Board gaming is on a roll, and not necessarily of the dice.
For the fourth year, Palmerston North board gamers Bethani Eustace and Alastair Manning have organised a successful Board in Palmy event, with two sellout days at the Palmerston North Bridge Club.
It may mean next year finding bigger premises for the volunteerrun and staffed event.
Modern board games the pair explained, are light years in advance of those ‘‘tired old staples’’ Monopoly, Cluedo and Scrabble. Board in Palmy, a smaller version of Wellycon in the capital, was a two-day showcase for long-time board game converts as well as for novices.
‘‘Every year, more people have attended. When tickets went on sale, half of them sold within 24 hours,’’ Manning said.
Participants came from as far away as Christchurch, Hamilton, Wellington and Hawkes Bay.
The pair took along their own collection of about 70 games to add to a library available for people to try out.
Players at the event were given ‘helper’ flags, one marked with a ‘‘?’’ requesting guidance and the other featuring a ‘‘meeple’’.
Meeple was the name given to a game figure, a contraction of ‘‘My’’ and ‘‘People’’ (in days of yore they were known as game counters), though when anyone waved that flag it meant ‘‘more people’’, as in more people were wanted to join in a particular game, Eustace said.
Her favourite game of the moment was a quest game called Land of Waterdeep. Eustace also has a penchant for The Castles of Mad King Ludwig, which involves building fantasy castles.
Manning’s preference was Merchants and Marauders, channelling his inner Captain Jack Sparrow around the islands of the Caribbean.
Games could be co-operative or competitive. There were bluffing and guessing games, such as Werewolf, played with cards and a soundtrack. XCOM, based on a computer game, required the use of a phone app to play.
Three levels of games were showcased at the weekend, small - over in an hour; medium - up to three hours, and epic, which could last the whole day.
Eustace said she enjoyed the pastime because it promoted socialising without pressure, was a good way to make friends, and there were no screens.
‘‘It’s good old-fashioned newfashioned stuff,’’ she said.
Scott Grady looks on as Callum Mills (right) makes a move during Board in Palmy.