Which box would you pick up?


The most important feedback I got at KublaCon this year was that my title needs to be better. “Deckahedron World” appealed to me because I like puns, and I felt it was a nice nod to it’s parent, Dungeon World.

But the title of the game isn’t for me, it’s for the audience, and “Deckahedron World” doesn’t serve the audience.  It doesn’t help the audience know what the game is about. If someone walked into a game shop and saw a box on the shelf saying “Deckahedron World”, would they have any impression about whether this was something they would enjoy? Would they want to pick up the box and have a look?

Thanks to James Ernest for helping me see this.

Which of these names do you think would give you a good impression? If you saw a box on a shelf entitled thusly, would you pick it up and look at the cover? What kind of expectation would you have of it?

  • Ye Brave Heroes
  • Hearthember Journeys
  • Master the Myth
  • Campfire of Heroes
  • The Ascendant Circle
  • Face Myth, Become Legend
  • Crucible of Legends
  • Epic of the Hearthlighters
  • Legends to Fear or Be
  • Bearers of the Hearthflame
  • Campfire Epics
  • Deckahedron Legends
  • Flipped Fantasy
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image of Deckahedron World on a table

Last weekend was spent at KublaCon, which was an opportunity to hang out with friends, play some new board games, and excitedly run some playtests of Deckahedron World.

I was very pleased with the playtests. One one hand I received several comments from testers that they thought the game was a lot of fun, but more importantly for the stage I’m at now, several bugs in the system were exposed. Beyond those, I also noticed some friction that different players were experiencing with the system.

I’ve now got pages of notes that are slowly being digested and used to refine the system and the documentation. I’ll be back next year with a great game!

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Almost Famous

Boardcrafting was in the New York Times (sort of)!

I was doing some vanity googling tonight, as one does – sometimes it’s fun to see where images of the Boardcrafting Catan boards pop up, and I saw a still image clearly captured from a video. On further investigation, it was a video from a NYT tech blog featuring Dan Shapiro talking about Glowforge.  Very cool!

In their early prototype stage, I shared the Catan tile designs with the Glowforge folks, and I’ve seen it in their marketing materials here and there. They’ve since created their own in-house Catan design, but this NYT video was shot when they were still using mine.

If you’re interested in laser cutting, check out Glowforge, I’ve got one myself and am very happy with it.  Plus, they made me famous.

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Refused Redemption and Corpsemonsters

IMG_20170917_170349Last night I completed my first playtest campaign of Deckahedron World!

It. was. epic.

Brian, Garrett, Greg, Jared, and I (and guest-star Joe as the Party Goblin) wove a tale of purple potatoes, murder, plagues, escapes, drug manufacturing, faction upheaval, grand theft, falling into traps, refusing chances at redemption, becoming a monster, destruction of civilization, and being rescued from yourself by your best friends, who sacrificed the biggest score they ever laid eyes on to do so.

I’m really excited about Deckahedron World, I’ll be playtesting one-shots at the Protospiel at Dundracon in a couple weeks.

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Role Playing Games

I’ve been dabbling in Role Playing Games like D&D lately.  I’ve been using a commercial online game supply maker to make some playing cards for a RPG I’m designing, and I’m pleased with the results.


I’m calling it Deckahedron

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Readying laser-cut Carcassonne

I’ve been finding some time recently to continue working on my designs for a laser-cut Carcassonne board.  It’s gone through revisions as I’ve been solving tricky problems and re-doing parts I wasn’t happy with.  Now I’ve got some wood to test it out, and I’ve laid out the design so that it’s ready to laser.

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Laser-cut Carcassonne

I have been working recently on designs for a laser-cut Carcassonne set.
I have completed a prototype of The River and some start tiles. I brought them all to KublaCon a couple weekends ago, and played many a game of Carc. I was super-proud to show them off at KublaCon, and will soon post some of the designs here at the Boardcrafting blog.


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Catan Treasure Chest

David Sopko has some very lucky friends. He created a wonderful wedding gift – a customized boxed set of Catan: Cities and Knights using Boardcrafting tiles, felt bags for the player pieces, and wooden trays for the cards.

custom catan box and game pieces

In his own words:

“Here’s how I put it together. I found an unfinished box at Hobby Lobby that was about the right size and invoked some of my rusty high school wood shop skills to build the separators and card caddies.

custom catan card holders

I then found the different colored dice bags from the local game store for the player pieces. Brown and orange proved difficult to acquire on short notice so I used glued city-shaped colored felt on black bags.

catan tiles and gift bags

The flip charts fit in the left compartment. Then the card caddies for the commodity and progress cards rest on top of the flip charts. The resource card caddy for the resource cards lays on top of the box separators. The player and other game pieces go in the center compartment.”

custom catan gift box and game pieces_full

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Combination Platter

Jorge's fancy catan birch set

The greatest thing about attending KublaCon last year was connecting with so many fellow board game enthusiasts, sharing ideas, and getting new inspiration.

Jorge showed me a great example of mixing Boardcrafting tiles (he has the “Fancywood” edition with cherry and butternut – I think it looks spectacular) with a Catan Table.

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Tile Extractin’ Backing Action

pushing from behind to extract a catan tile from the frameOne part of my Catan boards that doesn’t get enough attention is the backing. The backing is almost invisible during play, and it is obviously critical to keeping the frame together, but there’s one feature of the backing I haven’t highlighted before.

Between games, when players need to remove or re-arrange the tiles, you’ve got to pick them up from the frame. Since the backing is soft, a player can lightly press up behind a tile to pop up an edge to grab on to.

catan board leather backing fancy leather backing for catan board

Right now, I provide backings made from vegetable-tanned leather, a softer brown leather, and recycled PET felt.

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