I like tabletop gaming as much as videogaming, and but one of the biggest blockers behind being able to play the more in-depth ones I own (especially the most weighty in my collection, Eclipse) is time spent trying to teach or look up rule minutiae.
And aside from knowing the rules, I also don’t expect that everyone around the table has read (or would even want to read) the entire rulebook of every game cover-to-cover. But if so, they’re often missing out on thoughtfully composed flavor text or art that would make the game more enjoyable if only it was in a more easily shared format.
So when I read on /r/boardgames and BoardGameGeek that there was a 10-items-for-$20-total-including-shipping sale on ArtsCow (and eventually sister company CowCow, or if you want it, a non-referral link to ArtsCow again) it wasn’t difficult to think up what I’d make:
- One bag for Tzolk’in, the other heavyweight in my collection; I’d bought the original game used on Amazon lacking its original box, then eventually bought the expansion for it hoping that aside from the extra content, it would hopefully hold the board well. But that box lacked the depth to hold all the components too, so a nicer bag could replace the ziplock one I was using alongside the box.
- Nine bags for Eclipse, one for each of the player races. Human races and flavor text on one side, equivalent-colored alien races and their rulebook differences from humans on the other side.
They’re not perfect, and if I was to do another print run for myself I’d make a few tweaks. But for a first try, I’m pretty happy with how they turned out:
They’re a fair bit larger than the ziplocks I’d been using for each player color before, but so far still fit into the box with the Rise of the Ancients expansion. I’m still waiting on Funagain Games to ship me Ship Pack One (I ordered it almost two months ago but they’re holding back shipment because a certain gripmat manufacturer has been slow to restock their part of that order. No worries, been busy enough with other things that I’m actually glad they haven’t charged me extra by making separate shipments.)
The upper right quadrant panel in this organizer by The Broken Token rides a little higher than normal with that many bags in, but still fits well enough to hold their resource trays just fine.
(Sidenote: If you had to buy an organizer for this game today I’d tell you that I’ve been happy with every product and interaction I’ve had from The Broken Token, and haven’t heard any complaints yet about either of the two competitors I’m aware of, Daedalus Productions and go7gaming. But TBT would be the first to admit that this organizer has room for improvement because it’s one of the first ones they ever designed and they’ve learned from every one since. So if you have the patience, I’d recommend waiting for the already-announced next expansion, Shadow of the Rift, to get released later this year, and hope each of these companies will update their designs to accommodate it).
If you want similar drawstring bags yourself:
- The link to the sale is http://www.artscow.com/photo-gifts/crazy-bundle
- Unique coupon codes are emailed to each user and then act as referral codes, so if you’re okay with benefiting me you can use mine, ZCRAYSALE8FVXZ . Or if you’d rather benefit another user you’re welcome to use one of the codes they posted on the above-linked threads on BGG, reddit, etc. They should all work equally well at letting you take advantage of the deal.
- More information about the extension of the sale’s deadline and the use of ArtsCow vs. CowCow links is available in this BGG thread
- I am hesitant to put up a link to the exact designs I made because I am not the original artist of the works I layered together, and I suspect there would likely be some law or restriction against me profiting from his (or her?) work, even if it’s just in online store points instead of cash. But please comment below if you can clarify the situation and recommend putting up the links for other people to use my designs.
And regardless of what designs you make or take, enjoy gaming with them! Feel free to leave thoughts, questions, or just general encouragement (this is my first ever blogpost on tabletop gaming) in the comments.
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