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Article of tips on Prototyping

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Justin Gary
Justin Gary's picture
Joined: 07/20/2015

I posted an article with tips on Prototyping on my blog here:

Please check it out and let me know what you think in the comments.

Also, please let me know if there are other topics you would like me to write about!

X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013
I think that starters have a

I think that starters have a good start with it.

Might I suggest that if possible. A designer uses a pencil and eraser when needed. If you need to change one number. It is better to erase that part and rewrite. Than having to make the card again or writing over.

Further, scissors or a fine cutting knife might add to the process.

And to conclude. I personnaly have some plastic bin lids. I can cut out pieces. Write or draw info on them. And easily remove the info as if they are super small whiteboards. They are great recycling material.


Liked the suck part. My first prototype sucked 7 times before it started to become decent enough. You might wwnt to add that sometimes in the process, you throw away half of your game. Because the prototype has shown you this.

Overall a good read.

Joined: 08/21/2015
I generally liked the

I generally liked the article, particularly the bit about the war-chest. I'd add a few useful items there. A big box of old clothing buttons of various shapes, colours and sizes is useful and cheap for counters or resource-tokens. An even cheaper option is a collection of bottle-tops and toothpaste caps. Plastic rhinestones (those glittery, foil-backed fake jems that craft-people use for decorations) are similarly useful (particularly for representing jewels) and are pretty and cheap. And a chess-set under existing board games.

Regarding pretty vs. quick, I do think that once you get beyond solo-testing or testing with a captive audience (spouse/siblings/co-designers), it is worthwhile making it as pretty as possible within your time and financial budget. Time spent on artwork and components for cards or tiles is not always wasted; it can also often be reused from game to game (you can add actual components to your warchest, or have a sort of virtual war-chest of artwork for cards, etc). And if the game looks relatively appealing it is also easier to persuade potential players to play-test it. Also, particularly for themed board or card games, I feel that you as the game designer are trying to immerse players in your game-world (a challenge given that you are already using a semi-abstract representation), and appropriate art-work and nice components definitely help to do that. In other words: I'll try to be lazy where I can do so without compromising the overall experience I'm trying to give the player.

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