A challenge we have tried to solve with the design of the Green Box is how to strike the perfect balance between abstract and thematic visual game design.

Obviously, the components need to be quite generic, otherwise we would limit the number of games you could play with them, but on the other hand we want them to have an intriguing visual appeal, so that they to a certain degree draw the players into the game in the way proper thematic design does.

With this in mind we have tried to design the symbols in such a way that they can be given specific meaning in a given game, as resources, tools, characters, actions etc, but at the same time making  sure they are ambiguous, so they can take on different meaning in different games.

“The Drop”

Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.46.20Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.46.20This symbol looks like a drop of any kind of liquid, so it can represent water (like in Crafty Explorers), oil or blood (in The Gauntlet). Turn it around, and it resembles a map pointer (used in Grenade Salad) or i kind of arrow.

“The Hammers”

Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.44.23screen-shot-2016-09-04-at-23-44-23Crossed tools, most often hammer and pick, are often used to symbolise mining or craft (a smith in Crafty Explorers). Our version can represent any kind of tools, and upside down they might resemble swords (used in Grenade Salad and The Gauntlet).

“The Three Circles”

Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.45.28Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.45.28Designed to look like three logs of lumber, they can represent wood (as in Crafty Explorers), but they may also simply represent three units of anything (used in Grenade Salad).

 

“The Bricks”

Screen Shot 2016-09-04 at 23.46.03screen-shot-2016-09-04-at-23-46-03Easily used to represent building blocks like bricks and stone (for building a house in Crafty Explorers, or a wall to climb across in The Gauntlet), but may also imply a road or something to step on.

 

“The Arrow”

screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-22-11-22screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-22-11-22An obvious choice for representing a piece of weaponry (in Grenade Salad or The Gauntlet), or the craft of the fletcher (in Crafty Explorers), but it is designed also to resemble grain and possibly represent food. Turn it around and it might be a rocket ship.

“The Wheel”

screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-22-11-11screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-22-11-11Perhaps the most ambiguous symbol of all. A wagon wheel (wheelwright in Crafty Explorers), a cogwheel or a steering wheel. A round table. The sun. A shield (in The Gauntlet). An explosion (in Grenade Salad). An eye.

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