After two boom years with high growth rates, parlor games have slightly lost sales in recent months. The general interest in games remains at a "high level", said Hermann Hutter from the game publishers industry association on Wednesday in Essen. According to the organizer, the world's largest trade fair for parlor games - Spiel '22 - starts this Thursday with 980 suppliers from 56 countries. For four days, visitors can test around 1,800 innovations relating to card, board or dice games.
The trade fair organizer Friedhelm Merz Verlag (Bonn) spoke of an overall "incredible growth in the board game industry" despite the recent drop in sales. The international Spiel'22 also clearly shows the importance of board games as a cultural asset. The management was convinced that the interest in board games was sustained.
The new products are often about nature and animals, but there isn't just one special trend, but: "The trend lies in diversity," reported Managing Director Dominique Metzler. This time the German Games Prize goes to "Arche Nova", in which the players create a scientifically run zoo and support global species protection projects. Among the so-called expert games, "Skymines" was highlighted, where everything revolves around resource mining on the moon.
By August 2022, the classic board game had declined by around seven percent compared to the first eight months of 2021. "That's nothing bad," said association boss Hutter. Compared to the pre-crisis year of 2019, the market is still “clearly in double digits”. Gaming is trendy and has become even more important during the Corona crisis. Among other things, card games, party games and offers for children are in demand.
According to Hutter, price increases for paper and energy have so far been passed on to consumers "only to a limited extent". The price level for games in Germany remains lower than in its European neighbors. The average price of a board game in this country was eleven euros in 2021.