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Subject: Small game size... HUGE BOX!! Please explain why!? rss

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Rosie Caswell
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Let me start with the disclaimer that there may be a very good reason for this that I don't know or understand, I have only been into gaming 5 months and in that time acquired 40 or so games (it was a blinding love affair clearly).

But I am perplexed as to why games publishers put such small games in such HUGE boxes. I understand for games with huge amounts of components and mini's etc, but the last few I added to my collection were laughably small when I opened the box. Android Netrunner, and even smaller games like Battle Line could fit comfortably in considerably smaller boxes and make storage MUCH easier to deal with. I opened Splendour the other day and couldn't help but laugh hysterically.

(for those interested: http://boardgamegeek.com/image/1991004/splendor )

Is there a reason for this? Do they really thing we feel like we're getting "more game" if the box is bigger? Is there a positive side I don't see?
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J M
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Shelf presence is a real consideration, marketing-wise.
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Stevenson Junior
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Wow effect due to the huge box leads to increased interest of customers.
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Bryan Thunkd
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People are subconsciously willing to pay more for a larger box than they are for a smaller box.
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Scott M.
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FroodMcBorkBork wrote:


Is there a reason for this? Do they really thing we feel like we're getting "more game" if the box is bigger? Is there a positive side I don't see?


NO, They feel they are getting more money if the box is bigger. So yes there is a positive side, Just not for the customersoblue...
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Boaty McBoatface
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£15 and a shiny cover to you mate.
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Eric Etkin
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SIZE MATTERS.

(when you're talking about shelf presence.)


Also - it might be possible that the manufacturer is utilizing a box-die or repurposing materials from another game.
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Boaty McBoatface
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Jokes aside

A: to trick you into thinking you are getting more then you are (the party pack scam).
B: to hold the million and one expansions they have in teh pipeline.
C:They have a warehouse full of unused big boxes.
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A lot of the time they're thinking about future expansions and how to cram it all in the one box.
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Rosie Caswell
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Ahh, I hadn't considered it's 'shelf presence' from a point of sale perspective.


That makes sense.


Although I'm surprised it hasn't backfired with people complaining. I'd assume the people who buy most of the heavier games are not noobs walking in to a store after a good night playing Monopoly and buying a $60 game they've never heard of. It's gamers. And it's us as enthusiastic consumers who have to wrangle 80% empty boxes and wear the cost in the end, isn't it?

Also, the 'shelf presence' hasn't seemed to effect games like Love Letter, Hanabi and that ilk.


Hmmm. Great responses... Thanks everyone.



EDIT: WOW! Thanks heaps for the gold!
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Pedro Pereira
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MOTHDevil wrote:

SIZE MATTERS.

(when you're talking about shelf presence.)


Also - it might be possible that the manufacturer is utilizing a box-die or repurposing materials from another game.


Which keeps costs down considerably. I'd go with this explanation, there is no reason for a publisher to spend more money on a larger box if they are designing a box from scratch for a particular game, but making a new box to adjust size is an incredible amount of time and money input over using an existing dieline.
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J M
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Speaking of expansions, the makers of Pandemic did a fantastic job with their limited box size (mandated by major chain retail store logistics) fitting the base game and two expansions* into a relatively small box.

I'm sure their game loses out in terms of customers browsing in gaming stores; hopefully the benefits of being sold in Target, etc made up for that.

*You can't really keep the whole bio-terrorist notepad in too, but you can keep enough sheets.
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Rosie Caswell
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luckystreak wrote:
A lot of the time they're thinking about future expansions and how to cram it all in the one box.



People throw boxes away?!?!


*faints*
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By coincidence, I was just watching Miami Dice reviewing Stone Age and they were musing over why Tom's copy was larger than Sam's.

I like the stock-on-hand explanation.
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L W
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I can say for Android: Netrunner I've filled that box with expansions. And the expansions (aka data packs) come in small packaging.

I find it amazing that you've acquired 40 games in a few months. Wow. I've gamed all my life and I have about 20. I do have the advantage of having many game friends for many years who own games I don't. I get to play lots of different stuff without taking up tons of shelf space. Hopefully the longer your in the hobby the less you will need to own yourself to get to play everything you want.

I have to say game boxes have gotten crazy big in the last decade that's for sure. But so has the idea of expansions. I just cram that stuff in the original box.
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David C
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While I get the shelf-presence argument, games like Fluxx, Munchkin, Zombies, would likely not have the ubiquity that they do if they had huge freakin' boxes.

If I could ask, Funforge could maybe weigh into this one? Either they're just going with the "eh, lets go with a ticket to ride size box" because it's hard to make a custom box for each game... OR they really believe in shelf presence. With Tokaido and Pony Express, they could easily fit it in a box that's half as thick, but they don't.
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Ron Parker
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FroodMcBorkBork wrote:
luckystreak wrote:
A lot of the time they're thinking about future expansions and how to cram it all in the one box.

People throw boxes away?!?!


Nobody said that! (Though people probably do, indeed.) I have an entire shelf full of empty boxes, mostly Arkham Horror and Dominion expansions, alongside the boxes from the Alien Frontiers, StarCraft, and Pandemic expansions.

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Rosie Caswell
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Budapest wrote:
I can say for Android: Netrunner

I find it amazing that you've acquired 40 games in a few months. Wow. I've gamed all my life and I have about 20. I do have the advantage of having many game friends for many years who own games I don't. I get to play lots of different stuff without taking up tons of shelf space. Hopefully the longer your in the hobby the less you will need to own yourself to get to play everything you want.


Yeah. I went pretty deep, and fast.

Also, I was out with pneumonia for 6 months and had a LOT of home time and managed to sucker my shift working partner into the hobby. And only this last month started making gaming friends for a once a month meet up. So the games are all ours we're playing at the moment. It's slowing down a bit now.


*cough*
 
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J M
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Fluxx, et al are under $15. It's a different segment of the market.
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Chris Puram
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FroodMcBorkBork wrote:
luckystreak wrote:
A lot of the time they're thinking about future expansions and how to cram it all in the one box.



People throw boxes away?!?!


*faints*

Oh yeah, I always toss my expansion boxes. My priorities...

1) Games
2) Space & Efficiency
3) Useless empty boxes with pretty pictures on them.
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I think these have been said already, but here goes again.

1. Price point - more expensive games have bigger boxes (appearance of getting your money's worth).

2. Standard Sizes - one publisher has usually only one or two standard sizes for their games. Also, consider standard sizes for rulebooks. There is a minimum size for a rulebook too, make it too small and you get complaints.

3. Room for Expansions - most of my games with multiple expansions still fit in the base game box.
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The K2: Broad Peak expansion box fits perfectly inside the base game box...everything snug as a bug in a rug...pure genius!
 
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Robert D. Spake
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This is something that annoys me as well, especially with card games. I assume with most of them they plan for expansions, but I guess that a lot of times the initial game doesn't do as well as expected so expansions aren't forthcoming.

One of the best is Legendary, the first box was big but it's managed to house all of the expansions so far. The box for Smash Up was pretty big as well, but at the moment I have everything in the first expansion box (I'm yet to get the other two expansions, but I've kept the base game box in case I do).

The worst I've seen are the Star Trek deckbuilding games. Here's the box to Star Trek Deck Building Game: The Original Series

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Scottgun wrote:
By coincidence, I was just watching Miami Dice reviewing Stone Age and they were musing over why Tom's copy was larger than Sam's.

I like the stock-on-hand explanation.


Which is incorrect in the case of Stone Age.

It originally came in a standard-depth box, which was shipped over-filled with punchboards and player boards. Unfortunately, due to the shape of the player boards, the box still couldn't be shut completely after punching, unless one threw away or butchered their insert (see several early threads on how best to do exactly that).

Rio Grande/HiG heard the bitching, and subsequent printings featured a deeper box, that would fully close.

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Boaty McBoatface
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FroodMcBorkBork wrote:
luckystreak wrote:
A lot of the time they're thinking about future expansions and how to cram it all in the one box.



People throw boxes away?!?!


*faints*
Calm down dear, it's only a game.
 
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