Predicting the SdJ and KedJ Nominees

The nominees for this year’s German boardgame awards, the Spiel des Jahres (SdJ) and Kennerspiel des Jahres (KedJ), are announced tomorrow so I’ve been thinking about who might be nominated. It’s a bit tougher for me this year as I’ve probably played fewer of the potential nominees than I have in previous years. However, I think the jury will do its best as normal to throw up a surprise or two, so these are my predictions:

Spiel des Jahres

Karuba – This is my banker nomination as it seems to me to be the perfect fit for the criteria used by the jury and it would be nice to acknowledge Haba’s move into family games.
Codenames – This is probably the bookies’ favourite as I think everyone was saying it was SdJ material as soon as it was released. It would be nice for a word game to be nominated but it doesn’t look as good on the table, as you’re just staring at a five by five grid of words. That said, I’m pretty confident it will be nominated.
Completto – This is my left-field pick but I think it fits the jury’s criteria well, its got nice components and looks good, while Schmidt Spiele and Heinz Meister are a good pairing.

Kennerspiel des Jahres

Isle of Skye – I always have trouble working out how much of a step up the KedJ is supposed to be from the SdJ but I think lighter rather than heavier, which is why I discount the likes of Mombasa and My Village. Isle of Skye has a bit more going on than the games above and Alexander Pfister is on a roll, so this could be given the nod.
7 Wonders Duel – Two-player may be a knock against it but I think this is superb and has that familiarity of the 7W system and difference in gameplay to set it apart that means it could well get a nomination.
Mysterium – For me, this has the novelty of gameplay and continuing replayability out of the box that TIME Stories and Pandemic Legacy do not and that’s why I pick this ahead of those games.

So there you have it. I’m pretty certain some of my picks will not gel with those who read this so tell me which games you think are more likely to get the nod and why. Not long until we know the jury’s view.