In the spring of 2014, I was looking around social media and saw some libraries were including modern board games into their collections. I began considering how we could go about adding them to the collection of the Delaware County District Library where I work.
I looked to other libraries and what their collection development and circulation policies were. I also looked into our own library’s policies as well as our strategic plan. As I did this, I found room for where the collection would fit within our library and approached the Adult Services Manager about adding games. He gave me a budget to work with and I developed a list of 22 board games to add to the library.
The games were purchased through a local hobby store in Delaware with the exception of two which were purchased through Amazon. Once the games reached the library I prepared them and sorted out the pieces as well as prepared an inventory list of the parts. After this, the games were sent to be cataloged. Once completed, a few final preparations were made to try and ensure structural integrity to the boxes and some components.
A circulation policy was created that allows patrons to check out one game at a time for two weeks. As long as no holds were placed on them, games could be renewed up to three times. The games would have to be checked out at the circulation desk, and returned there as well. If games need repair or parts replaced, we would do all we could to do that at cost to the library. So far most replacement parts have been received from publishers for free, with a few purchased out of pocket. However, if patrons destroy a game or damage it beyond repair they are responsible for the cost of the game.
The collection launched on February 10, 2015, with additional rounds of games being added to the collection every 6 months or so. As of October 1, 2017, our 140 board games and 17 RPG had a total of 3,575 check outs and renewals.
Because our patrons and staff are not all familiar with the modern board gaming movement, I sought to provide a simple collection of information to explain the collection a bit more. I created a wiki using Google Sites that provides information on the games themselves, as well as the mechanics underlying the way the game plays. To see the wiki, please follow this link.