How-To Wednesdays: Checking Board Games for Completeness

by on January 9, 2013 at 5:29 pm

Every Wednesday, we’ll do a short how-to where we’ll tackle a topic in the reselling space and try to give clarity on it. eBay and other selling platforms, as well as picking itself, can be daunting. If you have a topic you would like to see in the How-To Wednesday topic, please leave comments and we will try to add it to the schedule. Thanks for reading!

A very common question I get all the time is “How do I know if a game is complete?” There are a variety of ways to figure this out.

2013-01-09 17.22.31First, and most commonly, the instructions inside the board game will usually have a detailed list of everything that is supposed to be in the game, including how many cards there are supposed to be (if it’s a game with cards.) If the instructions are missing, fear not, because on newer board games, the back of the box will often have that same listing of contents.

2013-01-09 17.23.15If it’s an older game without instructions or the instructions don’t detail what’s supposed to be in the box, which is a fairly common issue with games that are pre 1970, knowing what is supposed to be in the game can be difficult. One of the easiest ways to check for completeness is to check other eBay listings to see what people are saying there is supposed to be. If you find three or four listings with the same contents list, it’s pretty likely that’s what a complete game looks like.

If you can’t find other listings that detail what they have in the game and the other methods are failing you, another great place to check is This website is full of information about board games, and the older games will usually have a contents listing or someone will have posted on the forum what the game is supposed to have. If not, it can’t hurt to post yourself and ask what’s supposed to be in the game, and maybe someone who knows they have a complete copy will give you a list.

Finally, Google is your friend and a Google search for the game, if all other methods have failed, will usually result in a million listings that have nothing to do with what you need to know, but one somewhere in that haystack that will give you the info.

When all else fails, simply list the game on eBay and detail out what the contents you have in the game. Do not say it is complete, let other people come to their own assumptions about the game. If you do not claim it is complete, because you aren’t sure, and you list everything that is included, then the person buying the game knows what they are getting.

Hope this helps!

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