Boardgames in the News: 20 Years of BoardGameGeek

On 22nd January 2000, largely unnoticed, a little website called boardgamegeek.com went live for the first time.  Created by Scott Alden and Derk Solko around the time when everyone else was worrying about The Millennium Bug, boardgamegeek.com has now become the largest “one-stop-shop” for board gamers.

Original BGG Logo
– Image from
boardgamegeek.com

Among other things, it comprises a database with over 100,000 entries; a forum (essential for checking rules etc.), and vast amounts of User-created content, including photos, player aids and rules translations—there is even a marketplace where gamers can buy and sell games.  In 2006, after just six years, the site was generating sufficient funds for Scott Alden to give up the day-job and work on BoardGameGeek full time.  Since then, the site has grown further:  it now includes role-play and video game strands, and they hold their own biannual conventions (BGG.CON and BGG.Spring) with some three thousand attendees.

BGG Ernie
– Image from
boardgamegeek.com

The growth of BoardGameGeek has been commensurate with increasing recognition and participation in board gaming as a whole.  Although there have been many factors that have led to this, it is clear that the provision of extensive information about games and where to get them provided by other gamers, has been massive.  Thus, the creation of BoardGameGeek was undoubtedly timely, but without it, it is arguable that the BoardGameGeek has been essential to the development of the wider board gaming community. So here’s to the next twenty years!

BGG Corner Logo 2019
– Image from
boardgamegeek.com