FEATURE3 August 2020

Return to childhood

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Covid-19 Features Impact UK

The Covid-19 restrictions led to an increase in board game purchases, and classic games dominated sales. Did the pandemic lead people to revert to simpler pastimes? By Liam Kay.


Whether it be a divisive Monopoly game at Christmas, Cluedo with the family on a quiet weekend or card games with friends, many of us have positive memories of playing traditional games.

During the recent Covid-19 lockdowns, with people restricted to their homes for weeks on end, board games hada moment. Sales in the UK increased by 240% in the week ending 21 March, compared with the same week in 2019, according to figures from the NPD Group.

Additionally, Kantar’s Covid-19 barometer study from the first week of April recorded a 34% increase in US respondents playing board and card games with their families since lockdown began.

NPD is tracking 14 countries – the US, UK, Canada, France, Italy, China, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium, Russia, Brazil, Mexico and Australia – and similar trends are being seen across the globe, albeit at higher rates in some countries than others.

The answer for the increase in sales is as much about nostalgia as a ...