Spiel des Jahres Winners and Nominees
Welcome to the new Gumnut blog! Here we'll be looking back and highlighting games of the past and present that might have escaped your notice. Each post we'll take a look at a different game genre, designer, mechanic, or theme, to introduce you to new favourites to add to your collection.
The Spiel des Jahres (German for 'Game of the Year') was established way back in 1979, with the aim of rewarding innovative game design, and promoting top-quality games available in the German market (including Austria and Switzerland). Before this time, the UK was the biggest European audience for board games, so German-speaking game critics founded the award to draw attention to their insatiable need for gaming.
Since then, the award has grown to become the most coveted in modern board game publishing. According to co-founder Tom Warneck:
"An average board game with a retail price between 20 and 35 € is put on the market with an initial print run of 3000 to 5000. If such a game wins the award “Spiel des Jahres” circulation in the current year shoots up to 300,000 to 500,000 copies. This is a multiplying factor of 100. No relevant game producer can afford not to strive for this wonderful carrot."
Every year, around 20 independent judges are each sent up to 400 games to play and consider. From that, just three games will come away with an award; one each for the Spiel des Jahres ('Game of the Year'), Kinderspiel des Jahres ('Children's Game of the Year'), and Kennerspiel des Jahres ('Connoisseur Game of the Year').
Click through to the lists above to see which previous nominees and winners are available right now on Gumnut. And let us know in the comments which game(s) you reckon are up for nomination this year. We hope to send one of these gems to your collection soon!
- Gumnut Team