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Actionartist
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Just letting you all know that I’ve started a poll based on the topic, Who should be our target audience? Are millennials and Gen-Xers the biggest consumer of board games now, and if so, are we alienating the younger generations? Or are younger kids still just as fond of board games as we were as kids? I want to know what you all think, so join in the discussion!

http://www.bgdf.com/poll/who-should-be-our-target-audience-board-games

questccg
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Please check-out this POLL

Voting is open to all BGDF members (must be logged in to Vote). Yeah I'm trying to *Bump* this thread... Not much voting has been going on since the link has been very publicized.

Here is another thread concerning the same topic:

http://www.bgdf.com/node/20359

To VOTE:

http://www.bgdf.com/poll/who-should-be-our-target-audience-board-games

questccg
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Not many voters...

Please if you have 5 minutes to check out this POLL about "Target Audiences" for games that we as designers design...

*Bump*

Ali Ludlow
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Just voted!

We voted :) excited to see which age group prevails

Ali & Britt

MAR
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New Poll

We voted as well. This is an interesting poll, and the results should be interesting as well. Right now, with such a small crowd, the results do not seem comprehensive- we need more people to vote :) I think that games will be more popular with millennials, though I hope that all people like, play, and appreciate games. Many times, you see people enjoy games as a family (multi-generation), because their older sibling likes a game, or because they played the game with their parent and remember fun times. Probably the least interested party today are the "kids", since the technology is winning the war of entertainment. I hope that changes :)

-Austin

questccg
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Intended audience

I think that some (not all) games are designed for kids to become "interested" in the game. It reminds me of a story from another designer who had a younger brother... He ventured forth into a group of "Dungeon & Dragon" players ... and he explained the wonders of the game to his younger sibling. Of course his younger sibling thought that the experience would be awesome and instantly fell in "love" with the RPG-genre.

That's why I design games for Teenagers, hoping that their younger siblings also get caught up in the game and it's experience. Father Geek (Kirby Cyrus) son played the game... And although the kids didn't play with the same level of "strategy" (roles were mostly about what each player wanted to do next... not always the best role was picked), they "loved" playing the game...

And so I remember these stories that I hear - and I design with purpose: an experience for Teenagers and their younger siblings! Get them off digital media and onto traditional card & board... for a unique and FUN experience.

That's why I voted "for Kids"! Cheers.

MAR
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Poll

Yes, I think that "Kids" is the ultimate goal- I would love for kids to play games, problem solve, be creative, use their brains, and have fun! However, currently, I am not sure if going straight to the "kids" (a very broad category to be sure) is the most successful way in reaching them. Perhaps older teen siblings, young adults, parents, or "that weird but awesome uncle" might be the best key to that path. It is not that the kids won't like the games, but it is that they need introduced to the game/ and or have some kind of spark that will make the game playing experience awesome! to them. Should the games be aimed directly at kids? Or at parents/older generations with the hopes of pulling in the kids?

questccg
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Very perceptive and illuminating!

MAR wrote:
...Should the games be aimed directly at kids? Or at parents/older generations with the hopes of pulling in the kids?

That's a very interesting perspective @Austin. You make a good point, so much so, that it would have me change my vote from Kids to "Millennials". Because it's true that while I would want to broaden my fan-base, even with kids loving the games they play - they often need coaching or someone to introduce them to the game FIRST.

Cheers.

FrankM
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Terminology

It's helpful to keep a couple terms in mind:

Target consumer: the person you want using your product
Target customer: the person who actually pays for your product

This creates one of the thorniest problems with marketing to "kids" (which I would define as anyone who isn't spending their own money to acquire the game).

questccg
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I think we are talking about "consumers"

"Target Audience" of a "game" to me sounds like "consumer". Obviously you bring up a good point that the "customer" of a game might be two (2) different people...

Like a Parent buying a gift for a Teenager (or Millennial) and then his/her sibblings also become interested in the game. Those would be "consumers" and the Parent the "customer".

That's why I target older aged groups but TRY to allow younger kids to engage in even one or two aspects if not the entire game itself...

cybulskina
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Games for those that want to play games

This is just some thoughts here, but I think that games are targeted to different audiences for a reason.

Age is on the box for a reason. And I think its totally fine to target different ages for different games.

I think that games are a bit like food. Everyone has their preference. (though some people don't like games, and I guess there are some people out there that don't like food though I haven't met them;)

When designing games I find that I like to focus on the "fun" of the game and if the mechanics get complex.. I move closer to an audience that likes complex games. If the game is simple, I simplify the art, the appeal and would normally attribute to a younger audience.
Games like chess work toward a wide variety of people, however that abstract "easy to learn life time to master" type of game might not work for your type of game.

There are connections to games that fit in with the times. Games have developed tremendously in popular culture, though there have always been "better than monopoly" games even while "1 dimensional games like monopoly" thrived in popular culture. ( I know, I opened the monopoly door)
From my experience, Games are fun with different groups of people. When I play hungry hippos with kids, it is an entirely different experience than when I play Euchre with my friends family.

To wrap up and summarize:
Games are fun. Games come in all shapes and sizes and people like what they like. So the question then becomes:
How do we target game A to this audience?

Anyway, just some thoughts

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