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BoardGameGeek» Forums » Board Game Design » Board Game Design

Subject: Board Size vs. Card Size rss

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Evan Mitchell
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Hi BGG,

I have a challenge I would like your advice with. The game I am designing is a 9x9 square grid. Before getting into much else: Yes, for the sake of gameplay, the grid does need to be 9x9.

Cards are square and act as tokens you place and move on the grid. Here are my options:

2.5" square cards, meaning 3" spaces and a total board size of 27".
2" square cards, meaning 2.5" spaces and a total board size of 22.5".

Which is preferable? I'm thinking 27" is too big of a board, but 2" seems too small of a card size. (They have important icons, art, and text, although nothing wordy — kept very simple with keywords.)

What do you know about size conventions with the two? Any advice? Thanks.

Best,
Evan
 
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Davin Nisser
United States
Sonora
California
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Something you may want to take into account: the only square sleeves available are for 70mmx70mm cards.
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Andrew J.
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Missouri
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Go for the 2.5" cards. As far as I can recall this is what Five Tribes uses for a 5x6 board and it works out just fine. Then again, if they're using 2" tiles, they fit a good deal of info on without problem, so either way, check that game out
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Jeremy Lennert
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Do you need a full .5" gap between cards in the grid? Maybe you could reduce that to ~.2" and save some space there.

My game Destined Hero had a similar issue of forcing the board to be big because the cards were used as pieces. I abbreviated aggressively and fit 3 abilities per card on 1.6"x2.5" cards (leaving space for artwork), so 2" square cards sound usable to me. I think the clarity of my game suffered, though.
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BT Carpenter
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Reston
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I recommend measuring some of the more popular box sizes in your collection and using that information to help your decision making process. Strange, off-size boxes are sometimes a reason I pass on a game, merely because it won't fit on the shelf easily.
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Derek H
South Africa
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Antistone wrote:
Do you need a full .5" gap between cards in the grid? Maybe you could reduce that to ~.2" and save some space there.

My game Destined Hero had a similar issue of forcing the board to be big because the cards were used as pieces. I abbreviated aggressively and fit 3 abilities per card on 1.6"x2.5" cards (leaving space for artwork), so 2" square cards sound usable to me. I think the clarity of my game suffered, though.

Agreed. Images and icons only are the way to go -- and at that size you'd probably want to use tiles rather than cards because of handling issues. Clarity *can* be achieved with the help of a good graphic designer; although there are those on BGG who are, for some reason, vehemently opposed to their use.
 
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Mister Neutron
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California
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Not knowing the specifics of the game, here are 2 ideas to consider.

If the cards do not have to be square, you could consider using a deck of micro sized cards (1.25 x 1.75) offered by most card printers, or other small custom sized cards. This would allow for a smaller board size. You could do this if you use only icons, numbers, color coding etc. on the cards with something like a cheat sheet for each player providing more complete information on what the icons, numbers, and colors mean.

Also if it is only card based, you could use 91 'placement cards' arranged 9x9 instead of a physical board. The placement cards could also have some type of game mecahanic related to the cards that are already being used in the game.
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