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Twenty Sixteen and Me (and Games)

The year is almost over, meaning that it’s time for my traditional “what I did this year” post1. The year of 2016 is universally hated, in my opinion wrongfully – it’s not the fault of a slightly arbitrary measurement of the earth’s rotation that so many bad things have happened. Many inspirational people have died2, but many more will likely die in the next couple of years. Many bad things have happened around the world, but considering that soon one of the most powerful nations in the world will be led by a group of imbeciles, I don’t even want to think about all the bad things that will still happen.

But this blog is supposed about me, so how was MY year of 2016?! It was a bit odd, I guess. My master’s degree was nearing it’s end in February already, as that’s when I finished the last exams I had to take before my master’s thesis. Most of February and March were then spend agonizing over a topic, before I finally decided to just ask my professor for one. That went rather well, and the next couple of months were spent preparing the experiment I performed for the thesis. My professor turned out to be an excellent supervisor and was very helpful throughout it. After the experiment was finished, I started writing my thesis in September and eventually finished in November, when I handed it in. I’m still awaiting the result.

So even though I’m technically finished with my degree, I’m still biding my time at university, doing another course I don’t really need the credit for, and teaching two tutorials. I’ve been planning for this to be my last semester at university, and I’m hoping to find a job by the time it’s over (so in April). I have no idea if that’ll work out, so there is a lot of uncertainty for me ahead.


What else was 2016 for me? Looking at my visual representation (generated by dailyfratze), I seem to have had a lot of fun with friends, did a bit of renovating, and went on a few very short trips around Europe3. I also started participating in Postcrossing again, and re-discovered my 20 year old stamp collection.

But I think the biggest thing for me in 2016 was board games. I have been a board gamer for a very long time (first contact was in 2005), but it has taken me this long to actually really, really delve into the world of board games. This is due to the fact that I finally dared to join a Meetup group of board gamers, and finally took all my courage and attended a meeting. I’m always terrified of going somewhere where I know nobody at all, all by myself, but I’m glad I did because I got to meet a lot of awesome people. Ever since I first attended one of those meetings this summer, I’ve been going almost every week to a board game night and I even started organizing some myself. That way, I got to play TONS of awesome new board games. I even started using BG Stats, an app that also connects to Board Game Geek, and thanks to that I have awesome statistics of the board games I played this year:

  • In 2016, I have altogether played games 173 times – a huge increase over the 24 games I played in 2015. Out of those 173 plays, I played 67 unique board games, out of which 34 were completely new to me (in 2015, I played 10 unique games, none of which were new to me). And this year, I played games with no less than 64 different people, at 10 different locations (compared to 7 people at 4 locations in 2015). Wow.
  • The #1 most played game of 2016 for me is Codenames, which I played altogether 37 times, with 22 different players. That’s probably no surprise to anyone familiar with the game – it’s a fun, lightweight party game that usually plays very quickly, so we tend to play multiple rounds when playing it. Most of the games that I’ve played a lot in 2016 are similar – short, lightweight games that are usually played at least twice.
  • As for new games, some of my favorite new discoveries of 2016 are Burgle Bros., which I played 5 times with 12 different people, Adrenaline, which I’ve played 3 times with 9 different people, Clank!, which I’ve played twice, and Lords of Waterdeep and Castles of Mad King Ludwig, both which I’ve played only once so far.

I think 2017 will be an even more exciting year for board games, since I hope I will be able to attend many more meetings and play many more new games.

But other than that, I hope I’ll successfully finish my time at the university (even though it’s scary to leave those familiar surroundings), start a new career, have more fun with friends, and travel to some awesome places, this time hopefully for longer than just a weekend. We’ll see…

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