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Going Cardboard: A Board Game Documentary (2012)

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In 1978, the German press and board game makers created the Spiel des Jahres, or 'Game of the Year' award for excellence in board game design. Competition for this award contributed to an ... See full summary »


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Title: Going Cardboard: A Board Game Documentary (2012)

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In 1978, the German press and board game makers created the Spiel des Jahres, or 'Game of the Year' award for excellence in board game design. Competition for this award contributed to an explosion in the variety and sophistication of 'Euro-games.' With the arrival of The Settlers of Catan in the United States in the mid-nineties, more people began to discover the new breed of board game that had been quietly evolving in Germany for the past 30+ years. Going Cardboard takes you into the world of 'designer' board gaming, from the community of enthusiastic fans to the publishers and self-publishers, and of course, the designers. Written by Anonymous

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A Home Movie Style Look at a Popular Hobby
4 April 2013 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

I feel kind of bad applying critical standards to this movie. I'm sure it was never the film maker's intent to make a documentary in the same league of The Thin Blue Line or Bowling For Columbine. It is simply the work of an amateur film maker who loves board games and who wanted document the scene for fellow fans. Most Americans think of Monopoly or Clue when they think of board games, but there has been a quiet revolution brewing in the world of gaming for over a decade now. Small companies have been putting out a new style of games that are richer and more complex than the ones that the general public are familiar with. The games are gaining in popularity every year (in America anyway--they've been big in Europe for a while), and they have reached the point where there are web pages, local groups and large national conventions showcasing them. This movie covers all of that with interviews of fans, business owners and game designers like Alan Moon, Klaus Teuber and Reiner Knizia. Fans of these new games will especially enjoy seeing those three men on film, but if those names mean nothing to you, you are not likely to enjoy this film much. The only way to truly understand the appeal of these games is to play them. Watching people talk about them if you are not familiar with them is not particularly enjoyable. The film is pretty scatter shot in its approach, jumping from subject to subject with seemingly little logic, and no real insights are given and very few facts. Plus, most of the interviews were done at crowded, and noisy, conventions. As a result, the video and sound quality make the movie seem like a 75 minute YouTube video. Overall, the movie is basically an hour plus look at a bunch of people talking about games--which to be fair, most gamers will probably enjoy, since that is what they do when they get together anyway. Rating 5 stars (but add 2 if you're a gamer.)

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