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Market Research


Board games, updated classics (gallery)

The stars of the holiday season (6)

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Board games are one of the categories that can be trusted for Christmas. They are not usually the star gift, but they tend to be present in letters to Santa, as they offer many playing opportunities for the whole family and also for groups of friends of all ages. Many of them also have an educational component that makes them very attractive to parents.

So far, it has not been one of the most important categories in Spain during 2013. According to NPD, sales of games and puzzles fell by 5.5% in value until July, somewhat below the rest of the market (-1.9%). Even so, we must keep in mind that during the difficult 2012-2013 season board games was one of the best valued segments by retailers, with 50% explaining that sales had been better than the previous year, according to the trade magazine Juguetes B2B.

For this Christmas season, we see the following trends in the games category:

1. Technology is increasingly present. If we talk about games based on mobile apps, we should mention Angry Birds. One of the games most cited by retailers (according to the November issue of Juguetes B2B) is the Angry Birds Millennium Falcon, in which children take this flying birds game to the physical world. And you can find more than just new properties: Educa Borrás launches Tetris Blocks, based on the classic video game.

2. Technology is also applied to the mechanics of the game and not only to contents. For example, one of the favourites of retailers for this year is Mattel's Scrabble Banter, in which a marker is passed from hand to hand, counting correct answers and offering a new way to play this game.

3. As you can see, licensing remains important, and not just for young audiences. There are quite a few board games based on TV shows, as is the case of the game based on the Spanish version of Who's Still Standing, by IMC Toys, as well as The Million Pound Drop Live, by Educa Borrás, which during past campaigns were successful and are still among the picks of toy retailers.

4. Of course, classics never fail in this category. Diset has its Party & Co. Extreme 3.0, a new version of a board game with two decades of history. Not to mention Monopoly Empire, the version of this Hasbro centennial game in which players can buy brands. Educa Borrás' Magic Great Set offers a set of magic tricks that the company started selling 80 years ago.

There's nothing odd in talking about decades of existence of these games. Backgammon was created in Iran in the year 3,000 BC, and chess, around the sixth century BC. Therefore, many of the games that will be bought this Christmas still have a long road ahead.

Other stars of the holiday season:

1. Playmobil and the importance of long term thinking (10/3/2013)
2. Furby gets the pole position for the Christmas season (10/11/2013)
3. 12 licenses for Christmas (10/17/2013)
4. Why tablets for kids are a success (10/24/2013)
5. Lego - the value of being a specialist (10/31/2013)

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Angry Birds Millenium Falcon (Hasbro) Tetris Blocks, (Educa Borrás) Scrabble Banter (Mattel) Ahora Caigo (IMC Toys)
Atrapa un millón (Educa Borrás) Monopoly Empire (Hasbro) Party & Co (Diset) Magia Borrás Gran Set (Educa Borrás)


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