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Subject: [POLL] Expansions or Stand Alone games? rss

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hero gamer
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I've finished up my core game and began working on additional content. I quickly realized I had enough extra content to essentially create 3 stand alone games, all following the same rules, but using different characters, etc.

Important: The components that would be used in all boxed sets, while visually similar, would infact be functional when combined. Meaning it would add more players and allow for a larger game board setup. (modular tiles used in game)

Poll
When buying into a game, would you rather see...
1 Core Game, with several small expansions (requiring the core game)
3 Stand alone boxed games, each could be combined without any rule changes
      67 answers
Poll created by herogamer
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Brad Johnson
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I voted for expansions, because I wouldn't want to have to pay for redundant extra material that would probably be required to be added to make the expansions into standalone games.

(Hard to describe -- For example, if all the expansions for Dominion were released as standalone games rather than expansions, I would have had to buy redundant extra sets of Copper/Silver/Gold/Estate/Duchy/Province cards that I would not want.)

If your games would not have any redundant material between them, then it's kind of a moot argument anyway.
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hero gamer
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Quote:
I voted for expansions, because I wouldn't want to have to pay for redundant extra material that would probably be required to be added to make the expansions into standalone games


What if the redundant material was actually functional if the games are combined? Such as tiles that are visually the same in each box, but could be used to make a bigger game board?
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hero gamer
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Here are a few comparisons I've come up with...

Core + Expansions

- Lower consumer cost to get all content
- Lower Production Cost
- Pick and choose desired expansions
- Lower shipping cost if ordering online or KS

Stand Alone Games

- Can be combined for bigger game setup
- Initial cost can be split between consumers and each still has a playable game
- Can potentially increase # of players
- If you can't afford the core plus expansions but really want a perticular expansion..
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hero gamer
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Original Post Updated*
 
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hero gamer
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To help with additional Voting.. Here are some sample figures

Core Game: $25
Expansions: $10 (4 available if an extra component expansion is offered)
- To get it all = $65

Core Games: $20 Each (4 Available)
(less cost due to larger quantity of printed components that are included in each box ie. tokens)
- To get it all = $80
 
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Mike James
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I never buy all the expansions for a game. I like to pick and choose which ones sound most interesting.

I voted for one base game with expansions due to my cheap nature and the fact that expansions take up less space on my already full shelf.
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hero gamer
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michaeljzerby wrote:
I never buy all the expansions for a game. I like to pick and choose which ones sound most interesting.

I voted for one base game with expansions due to my cheap nature and the fact that expansions take up less space on my already full shelf.


I'm assuming the core box should be designed to fit all expansions inside?
 
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Mike James
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Inefficient boxes are a huge pet peeve of mine! If you could swing it, yeah! That would be great!
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dennis bennett
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i'm always a bit suspicious of publishers that release too many expansions in quick succession.
makes me question:
Is it just more of the same? Didn't they bother to see what they could cut out during the design process, did they just lazyly pack in anything and everything they had thought up.

Is there really no way to cut out any unnecessary bits and make it just a single game? do you really need all the expansion stuff?
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hero gamer
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Quote:
Is there really no way to cut out any unnecessary bits and make it just a single game? do you really need all the expansion stuff?


For my game, the expansion content is simply more "characters". Each one is unique. The original game includes 6 playable characters, I've come up with 18. I can't feasibly add all 18 to the core game and keep it at $20 retail...
 
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dennis bennett
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herogamer wrote:
Quote:
Is there really no way to cut out any unnecessary bits and make it just a single game? do you really need all the expansion stuff?


For my game, the expansion content is simply more "characters". Each one is unique. The original game includes 6 playable characters, I've come up with 18. I can't feasibly add all 18 to the core game and keep it at $20 retail...


How many components does each character have? a card? a mini? how much physical stuff is it really?
Is there any chance of releasing them as a PnP?
So the first expansion would just be a character pack? sounds okay to me!
 
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Philip Becker
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Definitely voted for stand alone that can be combined. It's happened a few times in my circle where somebody will find a fun game, and other people will fall in love and buy it too. So with combine-able stand-alones, we end up with way more content because each of us will buy a different version, but we can all play separately too.
And games that come with the expectation of expansions really annoy me. If it's great for gameplay then it should be in the original game, so it either isn't that good or you are holding part of the game for ransom.
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hero gamer
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Each character needs 2 pawns/standees & 2 cards...

The base game comes with 6 characters, I've created the art for and tested 18. I was going to offer two character expansions, 6 units each..
 
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hero gamer
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Erluti wrote:
Definitely voted for stand alone that can be combined. It's happened a few times in my circle where somebody will find a fun game, and other people will fall in love and buy it too. So with combine-able stand-alones, we end up with way more content because each of us will buy a different version, but we can all play separately too.
And games that come with the expectation of expansions really annoy me. If it's great for gameplay then it should be in the original game, so it either isn't that good or you are holding part of the game for ransom.


I agree with your first points completely, but what if the primary reasoning for NOT including the expansion content in the base game was to keep the buy-in cost as low as possible, to attract players.. then if they feel adding the extra content would enhance their game experience, they will.. vs forcing them to pay double what they could, for something that isn't *required* ?
 
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hero gamer
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Quote:
If your games would not have any redundant material between them, then it's kind of a moot argument anyway.


So let's say I was able to create different art for ALL components, although some like the floor tiles aren't necessary and don't change the core rules at all, would that justify 3 core boxes?
 
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John
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If it was a game that was going to be widely available for a decent length of time then I think I'd prefer multiple stand alone games - cheaper initial cost, can chose which one I like best, other people I play games with might buy a different one.

If it's going to be limited print run (which I'm assuming it is as most things are) then expansions might make more sense as can try base game, then order all the expansions if you like it (or just take a punt on the lot) and the overall cost is less.
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hero gamer
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Quote:
If it was a game that was going to be widely available for a decent length of time


Isn't that what we all want for our games? lol
 
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Ron A
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Personally, I prefer stand alone. I don't like dependencies.

What is the base game if OOP, why bother getting the expansions?

If all the games are stand alone, you can get your preferred game without worrying if the pre requisites are in or out of print.

Similarly, if you go expansion, what if somebody wants game 2 but doesn't really care about game 1?

Real world example: I'm a wargamer, and there is a newer series of games out, Band of Brothers. The publisher went the stand alone route (at least with the 1st 2 games). Game 1 was OOP by the time game 2 was out. I was able to get 2 because I didn't NEED 1. Plus, the subject matter in 2 was different enough that some people prefer game 2 to 1. We were all able to buy 2 even though 1 was OOP.

Now game 3 is about to go on preorder, and there is some controversy because 3 is an expansion, you'll need 1 AND 2 to play 3. I'm on the fence, because the original game isn't available and even if it gets reprinted, I don't know that I want to buy it.

The other thing is, if you go the expansion route, your sales for games 2..n will never top game 1.

Just a few things to think about.
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hero gamer
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What if I offer both??

3 Stand Alone boxed games @ $20 Each - Total investment to get everything $60

The only components in the game that would repeat between boxes is the floor tiles and tokens. Floor tiles however can be combined to create a larger map and having backup tokens is always good! This also allows those who can't afford everything to only purchase the set they want.

AND

1 Big Box @$50 that includes the unique components from all 3 boxed sets with only a few extra tokens and tiles. This allows for slightly larger setups and is discounted because it's less packaging and components.

I'm sure there are faults in this or at least I know I can't satisfy everyone so I welcome your further input! Thanks everyone!
 
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hero gamer
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Scratch the above suggestion!

How about keeping things simple, which end the end is better for everyone.

Two Boxed Games:

1. A base version that includes everything needed to play by ALL the rules, at a low cost of $20.

2. A 'Big box' version that includes everything from the base, plus ALL the additional content that has been created at a cost of $50.

This keeps things simple and decreases the amount of custom box art, shipping costs, and production costs.

For the consumer, it's a simple choice based on how they feel about the game. IF a customer bought the base version unsure whether they'd like it, and decided they did and want the big box, they only have a small investment of $20 already and the Base game CAN be used in conjunction with the big box completely!

Thoughts?
 
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dennis bennett
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So if i buy 1, won't i feel reluctant to buy 2 since i'll be paying for a second copy of the base game?
 
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Philip Becker
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herogamer wrote:
Erluti wrote:
Definitely voted for stand alone that can be combined. It's happened a few times in my circle where somebody will find a fun game, and other people will fall in love and buy it too. So with combine-able stand-alones, we end up with way more content because each of us will buy a different version, but we can all play separately too.
And games that come with the expectation of expansions really annoy me. If it's great for gameplay then it should be in the original game, so it either isn't that good or you are holding part of the game for ransom.


I agree with your first points completely, but what if the primary reasoning for NOT including the expansion content in the base game was to keep the buy-in cost as low as possible, to attract players.. then if they feel adding the extra content would enhance their game experience, they will.. vs forcing them to pay double what they could, for something that isn't *required* ?

If it really isn't required, it should probably be cut from the game; if it's essential to the game's fun it should be in the game.
If it is a variant of the game (even as simple as 6 players instead of 4) it's should be an expansion of the game.
If they are totally different ways to play with the same core mechanics, it should probably just be stand alone.
The best products will have it's production decisions serve the game, if you make your decisions to serve your bottom line or get yourself famous it won't be the best game it could be.
/my two cents
 
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hero gamer
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dennisthebadger wrote:
So if i buy 1, won't i feel reluctant to buy 2 since i'll be paying for a second copy of the base game?


Yes, If you decide to buy the big box later, but like mentioned, they can infact be combined. When building your party, you'll have the option to pick two archers if you had two of the base set....
 
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hero gamer
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Quote:
If it really isn't required, it should probably be cut from the game; if it's essential to the game's fun it should be in the game.
If it is a variant of the game (even as simple as 6 players instead of 4) it's should be an expansion of the game.
If they are totally different ways to play with the same core mechanics, it should probably just be stand alone.


I agree with all of the above, but I don't think any of them really apply directly to my scenario. As I didn't post actual rules or game play in my original post, it's understandable. The expansion content I'm referring to is additional characters. As each one is unique, having more to choose from does enhance replay value but is not required to enjoy the game fully
 
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