By the late 1960s and early 1970s, German newspapers were running columns about “family games”. There may have been a social motive – board games were, and still are, regarded as a wholesome activity – but the columns reflected the genuine enthusiasm of mainstream journalists who persuaded their editors to let them moonlight as game critics. In 1978, those enthusiasts decided to create an award, the Spiel des Jahres (Game of the Year).
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