Glossary - Board Game Design

Board Game Design is the process of developing and creating a board game. It involves the entire art of deploying aesthetic and design procedures to build board games for one purpose or the other. Board game designers apply principles and elements of design to create rules, goals, and challenges to design the game. Game developers take different approaches to design and develop board games. There are no right and wrong approaches, but some steps are more commendable. According to, these steps emphasize the design aspect of the process. This helps produce the desired interactions among players and spectators.

Two Key Factors of Board Game Design

During board game design, game developers first consider the theme of the game. Be it the literal theme or the mechanical aspects of the game’s resources. The theme of a board game is crucial for replayability and randomization. Therefore it is tackled early on in the design process.  Next is the goal of the board game. Board game designers consider and decide how players win or lose during gameplay. At this stage, the setting of the game and rules of gameplay are integrated. Since these two largely determine how players overcome obstacles and proceed through the game to completion.

Steps of Board Game Design

A comprehensive list of board game design mechanic and steps create a theme-driven design. This is advantageous because it offers a dynamic back method of designing the game. Also, coming up with a theme helps to narrow down the mechanics needed. Anytime developers encounter issues in mechanics, all they have to do is to resort to the theme. One key question they ask is, “What would take place in a real-life situation?” Board game design has some similarities with web design and film directing. In that, the goal of the director (board game designer) is to deliver a rich and immersive experience to players (audience).