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March 24, 2015 / Charlie McNabb

Boardgame Collection Launched

After the success of the boardgame event at my library, I had support to create a circulating boardgame collection! The budget allowed me to purchase 15 games for the core collection, which I chose through a complex process of polling students, talking to fellow boardgame nerds, surfing BoardGameGeek, and getting advice from my friendly local game store Redcap’s Corner. Collection development has never been so fun!

We had some tricky decisions to make as far as processing. The catalogers decided to create one item record for “Board Game Collection” and put each individual game as separate holdings. This way we can easily add future games without having to mess with descriptions. We don’t expect students will be browsing the catalog for games, as they will probably want to look at them in person to determine if they want to check them out.

Screenshot of the online catalog record for the Board Game Collection, showing several individual games as separate holdings.

To facilitate on-location browsing, I created “stats sheets” with a brief summary of the game, number of players, playing time, and game mechanics. These sheets are on the shelf with the collection.

Stats sheet for a game called "Arkham Horror" with image, summary, and information.

I used ziplock bags to keep similar pieces together in the boxes.

A game called "Betrayal at House on the Hill" with pieces in ziplock bags.

I created inventory lists which are taped to the box lids. Checking in triggers a message for the circulation staff to check the inventory list.

Inventory for a game called Hanabi taped to the inside of the box lid.

I created a display on the main floor with a flyer for the 2nd game night.

Games and flyers on tall bookshelf.

And put the rest of the games in their new location, a bookshelf in a comfortable lounge on the 3rd floor!

Several games and two informational posters on a wide bookshelf.

I’ve received a lot of positive feedback from students. I hope the collection is popular. I look forward to building it over time!



Leave a Comment
  1. kateristau / Mar 24 2015 12:40 PM

    Great idea with a good selection. I like your approach to tracking the pieces and inventory too! These games will be well-loved!

    • Charlie McNabb / Mar 30 2015 3:29 PM

      Thanks, Kate! It was the fantastic advice of fellow boardgame nerd and librarian John Pappas that really helped get this collection and programming going!

  2. mandaacap / Mar 24 2015 12:47 PM

    Reblogged this on NerdlyLibrarian and commented:
    I really love adding board games to the academic library. It is such a neat way to define the library, while also providing learning experiences. Just because board games are fun, doesn’t mean there isn’t something to learn. 🙂

    • Charlie McNabb / Mar 30 2015 3:30 PM

      Hear, hear! The library is full of fun stuff that’s also meaningful academically.

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