Guide to the Geek Pt. 1: Basic Geek Protocol

Whenever I am playing with new gamers, trying to get them into the hobby I will almost always give them the same piece of advice. Create a Board Game Geek profile. Unfortunately they don’t often follow through. I’me worried that the “Geek” part of the title may be a little off-putting to some. And for those that do work up the courage to visit the site, I doubt they find it intuitive or attractive.

I’m here to try and do the site a little more justice. There isn’t a greater resource or tool when it comes to board gaming than the “Geek”. It is a wiki-style website were me and you, along with the thousands of users, are the driving force behind it. The Board Game Geek is just packed to the brim with user submitted photos, reviews, rule clarifications, and more for just about every game in existence. Yes, that includes monopoly and uno. In addition to being a wealth of information, the website also allows you, the user, to track your own collection of board games. You can mark which games you own, the ones on your wishlist, and even the ones you’ve got on preorder. But my favorite part is the ability to rank games, allowing you to easily create your own top ten.

Let’s have a look at getting an account set up and the basic navigation around the site:

The official url is www.boardgamegeek.com, also affectionately known as BGG. Once there you have the option to “Register” in the upper left corner. Choose your username wisely as this is how you will be known among all the users.

 

Once your account is created, or even before, you are free to start browsing the games in the database. I recommend starting with the top 100 games. These can be found by going to “Browse” and then “All Games”. These will be the games ranked 1-100, based on a formula composed of user ratings and number of ratings.

 

Each game will have its own page. This is where you can browse the photos, reviews and a whole slew of stuff about the game. I really appreciate how well you can get to know a game prior to actually going out and buying it. This has saved me from a lot of bad purchases.

 

My favorite is managing your profile. There are fun unlockables when it comes to your avatar. You can also sort and rank your games, leaving comments for yourself and others about the games in your collection.

Next week we’ll take a look at some of the more in-depth features the site has to offer. In the mean time you now have no excuse for not creating an account.

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