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Game Board Design Advice - SPAR

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slam
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Joined: 07/28/2008

Hello all. Want to ask folks for some advice.

I'm working on self-publishing my next game, called SPAR (Scissors, Papers, And Rocks). This is an abstract game I've been offering in a cheap, paper board version for a while, as seen in the link below.

Paper Board Link

In fact, you can get the Print and Play version here.

Recently, I've ordered a prototype from Blue Panther Games and Steve's amazing laser printer, with a new, modular wooden board. See the link below.

2 Players Link.

The best thing about this is that you can turn the boards around to make a three player board, as seen below. In this case, the hexes with printing in them are not in play, so that each player has an equal field.

3 Players Link.

Now, my question is this: I've had the thought that it might be good to have the initial starting positions of both the two player and three player games demarcated on the board itself, since the positions are a bit complex and it would ease set up time. Steve tells me it can easily be done. The diagram of the marked board would look like in the link below.

Diagram Link.

But the concern would be whether having letters in the hexes is distracting to players once the game starts? If so, should I just leave the hexes alone? What say you all?

Once I get details worked out, I'm hoping to have a limited run of the game available this summer/fall.

DogBoy
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Joined: 12/15/2009
Aesthetically I think it

Aesthetically I think it would be preferable to have subtle pictures on the tiles.

Would it be possible to make the board reversible, with one side showing the 2-player starting config and the other side showing the 3-player?

Willi B
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Joined: 07/28/2008
Small re-design.

I would take the small logo and the S P A R and remove them. Use the small icons from that central logo to indicate the placement of the spots (make them no larger that 1/4 of the size of the placing hex).

Then, I would recreate a logo for the game using a new concept and use the center 7 hexes for that (the center and the 6 surrounding. Perhaps a circular chase of a pair of scissors, piece of paper and rock. Something similar to the Jyhad (Vampire: the Eternal Struggle) card back design, a snake biting a snake biting a snake biting the original snake thing.

slam
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Joined: 07/28/2008
Two-sided printing

No, I don't think that printing on both sides is possible, or at least it'd be cost prohibitive.

Maybe subtle pictures would work. A small rectangle for paper, an X for scissors, a circle for rock, a "P" shape for the flags. I'll at least give it a try. I do worry that it'd be too busy.

bluepantherllc
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Joined: 07/29/2008
Printing on both sides

Printing on both sides is possible. It does cost a little more, but not prohibitively more.

ilta
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Joined: 12/05/2008
I would strongly suggest

I would strongly suggest pictures instead of letters, and double-siding printing. Both will be much more clear than the tangle of similar letter forms that you currently have. If the pieces are bright enough nobody will look at the board after initial set-up anyway, just as nobody looks at the set-up-inscribed hexes for wargames once they get underway.

And ideally, rather than using rectangles/x's/o's you'd actually have the shapes themselves, avoiding a layer of translation. But if you're limited technically by what the machines can do, then that's still better than letters.

DogBoy
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Joined: 12/15/2009
Yes that's what I meant -

Yes that's what I meant - pictures exactly matching the pieces, but with less contrast so they don't distract during play. Maybe finer lines and / or less contrasting tones than on the pieces.

If you can't print double-sided, small pictures in place of the letters, like ilta suggests, would be much clearer.

red hare
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Joined: 11/09/2009
color coded?

It seems like small pictures would be an improvement. Have you looked into color coding a boarder of the hex to match the paper/rock/ scissor instead of pictures. Not sure if that would look better.

BTW great job on designing a new game!

slam
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Joined: 07/28/2008
OK, upon talking with Steve

OK, upon talking with Steve more, he's said that there's a different printing method than the one that I'm thinking of that can incorporate color along with the burning cutting. (Using MDF instead of wood)

So with that, here's what the board would look like with two color coded sets of mini icons instead of letters.

Color Board

DogBoy
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Joined: 12/15/2009
Looks amazingly better than

Looks amazingly better than the version with letters. I personally think a double-sided solution would be even better-looking, but I guess you decided it's not worth the extra expense.

ilta
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Joined: 12/05/2008
Definitely much better; the

Definitely much better; the colors are especially helpful. I'd still vote for double-sided though.

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