Frequently Asked Questions
about games

(click on a question below for the answer)

  1. I have an old game.
    How much it is worth?

  2. I found an old game (in the basement; at a garage sale; at an antique store; etc.) without instructions.
    Where can I get a copy of the instructions or the rules?

  3. I saw (purchased, was given, etc.) a game in (China, Africa, Germany, etc.).
    Can you tell me how to play it?

  4. I have invented a game.
    How do I market it?

  5. I am writing (a book; a newspaper article; a monograph; a school paper; etc.) about a game.
    Will you send me all the information (or photographs; or slides; etc.) you have on games of this type?

  6. I an preparing (a Website; a book, a CDROM; a DVD, etc.).
    May we have permission to use (WebPages, Photographs, Graphics, Text, etc.) from this Website?


  1. Please CLICK HERE for an explanation about market values.

  2. Return to Questions.
  3. If the game is still manufactured, because of copyright law you will have to contact the manufacturer for a copy of the instructions. Many manufacturers maintain Websites with free downloadable game instructions for current and older games. Also note that the Game and Puzzle Collectors Association(GPCA) maintains an archive of rules and instructions for over 2000 commercial games made in the United States. GPCA will provide a copy to non-members for a copying fee for each set requested.

  4. Return to Questions.
  5. Maybe. A major issue is often the name of the game, and the exact place it comes from. Another issue is that for certain ethnographic games (rather than mass produced games, there are many local variations in the mode of play. The more details you can provide, the easier it will be to determine the information about a specific game. If you send us a scanned photograph of the game as an email attachment, that will be helpful in identifying your game. A photo should be in "jpg" format. We will respond with direct email to your sender's address.

  6. Return to Questions.
  7. There are a number of national and international organizations that can best answer this and other related question for game inventors. Many commercial game manufacturers have established procedures for responding to game inventors. We suggest you do a search for a Website with specific information for inventors.

  8. Return to Questions.
  9. Please do not ask for ALL of the material we may have on a subject. Please be specific. For example - bibliographic information on the history of Chess, what is the geographic origin of dice, when were computer games first marketed, etc. You may send us details about the type of information you require, as well as a graphic to identify. The graphic should be in "jpeg" format, as an attachment to your email. We will respond with a direct email to your sender's address.

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  11. This Website has been created by E.M. Avedon. Under the University of Waterloo's Intellectual Property Policy, and it is therefore his property. The content is intended for public information, and individuals may use the content for scholarly, educational, or other academic purposes with permission. Individuals or organizations wishing to copy any of the content for replication on the Internet or in other media, must first seek permission before attempting use any of the Website for such purposes. Organizations wishing to use any of the content from the Website for a commercial venture must request permission. There are standard fees charged for use of the Website content for commercial purposes.

  12. Return to Questions.

Last update December 21, 2009