Information for first-timers

What's Mind Games?

Mind Games is a 40-plus-hour board-game-judging marathon. Judges tend to play around-the-clock, breaking only for food, drink and sleep. Hospitality is open 24-hours, but unlike the Hospitality experienced at gatherings, it is intended only for quick refreshment between games.

Cool! How does it all work?

Each year, 300 Mensan participants, or "judges," play and critique games released in the past year and award the coveted Mensa Select® seal to the top five vote-getters.

Game manufacturers pay a fee and submit several copies of their game for the valuable feedback from comment cards, as well as the chance to win one of the aforementioned Mensa Select seals.

Event attendees (judges and guests) are expected to give the games they have played a fair assessment based upon the judging criteria and submit honest, constructive comments via comment cards. Judges tend to play around-the-clock, breaking only for food, drink and sleep.

Each judge is charged with:

  • Playing up to 30 games from start to finish;
  • Submitting a completed ballot;
  • Completing and submitting a comment card for each game played, each time it's played.

The comment cards help judges score each game in five categories: aesthetics, originality, play value, play appeal, and quality of instructions.

After playing the allotted selection of games, judges are then welcome to play and judge any of the other games that have been entered the competition. When it comes to the Mensa Select voting, judges are expected to vote for the games they would buy for themselves or their friends.

I'm in! Where are we doing this thing?

Mind Games 2018 takes place April 20-22 in Denver at the Crowne Plaza Denver Airport Convention Center. Player-judge registration is open and information about the hotel is available.

How about kids… are they invited?

Mind Games welcomes any Mensa Member to register for the event. However, attendees under the age of 18 must have a parent/guardian on site during the event. Additionally, attendees 14 and younger are required to have a legal guardian present in the games room with them at all times to ensure the safety and well-being of all of our guests.