Board Gaming in Asia (SCAMS)

First of all, wishing everyone good health amidst the pandemic.  I have been taking a hiatus from updating this blog series. With the implementation of strict stay-home orders in Singapore, I have decided to return to update you on the board gaming scenes in Asia. 

With more time on hand than ever before, I have picked up a Japanese drama series on Netflix called SCAMS.  This series is about a character named Makoto who was trying to save this father from eye cancer by agreeing with the doctors to provide a cure for him using a cutting-edge but exorbitant treatment.  To raise money, he has to resort to helping a phoney company perform phone scams on the elderlies.  The narrative of the series argued that more than half of the Japan’s wealth is held by people over the age of 60.  Therefore, they are vulnerable targets who present great financial rewards if they fall for these scams.

I like the fact that the series highlights the phone scams that are prevalent in the Japanese society.  It is also highly relatable as these phone scams can be targeting the people around you including your parents and your grandparents.  You can draw some inspiration from this and use it as a theme in your next game design (as described in part 1 of this blog series).  In addition to making a great theme, this generates a purpose in your game as though serving a higher purpose much like what social enterprises are doing. 

Part of the reason why I published Overbooked is to raise awareness of airlines’ malpractice of overbooking.  On top of that, I wanted to highlight the possibility of racial profiling involved with the victim of the United Airline incident (David Dao) being Asian. 

I feel a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction every time a stranger comes up to me to confess their ignorance of the airline industry being synonymous with the practice of overbooking after playing Overbooked.

After watching the series, I had a compelling urge to pen this blog entry to remind the future me not to fall for these scams.  At the same time, this series also highlighted the possibility of scams propagating in the board gaming ecosystem.  In view of this, I will be discussing the topic of counterfeiting in future blog entries to prevent you from falling for such scams. 

What scams have you encountered in the board gaming world?  I would love to hear your encounters.

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2 Responses

  1. When the game box printed 2 – 4 players. Only to be a 4 player game. I looking at you “Ghost Stories”

  2. Looks like the “ghosts” are narrating the “stories” here.. On a serious note, if the price is too good to be true, it usually is. That is a more than accurate gauge to spot counterfeit games.

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