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Designer Diary: Take a Seat

Ferran Renalias Zueras
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Board Game: Take a Seat
By designers Eloi Pujadas and Ferran Renalias

Greetings, all! Take a Seat has been published in Spain, and the game will be presented internationally at SPIEL '22. We thought it would be a good idea to post a design diary to share some background info, design decisions, art, and more.

Initial Idea

In September 2019, we started our first design as a team. We had a clear premise: Create a roll-and-write game themed on scheduling the calendar of Santa Claus, who has a busy December managing reindeer, manufacturing presents, and visiting all the continents of the globe.

From gallery of Ferran Renalias
Santa Claus calendar

Some months after the first sketch, we changed the theme in order to make a non-seasonal game. Players are now scheduling the calendar of a Shakespeare company trying to represent different characters, build the scenery, rehearse with actors, and manage the theater seats.

From gallery of Ferran Renalias

From gallery of Ferran Renalias

At this point, we realized that when we playtested the game, we really enjoyed the part about theater management, finding the rest of the game uninteresting.

Main Design Premises

We decided to start a new game using only the part that was really fun for us: managing a theater. We focused on two main points:

1. We wanted to create a roll-and-write game with its own identity. Could it be possible to suppress all the randomness coming from dice or cards?

Some inspiration came from Between Two Cities, in which you share cities with your neighbors. Perhaps we could share and strive for our target audience. We created the concept of "share-and-write", in which randomness is created through player interaction instead of by rolling a die or flipping a card.

2. We love polyominoes, and we wanted to introduce something that could not be implemented in a normal cardboard game. Writing on the board should have something special — Wait! Decreasing polyominoes, with you scratching them during the game and changing their shape.

From gallery of Ferran Renalias

We worked hard during the first quarter of 2020 in order to test it at Protos y Tipos, a prototype convention organized by Ludo, the Spanish designers association. We obtained lots of ideas and feedback to focus on the final development of the game.

Publishing with Salt & Pepper

In October 2021, Gonzalo from Salt & Pepper Games contacted us for the first time in order to see the game, and later we signed the game at SPIEL '21. That was fast!

With a clear idea of the game concept, Meeple Foundry put a vintage flavor in all the design, making bright the lights of the whole game.

From gallery of Ferran Renalias
Box cover

From gallery of Ferran Renalias
Game board

Finally! All preparations for the theater are over, and the final audience sits in their seats. Now if you'll excuse us, the show must go on!

Eloi and Ferran

Board Game: Take a Seat
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