A Gaming Legacy - Legacy Board Games
When putting my game collection together I set some guidelines for games that I bought. I considered theme, components, who would be playing, and how often. Most importantly I considered the replay ability of each game. I wanted games that I could happily bring to the table time and again and know that each experience would be fresh, fun, exciting, and engaging. Of course this year has left me questioning just how important replay value is to my game collection. The reality has been that – for the most part – many of my games simply do not get played all that often.
Pandemic Legacy, many many plays.
A few weeks ago I put together and posted on YouTube a rather lengthy discussion on my experience playing Pandemic Legacy. One thing I could not deny about the game is that it gave people a reason to keep bringing the game back to the table. This fact led me to question why this was such a notable point. I know that there are many individuals and groups that have their favourite game and gather to play just that game. Yet in my experience that is the exception to the rule. Most table top gamers I know have large collections and struggle to play through there collection in a year, let alone bring a game multiple times to the table. This is why Pandemic Legacy is notable because any team that played through the game played an hour long game at least a minimum of 12 times, though more likely closer to 18 times. The story, the development of mechanics, the changing board were all motivating factors for people to keep going back to Pandemic Legacy and push through to the very end.
This fact alone made me question if the future of gaming is going to value replay ability in games as much as it had in the past. Truth be told, having finished my 18 hours of Pandemic Legacy I am satisfied that I got everything I could from the box. There is no bitterness or resentment that I cannot go back to the game or on sell it. That game received more gameplay than any other game in my collection this year and it is arguable that it has proved to be better value for money than any other game I own, despite having games I enjoy more sitting on my shelves. Perhaps this is the virtue of a Legacy system. Games may just be moving in the direction of being single use toys. Not in the sense that you get one game and then it is over, but limited in number of plays certainly. And even more appealing is that you get to enjoy a game that changes each time you play it. With one box you have 18 hours of game play with 18 different gaming experience and one could say it would be money well spent.
Whatever your regard for Pandemic Legacy as a game, the fact is that there may be room for games to transition towards being play limited with no meaningful disadvantage to gamers. As already stated those 18 hours of game play represent more time gaming than many other boxes that have been in my collection for years. So the real question is, why not? Why not start with an end game in mind? You pay $50 dollars for 10 hours of game play with different experience every time and I would be willing to say that it would be money well spent. I do not expect every game to go down this path, nor am I suggesting every game become a Legacy game. But the idea of games being play limited is not the disadvantage I first imagined. In fact I could say that I would be happy to buy more games like this. It is certainly worth considering. What do you think? Would more play limited games be something you would invest in? Leave your comments below.