Card Sleeves, Inserts, & Upgraded Pieces


I actually wanted to post about this before, but the recent FLGS post where we were talking about our budget made me really want to ask about it.

I, for the first time ever, just ordered a wooden insert for Clans of Caledonia.  Normally I don't mind plastic bagging it but that game is an organizational hot mess.

It had me wondering what other people do?  As much as I'd love metal coins for Scythe (and upgraded resources) and Viticulture I always see the price and think, that is all money that could go to another game.  And while inserts seem really nice, I find most games pack up easily enough with what they already have.

Sleeving for me is an easy skip, not only because of cost.  I love the look (I know you can get clear sleeves), but also the feel of the quality of work the designers put into making cards and I just don't want to cover it up.  I know this opens it up to get damaged but my group and I just make sure we take good care when playing games.

Where do others stand?  Get it all? Maybe a few things if it's a favorite game? Only if it's absolutely necessary (I need to save my cash for new games)?

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Supporter13 months ago

Definitely a baggie guy here. You guys should see my Imperial Assault Core box. Probably 20 different baggies in there. 

I don’t have the budget to spend on fancy stuff right now. Maybe someday when my collection is to a point where I’m happy with it. If that ever happens. 

13 months ago

The only cards I've purchased sleeves for are for my X-Wing cards. And Mistborn: House War (came with the Kickstarter). Generally, I won't sleeve. I am always very careful with my cards and components, and those I play with are as well. 

Even if I love a game a ton, I still have yet to get an insert or anything more than sleeves for the aforementioned games. I'd love them, and they're great, but I have a large collection of baggies of various sizes that I use to keep everything together.

Supporter13 months ago

I don’t sleeve either. Totally ruins the feel of the game. 

Supporter13 months ago

Totally, and like I said, I pretty much always bag and 99% of the time that is just fine and dandy.  

Supporter13 months ago

I don't sleeve anything and haven't had an issue at this point.  However, I have put coin cases on the order tokens for Forbidden Stars.  If they get dinged and you can tell what they are they can't be replaced easily.  I also don't tend to play the same game over and over so sleeves for me are probably a waste.

With regards to "blinging" out a game, I tend not to do it but I have in one case: Scythe.  I love the game, I love the aesthetics and for some reason my subconscious decided I'm going to go all out for this one game.  I have the legendary box, all the expansions, coins, realistic resources, etc.  I bought nicer containers for the bits and pieces.    I haven't bought an insert though.  The cost is just too much for my fairly cheap tendencies.  I don't find setup to be an issue anyway.

Edited to add: Even when I bought the bling I waited until I found it at a decent price.  

Supporter13 months ago

Nice!  I don't sleeve because I don't want to pay for it, but also because I don't like how they look.  So much of the aesthetic for me is both the art and the material the cards are made of.

I also thought about blinging Scythe because it's one of my favorite games.  I really wanted to start with metal coins, I just think I'd love the way they feel.  I've actually moved away from really wanting the realistic resources, I don't know why but now I enjoy just the wooden pieces it comes with.

I ended up springing for an insert for Clans of Caledonia because the plastic bag situation was out of control for that game.  It's just going to get the game to the table more.  The first time I played it set up and tear down was such a drag.

Cheers & Happy Gaming!

Supporter12 months ago

I've started looking in to more inexpensive alternatives to baggies.  Basically things you can open up and put out on the table. 

One game I bought used came with the bits in little sauce containers.  Inexpensive, worked well, and can be opened up right on the table.

I've also picked up inexpensive little plastic holders from the dollar store.  (Board gamers best friend!)  They screw in to each other so as long as the box is tall enough you can hold quite a few resources in a small space.  

Lots of options out there if you have the time to look for the right bits.

Supporter12 months ago

Oh yeah, I totally forgot about that, of course sometimes it depends on the size of the box.  For one game I absolutely had to have an insert.

However, I use bead cases from Michael's for Imperial Assault, to hold things like the wound tokens and such.  Definitely helps with set up and tear down.

Also, plenty of rubber bands or hair ties (I live with 5 girls).

Supporter13 months ago

I haven't seen the need yet, especially with the kind of games that I've been getting. Now, if I had Quacks, I think I would've been real tempted to get the upgraded bits (they sure are pricey though).

Edit: To answer your question, I would reserve upgrades for absolute favorite games only (I haven't played Quacks yet by the way, but have a feeling I'd really like it. And the upgraded bits feel like it would up the overall experience of the game for the players).

13 months ago

I look at it from a stance of “Will this improve my experience”. I have Gaia Project (similar to Clans of Caledonia), and I am one more set up and tear down from getting an insert just to keep my sanity! It’s a quality of life or experience choice!! 

Supporter13 months ago

Totally, great way to put it.  Most of the time bags are just fine.  But one play into Clans and I knew that an insert would help me get it out more often.  Especially when I'm needing to get some solo gaming in.  I'd never get it out otherwise.  Too much work.  Set up and tear down would take as long as playing the game solo. 

13 months ago

If I didn't have to open 45 mini bags (twice) to play a game...thatd be greeaaaatttt
Linked Games
Viticulture: Essential Edition
Clans of Caledonia