FiveThirtyEight: The Worst Board Games Ever Invented

January 9, 2015 - 10:10am
monopoly We all do our best to focus on the positive, but sometimes reflecting on those things that are lacking helps us grow, improve and push to make things better for everyone.  In that light, it can be useful to take a look at games that aren't getting the love from gamers, at least in reputation.  In a recent article for FiveThirtyEightLife, Oliver Roeder shares his recent findings on what, according to the ratings on BoardGameGeek, are the worst board games ever invented. In an analysis of over 15,000 games that had at least 10 ratings by users, Roeder identifies the games that lie at the "bottom of the heap", including Tic-Tac-Toe, Monopoly, The Game of Life, and Candy Land.  Roeder points out that most of these games tend to rely mostly or solely on luck (random card draws, die rolls, etc.), creating a boring and frustrating experience for players.
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Also presented in the article is a chart of the worst game for each decade, beginning with the 1910's (Uncle Wiggly) and ending with the 2010's (Angry Birds tabletop games). It should be noted that while all of these games have very low ratings on BoardGameGeek, they get the most notice via one other criteria: they continue to be played by many people each day.  Roeder calls these games "cultural touchstones", and indicates that these games continue to be played for sentimental value rather than actual interest in the gameplay itself. To read the full article, visit the website.