One of the recent trends in game pimping is custom metal coins. Long a staple of LARPing (Live-Action Role Playing), allowing players to help immerse themselves more fully into their game world, custom metal coins have been pushing into the board game arena both as separate game accessories and standard components offered by the publisher themselves.
Recently, I received my Kickstarter pledge for Fantasy Coins, LLC second run of gaming coins and picked up some great custom coins for a couple of games in my collection.
First up is a set of custom coins for Lords of Waterdeep. Custom coins are available from other manufactures for Waterdeep but they tend to be pretty expensive. Fantasy Coins’ Kickstarter made the set relatively inexpensive.
At the top of the picture, you can see the standard cardboard coins that come with Waterdeep. The custom coins are a bit larger and definitely give you that weighted-coin feel that you are looking for in nice coins. The designs are great and it is a really great addition to the game. Combined with the custom DnDeeples, my Waterdeep game is becoming as pimped out as my own custom creations.
Epic Coins has a different version of a coin set for Waterdeep. I don’t have them but they look to have the same heft and detail (though a different design). However, they are considerably more expensive.
I also picked up a set of Fantasy Coins’ “credit” coins that work well for sci-fi games like Netrunner and, specifically to me, Race for the Galaxy. Race for the Galaxy has these cardboard chit victory point markers that, while unique to the game system, are actually awkward and a little difficult to use with new players.
The Fantasy Coins credit coins give the player some heft to the victory point tokens and are large enough to easily spot how many victory points a player has.
Publishers are noticing the appeal of custom metal coins as well and some are including them as standard options in the game. Space Cowboys‘ 2014 game, Black Fleet, came with metal coins as a standard and was one of the first games I saw that treated the concept as a standard practice.
Most games that offered metal coins before offered them as part of a deluxe package or was announced with a lot of fanfare. Black Fleet surprised customers without any announcement of the upgrade and it generated a lot of buzz when it was released.
Ironically enough, these metal coins are upgrading the already upgraded plastic coins that came with the kickstarter. The retail copy comes with standard cardboard coins so CMON went a little overboard with the pimped coin options for their game.
Not quite in the same realm of usable coins for monetary mechanics or victory point tracking, some publishers are making custom metal coins in the style of the older “challenge coin” tradition. I’ve seen this notably in a recent crop of Fantasy Flight Star Wars games.
These are massive coins with great detail and are quite heavy. Since several of these games require a random way to determine which player has initiative, a coin flip is a nice pimped out way to accomplish it. These coins were extremely rare when they came out several years ago as prize support but are getting a resurgence in a new crop of Organize Play support.
I’ll leave you with a nice link from Reddit user FlakyPieCrust that catalogs some great custom coin resources to pimp out your game with.