -34.18% 21.92% 6.95
Rockband Manager 2010 -21.33% -0.65% 20.68% 6.37
Dungeon Fighter 2011 -30.00% -10.25% 19.75% 7.00
Popular Front 2010 -40.00% -22.08% 17.92% 7.44
Sergeants Miniatures Game: Day of Days 2011 -52.17% -34.43% 17.75% 8.27
Ventura 2011 -15.00% 2.42% 17.42% 6.87
Colonial: Europe's Empires Overseas 2011 -41.87% -24.48% 17.39% 7.27
Upon a Salty Ocean 2011 -22.96% -6.39% 16.57% 6.75
Scallywags 2008 -20.00% -3.77% 16.23% 6.36

I also see scarce games becoming even more scarce (going from a negative percentage of excess copies to a larger negative percentage). I would expect some of these games to be reprinted soon.

GameReleased in201208 excess copies201307 excess copiesPercentage increaseAverage rating
Keydom 1998 -51.82% -64.66% -12.84% 6.78
Swish 2011 16.25% 4.23% -12.02% 6.08
South African Railroads 2011 -11.39% -22.78% -11.39% 7.64
Offboard 2011 2.44% -6.76% -9.20% 6.48
Cheaty Mages! 2008 -13.85% -22.34% -8.49% 6.39
1846 2005 -46.78% -55.08% -8.30% 7.94
Mai-Star 2010 -13.92% -22.11% -8.18% 6.45
RRR 2010 -13.64% -20.92% -7.28% 6.86
Octego 2007 6.67% 0.00% -6.67% 6.27
Keytown 2000 -25.67% -32.32% -6.65% 6.49
Schwarz Rot Gelb 2011 4.17% -2.47% -6.64% 5.92
Key Market 2010 -34.31% -40.92% -6.60% 7.56
Cannonball Colony 2008 -43.48% -50.00% -6.52% 7.06
Atlantis: Pathways of the Deep 2001 27.08% 20.65% -6.43% 4.23
Gumshoe 1985 -8.66% -14.89% -6.23% 6.92
Monkey Dash 2009 1.25% -4.88% -6.13% 6.89
Age of Scheme: Routes to Riches 2008 -40.58% -46.38% -5.80% 6.05
Knights of Camelot 1980 -0.40% -6.02% -5.62% 6.34
Faux•Cabulary 2011 -5.88% -11.43% -5.55% 5.97
Dixit 2: "The American" promo card 2010 -38.68% -44.21% -5.53% 7.25

Games nobody/everybody wants

Here in 2013, these are the games with the highest positive percentages of excess copies: games for which as many as a quarter of the extant copies are up for trade. Unsurprisingly, all of these games are poorly rated, except for the champion, which is a placeholder, not a real game.
GameReleased inAvailableWantedOwnedExcess copy percentageAverage rating
Outside the Scope of BGG 0 496 106 1429 27.29% 6.77
Ninja Galaxy 2006 22 1 78 26.92% 3.53
Barista 2007 28 0 106 26.42% 3.98
Employee of the Month 2004 111 6 409 25.67% 5.21
Ultimate Golf 1985 45 2 171 25.15% 4.65
aBRIDGEd 2006 38 1 149 24.83% 5.33
Vapor's Gambit 2004 58 1 258 22.09% 4.86
Raceway 57 2005 50 1 224 21.88% 5.71
Dying Lights 2003 45 3 194 21.65% 5.09
Head-to-Head Poker 2005 62 1 282 21.63% 5.76
Double or Nothing 2006 142 5 656 20.88% 5.71
Atlantis: Pathways of the Deep 2001 21 2 92 20.65% 4.23
Tom Clancy's Politika 1997 73 1 350 20.57% 4.09
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Board Game 2003 58 3 268 20.52% 3.48
wordXchange 2000 18 1 84 20.24% 5.73
Crosstrack 1994 40 4 180 20.00% 5.18
24 DVD Board Game 2006 19 0 95 20.00% 2.34
221B Baker St.: Sherlock Holmes & the Time Machine 1996 90 5 430 19.77% 5.67
Pressure Matrix 2010 38 5 170 19.41% 4.92
Power Lunch 1994 42 0 219 19.18% 2.60

The games with the highest positive numbers of excess copies are basically the old standards like Munchkin and Risk. People would be happy to get rid of them in a trade, but nobody wants to acquire them in a trade. The champion is "Munchkin" with 707 excess copies, but since there are 19,774 copies of "Munchkin" out there, its excess copy percentage is only 4%.

And here are the games with the highest negative percentages of excess copies: games that are highly in demand relative to how many copies are out there. The number of people with these games on their wishlist approximates or even exceeds the number of extant copies.

Looking at the list it's obvious that most of these games are highly rated. What's not so obvious is that a lot of them have unusual physical shapes or components. An amazing percentage of these games involve flicking or stacking or sliding things. Relatively few are typical American or Euro-style board games based around cards and tokens. If I had to guess, I'd say that people don't put these games up for trade because they'd be a pain to ship.

GameReleased inAvailableWantedOwnedExcess copy percentageAverage rating
Capes & Cowls: The Superhero Board Game 2006 1 167 66 -251.52% 7.85
Spinball 2001 0 50 31 -161.29% 6.86
Wok Star 2010 13 369 282 -126.24% 7.14
Saturn 1997 3 112 116 -93.97% 6.68
Taktika 2007 9 157 175 -84.57% 7.20
1817 2010 0 46 55 -83.64% 8.72
Hotel Life 1989 1 85 103 -81.55% 7.29
Curling Table Game 2008 0 35 43 -81.40% 7.28
Dixit 2: "Gift" promo card 2010 1 127 155 -81.29% 7.73
Qyshinsu: Mystery of the Way 2008 0 24 34 -70.59% 6.94
Entrapment 1999 0 25 36 -69.44% 8.14
Destruct 3 2005 6 40 51 -66.67% 5.15
Palazzo Paletti 2001 0 31 47 -65.96% 6.63
Mäuse-Rallye 2001 0 37 57 -64.91% 6.61
Keydom 1998 1 76 116 -64.66% 6.78
Cornerstone 2008 4 79 119 -63.03% 7.28
Fire 1996 6 73 110 -60.91% 6.06
Hansa: Changing Winds 2006 3 51 81 -59.26% 7.27
Santorini 2004 1 68 118 -56.78% 7.48
1846 2005 1 104 187 -55.08% 7.94

BGG's "new hotness" list can be seen as a list of recent games with high negative numbers of excess copies. These are games that are highly in demand among BGG users, but which are also owned by a lot of BGG users. The champion is "Le Havre", with -965 excess copies.


This document (source) is part of Crummy, the webspace of Leonard Richardson (contact information). It was last modified on Monday, July 29 2013, 22:15:49 Nowhere Standard Time and last built on Monday, April 21 2014, 02:00:08 Nowhere Standard Time.

Crummy is © 1996-2014 Leonard Richardson. Unless otherwise noted, all text licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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