What kind of Board Game player are you?

Have you ever wondered what type of player you are as you engage in a board game?

Games elevate our mental dimension and cultivate aspects of our personalities that may get “lost” in the routine and stress of everyday life. However, each person harbors a type of player within them, one that represents and highlights their personality.

The Rule-Bender:

Certainly, in any board game, there is the person who will do anything, even bending or breaking the rules, to win. They play purely for themselves and get upset when they lose. They might sabotage their fellow players, seize opportunities to cheat, and feign innocence when caught. This approach could be considered somewhat egocentric and may irritate their teammates. The label “self-centered” often fits players like these, though everyone may possess some elements of this character; it’s important to control and manage these tendencies to avoid misunderstandings. An ancient proverb suits these types of players well: “Give me flour, and I will make you a pie.”

The Social Player:

Of course, there’s also the case where a player has no idea about board games, nor does he want to learn; he simply plays for the company. This player could be characterized as “The Indifferent One Who Gets into the Game.” The progression is predictable, as the others, depending on their characters, flock like crows to drag this easy prey along with them. This character serves as either a helper or a breeding ground for individualism. Their characteristics are known: they don’t know when it’s their turn or they delay their play, asking answered questions to appear knowledgeable. Almost always, they’re among the first to quit the game. The label attached to this player reads boldly: “I wash my hands.”

The Burnt-Out Expert:

It would be a significant oversight not to mention the presence of the famous burnt-out player! Yes, this character is independent of gender and age, and usually, they’re the most frequent players of board games. They are the greatest complex-holder-stuck-to-the-rules one can encounter, for every night as they sleep, they safeguard the rules of the board under their pillow, thinking they’re tops! Throughout the game, they don’t part with their advisory rulebook and are ready to scold for any thefts or mistakes. Statistically, this type of player is the worst enemy of the rest and has been haunted by various superstitions, which tend to be true.

The Novice:

Worth mentioning is also that position from where we all once started. The novice, who, in contrast to the advanced player, tries to understand the game by observing step by step the more experienced teammates, in order to have a progressive and evolutionary path. However, the novice type can also show, someone who doesn’t fare well with the whole technique of observing methods and steps, resulting in difficulty keeping up with the level of the more advanced. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on each person’s character, if they continue or give up on the game. They display interest and usually act contrary to the egoist and the indifferent, simultaneously trying to develop their critical ability and memorize “checkmate” moves in preparation for future matches. Statistically, at this stage, everyone is more cautious and balanced than the other characters. Many times, beginners win the first game, and this has remained in world history as “The Luck of the Newbie.”

The Diplomat:

Every board game, regardless of its category, almost always involves the careful, methodical player known as the diplomat. Typically, this player is the oldest in the group, doesn’t talk much, knows when to speak (usually when victory is inevitable), and observes even the tiniest movement of their teammates. They are always ahead by a few rounds; when it’s their turn, they play slowly, appearing restrained. In the meantime, they predict and sense the possible moves of others, formulating corresponding new strategies. They execute all the sneaky moves and secret agreements under the noses of other players, without them realizing. Naturally, this type of player remains vigilant to prompt any possible deviations. Statistically, they come out as winners most of the time, and they are a headache for the egocentric characters. The familiar saying aligns perfectly with them: “Fear the silent little streams.”

Τhe Chatterbox:

On the opposite end, there’s the character of the chatterbox, the one who’s more or less the “yes” person of the group. The optimism that distinguishes them is remarkable. They embody the irritation of everyone both inside and outside the game, yet this makes them interesting because even the indifferent person often tries to punish them. In other words, it’s certain that they’re bound to lose, and if they happen to win, it’s due to the kindness of those around them or the laws of luck conspiring for a beautiful evening in the back of a talkative mind. Threats and challenges are their asset, which subsequently makes them appear both humorous and dark. All of the above are interlinked with a few wise words: “A tongue is a shoe, a mind is a bump.”

The Avenger:

An eccentric personality is the avenger, simultaneously symbolic. They are the one who participates in the board game for a single purpose. Whether it’s to prove something to someone else but not to themselves, to fulfill a bet or a dare, to seek revenge and defend their grievances, or to humble someone and boast about their victory! Classic examples include siblings competing against each other, competitive friends, or a novice playing against a veteran. It’s easily understood that they’ll do whatever it takes to achieve their goal. They’ll collaborate with people they dislike, bluff, take risks, and undermine every obstacle. The timeless saying that appropriately represents them is: “Revenge is a dish best served cold.” Ultimately, each of us has a small dose of the avenger element within us.

These characters suffer from a sense of defeat, and the expression “loser” is belittling nicknames from experienced competitors. Board games can allegorically express the way we approach our attitude towards life, our thoughts, our behavior towards ourselves and others. Essentially, they are a “stripping down” of ourselves, as during the game, we forget many of the “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” of daily life, as well as global phenomena that plague all of us.

In the end, which of the above types are you when you play a board game?

Panos Patroulias

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