Pimp My Board Game

a pursuit of fruitless endeavors and endless refinements

Month: June 2014

Ticket to Ride: 10th Anniversary

One of the first hobby board games I came to appreciate was Ticket to Ride by Alan Moon.  Such a simple, yet effective game, I’ve found that very few casual games elicit the nervous end game anxiety that this one can. Being a great game that can be shared with gamers and non-gamers alike, I was happy to see Days of Wonder (DoW) produce an upgraded “Anniversary” edition.  I’ve often wanted to create a larger scaled version of the game and pimp out it’s contents like I’ve seen at GenCon (taken from Tony Hope Romero’s post on io9):

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In the beginning

When I first got into the hobby of board games, I had virtually no game collection to speak of and so I was more into the “playing and acquiring of new games” aspect of the hobby. Too busy with the enjoyment of experiencing all the classics for the first time, I had no real reason to pimp out games. I had played role-playing games (RPGs) and Magic: the Gathering growing up but never did any modifications.  RPGs always had a heavy modification component as you built your own adventures or painted minis but it seemed to be so tied into the overall game experience that it was hard to have one without the other. In a way, an RPG background helped me most with future pimping projects.

The first game I ever knowingly pimped out was Last Night on Earth. This zombie apocalypse game from Flying Frog Productions was a favorite of mine and the more my game group played it, the more the theme and atmosphere really came through and engaged us. I was researching more information on the game on Boardgamegeek.com (BGG) and saw a lot of players painting up their miniatures. I am by no means a professional minis painter so, while the images looked great, I largely skipped them and looked deeper into the BGG entry for interesting discussions on the game. That all changed when I came across David Bezio’s painting article on BoardGameGeek.

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Welcome to Pimp My Board Game…

I buy games.  I play games. And then I find it’s not enough.  Not enough to spend hours on board game hobby sites reading about them. Not enough to come up with variants and rules tweaks. No. I have to go the extra mile and modify the game’s very core- its components.  I pimp games.

Not long after I started collecting and playing board games away from your mainstream titles, I started tinkering with the game bits of my favorite games to make the game uniquely my own. Sometimes these tinkerings were to enhance the experience by cosmetically improving the game while other times I would strive to improve the functionality of the game. I found this niche aspect of the board gaming hobby highly appealing, sometimes as much as actually playing the games themselves. The more I looked into “pimping” my board games, the more I found others doing the same thing.

In this blog series, I aim to explore the board gaming hobby through the pimping aspect of the industry. I will show various techniques I use to pimp out games in my collection as well as highlight past, present, and future work I’ve done or will be doing. I will also discuss the reasons why we feel the need to spend so much extra time and money improving a game beyond what a professional publisher has already developed for market release. I encourage you to comment on anything posted, sharing insight into your reasons or techniques when pimping out a favorite game or asking questions on anything you see.  Enjoy!

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