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Subject: Why is the graphic design in this game so terrible? rss

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Garbage Person
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Don't get me wrong, I love the game, but you'd think the way Dice Hate Me games and crew used to just lambast people for poor graphic design, they would have done a little better with this game.

No symbology used on the skilled workers. Why do people have to read a football field of text to play this game? In literally every game played, this statement has been uttered "Oh, I didn't see that it said that". Local partnerships, research labs...walls of text. Why is the symbology used on the market boards not consistenly used throughout the game? Why are the building rules relegated to tiny text on cards and not the rulebook? Why are they paragraphs of text instead of something more quickly translated? And the game uses symbols such as a coffee bean, the word coffee, and a black cube all to represent the same thing...I could understand using 2 for thematic reasons, but 3 "symbols" for the same thing?

I can read. I enjoy it and do it all the time. But the situation is a little different when you have 5 people crowded around a single set of components trying to read 40 different paragraphs of text. And then having to translate "is malt this color or that color? And it is what symbol?" for newer players.

Why is there nothing on some of the various improvements to show what they do?

Drives me batty every time I play this game.
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Barry Miller
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Yeah, there is a lot of reading text on game components for this game. But it's never been an issue with the people I play with. Or at least no one has expressed it as an issue.

Maybe all that can be cleaned-up a little if there's ever a next edition (note I'm not talking about a next printing, which is due out soon if it hasn't already been released).

But regardless, it's a good game, so don't let the component text dissuade you.
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Y P
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Having to constantly refer to the player aid for building rules and room functionality is annoying--I'll give you that. I wish some symbols were in place to make remembering all of that easier.

But on the whole I'd say the graphic design is good. Certainly wouldn't call it "terrible", but that's just my opinion.
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Mat Thomsen
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I think your criticism is more than fair. DHM is known for appealing, original, and effective art design (Carnival, Viva Java Dice, Compounded and most recently, New Bedford are among my favorites), but here, many improvements could be made.
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Drew Lawson
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I recently bought Viticulture, and that game really made me realize how cluttered and inconsistent Brew Crafters looks. It's a mess on the table. I love the game, but man, I wish they'd clean up the symbolic system and probably condense things onto a game board.
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Susan
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I was going to break it out the other game night and opened the box and it's a just a sea of bits and pieces and was like, ya, no.

 
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Barry Miller
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ajpl wrote:
I recently bought Viticulture, and that game really made me realize how cluttered and inconsistent Brew Crafters looks. It's a mess on the table. I love the game, but man, I wish they'd clean up the symbolic system and probably condense things onto a game board.

I've never played Viticulture, but I surmise that one of the reasons for all the different boards for Brew Crafters is due to its modular "scalability" system.

Brew Crafters plays equally well at all player counts due primarily to the differently designed Market Action boards for each player count. The only board that doesn't scale is the Brewery Action board.

I guess a larger, folding board could've been printed double-sided that would have the necessary artwork for all the boards. But that would entail compromises of its own. IMHO, the modular board system fits this game perfectly. And besides, it allows you to shape the layout of the game to better suit your playing area!

 
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Drew Lawson
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bgm1961 wrote:

ajpl wrote:
I recently bought Viticulture, and that game really made me realize how cluttered and inconsistent Brew Crafters looks. It's a mess on the table. I love the game, but man, I wish they'd clean up the symbolic system and probably condense things onto a game board.

I've never played Viticulture, but I surmise that one of the reasons for all the different boards for Brew Crafters is due to its modular "scalability" system.

Brew Crafters plays equally well at all player counts due primarily to the differently designed Market Action boards for each player count. The only board that doesn't scale is the Brewery Action board.

I guess a larger, folding board could've been printed double-sided that would have the necessary artwork for all the boards. But that would entail compromises of its own. IMHO, the modular board system fits this game perfectly. And besides, it allows you to shape the layout of the game to better suit your playing area!


Viticulture accomplishes the exact same thing by having multiple worker placement spots for each action, which are restricted by player count. Brew Crafters could have done the same thing—i.e. the malt market action space could have two worker slots, one with a "X+" marked on it to show the player count at which it opens up.

Alas, the Brew Crafters graphic design team was asleep at the wheel.
 
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ajpl wrote:
I recently bought Viticulture, and that game really made me realize how cluttered and inconsistent Brew Crafters looks. It's a mess on the table. I love the game, but man, I wish they'd clean up the symbolic system and probably condense things onto a game board.


The depth of Viticulure is comparable to a puddle of a light rain, while Brew Crafters is more like a lake. So yea, there is a lot more information that needs to be communicated. Would you like Wall of Text or Era 51's 100 symbols?
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Drew Lawson
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Mabuchi wrote:
ajpl wrote:
I recently bought Viticulture, and that game really made me realize how cluttered and inconsistent Brew Crafters looks. It's a mess on the table. I love the game, but man, I wish they'd clean up the symbolic system and probably condense things onto a game board.


The depth of Viticulure is comparable to a puddle of a light rain, while Brew Crafters is more like a lake. So yea, there is a lot more information that needs to be communicated. Would you like Wall of Text or Era 51's 100 symbols?


Ah yes, the ever-present need to bash other games when deficiencies in ones you like are pointed out.

Setting aside your knee-jerk swipe at "depth"... Brew Crafters is not actually that complex. The market actions are pretty simple, and in fact their rules are already communicated using fairly straightforward iconography. "A lot more information" to communicate? Like what?

They could easily create a simple icon system to simplify the scattered market action boards and cluttered-looking spare tiles. This would fit graphically with what they're doing already on the market action spaces and would make things much less ugly. It's not that they couldn't—they just didn't think of it.
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