Did you know that there are many board game groups in Bangalore? Not just children, adults enjoy the games too.
The level of complication and strategic thinking required in these games though might be a little more than the average game of Ludo or Snakes and Ladders. Read to find out more about Bangalore’s board game groups and community.
When you think of board games, children playing Ludo is probably one of the first things to come to mind. But, are children the only ones who enjoy board games? The rising number of board-gaming communities begs to differ.
Board games in Bangalore are for everyone. More and more people are turning towards board game events to shake off their office stresses. Playing a game and winning it can make a person instantly feel brighter and more alive. Since you can’t play a game against yourself, this is also a great way to meet new people.
Why Board Games
- Board games are a good opportunity to meet new people
- Board games are expensive in India given the high customs duties they attract
- The best way to build your board game collection is to ask people coming from the US to carry one or two back with them.
Board Game Groups in Bangalore
ReRoll: The Bangalore Board Games Collective
It is the largest board gaming group in India. The group has 803 followers on the Facebook page and organizes board game nights known as Tabletop Thursdays almost every week for anyone who would like to come and play.
When they started out in 2016, often only 6-8 people would show up every week but now, a bad week has 50 attendees. The events see serious gamers, as well as amateurs, come together. Once every few weeks, ReRoll also organizes marathon gaming sessions known as a “Seriously Fun Game Day”.
Meeples of Bangalore
Meeples of Bangalore caters to new board game payers as well as experienced board gamers. They have over 100 different board games attendees can choose from at their regular Sunday brunches and lunches.
These include cooperative games, conflict based games, strategic and thematic games. New players can also seek help from ‘teachers’ to understand game rules.
This community of board gamers meets every Saturday afternoon at Dialogues and plays addictive board gamers till as late as 11pm. Anyone and everyone is welcome to attend. Since the meetups are organized at rented spaces, a small attendance fee is typically charged.
There are a number of smaller groups as well. The Dice N Dine Restaurant in Koramangala organizes weekly board game evenings as well. Hoppipola is another place where Bangaloreans can enjoy a game or two.
Board Game Groups in Bangalore – Challenges
Running a group like ReRoll isn’t all fun and games. The core members all have full-time day jobs that help finance their hobby. After all, board games are expensive. Many games are not available in India, Those that are available attract a high customs duty and are very expensive.
So why aren’t more games available inexpensively – there are many reasons for this.
Imported toys and entertainment products have always been a heavily taxed sector. Recently custom duties for these toys and games were hiked further.
After custom duties are added, games like Star Wars: Rebellion retail for more than Rs 8000. Since the market for such high-priced games is limited; it doesn’t seem like a good business idea for most importers.
Another reason there aren’t too many players in this market is that a game can easily become unsellable even before it reaches the shop floor. On many occasions, customs officials open the outer packing of the games to inspect them. This can cause severe damage after which the games cannot be sold.
The core members of ReRoll together own about 100 board games. This collection has built up over the years. Most of these games have been brought back by friends and family members from their trips abroad.
Board Game Groups in Bangalore – Popular Board Games
There are many different types of board games popular today. Some are played individually while others are played in teams. Some are strategy based while others are more about luck. The most popular board games today are:
- Risk Legacy
- Dungeons & Dragons
- Call of Cthulhu
- Settlers of Catan
- Terra Mystica
- Lord of the Rings
- Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle
Want To Buy New Games
In 2017, Euromonitor, a market research firm evaluated the market size of puzzles and board games in India at around Rs330 crores. According to the Indian country manager of Hasbro , this market should touch the Rs400 crore mark soon. A lot of this growth is dependent on rising ecommerce sites.
Marketplaces like Amazon and eBay offer a wide range of board games. If you’re looking for something unique, dedicate websites like the Bored Game Company are just what you need.
Most gams are priced between Rs3,500 and Rs4,500. The site receives orders for up to 15 games each week. Boardway.in and Madratgames.com are other websites that offer unique board games.
Traditional India Board Games
India has a long history of board games. Krishnaraja Wodeyar III, the erstwhile Maharaja of Mysore in the 19th century owned a collection of board games.
These indigenous games can be categorized as strategy games, race games, alignment games and war games. Many of these games are centuries old while others are more recent interpretations of classic games. For example, Maw Korkatia or Aliguli Mane as it is also known is a newer version of a 7000-year-old game called Mancala.
In a bid to revive these games and traditional art forms, handicrafts are being incorporated in the design of these games. For example, the boards for these games are being designed with Bidri art characteristic of Karnataka. Many of these boards are sold not just for day to day play but as collector’s items.
Made-In-India Board Games
Along with traditional games like Pacheesi, a number of new board games are also coming to life in India. Fletter, a card game based on word building was developed by Rubianca Wadhwa and sells about 300-400 units each week.
Another popular made-in-India game is Cards Against Sanskaar. The game is based on a popular American game, Cards against Humanity. It raised Rs5.5 lakhs on the Wishberry crowdfunding platform. Wishberry has hosted three funding campaigns for indigenously designed and manufactured board games.
Board games being designed in India are not just for entertainment. Mantri Cards, a trump card game, is based on Members of Parliament. The game is based on information such as the declared assets, net worth and criminal cases of 100MPs.
A fundraising campaign for the game is currently live in Wishberry and has already raised over Rs1.52 lakhs.
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