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GameTalk - Aesthetic Design of Counters

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bayonetbrant:
Counters as artwork - whaddaya think?!

Cyrano:
I assume here you're speaking of all formats -- digital and "analog" -- that use counters.  In the case of the latter, I've got some of my favorites that I'll ferret out and share when I get home, but I will always have a squishy spot inside for the simple elegance of the "Panzer Leader" design.  The notion that Tiller's Campaign Series might be getting an update to bring that aesthetic to the system makes me, well, moist.

In terms of the former, Barth and I have had a running back-and-forth about the counter art, or lack thereof, in Tiller's Panzer Campaigns.  He gives them demerits for only indicating unit type and forcing the player to look to the info box for more detail.  For me, games like "Decisive Campaigns" and "War in the East" become an unreadable mess if I try to use the counters themselves for information.  It's not that they're bad counters, quite the contrary; I think the layout of the former is particularly good, but I do not process information from a computer screen in a way that makes that layout work for me.  Inevitably for me simpler will be better.

*sigh*

Panzer Leader...

Best,

Jim
"Cyrano"
:/7)

mirth:
I've recently been playing Fire in the Sky. It has some of the most unusual and visually striking counters and components I've ever encountered in a board game. It all works though.

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/14083/fire-sky-great-pacific-war-1941-1945











Jamm:
I like a nice layout with good art.
Too much of anything can ruin them.
It's a delicate balance.

Of course I don't mind pimping my own  :)

Strela:

--- Quote from: Cyrano on August 17, 2015, 11:12:01 AM ---I assume here you're speaking of all formats -- digital and "analog" -- that use counters.  In the case of the latter, I've got some of my favorites that I'll ferret out and share when I get home, but I will always have a squishy spot inside for the simple elegance of the "Panzer Leader" design.  The notion that Tiller's Campaign Series might be getting an update to bring that aesthetic to the system makes me, well, moist.

In terms of the former, Barth and I have had a running back-and-forth about the counter art, or lack thereof, in Tiller's Panzer Campaigns.  He gives them demerits for only indicating unit type and forcing the player to look to the info box for more detail.  For me, games like "Decisive Campaigns" and "War in the East" become an unreadable mess if I try to use the counters themselves for information.  It's not that they're bad counters, quite the contrary; I think the layout of the former is particularly good, but I do not process information from a computer screen in a way that makes that layout work for me.  Inevitably for me simpler will be better.

*sigh*

Panzer Leader...

Best,

Jim
"Cyrano"
:/7)

--- End quote ---


Interesting Jim,

Having done the counters in Tiller's Panzer Battles - Kursk, that's why we gave three choices; Nato Symbols, Side on (same graphic as the unit box) and top down. We hoped that would cover most player's fetishes. That said, I did experiment with text/numbers on counters and only resorted to the unit equipment in text on the Nato counters. With a counter size of roughly 50 bytes by 50 bytes, there is a real issue with legibility of text and figures on counters.

Here are some example of the three types at different zoom levels.






Of interest there will be less need for 'multiple' counter sizes in the future as mobiles are driving 'scalable' zoom and there will be much more of our 'pinchable' zoom rather than set zoom levels.

David

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