You can’t have Fastaval without board games. Board games have been a part of Fastaval since the beginning. Every year several board games premiere at Fastaval – entirely new, not yet published games, and you can be among the very first who get to play them.

What is special about the board games at Fastaval?

At Fastaval you’ll meet innovative board games that push our idea of what board games are and what they can do. Social games that frame the interaction between players in new ways – like ‘Magic Maze’, where the players must cooperate without any talking. Board games that tell stories, like the double prize winner from 2017 – ‘Z’, where the players must work together to survive in the remnants of a world overrun by zombies.

Games for entirely new audiences – like ‘Fog of Love’, a romantic comedy as a board game, perfect for couples. Games that engage the players in societal challenges – at Fastaval 2018 we had games about climate change, the information war between superpowers, and the treatment of the mentally ill from 1700 to 1950.

World class board games

And we are talking world-class board games premiering at Fastaval.

The winner of the Otto for the best board game in 2015, Magic Maze, was nominated for the biggest award for board games, Spiel des Jahres. Fog of Love from that same Fastaval was the first boardgames Wallmart bought the exclusive rights to in America, and Fog of Love was nominated to the Golden Geek Awards.

A long line of games from Fastaval has gone on to become published or Kickstarted. So it’s not just us who think our board games are pretty great.

Board games are many things, also at Fastaval

Besides the new board games, Fastaval has an extensive library of well known, and not-so-well-known board games available for pick up play.

There is also organized play of some of the games, where you can reserve a spot, and have the game explained if you are not familiar with the rules.

And finally, you can design your own board game, either on your own or in teams, in the span of just a few days at Fastaval – with several obstructions, to stimulate your creativity. We call that Game Rush.

How we select games

When we read through the incoming pitches to make the selection for Fastaval, our task is to provide the participants with the best possible potential for great experiences playing games. As such we consider several factors that all influence our decision:

The presentation
Do we understand the description of the game well enough to get a good understanding of the ideas and core concepts of the game?

Is there good cohesion between game mechanisms and theme? Is it a good game?

Does the concept excite us? Do we believe that the game will provide a good experience for the players?

Development potential
It isn’t long between September and April, so it is important that the core elements are, by and large, in place and it seems realistic that the game development can be complete for Fastaval.

That special ‘something’
We have a great love for the different and innovative – the games that might not have obvious commercial potential, but brings something new to the table – in short: Is it a Fastaval game?

Finally, we wish to have a broad field of different games, covering the gamut from lightweight to heavy, short to long, from serious to humorous, from both Danish and foreign designers, both experienced and rookies, men, and women.

So there are several factors we try to fit into a coherent picture, and picking the games has not been easy. This year we received more than 120 pitches and ended up selecting 23 games. Many more had what it took to make it, but in the end were turned down, to get the diversity we were looking for. Anyone who sends us a pitch will receive a thorough reply from us.