When board game lover Mohit Goel realised that the games available in the international market were more advanced, boasted of higher production values and challenged the mind even more, he decided to start a venture with partner Rishabh Shah, to ensure that these games were available to the Indian audience as well.
“I loved board games since I was a kid, and as I grew older I began to explore newer games, which are more challenging. On international websites I saw many such games and would order them.
But they were expensive as the cost involved shipping and custom clearance charges. Besides the waiting period would run into two to three weeks,” reveals 39-year-old Goel, who has a collection of over 100 board games. He started ordering these and introduced them to friends, and realised many people loved them. He then decided to start Blah Games, and got in touch with game publishers directly, and bought the games. “Now, people can order any game and get it in two to three days. Plus, they don’t need to worry about customs or shipping expenses,” he adds.
Games people play
“The games in the international market are more evolved and have very high production values. Many of them involve a lot more strategising and planning and are great fun to play,” says Goel adding, “There is a misconception in India that board games are only for kids, but there are games for people of all ages.” From games on fantasy, to that on politics, science fiction, economics, history, war games and even those based on popular video games, Blah Games has a wide variety of games for everyone.
Tales of the Arabian Nights (Rs 3,700) is a game where you play the hero or heroine in a story of adventure and wonder just like those told by Scheherazade to her spellbound sultan! You will travel the land seeking your own destiny and fortune. 1960 — The Making of the President (Rs 3,100) is a simulation of the elections. You take on the role of one of the protagonists, Richard Nixon or John F Kennedy, vying to lead America into an era of turbulent change. I’m the Boss is a deal making game where you try to make a deal as an investor. “Many games involve thorough planning and strategising, which makes it more challenging,” feels Goel. “Besides, it is a great form of entertainment. Board games help socialise and bond in your free time making it a fun exercise, instead of being glued to the TV or watching a movie,” he adds.
To increase awareness, Goel has been been organising meet-ups for interested folks to drop by and test drive these games. “We’ve hosted between 12 to 14 meet-ups and the response has been great. The next meet will mostly happen this Saturday,” he reveals.