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Subject: Map Graphics rss

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Antonio Nessuno
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Why they Have chosen a graphic for the map so ugly?

Madeira have a fabulous graphics, the prototype seemed to choose the same direction... but:



become


Have they follow community feedback or what?
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Sergio Perez
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Having played the game, I can tell you that the final board is much more functional. Playing on the board in the top picture would have been a nightmare - very confusing. With the current board, it's very easy to quickly distinguish what is going on in the area control region.
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Bruno Valerio
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Yeah, sometimes less is more!
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Matthew Robinson
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I think it looks great. I like that it has a different look to Madeira.
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Steve Austin
Canada
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I agree. One of the blandest boards I have ever seen. Not quite as bad as Brass, but getting there. Why do designers not realize that looks are every bit as important as gameplay. I have madeira and love it, but this board has actually taken Nippon off my buy list.
 
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Brian Pierce
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Peepser wrote:
Why do designers not realize that looks are every bit as important as gameplay.
Not for all of us.
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Christian K
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Oblivion wrote:
Yeah, sometimes less is more!
But if less is more, just think of how much more more would be
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Sergio Perez
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Peepser wrote:
this board has actually taken Nippon off my buy list.
Well, that seems rather harsh...and unfortunate. I'm surprised that the board art seems so bad to you that you are dismissing the entire game outright. Had none of the prototype boards ever been revealed, I wonder if your opinion would be the same.

My opinion is that the current board is a good combination of elegance and functionality. On the table in front of me, I didn't find it bland at all. It pops in all the right places And the game itself...it's amazing. I need more plays of this and one other game by another well-known Portuguese designer before I can make my decision for certain, but this very well may be my selection for game of the year. To dismiss it outright because you dislike the board, well, it's unfortunate for you that you're missing out on a great game, but to each his own, and there are plenty of great games out there (but maybe none quite this good this year).
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Steve Austin
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I didn't need to see any prototype boards to find this bland. It looks like fake beige wood siding on a 1971 station wagon. If it was a game about the Brady bunch, then it's perfectly suitable, but not here.

Many people find this board bland, even ugly, I'm certainly not the first to point it out, but I think it's important to point out their possible loss of sales due to blandness. This is the first of the essen crop to really stick out this way. The box art is great, so why can't the board be half as nice?

'The gallerist' manages to do great game as well as great looking. In a world where 800 games get released in a year, why hurt your sales chances by going bland? Makes zero sense. Sure, there are those who don't care about looks, but why cut your potential audience? Especially as this theme has nowhere near mainstream appeal. It's niche, and now even more niche because of the blandness.

I was initially interested, and try to focus on "think of gameplay" but the board really dilutes any enthusiasm. It's fighting itself for votes, and that's not good.
 
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Christian K
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I think their sales are doing quite well, do you have anything to suggest that this hurt their sales other than that you didn't buy it yourself?
 
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Mathue Faulkner
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Peepser wrote:
The box art is great, so why can't the board be half as nice?
It's kind of funny...There is a thread about the "ugly" or "disappointing" box cover as well.
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Bob D
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Peepser wrote:
I didn't need to see any prototype boards to find this bland. It looks like fake beige wood siding on a 1971 station wagon. If it was a game about the Brady bunch, then it's perfectly suitable, but not here.

Many people find this board bland, even ugly, I'm certainly not the first to point it out, but I think it's important to point out their possible loss of sales due to blandness. This is the first of the essen crop to really stick out this way. The box art is great, so why can't the board be half as nice?

'The gallerist' manages to do great game as well as great looking. In a world where 800 games get released in a year, why hurt your sales chances by going bland? Makes zero sense. Sure, there are those who don't care about looks, but why cut your potential audience? Especially as this theme has nowhere near mainstream appeal. It's niche, and now even more niche because of the blandness.

I was initially interested, and try to focus on "think of gameplay" but the board really dilutes any enthusiasm. It's fighting itself for votes, and that's not good.
I used to think this way. And I still love quality components, graphic design, and art and think them important. But to dismiss a game strictly BECAUSE of a bland board is unfortunate. The Gallerist is a great example of a beautifully produced game. I received that in the mail a few weeks ago. At the same time, I received Food Chain Magnate. While it has a very clever, kitschy 50s Americana style art design, the modular board is extraordinarily dull. However, the game play is phenomenal and arguably better than The Gallerist (which is still excellent).

I think The Castles of Burgundy has a horrible color scheme and is just plain ugly. I also, eventually, found the gameplay engaging enough that I now own the game.

That being said, it would have been nice if the Nippon cover art was extended onto the board (and I prefer the new cover to the prototype). So I understand the disappointment. But I no longer dismiss a game out of hand based on anything other than gameplay. A beautiful board is just a big bonus.
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Steve Austin
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Muemmelmann wrote:
I think their sales are doing quite well, do you have anything to suggest that this hurt their sales other than that you didn't buy it yourself?
Yes, I'm certainly not going to be the only one to pass on the game because of esthetics, but I will also be one of the very few to make a point of bringing it up in this forum. Their sales could also be a lot better if they had a nicer board. The box art is misleading. The board should have been equally evocative.
 
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Steve Austin
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mfaulk80 wrote:
Peepser wrote:
The box art is great, so why can't the board be half as nice?
It's kind of funny...There is a thread about the "ugly" or "disappointing" box cover as well.
They should have put a picture of the actual board on the box. That would have been a thread to watch.
 
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Steve Austin
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bobbyrayiam wrote:
Peepser wrote:
I didn't need to see any prototype boards to find this bland. It looks like fake beige wood siding on a 1971 station wagon. If it was a game about the Brady bunch, then it's perfectly suitable, but not here.

Many people find this board bland, even ugly, I'm certainly not the first to point it out, but I think it's important to point out their possible loss of sales due to blandness. This is the first of the essen crop to really stick out this way. The box art is great, so why can't the board be half as nice?

'The gallerist' manages to do great game as well as great looking. In a world where 800 games get released in a year, why hurt your sales chances by going bland? Makes zero sense. Sure, there are those who don't care about looks, but why cut your potential audience? Especially as this theme has nowhere near mainstream appeal. It's niche, and now even more niche because of the blandness.

I was initially interested, and try to focus on "think of gameplay" but the board really dilutes any enthusiasm. It's fighting itself for votes, and that's not good.
I used to think this way. And I still love quality components, graphic design, and art and think them important. But to dismiss a game strictly BECAUSE of a bland board is unfortunate. The Gallerist is a great example of a beautifully produced game. I received that in the mail a few weeks ago. At the same time, I received Food Chain Magnate. While it has a very clever, kitschy 50s Americana style art design, the modular board is extraordinarily dull. However, the game play is phenomenal and arguably better than The Gallerist (which is still excellent).

I think The Castles of Burgundy has a horrible color scheme and is just plain ugly. I also, eventually, found the gameplay engaging enough that I now own the game.

That being said, it would have been nice if the Nippon cover art was extended onto the board (and I prefer the new cover to the prototype). So I understand the disappointment. But I no longer dismiss a game out of hand based on anything other than gameplay. A beautiful board is just a big bonus.
I also passed on food chain magnate because of the 'designed in two minutes' board, with the + $100 cost helping immensely to cement that decision. Agree about COB as well, and that's why the game was not purchased and only played online. Competition for my game dollars is immense and I don't buy everything that comes out, so games need to play well and look good, especially when considering who I am playing with and hope to entice to play. My wife needs convincing at the best of times and an ugly board does nothing to get her more immersed in board gaming.

We live in a niche hobby, so let's make it easier to pull people in, not harder.
 
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Matthew Robinson
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Peepser wrote:
Why do designers not realize that looks are every bit as important as gameplay.
Please let them never learn this.
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Paulo Renato
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Peepser wrote:
I agree. One of the blandest boards I have ever seen. Not quite as bad as Brass, but getting there. Why do designers not realize that looks are every bit as important as gameplay. I have madeira and love it, but this board has actually taken Nippon off my buy list.
Well looks aren't nearly as important as gameplay... they are an important part of the whole but if I have to choose between great gameplay and ugly looks or bad gameplay and gorgeous looks there's no doubt in my mind what is the way to go...

With that said, I don't see why it's ugly... yes it doesn't have vibrant colors and flashes everywhere but it's still a beautiful representation of the map and it's highly functional...

Also if because of the looks you took it of your buy list let me just say that is your loss no one else's

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Paulo Renato
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Peepser wrote:
Muemmelmann wrote:
I think their sales are doing quite well, do you have anything to suggest that this hurt their sales other than that you didn't buy it yourself?
Yes, I'm certainly not going to be the only one to pass on the game because of esthetics, but I will also be one of the very few to make a point of bringing it up in this forum. Their sales could also be a lot better if they had a nicer board. The box art is misleading. The board should have been equally evocative.
You are failing to see 2 things:

First Beautiful / Ugly is in the eye of the beholder, what looks ugly to you might be beautiful to someone else and vice-verse... it's a subjective thing and in that matter it would be impossible to please everyone!

Second, if they had more copies to sell they would be selling... The game sold out at Essen on Saturday there weren't more copes for the many people that wanted it... So despite not being the most beautiful game in the world to everyone it's still selling like hot cakes so that's a testament on how good the substance of the game is...

But it's clear that some people value looks over substance and there's nothing wrong with it... it just makes no sense creating a topic to complain about a subjective thing even more when there are already plenty of other topics about this discussion...
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Steve Austin
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Muse23PT wrote:
Peepser wrote:
Muemmelmann wrote:
I think their sales are doing quite well, do you have anything to suggest that this hurt their sales other than that you didn't buy it yourself?
Yes, I'm certainly not going to be the only one to pass on the game because of esthetics, but I will also be one of the very few to make a point of bringing it up in this forum. Their sales could also be a lot better if they had a nicer board. The box art is misleading. The board should have been equally evocative.
But it's clear that some people value looks over substance and there's nothing wrong with it... it just makes no sense creating a topic to complain about a subjective thing even more when there are already plenty of other topics about this discussion...
I value looks and gameplay equally. I want a fun game that looks good. When your competition is 800 other games, you should be putting equal care into both gameplay and presentation. They are not mutually exclusive, especially at the exorbitant cost of board games these days with many creeping up to the $75 or $100 mark. This is why I buy games, not IOS apps. I like seeing them on the table, looking inviting, not off putting.

An unattractive or bland board may be acceptable at the $20 level but not $70. It puts up a a very unnecessary wall that will be an impediment to many people deciding on a purchase. brass is the perfect example. Has to be the ugliest board I have ever laid eyes on. When you fail to hit the buy button even when you know there may be a good game there it is something a company needs to take note of, not say "there are many other topics to discuss others than looks." Looks are just as worthy a topic as anything else. I seriously doubt the majority of people who see this board say "It's so beautiful!" Functional perhaps, but that's it.
 
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Shane
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Just played my first game tonight. The board is fantastic.
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Patrick Swinkels
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Peepser wrote:
It looks like fake beige wood siding on a 1971 station wagon. If it was a game about the Brady bunch, then it's perfectly suitable, but not here.
Well, the 3 other people I played this with all found the board beautiful.

As for theme, we simply called it the "Bamboo" look!
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Sergio Perez
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swinkelp wrote:
Peepser wrote:
It looks like fake beige wood siding on a 1971 station wagon. If it was a game about the Brady bunch, then it's perfectly suitable, but not here.
Well, the 3 other people I played this with all found the board beautiful.

As for theme, we simply called it the "Bamboo" look!
Yeah, I'm really not seeing how this board is being called bland and/or ugly either. The others I have played with haven't complained either, but again, we've all played and enjoyed the game.

I believe the colors on the actual production board are a bit more vibrant than those on the final prototype board pictured above (which looks to be sheets of paper).



 
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Jimmy Okolica
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Peepser wrote:
Muse23PT wrote:
Peepser wrote:
Muemmelmann wrote:
I think their sales are doing quite well, do you have anything to suggest that this hurt their sales other than that you didn't buy it yourself?
Yes, I'm certainly not going to be the only one to pass on the game because of esthetics, but I will also be one of the very few to make a point of bringing it up in this forum. Their sales could also be a lot better if they had a nicer board. The box art is misleading. The board should have been equally evocative.
But it's clear that some people value looks over substance and there's nothing wrong with it... it just makes no sense creating a topic to complain about a subjective thing even more when there are already plenty of other topics about this discussion...
I value looks and gameplay equally. I want a fun game that looks good. When your competition is 800 other games, you should be putting equal care into both gameplay and presentation. They are not mutually exclusive, especially at the exorbitant cost of board games these days with many creeping up to the $75 or $100 mark. This is why I buy games, not IOS apps. I like seeing them on the table, looking inviting, not off putting.

An unattractive or bland board may be acceptable at the $20 level but not $70. It puts up a a very unnecessary wall that will be an impediment to many people deciding on a purchase. brass is the perfect example. Has to be the ugliest board I have ever laid eyes on. When you fail to hit the buy button even when you know there may be a good game there it is something a company needs to take note of, not say "there are many other topics to discuss others than looks." Looks are just as worthy a topic as anything else. I seriously doubt the majority of people who see this board say "It's so beautiful!" Functional perhaps, but that's it.
My take on it is if I want a piece of art to hang on the wall, I'll buy a piece of art. If I'm buying a game, the biggest reason is because I want to play it. If a vibrant board makes it harder to parse the game state or easier to make mistakes, I'm less likely to buy/play it. With that in mind, I really like the board. It's easy to parse the game state and the available actions. Personally, the board is a reason to buy this game over several others.

oh, and as a side note, you're really missing out on Brass. I happen to like the art of the Brass board, but that aside, it's an outstanding game.
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Robert Forrest
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I wish that BGG sorted threads on graphic design into an entirely different section.

And then shot anyone who posted on it into outer space.

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E Thomas
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Peepser wrote:

I also passed on food chain magnate because of the 'designed in two minutes' board, with the + $100 cost helping immensely to cement that decision. Agree about COB as well, and that's why the game was not purchased and only played online. Competition for my game dollars is immense and I don't buy everything that comes out, so games need to play well and look good, especially when considering who I am playing with and hope to entice to play. My wife needs convincing at the best of times and an ugly board does nothing to get her more immersed in board gaming.

We live in a niche hobby, so let's make it easier to pull people in, not harder.
I've played several (11-12) of the big Euro releases from Essen this year thanks to the Sasquatch convention in Bellvue, WA. Food Chain Magnate and Nippon? The best of the best for gameplay. Trust me, if you skip on looks (I agree they aren't the most attractive), you are really missing out on two of the best games coming out this year.
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