Re-Remediation – How Digital Games saved Boardgames

In the last four decades the old medium of analogue games (aka boardgames) has reinvented itself over and over again. Even though the material is static – cardboard, wood, plastic – new mechanisms are invented continuously. Designers are inspired by modern technology and their own gaming-socialization. Realtime strategy games controlled by sand-glasses, campaign-driven games that change over the course of numerous rounds of play or cooperative survival games … boardgames are remediating the much younger medium in new and unusual ways. This short talk takes a look at the history of this re-remediation. Furthermore some of the most prominent examples will be discussed to highlight their key mechanisms and how they are realized without any digital assistance. Since within analogue games all rules and procedures are executed by the players themselves the design has to be extremely tight. By reducing concepts from digital games to a minimum they can offer a fresh look at why something is fun.