While I obviously don’t know for a fact that this is how it happens, I consider this to be more of an educated guess than shot in the dark. If we have any designers in our audience, I’d love to hear from you? Is this how the ‘great lie’ of our hobby gets told?
I know I’m not alone in this, too. I mean, those times on the side of the box are more hopelessly optimistic than playing a game of Pandemic on the highest difficulty. And that’s not to mention the ridiculous “30 minutes a player” assertion. What kind of crazy maths is that?
And while I’m throwing wild aspersions and baseless accusations around, I’m sure it’s the exact same people who decide on the size of board game boxes. Marketing people, I mean. While the motto for play times is clearly ‘less is more’, when it comes box sizes it’s a resounding ‘more is more – like, a lot more’. Why make a box that the components fit snugly into, when you can make a box FOUR TIMES that size and have your game take up four times as much space on the shelf? It’s a no brainer. Who needs trees anyway?
In fact, I’m pretty sure everything they teach you at the Hollywood School of Board Game Marketing can be boiled down to one simple equation:
(Box size x miniatures) / play time = sales
Easy as that. If anyone from Asmodee is reading this, I’m available to start immediately and my consultation fees are modest(ish).
POST SCRIPT: A friend of ours actually claimed to play Game of Thrones in an hour. We have never played the game with him, so can’t tell for sure. And of course we had to burn him as a witch, so preposterous was his statement. So I guess now we’ll never know.