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Bit Fetishists

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Anonymous

Guys,
I'm nearing the end of testing of one of my games (Wheat & Tare) and thinking about putting together a nice looking proto for it. Here is my problem. In the game, players claim squares by placing a colored token on it. The theme of the game made me choose to use spray-painted pinto beans (no joke). This looked really cool and was nice and cheap, but doesn't work for real production for a variety of reasons (I'm almost sure there would be extra fees for shipping abroad, for starters, since it's a food product).

I would love to go for the small colored wooden squares found in games like Tigris and Euphrates, but I need about 150 of 4 different colors. I've only been able to find these at .10 euros each. Of course, this makes the price of the game wildly astronomical. Glass won't work, because the game will then be waaaaay to heavy to ship. I could use simple plastic discs, or a variety of cheaper plastic solutions, but...

My questions are as follows:

1. When getting ready to produce, how many here take into account the "bit fetish" factor? I know for certain that a HUGE draw to german style games is how cool they look and how high a standard of quality was taken to production.

2. Does anyone know of an uber-cheap place to buy these wooden squares (the small ones).

phpbbadmin
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Joined: 04/23/2013
Wooden bits

The other thing you could use is tiddly winks, albeit they are round, they are quite small and might fit your needs.

Also check the bit resources category in the web links section.

-Darke

zaiga
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Bit Fetishists

BEDI Holzspiele has the small wooden cubes for 4 eurocents each:

http://www.holzbrettspiele.de/ (look under Wurfel, kantig).

This is still 6 euro's per game just for the cubes alone. If you order cubes in ultra-large quantities (say, over 10000), I'm sure you can get a huge discount, but I don't know how much.

Another great resource is "Plastic For Games": http://www.p4g.co.uk/

Here you can order pawns and tiddly winks and what not in large quantities for a low price.

I think it is important to keep an eye on the number of components that you use in your design, especially if you want to self-publish it.

jwarrend
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Joined: 08/03/2008
Bit Fetishists

600 cubes? Wow, that's a lot of cubes! I just got a game called Wallenstein that has 62 cubes per player, and I thought that was a lot!
150 per player is quite a lot! Have you considered having "big" cubes that represent 5 or 10 "small" cubes? That could dramatically cut down the number that you need. Or is there any way that the mechanics of the game could be scaled down so that each player needs relatively fewer cubes? For example, maybe the action "place 5 cubes" can be scaled down to "place 2 cubes" and other things scaled accordingly. It's hard to speculate without knowing anything about your game, but my guess is that there's no "game math" that really pigeon-holes you into needing 150 cubes per player; I'm reasonably sure you could achieve the same game balance and decisions with a smaller game. Moreover, I would think that a game that involves that many pieces per player takes a long time, so a "smaller" game could also be shorter and punchier, which would help your chances of selling it, as well. But again, without knowing more about the game, it's hard to speculate too much.

Do let us know if you find a good supplier for wooden cubes, especially one that's States-side. It would be nice to get a lot of game components so I can stop raiding my games library to steal bits for my prototypes!

Thanks,

Jeff

Brykovian
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Joined: 07/21/2008
Bit Fetishists

jwarrend wrote:
Do let us know if you find a good supplier for wooden cubes, especially one that's States-side. It would be nice to get a lot of game components so I can stop raiding my games library to steal bits for my prototypes!

The stateside supplier for small wooden pieces that I use is Woodworks Ltd. ... it was what my wife use to use when she was selling candles and other craft items. In any case, I found their prices to be fine (100 cubes for $0.035USD each ... or 1000 of them for $0.027USD each, for examples), and I remember that it's not too difficult to get a discount based upon how much you order. If you order over $50 at a time, then they don't charge shipping within the US (not sure about Canada).

Their components are pretty standard wood of fairly good quality. I use the bits for my tabletop version of Castle Danger. They stain and spraypaint pretty well.

-Bryk

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

Regarding gameplay - I've been furiously working on a way to scale down the board, but I'm not sure this is the best idea. There being lots of space actually is a fun part of the game. Movement isn't a problem, since players jump around from "rock to rock" on the board (illustrated, not actual markers or rocks). You are trying to enclose spaces with these cubes, crowding the board more might prove devestating to the game. Also, the game time is still around 1hr, just perfect. Lastly, it took me an age to come up with the board layout, which is just challenging enough.

That said, ya'll haven't answered my question. How seriously do you take bits?

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

And great suggestions, I might add, very helpful!

Scurra
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Joined: 09/11/2008
Bit Fetishists

Most of my designs at the moment are card-based, and there does come a point at which I have to look seriously at how many cards there are and if there are too many to make the game viable )I've had to abandon a lovely design because it used far too many cards and I couldn't find an elegant way to cut them back.)

But personally I don't think you can have "too many" bits! Hey, I've played Eagle Games, and they require you to spend a couple of days just putting the bits together before you even get to play the game! Indeed, I think it's worse when you open a "big box" game and find it mostly filled with air instead of bits.

I'd love to know how a game with 150 cubes per player can be over in an hour :) , but then I don't know much about the game. It does seem to me too that you ought to be able to make it work with fewer components (but see my comment above...)

Sorry I can't be more helpful.

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

Well, I've attempted to take the above advice and do a small redisign of Wheat and Tare with production value in mind. I've had to tweak the rules a bit, but all in all I think it just might work. See journal for more details.

FastLearner
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Bit Fetishists

I read your journal -- it sounds like the trade-offs made have made the game even better. Very cool.

It still sounds like you might have too many bits, though. :D

I'm very intrigued by the game, based on your journal entries. Have you described it in more depth elsewhere?

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

I haven't, for what I am assuming is the normal reason, that eventually I would love to have it published, and I think perhaps one or two of the mechanics have a touch of uniqueness. I was going to kick it over to the design competition, but my wife got pregnant and I found myself utterly without time while I was handling that. :)

I COULD however probably put together a print and play and send it to anyone here that is interested. I'd love to have some more people play it. The game is fun so far, just in need of a few tweaks. You'll need a color printer, and microsoft excel (I haven't put together a photoshop proto yet, that comes after testing is complete). Shoot me an email at aaron_youngren@bigfoot.com.

jwarrend
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Joined: 08/03/2008
Bit Fetishists

great_undoing wrote:

I COULD however probably put together a print and play and send it to anyone here that is interested. I'd love to have some more people play it. The game is fun so far, just in need of a few tweaks. You'll need a color printer, and microsoft excel (I haven't put together a photoshop proto yet, that comes after testing is complete). Shoot me an email at .

And...600 wooden cubes, of course?

Hee hee.

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

Print and play, buddy, PRINT AND PLAY :o)...

jwarrend
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Joined: 08/03/2008
Bit Fetishists

So you have to print out and cut out 600 chits? I'd almost rather buy the 600 wooden cube version! Or spray paint some pinto beans, I suppose.

I'd be happy to look at your rulebook, or you could consider workshopping it in the Game Design Workshop (although given that you've already playtested, it sounds like you might be past the point where that forum could help too much...) I don't suspect I can offer my group to playtest your game (for the same reason that you wouldn't offer me yours to playtest mine!), but if the game sounds promising, I might be able to reconsider that...although the 600 chits would still be a hang-up!

-J

hpox
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Bit Fetishists

How am I supposed to print Wooden cubes? Did you get your hands on some new army technology I don't know about? 8)

For serious though... Do we have to find the (colored, I imagine) cubes ourselves or print and cut 600 squares (wouldn't that take a humongous amount of cardboard?)

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

First off, it's down to about 425 chits or cubes. You could use a variety of different markers, or even just get different colored beans (black, pinto, red, etc), but yes, for chits it would be about 2-3 pages of cardboard worth.

And I say worth because the game is certainly worth it! It's funny, too. With the beans that I use right now, it really doesn't seem like 600. They all fit with room to spare in 4 of those 1/2 pint jars you get for cheap at ikea. The testers didn't think there were an inordinate amount of beans. Also, during the game players are placing them 2 or 3 at a time (and when they place more there's a big smile on their face). So the problem is purely logistical, and does not interfere with gameplay at all. I'm still trying to figure out some way to cut back, but any further reduction in board space will definitely ruin the game.

Anonymous
Bit Fetishists

Also, I would LOVE for this group to workshop the game, even if few results were to be had. Who is admining the workshops? I'd need a few weeks to get it ready.

FastLearner
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Bit Fetishists

great_undoing wrote:
Also, I would LOVE for this group to workshop the game, even if few results were to be had. Who is admining the workshops? I'd need a few weeks to get it ready.

Our own jwarrend is admining. See this thread and throw your hat in the ring there.

jwarrend
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Joined: 08/03/2008
Bit Fetishists

great_undoing wrote:
Also, I would LOVE for this group to workshop the game, even if few results were to be had. Who is admining the workshops? I'd need a few weeks to get it ready.

I am currently the "schedule keeper" for the GDW. Currently, we're putting up a new game for discussion every two weeks, and right now, there are 4 games in the queue, so if you're interested in getting in, it will be about 8 weeks until your game comes up. Unfortunately, that doesn't help if you're looking for quick feedback, but if you can tolerate a little wait, let me know (send a private message). Otherwise, you could post a game journal or something; you might get some responses that way if you're looking for quicker feedback.

I will say that my impression in the first 3 games has been that the designers have gotten feedback that they've found very useful. So, unless you're in a rush, it might be worth the wait!

Good luck!

-Jeff

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