I hope that the too pretentious title doesn't raise your hopes too high for my following ramblings....
This post is inspired by a brief interchange that @ObtusePunubiris and I had in the comments of this post. In that brief discussion it was obvious that @ObtusePunubiris and I had a different ideas of what consititutes a complete collection. I judge that we all, probably, have a number of differences in the thought process we apply to our collection.
I do want to state, before I go any farther, that I have no desire to denigrate anyone elses philosophy behind their collection. I really don't care if you collect to play, or to display on the shelf, or to support the industry, or from FOMO, or whatever other reason.
But, I will explore, briefly, my concept of collecting. Firstly, I don't like to think of myself as a collector. I much prefer to think of myself as a curator. I find that this encapsulates better how I feel towards my collections, be they books, or games, or whatever else.
If you consider a curator, they are someone entrusted with the management of a specific targeted collection of some sort. They might curate the art of an art museam, or the animals of a zoo, or perhaps a private art collection of some sort. What all these positions, have in common, is that they are trying to have as representative of a collection as possible, given the scope of the collection and the budget involved. They are responsible to see after the arrangement of the collection, maintence/restoration if needed, aquiring new pieces, selling pieces, and many other things.
This is the position in which I think of myself in. I am trying to build my boardgame to be representative of my interests and desires as is possible, while remaining within the constraints of budget, space, and time. I want to have games that are fillers, and I want 6+ hour games. I want games that are super heavy, and games that are really light. I want representative board games from specific game genre's that I wish to have represented in my library.
So, from that perspective, I see the concept of a complete collection to be a achievable goal. I see the day that I have a collection that I consider complete. These would be the games that I think best represent the various categories etc. that I wish to have represented in my collection. I don't see that as stopping my acquiring of other/new games.but those new games will be providing variety, rather than being building blocks of my collection. Of course, the basic building blocks of my collection my age out with time, but, I don't see that as a problem.
Of course, I haven't gotten to this point with my game collection. So, I don't know if I will ever feel that it is complete when I get to the point that I think I should feel it complete. But, I do have experience with my home library of books. I own around 1500 volumes, and I thought I had a complete core collection of around 300ish. But, when I moved to El Salvador, I discovered I could get a complete 100 volume collection out of my bigger collection. The other 1400 volumes went into climate controlled storage. I think I can see myself getting to this point with my games. I have a core collection, which is complete. But, I can see myself not limited to what I consider to be my core "complete" and "representative" collection.
So,how do you see your collection? Do you believe that such a thing as a complete collection is possible for any individual? Do you collect with a view of how you want your collection to be? Or, do you collect with an idea of what your interests are now?