Monopoly saw its biggest year of sales in 2014 after being around for almost 80 years. That’s according to a consumer reporting agency called Technavio. This is just one example of how the board game industry is growing.
Niche Podcast is a local podcast focusing on unique hobbies and interests. Hosts Joey Lovato and Paolo Zialcita recently visited The Glass Die, a board game bar in Reno.
Jeff Carter is the owner of The Glass Die and told Joey and Paolo how Reno is uniquely poised to be the home to quirky establishments such as this.
“It [Reno] just has the population density for weird unique kind of things like this to exist. I think Reno itself has always been that kind of somewhat progressive place where things like this can exist.”
On any given day at The Glass Die, you can find people spanning all ages and walks of life. You’ll see a son and mother playing Scrabble in one corner, a group of engineers and philosophy majors playing Dungeons and Dragons in another, some sorority girls getting together for a quick game of Cards Against Humanity, and a group of strangers meeting for the first time to play a strategy game.
“It brings people together in a way that they really don't experience in any other part of their life for a lot of people. I mean, if I go out somewhere else a lot of times people are just gathered on their phones,” said Carter.
For those looking to scratch that board game itch, here are a few of the more complicated and interesting board games that can be found at the bar.
Sythe (Special collector's edition): 1-5 Players Play time: 90-120 minutes This one is a steampunk-themed strategy game. You are pitted against opponents to battle for power over a fictional Europe. The coins are made from actual metal, and the resource tokens are made from the resource they represent: oil (plastic), wood and metal.
Twilight Imperium (4th edition): 3-6 Players Play time: 250-720 minutes This one is notoriously one of the longest games ever made, and could cost you $120. You fight for control of the universe after the ruler dies. The game can take up to twelve hours that can involve tense negotiations and betrayal between players. You’ll also need a hefty play area as the game can take up three normal tables easily.
Ex Libris: 1-4 Players Play time: 30-60 minutes In this board game, you are a gnome tasked with collecting the rarest and most interesting books for a new grand library, building up your bookshelf in a specific way to score the most points. The funniest part of the game comes from all of the book titles; many of them are puns, or just strange and silly. Even when it’s not your turn, you can have fun reading the library of books that your gnome has collected.