Thursday, September 11, 2014

Prototype Question: Should I include money with my board game prototype?

On twitter I posed the following question:

I was curious because I am preparing to make prototype versions of Post Position to send to publishers. 

Why might I think that publishers would not want me to include play money with the game?  Well, I naively thought some publishers prefer to use poker chips over paper money and they would pull out their own poker chips to play the game.

Quickly, other game designers corrected me of this fallacy.

They make a good point.  These folks are being inundated with submissions from other aspiring board game designers.  Time spent trying to setup my game with their own poker chips is time lost playtesting other games.  Even worse, missing an important game component starts the playtesting off on the wrong foot, reducing the chances of my game being picked up.

And if there was any question to doubt other game designers, Crash Games, Dice Hate Me, Stronghold Games, and Tasty Minstrel Games confirmed that they want play money included with the prototype.

To be honest, Tasty Minstrel liked The Cardboard Jungle's idea even more.

Tasty Minstrel never said which currency I had to use, so I am going to see if I can get my hands on Zimbabwe dollars.  The currency is so worthless that Zimbabwe officially abandoned it, meaning it should fit nicely into my prototype budget.


  1. I have heard many places that the prototype should contain absolutely everything needed to play in terms of components.

    I laughed out loud at the Zimbabwe currency idea. I should incorporate that into "East India Company."

    When I was in the Navy, I came home with about 3500 Brazilian Cruzeiros (if I remember the name of the currency correctly). I though it was worth about five dollars at the time. About a year later, I got around to bringing it to a bank to exchange it to U.S. currency. The teller had to check three times, and then told me that it was only worth about 35 cents, and so it wasn't worth their effort to exchange it.

    Maybe that's what I should use in my prototype.

    1. I can see it now, a new movement to lower board game production cost...the importation of worthless currencies.