The board game is back on the Dutch dining tables. The sale of board games has already increased steadily in recent years, Corona gave an additional boost. Dutch game manufacturers speak of a sales growth of 60 to 80 percent. Since some factories had to be temporarily closed and expanded at the same time due to corona, it sometimes takes months for popular games to arrive.
White Goblin Games alone is delivering a million games in the Netherlands and Belgium this year. Together with 999 Games and Asmodee Nederland, it is one of the largest game manufacturers in the Netherlands. At 999 Games, which publishes around 60 new games every year, sales rose by 20 million euros this year.
The popularity isn’t entirely new. In the past few years, sales have increased 50 percent, says Johan Kuipers, founder of White Goblin Games. This year he expects an increase of 80 percent due to the corona. “We have been at Christmas level for months.”
This gambling addict family in Zwolle is contributing to the trend; In the video they explain which games are popular with them:
Part of the sale is done through web shops, but according to Kuipers the ordinary shop is certainly not finished yet. A large audience likes to see games, to feel them and, above all, to receive personal advice, he says.
In the last few months there has been a lot going on in the game shops, says Margot Zijtregtop, owner of Dé Spelwinkel in Breda: “I notice that people are discovering or rediscovering games. We’re all more at home together, the pub is closed and Die most people quit Netflix. Games are fun at home. “
According to Zijtregtop, it also plays a role that games look really nice these days and are much funnier and more complex than they used to be. “The sleepiness is gone.”
All stock on
“In the first corona wave there was a run on everything,” says Richard Janssen from Spelkwartier-Spieleladen in Arnhem. “Then all the shares were gone.”
This growing demand could hardly be met by the manufacturers. It delayed some popular games for weeks, sometimes months. This was compounded when some factories – especially in China – had to close for a while because of corona. Where the production time at White Goblin Games used to be six weeks, it is now twelve to fourteen. And as the popularity continues to grow, the delays keep adding up.
Zijtregtop from Dé Spelwinkel no longer always has everything in stock: “The trick is of course that the customer leaves my shop with another nice game. I can do it better than an algorithm from a webshop.” But it is also not ideal to stock up on mass-produced goods as soon as the game is available again: “The fear that I will have to close because of the corona virus is still in the back of my mind. that I can even open. “
Publishers and businesses are now preparing for the holidays, which are traditionally the busiest time of the year. Some games take a while, others are ready to appear in shoes or Christmas packages. Bruinsma: “We are prepared with the offer. There are a few loopholes, it is not ideal but it will be fine. Fortunately there are lots of fun games.”