It goes without saying, of course, that the comic represents an exaggerated version of the truth. In Ireland, police don’t carry guns. But the endless search for baggies, the frustration at a terrible component to bag ratio lurking under the lid of a new purchase, hours spending popping open old games, desperately searching, cupboards raided, Tupperware stolen… I’m sure I don’t need to go on, dear reader. We’ve all been there.
The flipside of this is of course the joy of a good inlay. Opening a box and knowing, just knowing that all the components, cards, miniatures, dice, counters, more cards will all nestle snugly into the plastic tray. Games the likes of Splendor, which, while oversized to be sure, deserves a prize for its perfect inlay, let alone gameplay. Why publishers don’t put a little more care into providing package for their games is a puzzle. Maybe even a game… No? OK, too much of a stretch. I’ll leave it there, then.
One of the most valuable assets that any boardgamer can have is access to a healthy supply of small plastic bags. Because for some reason, so many games (but not all) come with a massive amount of components and only a handful of bags in which to store them. So once the initial euphoria of punching out fresh new cardboard pieces dies down, the time comes to tidy everything away. But to where? Yet again, the only option is to stuff everything into a few large bags, when what you really want to do is to subdivide every piece into its appropriate group. Organisation!
One game that readily springs to mind with this is Eclipse. It’s fabulous, but oh my god, there are just so many different ship part tiles. If these could be sorted into individual little bags, then it would greatly reduce the set-up time. But this would require a lot of little bags, and of the correct size.
But there is another option – inserts. Many creative people have now devised their own custom inserts for their favourite games, including this beautiful one for Eclipse. They help to tidy everything up and might be the best solution for so many games. In fact, I think my next craft project will be to make one of these myself. Glue, anybody?