We housesellers loved reading the recent story in Los Angeles Magazine titled "As People Search for Something Tactile, Board Games Are Booming in LA". When we did some further digging, it looks like the trend has been slowly building for a few years all over the country, partially as a response to the massive popularity of online gaming (especially combat-style games) that involves multiple people interacting in real time from the privacy of their homes but no real human-to-human connection. In these overwhelming times, “tabletop” games offer folks a chance to put down their devices for awhile and interact with friends, both old and new, while giving their brains an nice workout. As we head into the final stages of 2019, people of all ages (fueled by a constant stream of Kickstarter projects and looking for personal connections), have been the drivers of board games sweeping the city of LA. 

In Los Angeles you’ll find you have plenty of choices for places to go to play some board games with a drink in hand, whether it's a cold brew, cocktail or coffee. It doesn't matter if it is Scrabble in Inglewood, dominoes, backgammon and Connect Four at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood, Battleship, Sorry, Trouble, checkers and chess in Burbank or Monopoly and Cards Against Humanity in the DTLA Arts District, the trend seems to be exploding right now all over the Los Angeles area. Even though video games still bring in more money overall, tabletop games attract six times as much funding as any other category on Kickstarter, with 1/5th of all funds raised on the immensely popular platform coming from that category. Sales of tabletop games are expected to top $12 billion globally by 2023, with the largest share in the United States. 

Of course, the popularity is not just fueled by people throwing down their Risk boards in a hotel lobby. Entrepreneurial types have been inventing and introducing wildly popular games that offer more and more diverse characters, richer settings and outcomes that ratchet up player engagement and investment. As LA Mag explains, "Cooperative games (“co-ops”) let players work together to solve a crime or fight the zombie apocalypse, and “Euro-style” games force players to make efficient use of resources to produce the best wines or build the largest city". One of the more positive things we gained from the article is that for many, there is a focused effort to avoid spending so much time online among this new resurgence of game players. For them, there’s a very warm and real satisfaction from interacting with actual components such as drawing tiles, shuffling cards, tossing dice, taking cubes and tokens. And a main draw seems to be the satisfaction of learning something new and spending time with others who share a common interest.