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Games whose prototype was obviously some other game
bruno faidutti
France
PARIS
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Finding the right pieces for a prototype is not always easy, and cannibilizing older games is often the best way. it can also be the other way round, when some game components make you think that you could probably use them in a very different way. I didn't notice that many examples so far of games obviously designed and playtested using some other game's components, but I'm sure there are others, and I'm curious of it. So please add the ones you've noticed, or the ones you're having doubts about.
By the way, Valley of the Mammoths wasn't designed using Settlers of Catan tiles - the first edition of Valley of the Mammoths is older than Catan - but about half of the items in this list seem to have been designed using a Settlers of Catan set.
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1. Board Game: Dune [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:131]
bruno faidutti
France
PARIS
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This is the first one that comes to mind, and is made even more likely by the fact that Dune author's were also the designres of Cosmic Encounters.

Same number of tokens, and same number and size of discs. Clearly, the first Dune leaders were made from Cosmic Encounter's planets, and the tokens came from the same set.
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2. Board Game: Titicaca [Average Rating:6.29 Overall Rank:3686]
bruno faidutti
France
PARIS
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Settlers hexes, Settlers roads, Settlers settlements... Obviously, Corné van morsel wanted to do something with his Settlers set.
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3. Board Game: Castle Merchants [Average Rating:5.81 Overall Rank:5145]
bruno faidutti
France
PARIS
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Five different types of hexagonal landscape tiles - I'm quite sure the first path in the Castle Merchants kingdom were built using Settlers hexes.
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4. Board Game: Blokus [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:359]
Mats Blohmé
Sweden
Simlångsdalen
Halland
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When coming up with Blokus, did the designer use his old Skirrid set?

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5. Board Game: Das Amulett [Average Rating:6.50 Overall Rank:1853]
bruno faidutti
France
PARIS
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One more game made with Catan hexes and cards. I know it for sure, having seen a prototype.
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6. Board Game: Hyle [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:3264]
Mats Blohmé
Sweden
Simlångsdalen
Halland
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Entropy/Hyle has 25 disks in 5 different colours which are drawn from a bag and placed on the board.
If you use the tiles of one of the players in a Mentalis set and cover one row and one column on the board you've got what you need to play Entropy including the bag.

Is this what Eric Solomon did?

Apart from similar components the two games have nothing in common (edit. Except that I like both of them).

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7. Board Game: Balloon Cup [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:656]
Mike Cooper
United States
Lewisville
Texas
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One of the examples I remember. The cards were from a Powerpuff Girls game and the daughter of the designer wasn't too happy about them being co-opted.
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8. Board Game: Descent: Journeys in the Dark [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:167]
Sithrak - The god who hates you unconditionally
Germany
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I'm not 100% sure, but I think it's extremely likely that the first prototypes of this were actually Doom: The Boardgame sets with mock-up OL, skill and treasure decks.
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9. Board Game: Secret Tijuana Deathmatch [Average Rating:5.63 Overall Rank:7949]
Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
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Those counters look familiar? Well, to "beer and pretzel" gamers, they might be -- they're from Atlas Game's Spammers, which use the same counters in a totally different game!
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10. Board Game: Viktory [Average Rating:6.84 Unranked]
Ernesto Cabrera
Mexico
Mexico
D.F.
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Catan was both an inspiration and used in the prototype of the game. It's even mentioned in the webpage:

http://www.viktorygame.com/viktoryiihistory/#imperialconques...
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11. Board Game: Lost Cities [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:260]
Pieter
Netherlands
Maastricht
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Good intentions are no substitute for a good education.
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Several Knizia games, amongst them Lost Cities, Medici, and Modern Art, can be recreated if you simply have a regular deck of cards, with one extra suit. I once bought copies of a deck of cards, took out the diamonds of one of them, colored all the diamonds black with permanent ink (I called them "licorice"), and stuck them in the other deck. Voila, instant Lost Cities (just use the picture cards as "wagers").
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12. Board Game: Celtic Quest [Average Rating:6.12 Overall Rank:6344]
Nigel Buckle
United Kingdom
Thornton Heath
Croydon
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Published in 2014
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First round of testing for this used Magic Realm tiles:


Magic Realm


Celtic Quest

But soon I had to make my own

Purple tiles are the 'enchanted' sides.

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13. Board Game: Say Anything [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:542]
Dominic Crapuchettes
United States
Bethesda
MD
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North Star Games designs party games that don't suck! Play them with your non-gamer friends over the holidays.
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First there was Hearts, then there was Spades, and now we bring you Clubs. The suit of clubs finally gets some respect!
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We used the following components from Wits & Wagers to design Say Anything:

- Dry Erase Pens
- Dry Erase Boards
- Betting Tokens



Once we got tired of having the judge write their favorite response on paper, we started using the chooser from In10sity.

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14. Board Game: Pandemic [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:41]
Alan Monroe
United States
Columbus
Ohio
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Hmm, 13 cities in each of four colors? Must have been created from a poker deck. And indeed, in the prototype photos, we can see J, Q, K on some of the cities
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15. Board Game: Galactic Emperor [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:1084]
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
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The picture is a little grainy, but the early prototypes of Galactic Emperor used Twilight Imperium (Third Edition) Fighters, Destroyers, and Cruisers for the ships
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16. Board Game: Magic: The Gathering [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:123]
Deep Thought
United States
Columbus
Ohio
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It is not a certainity, but I have come to believe it possible that some entity wished for us to witness these events. Perhaps it wanted us to see all of these various ages.
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This game seems to be the standard source of cardstock for all aspiring game designers. Rather than pay for it, why not fetch some of your several hundred basic lands or useless old commons? I know a couple of the guys around here have drawn on their cards and made a new game with them, but for the purposes of this list, the obvious one is Dominion. I have it on good authority that the designer's old Urza's Saga cards were used as backing for some of the playtest prototypes.
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17. Board Game: 18EZ [Average Rating:6.24 Overall Rank:5914]
United States
White Settlement
TX
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A little lower and to the left, please.
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I don't know how much more obvious it is with this game than it would be with any other 18xx, but we borrowed heavily from bits of other games early on. The only thing original was the map.
We started with the stock board from 1856, tiles were borrowed from 1856, 1870, or printed them from an online tile dictonary, money from 1835 (because we like 200s,) shares and charters were lifted from our stillborn 1865: Midwest project.

Gosh that was an ugly prototype!
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18. Board Game: Portobello Market [Average Rating:6.43 Overall Rank:1263]
 
Jordan Stewart
Canada
Saint John
New Brunswick
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Quote:
East India Railway was the prototype title for this game, and it became Portobello Market when published by Schmidt.


Makes sense, it definitely resembles a train game.
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19. Board Game: Imperial [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:80]
Mark Holmes
United Kingdom
Shipley
West Yorkshire
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I always thought that the basis for 'Imperial' was the Diplomacy board and pieces. It looks very,very similar but plays totally differently.
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20. Board Game: Nexus Ops [Average Rating:7.29 Overall Rank:226]
Pee di Moor
Netherlands
Rotterdam
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Maybe I'm completely wrong here, but when I played Nexus Ops for the first time this weekend, I couldn't stop envisioning the designers playing their prototype of Nexus Ops with Catan tiles ....
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21. Board Game: Trias [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:1181]

Eugene
Oregon
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Considering that I came upon the idea of playing Trias with my copy of Survive: Escape from Atlantis!, I wonder if that's its origin:
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22. Board Game: Zatre [Average Rating:6.40 Overall Rank:3258]
 
United States
White Settlement
TX
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I would be willing to bet that the first prototype for Zatre consisted of bisected Dominoes.
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23. Board Game: Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42 [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:200]
The one and only (but one of two in BGG)
United States
Minnesota
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"Desire makes everything blossom; possession makes everything wither and fade." (Marcel Proust)
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No reason to pick on CoH per se. Could just as well mention Valor & Victory, Lock 'n Load: Band of Heroes, or some other Squad Leader spinoff. Including Advanced Tobruk, no doubt, though I guess it claims to trace its roots to the original Tobruk game.
 
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24. Board Game: Flowerpower [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:1679]

Eugene
Oregon
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I'd bet that this was originally devised using two sets of double-9 dominoes, like my homemade version here:
 
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25. Board Game: Catan [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:161]
Ken Waters
United States
Aloha
Oregon
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Was Catan prototyped using Lords of Creation to create the board?

Hexagonal board comprised of hexagons? Check.
Six types of land terrains to build the board from? Check.
 
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