1. Ok, here are my opinions:

    Best new game is a tie between Polaris and Etherscope, both of which were unique and envelope pushing in their own way.

    Publisher of 2005 is probably Green Ronin, for producing games of consistently high quality.

    Best ongoing game … does Mutants & Masterminds 2e count? If not, D&D minis continued to get better throughout the sets released this year, peaking with Underdark.

    Best innovation … Pirates I would have to say!

  2. You make it sound like Days of Wonder and Fantasy Flight are the only boardgames in existence.

    I would have to disagree. Rio Grande have done their usual great job of releasing a bucketload of Euros (although they need to hurry up with their long awaited El Grande reprint), and are working on the Caylus reprint. Z-Man Games have done a fantastic job in their greater focus on Euros – Reef Encounter being a case in point.

  3. Matthew,

    We have mentioned lots of other boardgame producers in the past. Rio Grande does a decent job, but in my opinion is dropping the ball on availability of their products. We got our 12 Caylus week of release, sold out in about 10 days…and nothing. We missed oodles of sales during the holidays on that one alone. I suppose I shoudl say “we” (both us and Rio lost sales.) Zman has been pouring some quality product out in the past little while, so much so, I wish they would slow down….

  4. Yeah, I noticed last night while searching something else that we reported on that back in November. Psychic powers, he has! Ah well.

    Software to make the show: Skype, HotRecorder, Audition, Audacity, and Acid Pro just for its MP3 encoder.

    And Matthew: we talked about Caylus, as well as the “bucketload” of Euro games, the latter of which we incidentally view as a problem. I hope Rio Grande finds ways to distinguish its products from one another in the minds of more gamers in 2006.

  5. As one of the guys at Eye-Level Entertainment, makers of ‘Nature of the Beast’ expandable (not collectable) card game, I would be remiss if I didn’t at least put NOB on the table for best new game of ’05. We’ve got strategy, humor, good card balance, and the ability to attack your opponent with a hamster in a roller-ball. Seriously, what ‘big name’ company can say that?

    Bet regards, OgreCave for a big year of growth in ’05 and and hopes for an even bigger ’06.

  6. My pick for “best new game” is Under the Bed or Breaking the Ice. Not that I’d object if Polaris came up. Best innovation: The Mountain Witch’s Fate cards. I don’t do a lot of ongoing products, so I can’t really specify that. Best publisher I would give to Luke Crane, probably, because Burning Wheel is *hot*


  7. Oh, and stuff about print-runs:

    My print-runs have ranged from 35-108. Vincent’s print-runs are even smaller. The largest indie print-runs are Ron’s, which I believe are around 1000.

    Of course, penetration into retail isn’t a big deal to me. I make most of my money on direct sales. I’m happy about retail sales, of course, because I’m a booster of my own game and I make a modest profit off of it. IPR’s sales into retail are sort of a strange novelty.


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