The decision has been made: Pictures by Daniela and Christian Stöhr is Game of the Year 2020. The board game published by PD-Verlag prevailed against Nova Luna and My City and won the coveted red pawn of the jury of the Game of the Year eV. 

The “Game of the Year” award was presented for the 42nd time, in 2020 due to the corona pandemic under special conditions. The ceremony took place in a small group in Berlin, some authors and publishing house representatives were on site, others were connected via live stream. One did not want to do without the award in the Corona year, explains the club's chairman Harald Schrapers: “We owe that to the cultural asset of games”.

Pictures prevails against competitors

The jury of the Spiel des Jahres eV scrutinized around 330 German-language innovations, and in the end the board game prevailed Pictures from the PD-Verlag, quite surprising, as one could see from the direct reactions of the viewers of the live stream. Nevertheless: For the jury, the graphic creative game seemed to best represent the idea of ​​the cultural asset.

The list of recommendations also includes:

  • Color Brain by Tristan Williams (Game Factory)
  • The fox in the forest by Joshua Buergel (Leichtkraft)
  • Draftosaurus by Antoine Bauza and others (Ankama and Board Game Box)
  • Kitchen Rush by Dávid Turczi and Vangelis Bagiartakis (Pegasus Games)
  • Little Town by Shun Taguchi and Aya Taguchi (Studio GG and Iello)
  • Spicy by Zoltán Győri (Heidelbär Games and Gémklub)

The competition in the area of ​​the Game of the Year 2020 was top-class: Pictures prevailed against Nova Luna from “Rekord-Uwe” Rosenberg, and Reiner Knizia's idea of ​​the simplified family legacy concept of a My City also won the board game from PD Verlag too little to oppose.

The mix of materials and the idea of ​​Pictures convinced the critics:


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Playing was and is one of the central topics in Corona times. A solid increase in sales during the lockdown confirms how popular the game round is at home - and how competitive the board game, which has meanwhile been said to be dead, can also be today when life is thrown out of joint and standards are suddenly no longer standards.

The jury also used alternatives in times of contact restrictions, explains Harald Schrapers: video conferences, for example. It didn't really ignite. It works, but for board players it is only an emergency solution. “The physical presence cannot be replaced virtually 1: 1,” summarizes Schrapers. Lively discussions at the table, anger, joy - the range of emotions is simply different in the - sometimes time-shifted - live stream. Not as one is used to from “real game rounds”.

And so the award of the “Game of the Year” award is again to be understood this year as an appeal to deal intensively with the “board game” cultural asset. The classic Catan, which was honored by the Spiel des Jahres eV for its anniversary, shows how long this can succeed.

Catan probably changed many lives, but one thing is certain: that of the author Klaus Teuber. With tears in his eyes, he says in a video shown at the award ceremony: "I am grateful to Catan." It is an author's view of a game that hardly seems to have aged, is still enthusiastic today and brings all-too-infatuated game fans back out of the bubble and into reality. It is the Gloomhavens, Terraforming Mars 'or Nemesis' who get fans excited about the board game. Often frowned upon titles such as Monopoly, Uno or Catan serve as an introduction to a hobby for many, which are only developed over decades from then on. Instead of loud prophecies of doom on the "scrap games" one should be happy about every single one who reaches for the board at some point.

By the way: The Crew became the Kennerspiel of the year 2020, published by Kosmos.

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