The Opinionated Gamers Prepare for Essen – Part 3

Dale Yu:  OK, i’m done with the hotel, airfare, passport panic check, etc – so I’m all set up to go logistic wise.  Now, I’m working on making my lists… There are 3 lists that I have to do:


1) The big Essen game list.  This usually involves sitting down for hours in front of the computer and looking at the BGG geeklist and researching as many games as possible.  I generally put the game into one of 4 buckets – Must have, should have, need to see first, don’t really want to see.  I try to classify all the games I research into one of these so that when I get to the SPIEL, I can be focused in seeing what I want, and also so that I’m not tricked into looking at a game I wasn’t interested in just because I forgot the title of it


2) Clothes packing list – yes, I’m anal enough to need to make a list of clothes and other stuff to pack.  Because one year I forgot socks.  True, Germany sells socks. And they are socks of high quality.  But it’s a pain to have to go find them last minute.  Also, I like to make a list to make sure that I am bringing the minimum possible to remain hygenic and non-stinky while saving as much weight for games as possible.  An extra pair of blue jeans in the bag could mean one less Carcassonne sized game out of the bag.  23Kg fills up quickly.  One weight saving maneuver has already been planned… I purposely save an old pair of running or platform tennis shoe to bring on the trip.  I’ll wear them while there and then leave them in the hotel.  But, I can bring two pairs of sneakers that way and only have to weigh one on the trip home.

3) Game organization list – baggies, rubber bands, packing tape, empty boxes, etc.  All the stuff that I need to re-pack/nest games to maximize the trip home.  Need to make sure I run to Dollar Tree to get the 1.5gallon bags which are big enough to hold a Kosmos big-box board (12” square”.  If I can find enough of them, I might even bring over those little air pillows that you get in Amazon boxes to put in empty game boxes to hopefully prevent crush injuries…


Andrea “Liga” Ligabue: I’m also starting to prepare my Essen holiday with my daughter, Caterina. It will be the 3rd time together and we will make our usual “Father in the messe” report. This year I hope to be able to make Caterina write something too (a good excuse to make her some english exercise).


The real good news is that she started to study german in school last year and she is quite good, so probably this year we will be able to understand the menu of the restaurant or other essential things like that!


I have already booked during the summer bot the flgiht and the hotel. We will arrive in Essen wednesday evning and we will flight back sunday afternoon. Of course that means we will miss the press event and also the sunday’s sales … but with only 2 suitcases it wil be not bad.


Last year we went back with something close to 40kg of games and this year we will try do something similar … that means we have to make thought choice. First of all we will avoid to buy ganes we know will have an Italian edition soon (that’s bad because I know there will be a lot of good titile I’ll have to wait months before playing)

Concerning the games I’m contacting Italian publishers to have some  games to play and preview before Essen. In the next week we will start to go through Essen preview and web sites but we also like a lot to travel the fair randomly stopping to try what get Caterina’s attention.


In the next update something more …


Andrea and Caterina

About Dale Yu

Dale Yu is the Editor of the Opinionated Gamers. He can occasionally be found working as a volunteer administrator for BoardGameGeek, and he previously wrote for BoardGame News.
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3 Responses to The Opinionated Gamers Prepare for Essen – Part 3

  1. Jacob says:

    I don’t get it. You bring two pairs of shoes to leave one behind. Why do you have to bring an extra pair? Why would you just bring one pair? (the one you wear)

  2. Dale Yu says:

    jacob – mostly for hygiene purposes… when you’re on your feet and walking for 12-14 hours a day, my feet get really sweaty. It’s nice to be able to rotate shoes around… To be honest, I’d probably be two pairs no matter what. Also, it tends to rain a lot in fall there, and I’ve been caught out in the rain on a number of occasions, and I don’t like having squishy shoes for a few days. It seems easier to me to bring an extra pair or two… but I bring an old pair to leave behind for weight purposes. Games are heavy!

    • Jacob says:

      Ah, I see. Thanks for clarifying that. That’s the kind of tidbit you gain from experience. I would not have known to do that if I went to Essen.

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