What board game accessory has made a huge difference?

As someone who hasn't really ventured into the board game accesory space, I am curious, what specific game accesory or cateogry for multiple games has made a hug difference in your board gaming life?

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Premium User13 days ago

I have a few that I use often.

Premium User13 days ago

I was looking at that level up platform.  i sometimes play some rather large games with a thin table so it's tempting.

Premium User13 days ago

It's pricey, which is really the only downside. Mine was a gift, so I didn't have to think about that, but it's a bit past "no brainer" price range in my eyes. It's still very cool, and I recommend it, but you could get 2 really good games for the price of the smallest one.

Premium User13 days ago

Is it fiddly to setup?  Does it take a lot of space when it's put away?  Just curious.  I'm not likely to get it but if it's convenient I can keep an eye out for a sale or something.

Premium User13 days ago

It takes similar space to a standard board game, I'd say, at least the size I got does (3x2). It comes with a bag to carry all of the pieces. It's not too hard to set up - slot the pieces together, then screw the legs in, done.

Premium User13 days ago

Worth keeping an eye out for it then if I can get it inexpensively.

Premium User13 days ago

Yeah for sure!

11 days ago

I second the bit trays.  They are so useful. I've taken to storing some of my games with the pieces in the bit trays, it makes set up so much easier as all of the pieces are already in the trays ready to go.  Take the top off the tray and you're ready to play.  I did this for our Pandemic Legacy Season 0 game sessions and it make set up and tear down so much nicer.  Then once we finished I was able to reclaim the trays to use for something else.  The trays from Board Game Geek Market really are pretty affordable compared to the value you are getting.  I would recommend 6 single, 4 double and 2 triple trays to start.  The collapsable bowls from the BGG store are really nice as well and since they fold flat are perfect for traveling or thowing into a box so they are always available.  They function as an okay dice tray in a pinch as well.

I 3D printed a dozen of these stackable game bits w funnel  so I have one in all of the primary colors you can imagine.  I've given away 2 dozen of them to friends and gamers as well as they are super handy.  The funnel design makes putting everything away so simple, just pour back into the bag. 

I have 2 dice trays (1 large and 1 med) that are useful for games that roll a lot of dice and you don't want the dice knocking over game pieces (looking at your Risk or Wasteland Express, etc)

I mostly got the 3D printer for printing custom game inserts but that's a little on the expensive side :)  I will say that printing the Terraforming Mars overlays was a great first investment in my 3D printer. 

 

Moderator Level 110 days ago

I've only purchased/requested (as gifts) a few games accessories: 

  • Game trayz from BGG- I use these to store game pieces in the box when space is available (#The Quacks of Quedlinburg - triple trayz and i don't have to sort colors or open so many bags) and have extra on hand for playing games that don't (#Raiders of Scythia).
  • A dice tray, not too big or too small, helps keep the dice from going all over the table or knocking things over on the board. 
  • A play mat, 3 feet by 4 feet, helps reduce light glare on the table and also makes it easier to pick cards and components off the table. 
  • I'm hoping to get some standard sizes of 3mil bags to store components in. (I'll include the website in an edit when i get home late tomorrow.) Bags also help when I can put each player's starting pieces in it's own bag and hand one to each player. Some games have huge bags for small amounts of pieces, others have really thin bags, and still others have random sizes. I save bags from my games and have gone through them trying to find the right size bag to fit each component in order to better organize the space inside the box, but every game uses slightly different size bags and i find it annoying (why differences of 1/8 inch?)  I have a bunch of some sizes, run out of others, and have random sizes of still others.  I'd rather spend less money on bags and game trayz than more on custom inserts. 
  • I also have made good use of my small label maker from my home office to print labels for each bag in the game box. This greatly speeds up game take down so everyone can help put sending away in the right bag to fit each component. 
  • I've only bought card sleeves for one game- #Cartographers: A Roll Player Tale. I've played it enough that it's starting to show some wear and new friends recently introduced me to sleeving. I don't have any plans at the moment to sleeve other games. 

Premium User7 days ago

oh man, LOVE my label maker!

Premium User13 days ago

I don't have really fancy things but some inexpensive improvements I use often:

  • Cheap Condiment containers from the dollar store for components that are frequently taken or spent.
  • Plastic bags from the dollar store of various sizes to group components for easy setup and put away.
  • Laminator: Get the Scotch guard one for $30 CDN and 100 5mm sheets and you are good to upgrade the odd flimsy player aid or whatnot.  Super easy to use and helps a lot!
  • Iron on paper.  Ok, you need to have a laser printer and it is about $1 a sheet (CDN) but you can buy 100 plain cotton bags for almost nothing and then customize them to your hearts content.  It's not a ton of work and saves a ton of money!

That's it really.

11 days ago

The longer I stay in the hobby the more I realize that I don't need to buy extra bags for storage.  I've collected a whole gallon size bag filled with other storage bags.  It got so bad that I sorted the bags into small, medium and large storage bags.  I did try this solution with the gloomhaven monsters initially but that was such a terrible idea that I ended up using 2 plastic bead containers from a hobby store to store all of the monsters and that worked a lot nicer.

Premium User10 days ago

Over time I have also collected a bunch. I think the reason why I like them is to make sure I right size the bags. Some games give you these huge bags for a small amount of components.  

When you are fitting underwater cities and it's expansions in the main box you really need to have bags that are the right size. 

The bead containers for gloomhaven are definitely a must have. 

Premium User7 days ago

A) Things that speed up play: game inserts or some sort of box organization system.

B) Making play easier: Card holders, for your hand or the deck/discard, bit trays (if the insert doesn't servie this function)

C) Protecting the game: card sleeves

D) Making the game subjectively more fun: upgraded coins and/or tokens. Some expansions

E) all of the above: Board game table

 

Supporter7 days ago

I'm not usually into too many "accessories" generally.  One exception is metal coins in games that you handle them a lot.  Really makes that part of the game fun.

I've only ever bought one insert and it was for #Clans of Caledonia and it was one of the best purchases I've made.  Set up and tear down were awful before but now it's cake.

I am personally actively opposed to sleeving cards ever so that will never be on my radar.

11 days ago

Lately, I have been trying to dress up clothes with themed prints for a particular game. I can also choose T-shirts with the clothing logos of the popular game. Sometimes these are baseball caps or bracelets.

13 days ago

Indispensable: card sleeves

Great to have: custom inserts that speed up set-up  time (not all do)

Nice to have: playmat

Premium User13 days ago

I didn't even think about card sleeves and custom inserts but yes I use those all the time