Board games are on the rise: sales are up 16% over the first eight months of the year compared to last year (source NPD). Cooperation games, in particular, are experiencing unprecedented development. Their principle is simple: instead of confronting each other, the players unite to win or lose together, “against the game”.
” The concept, born in the 1960s in the United States, in the wake of the hippie movement, arrived in Europe via Germany.’The orchard’, created by Haba thirty-two years ago, is a pioneer of the genre », Says Guillaume Lenoble, founder of Belugames, specializing in the distribution and creation of cooperative games.
For all ages
For a long time, these were intended for the little ones and served as a springboard for discovering the pleasure of playing while allowing defeat to be tamed. ” Very young children, when they fail alone, feel like they are losing face. However, preserving the esteem that the child has of him is very important to maintain his appetite for sharing ”, analyzes the psychologist and psychoanalyst Sophie Marinopoulos, who notes our passage ” in an era where doing it together, ‘doing with’, is valued, whereas until then, competitive games pushed to ‘do against’. “
Manufacturers have understood this and are multiplying the proposals for all ages. ” In our very individualistic society, some parents seek to encourage the values of listening and mutual aid », Notes Aude Deckner, product manager at Oxybul éveil et jeux. Many schools and recreation centers also favor these alternative modes of play, which American studies show that they reduce children’s aggressiveness.
Parents of “bad losers” may see cooperative games as an effective way to ease tensions, as they unite the team around an outside opponent (the game) and soften defeat. As a result, children focus more on the rules, on the act of playing than on the final outcome.
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Among the many novelties of the fall, we recommend for the youngest The Dragon’s Bridge (Oxybul), with its lovely wooden design, and the hilarious No Mercy for Monsters (Helvetiq), in which players must compete against each other. skill to keep funny creatures from invading their home.
For older children, Similo (Gigamic) or Ricochet (Flip flap) sharpen the spirit of deduction, while Hanabi (Cocktail Games) and Escape games (like Unlock !, sold over 1.2 million copies) remain safe values.