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Subject: What are you playing this week? (May 13th-18th edition) rss

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John Kanost
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PEGheads,

"Burnout" has a couple of literal definitions. According to Dictionary.com, it is "the reduction of a fuel or substance to nothing through use or combustion," or, "the failure of an electrical device or component through overheating." But these days the concept of burnout is probably more commonly used as a psychological term. "Being burned out" is defined as feeling empty and mentally exhausted, devoid of motivation, and beyond caring. People experiencing burnout often don't see any hope of positive change in their situations. Burnout can be caused by excessive stress, responsibilities, or in some cases, "too much of a good thing".

While it's often used for how one feels in relation to one's occupation, ministry, or volunteer efforts, burnout can also occur where hobbies are concerned, and gaming is no exception. Sometimes after attending a big convention and being immersed in gaming for days on end, one can feel a need to take a break. Often a specific game will suffer a burnout, either for you or even your group, after being played excessively for days or weeks on end.

So my question for you this week, fellow Pegheads, is twofold: Do you ever experience board game burnout? And if you do, what do you do to fix it?

And while you're thinking on that, don't forget to let us all know what you're playing this week... assuming you're not too burned out on answering guild forum threads to do so!
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Chris Graves
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I have a solid history of discovering something I like, and doing it non-stop until I don't like it anymore. As I have gotten older and "wiser", I have learned to back off. For example, I was regularly playing board games two times a week for about two years straight (sometimes even a third night during the week). It started to feel a little like an obligation: Friday and Sunday, you have to play games. I decided to take my foot off the accelerator. I do my regular Friday nights most weeks, but have started playing with my kids on random Saturdays and will get my core group together on random Sundays, but those sessions aren't set in stone every week anymore. I've had a more relaxed schedule for 8-9 months and have really appreciated that break, but now I am feeling the urge to play more regularly again, and think I will schedule sessions more frequently...but not over-do it.

Have had about a 4-5 week D&D campaign hiatus, but it should resume Friday. SOOOO excited. In our campaign, we just escaped the Undermountain beneath Waterdeep, and have a lot of things to get done! Now that we're home (in the game), I have so many plans.

Saturday is the monthly Meet Up at the game shop. I am going to bring Wingspan, Discoveries: The Journals of Lewis and Clark, and see if I can get The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire off my unplayed list.
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Joe Pilkus
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John,

That's a great question, and despite far longer drives than they should be to Philadelphia, difficult days at work, or day-long activities with friends which leave me physically shattered, I'm always up for a game.

For this week, nearly all of my gaming will be of the digital platform variety (boite-a-jeux) as I'm at the Pentagon and staying close by at an AirBnB. On Thu, I will host my weekly Game Night at the pub, and I'll have Arkham Horror and Coimbra, both by request. Also, as I'll see Ping this weekend, more games shall be played.
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Brendan Riley
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"Life is more fun if you play games." - Roald Dahl
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I do have parts of my life that come and go, but gaming has always been a steady for me.

This week, it's Anachrony at the regular game night, then who knows? Not much gaming this weekend, probably, as we have a swim meet to attend.
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Nick Shaw
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I have had a few times in recent months of feeling on the verge of burning out on gaming. Mostly, that's when I've had 5 or 6 prototype games on my pile to do playtests for simultaneously (and there simply aren't enough hours in the day, or days in the week, to fit in enough playtests to do them justice in the times allotted). It was either feeling like a slog to play anything, or I wouldn't feel like I was giving the game a good enough play, or my mind would be full of ideas & thoughts after playing meaning I didn't sleep well.

So I have recently taken to intentionally making sure I take some evenings off gaming each week (currently about half the days each week) so that I can recharge/unwind my brain from playing games. That's working pretty well so far!


As to specific games - I totally burned out on Imperial Settlers after playing a 13-game solo campaign game within a few weeks (I stopped short of finishing the campaign too, as I wasn't enjoying it any more - it was all purely mechanical). Ended up selling my copy. Didn't play it again for over a year, which I did a few weeks back with a friend's copy who happened to have some of the new factions; that was fun to try and it WAS fun to play again by that point.


This week: Not much planned other than a playtest meetup tomorrow (not playing my game this time, so don't feel any pressure of burnout there!). Although, it's my daughter's birthday today, and I got her the little Star Wars: Empire vs Rebellion card game (she's a huge Star Wars fan), which she'd really like to try out. May not have time tonight, but one evening this week hopefully we can break that out.
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Ashley Kennedy
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There is probably a legitimate difference between burnout and disillusionment. Too many game nights recently, I bring a huge stack of games and we don’t play any of them. The fault lies with me in that I am overvaluing playing my games. But I have games that we haven’t played at all or haven’t played in years.

I am disillusioned that another game in my collection will make the difference. I am disillusioned that painting another mini willlead to THAT game being played anytime soon. So I have less desire to paint and less desire to pursue and acquire games. This is probably healthy. March, April, and May have been very busy.

This week, the Gloomhaven campaign will pick back up. Three spears, Angry Face, Music Note, and Cthulhu will take on another big bad. My 5 year old showed some interest in playing with his Pokémon LCG cards. The end of the month will include the CMON Expo. Plenty to do there. I just have to remember that stuff doesn’t make us fulfilled.
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Brendan Riley
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njshaw2 wrote:
This week: Not much planned other than a playtest meetup tomorrow (not playing my game this time, so don't feel any pressure of burnout there!). Although, it's my daughter's birthday today, and I got her the little Star Wars: Empire vs Rebellion card game (she's a huge Star Wars fan), which she'd really like to try out. May not have time tonight, but one evening this week hopefully we can break that out.


I got to play that a while back -- it's a cute little duel game. Enjoy!
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Nick Shaw
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Playtest meetup on Wednesday was a great success; we only planned to play Chris' game, and that's all we played, but as he's prepping it for UKGE, that was fair enough. And it played really well with latest changes. We managed to finish the whole 3-player game in 2 hours; slightly longer than he'd like, but we were debating rules during play, so should end up a bit shorter than that.

I received my copies of Welcome to Dino World on Thursday, and got in a solo play that night, and a multiplayer play with my 10yo over the weekend. Great fun, and super to see the production copy!

Also did get to play Star Wars: Empire vs. Rebellion with my 15yo, which played out really well; nice crunchy little card game. She ended up winning with some cunning card play.
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Brendan Riley
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May is turning out to be pretty gaming-light, all told. Swim season has begun, so there are swim meets to attend that eat up our weekend gaming time.

That said, I did get in a game of Wingspan that was almost my best yet, but in which the engine was clicking and turning over early. Very fun for me. My wife had a string of bad luck in dice and card draws that gave her a very poor game. We both had fun looking at the pretty birds, though.
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Joe Pilkus
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Update: Managed to get a 7-player game of Arkham Horror to the table...Investigators Dexter, Carolyn, Mandy, Joe, Pete, Michael, and Harvey defeated Hastur

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Chris Graves
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Update: I only played one game this week at the meet up Saturday, but it was a good'n! The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire...man is this a fun game. It is now officially off my unplayed list, and I think it is going to get quite a bit if table time because I will be pushiing this one for a bit among my groups.

A customer service story: One of my my cards was damaged after opening (I think by me), and it is an event card that gets turned up at a certain time during the game. Basically, this became a marked card, which I could sleeve with a colored back, but I emailed Minion and offered to pay for a new one, explaining I probably damaged it. Within ten minutes, on a Saturday, someone emailed me back and said they'd ship it for free to the US. He also mentioned they had their expansion on KS, which I ended up backing. Stellar customer service!
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Frank Huminski
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I think the closest I came to board game burnout was with SeaFall. As I mentioned elsewhere, it's about 2-4 sessions too long, IMO, and I (and my group as well) were just ready to be *done* with it.

This week saw my Friday night group play Tales of the Arabian Nights (which my wife really liked, as I thought she would) and La Isla, which one of the other players found for $10...and after playing it, I went to the same store and picked up a copy of my own.
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