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Subject: Great game but..... rss

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Matthew Evans
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I just played this game for the first time at a gaming weekend. Loved it. Would buy it right now except for one thing. Color choice of the dice. I know I am in the minority but being color blind makes this game very hard to play. I just wish they could have chosen a different shade of the colors that were not so similar, why not fire engine red or something like that.

Anyone else have this problem? If so any good solutions? I am thinking if I do get it will buy some small boxes to separate the dice into so I can tell which is which.
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Check out the Produce faces of the dice. They're shaded differently (different squares of the barrel symbol filled in) for commonly difficult-to-discern colours, like red and green. Likewise, some worlds have dots in the corners and others don't - off the top of my head I think it's the green worlds with dots on. Not as easy as being able to tell the colour by sight, though, I'm sure!
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Justin Dugger

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All dice have a produce face, and that face is unique per color. It might be worth picking up a set of the smallest Really Useful Boxes though, and labelling them. Hopefully you don't have the same problem with the tiles, which also reference die colors. For example, Rebel Warrior Race gives you a red and a green die, not two green!
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Luther Hendricks
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pwnguin wrote:
All dice have a produce face, and that face is unique per color. It might be worth picking up a set of the smallest Really Useful Boxes though, and labelling them. Hopefully you don't have the same problem with the tiles, which also reference die colors. For example, Rebel Warrior Race gives you a red and a green die, not two green!
For what it's worth, that's not entirely true -- Red and Purple don't have produce faces. The five dice that do have produce faces (White, Blue, Brown, Green, Yellow) have unique produce faces, though. And yes, all Green settlements have a small dot near the cost to help distinguish them from Brown settlements.

Fortunately the tile text spells out the names of the die colors/types, but yeah, Rebel Warrior Race is hard to distinguish from the iconography.
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aravani77 wrote:
I just played this game for the first time at a gaming weekend. Loved it. Would buy it right now except for one thing. Color choice of the dice. I know I am in the minority but being color blind makes this game very hard to play. I just wish they could have chosen a different shade of the colors that were not so similar, why not fire engine red or something like that.

Anyone else have this problem? If so any good solutions? I am thinking if I do get it will buy some small boxes to separate the dice into so I can tell which is which.
AFAIK, specific shades of red or whatever may be too difficult/inconsistent.

If possible, see if your opponent players will also organize their dice to help you distinguish them from across the table as well.

Drab Emordnilap wrote:
pwnguin wrote:
All dice have a produce face, and that face is unique per color. It might be worth picking up a set of the smallest Really Useful Boxes though, and labelling them. Hopefully you don't have the same problem with the tiles, which also reference die colors. For example, Rebel Warrior Race gives you a red and a green die, not two green!
For what it's worth, that's not entirely true -- Red and Purple don't have produce faces. The five dice that do have produce faces (White, Blue, Brown, Green, Yellow) have unique produce faces, though. And yes, all Green settlements have a small dot near the cost to help distinguish them from Brown settlements.

Fortunately the tile text spells out the names of the die colors/types, but yeah, Rebel Warrior Race is hard to distinguish from the iconography.
Yeah, I figured in addition to red and purple, white also doesn't have shading on their IV icons since they don't have goods to match colors for bonuses in V. IIRC, only the genes/green worlds have that green dot on the names on their tiles.
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Scott Russell
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I can't tell the green from the brown in the dice (or in Race), but the gameplay makes it worth it!
 
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David Cuesta
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I know what im about to suggest its heresy to a lot of us, but you could paint a small dot on a corner of each face of the green dice to help tell them apart for the browns dice.
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QuimeraEC wrote:
I know what im about to suggest its heresy to a lot of us, but you could paint a small dot on a corner of each face of the green dice to help tell them apart for the browns dice.
That's not as bad as one would think... I've known more than one household where to accommodate color blind players, they've taken Sharpies and marked up cards. Games include but not limited to Race For The Galaxy, and Taj Mahal.
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Scott Russell
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I have a lot of (almost always) green cards in many other games with marks. For Race, I just memorized the green ones by name (most of them made sense) [Yes, for all published expansions, too].

I hadn't thought of doing it for the dice, but I may try that with a Sharpie. The produce symbol works, but it does sometimes involve rotating the faces a few times when making sure of color.

(I don't sleeve either, if I wear a game out by playing, I think the author and company deserve for me to purchase it again. And I am not too picky, so they'd have to be really worn.)
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qzhdad wrote:
I have a lot of (almost always) green cards in many other games with marks. For Race, I just memorized the green ones by name (most of them made sense) [Yes, for all published expansions, too].

I hadn't thought of doing it for the dice, but I may try that with a Sharpie. The produce symbol works, but it does sometimes involve rotating the faces a few times when making sure of color.

(I don't sleeve either, if I wear a game out by playing, I think the author and company deserve for me to purchase it again. And I am not too picky, so they'd have to be really worn.)
You don't need to mark your dice! Here are the Produce faces of the various dice - note how different quadrants of the "barrel" (or none) are filled in.

Home (white):


Novelty (cyan):


Rare Elements (brown):


Genetics (green):


Alien (yellow):


If it doesn't have a Produce face, it's either Military (red) or Consumption (lilac). If it has a Ship face it's Consumption, if it has a Settle face it's Military.

And here's a Genetics (green) world:


See the little dot at the top-left, above and to the left of the large (4) in a circle? That dot only appears on Genetics worlds.
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greylag wrote:
You don't need to mark your dice! Here are the Produce faces of the various dice - note how different quadrants of the "barrel" (or none) are filled in.

..........
I'd like to hear back from the OP, or others in his situation as even if this works in theory, in practice it may not be enough.

Plus, if it's on a wild side, you may not be able to see the IV side. Well, you could ask all players to flip it face up, but then you may not be able to see it from across the table. [shrug]
 
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Scott Russell
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greylag wrote:

You don't need to mark your dice! Here are the Produce faces of the various dice - note how different quadrants of the "barrel" (or none) are filled in.

Yeah, I mentioned that, but the produce face isn't always up, so it involves some rotating. With a small black dot on each face, it would be easier.
 
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Matthew Evans
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I didn't notice the quadrant thing and dot on the card first time I played. Unfortunately don't own the game to see if that would make a difference.

When I played, I could see the difference in the dice. The different colors and such. But had difficulty knowing when it was time to grab the right one. It would always take a few seconds of either asking for help or taking the dice and comparing it to the shade on the card. I could never find the red dice. It just didn't look red to me.

Reading the posts, I will look for the clues and see if that helps. I just wish it didn't have to be a problem. I know companies have a lot to do when making games, just bums me out when it happens. It would stop me from purchase of a really good game.
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John Farrell
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We often play in a poorly lit pub, and it is hard to tell the dice apart. Brown and purple are the hardest.
 
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Tom Lehmann
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Friendless wrote:
We often play in a poorly lit pub, and it is hard to tell the dice apart. Brown and purple are the hardest.
Do you find the mark on the brown production barrel useful for distinguishing these dice?

The reason I ask is that we are trying to, when possible, do things to aid color-blind players or those playing in poor light. If what we do is or isn't working, that's valuable for us to know.
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John Farrell
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We never noticed. I find I only look at the top face of the die anyway, if it's not production that clue means nothing. We have considered LED headlamps.
 
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Tom Lehmann
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Friendless wrote:
We never noticed. I find I only look at the top face of the die anyway, if it's not production that clue means nothing. We have considered LED headlamps.
Well, as an experiment, would you be willing to try and use this cue to sort our brown from red dice during your next play in dim light and report on whether it works or is a failure (due to being too much effort, etc.)? Thanks in advance.
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Tom Lehmann wrote:
Friendless wrote:
We never noticed. I find I only look at the top face of the die anyway, if it's not production that clue means nothing. We have considered LED headlamps.
Well, as an experiment, would you be willing to try and use this cue to sort our brown from red dice during your next play in dim light and report on whether it works or is a failure (due to being too much effort, etc.)? Thanks in advance.
I take it despite the planning put into color blind features, there just isn't the time nor resources to properly test these things?
 
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David desJardins
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ackmondual wrote:
I take it despite the planning put into color blind features, there just isn't the time nor resources to properly test these things?
Seriously? That's how you take it?
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DaviddesJ wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
I take it despite the planning put into color blind features, there just isn't the time nor resources to properly test these things?
Seriously? That's how you take it?
?? Not sure how to read this.

Looking back to my question, I probably should've worded it as whether or not it's practical to set dimly lit environments, or use tools to mimic color-blind views, but hopefully folks get the idea.
 
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David desJardins
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ackmondual wrote:
Looking back to my question, I probably should've worded it as whether or not it's practical to set dimly lit environments, or use tools to mimic color-blind views, but hopefully folks get the idea.
Looking back to your question, it seems unaccountably hostile that when someone welcomes additional input on how well his solution works for people who try using it, your conclusion is that it wasn't "properly tested".
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DaviddesJ wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
Looking back to my question, I probably should've worded it as whether or not it's practical to set dimly lit environments, or use tools to mimic color-blind views, but hopefully folks get the idea.
Looking back to your question, it seems unaccountably hostile that when someone welcomes additional input on how well his solution works for people who try using it, your conclusion is that it wasn't "properly tested".
Ahh, I see. I was wondering if we could pick Tom's brain on the facets of making board games more color blindness friendly. He has a lot of knowledge, and it'd be neat if we could get more info on something that generally doesn't get much mention.
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Wei-Hwa Huang
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ackmondual wrote:
DaviddesJ wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
Looking back to my question, I probably should've worded it as whether or not it's practical to set dimly lit environments, or use tools to mimic color-blind views, but hopefully folks get the idea.
Looking back to your question, it seems unaccountably hostile that when someone welcomes additional input on how well his solution works for people who try using it, your conclusion is that it wasn't "properly tested".
Ahh, I see. I was wondering if we could pick Tom's brain on the facets of making board games more color blindness friendly. He has a lot of knowledge, and it'd be neat if we could get more info on something that generally doesn't get much mention.
"Properly tested" is one of those trap phrases that sounds like it means something precise when in reality it is anything but.

When I worked for a large company with thousands of employees, it was reasonable to expect User Experience studies that would take potential customers, record their experience, do debriefings, etc.

When you're just one or two people, that's less feasible.

We do have a color-blind person in our regular testing group. But, he only playtested the game with our playtesting set. The playtest set was made out of my color inkjet printer with labels, and it should not surprise you to know that my inkjet printer label colors do not exactly match injection-molded plastic dice.

I also did run many of our images through online color-blind filters to check them, although I did not produce a playtest set with deliberately wrong colors to test the game. Occasionally the game would be played in a dark or loud environment but I don't think we ever did this explicitly for stress-test it.

When one is designing a game this complex, it's unreasonable to expect the game to be able to work in all situations for all people, and you quickly hit diminishing returns as to whether it's worth testing or changing something to get a few more customers. The game can't be played on a normal commercial airline flight if you're in coach. Sorry. The game can't be played in the rain. Sorry. The game is going to be pretty inconvenient for you if you're dyslexic. Sorry. I did not actually test any of those three cases.

Color-blindness is a common-enough problem that I was willing to devote some effort to try to accommodate it, but not common enough that I felt it was worth rounding up multiple color-blind gamers and scheduling playtesting and insisting on color-matching from the factory and so on. So it is valuable to hear comments from the field as to whether the things we tried worked or not. It might be too late for this game but there are other games in the future that could benefit from this feedback.

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Matthew Evans
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Please don't take my comment as complaining. It is a great game and I don't expect companies to go overboard in trying to please every customer. It sounds like you did take it into account and that is good. My only suggestion is that when choosing colors is not to pick shades that are near each other. If using blue and purple, use a darker blue and a lighter purple for example. That is what helps me tell the difference.
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Tom Lehmann
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The blue (cyan) was chosen to match the blue used in RFTG.

One disadvantage of choosing sharply differentiated colors is that it limits the number of possible choices later on. If we add another die to Roll, my current proposal is a dark blue die with white faces. If our original blue was a darker medium blue, then neither a cyan or a dark blue would be possible. There are lots of considerations that we have to balance...
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