As long as I've been in the hobby, I've never taken a liking to long games. Even though I'll play for hours & hours on a Saturday, I always want that time to be spent playing many different games. Why is that?
The truth is, I've been asked that question many times and have never been able to answer it. I know what I like, sure, but on my podcast I try to analyze my own opinions & preferences. That's what I'm doing here, with the help of Eric Brosius. Eric's an interesting guy who's been gaming even longer than I have. He likes short games like I do...but he also appreciates long games. I sought Eric out to work through this topic. He told me he thought of this topic through his own life experience in the hobby, encountering different games (long & short) over the decades. His story matches my recollection that the history of the hobby had a lot of long games before Catan came along. There are long games after Catan (and some short games before it), but 1995 was a landmark year when our hobby changed.
By the second half, I have a few different ideas about why I avoid long games. Some of it is complexity or length for its own sake, without a corresponding increase in narrative depth or strategic interest. I hate that, and those games feel like a waste to me. I get more fun out of 2-4 shorter games that play in the same time. Another consideration is the mental reset that happens between games, which is nice. Still another is the "arc" of a game, with its own beginning, middle, and end. I inherently have more interest in multiple games that will have multiple strategic milestones in them.
Closers: Game design efficiency, Packing games for a family weekend