Spiel des Jahres 2024 nominations

Spiel des Jahres

Nominations are out! The jury selected a total of sixteen games for their longlist, nine for Spiel des Jahres and seven for Kennerspiel des Jahres. Out of these games, three games each are nominated for the two awards and can hope to get the coveted meeple added to their covers on July 21.

Let’s dive straight into the nominations and recommendations, before we discuss how good (or bad) my predictions were and if the agreed with our Kennerspiel score.

Nominated for Spiel des Jahres 2024

Spiel des Jahres 2024

Captain Flip

2–5 players, 20 minutes, 8+ years, light (1.1), 100% Spiel

Captain Flip

Hoist your flag, recruit a colorful crew, and earn as many gold coins as you can.

In the Footsteps of Darwin

2–5 players, 20–30 minutes, 8+ years, medium light (1.6), 97% Spiel

In the Footsteps of Darwin

Assist Charles Darwin with his research for On the Origins of Species.

Sky Team

2 players, 15 minutes, 12+ years, medium light (2.0), 66% Kennerspiel

Sky Team

Pilot and co-pilot work together to land planes.

Spiel des Jahres recommendations

Nominated for Kennerspiel des Jahres 2024

Kennerspiel des Jahres 2024


1–4 players, 60–120 minutes, 10+ years, medium (3.0), 99% Kennerspiel


Cooperatively decarbonize the planet and create resilient societies.

The Guild of Merchant Explorers

1–4 players, 45 minutes, 14+ years, medium light (2.0), 95% Kennerspiel

The Guild of Merchant Explorers

Explore strange lands, establish trade routes, and search for treasure.

Ticket to Ride Legacy: Legends of the West

2–5 players, 20–90 minutes, 10+ years, medium (2.5), 94% Kennerspiel

Ticket to Ride Legacy: Legends of the West

Build train lines across the United States in a twelve-game campaign.

Kennerspiel des Jahres recommendations

How good were the predictions?

This really is a drama in three acts: the decision of Kennerspiel or not, the algorithm picking the longlist, and finally my guts picking the shortlist.

Kennerspiel score

This was a bad year for the Kennerspiel score… 🙈 It classified four out of sixteen games wrong: It saw Sky Team and Harmonies as Kennerspiel and Botanicus and Ritual as Spiel. An acuracy of 75% is pretty poor – the only solace I can take is that I correctly saw Sky Team on the red list… 🤷


It’s not getting better… 😅 The algorithm picked out only three out of nine games on the Spiel longlist, plus one game for the wrong award, plus one “honourable mention”. Things look a little brighter for Kennerspiel where the algorithm predicted four out of seven entries, plus one honourable mention. In summary, this would be a 44% hit rate (63% if we count all those pluses). In a year where I was more confident about the longlist than in any previous edition, it’s a bit disappointing.

There’s some good news though: 11, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 22. Those are the positions on their respective prediction lists for seven out of the eight misses. I’ll call those pretty close – Ritual on #292 of the Spiel list is the only catastrophic miss.


Again, not great… Only two out of six nominees called correctly, one of them on the wrong list. That’s my worst year so far – the score so far is two years with three and two years with four correct predictions. I did announce this more or less, but it’s still a bit disappointing. I’ve got some ideas how to improve the algorithm for next year, so let’s hope it’ll be better… 🤞

That’s it for now, we’ll be back soon with a little more in-depth analyses on the six nominees and their chances of winning an award.

See also