Game weight is a fascinating concept. There are several different ways people look at game weight. Some people strictly base this on the quantity of rules present in a game. Other people base it more on the quantity and quality of decisions. I think that most people probably use a combination of these metrics in judging game weight.
Of course, one may ask the question, why even worry about the weight? I think there are several reasons. Firstly, many of us are nerds,and we like to quantify all sorts of things. We like quantifying the weight.... so that, in itself, has value. Secondly, If I know that I tend to prefer games that are heavier, or lighter, seeing the game weight can be one of the factors that I consider during research on whether or not to buy a specific game.
I do like how BGA does it with two metrics. They use "rules or learning complexity" as well as "strategic complexity. I think that I prefer this way of doing it. But, it is a little bit harder to express. I have toyed with the idea of using numbers for one value and letter for the other. For instance, let's consider #Root. I would rate the rules complexity as a 3 and the strategic complexity as a 4. So, I would maybe quantify its weight as a 3D. I have also toyed with the idea of of combining the two numbers. There are two ways that you could do this. The first way is to add them together, this would give Root a "weight" rating of 7. The second way that one could do it is just to mash the two numbers together. This would give Root weight rating of a 34.
I prefer the sort of split weighting that BGA allows, but the biggest boardgame site in the history of the internet, BGG, doesn't use such a split system. They use a single 5 point metric and they have zero definition or example of what might consititute what. This system is rife with abuse and perhaps trolls. For instance, let us consider #Candy Land. On BGG 6 people rate this game as a 5, this is the heaviest end of the scale, as heavy as you can go on that scale. And they are talking about Candy Land, a game that has very very few rules, and zero decisions. On the other and of the scale, let us consider #High Frontier 4 All. There is someone who rated this games weight as a 1. This is a game with a 5 rulebooks, the main rulebook has 55 pages. There is no way, even if you think that it is a pointless game, that this game is a 1. This isn't even the biggest problem. There is a hugely difference in how, for instance, a wargamer and a eurogamer consider complexity. If you look at the weight rating for a wargame on BGG, and you are a euro gamer, you can probably mentally add a whole number on the weight rating.
Also, one thing that I think happens, and can happen with either system, is that people, for some reason, seem to put a value on weight. They think it looks cool to have "their" games be "heavier," so they tend to rank them a bit heavier than they might otherwise be. I don't know why that is. I wish that we could just get back to having fun with the game, no matter "even if it is light."
That being said, I do like going to BGG sometimes and looking at my collection and how it breaks down in terms of weight. Currently I have 54 games listed as owned on BGG. This doesn't include any expansions or accessories. Of those 54:
11 are between a 2 and a 3.
11 are between a 3 and a 4.
10 are between a 4 and a 5.
Anyways, just curious, what sort of rating system do your prefer? Why do you prefer one sort of system or another? Or, perhaps, do you think that quantifying game weights is a useless excersise in meaninglessnes? Also, in looking at your collection, do you think you tend towards "heavier" or "lighter games?"