Board Games with the best Design

All crazy about premium design board games

Do you feel an irrepressible attraction to those board games with such beautiful and curated covers, featuring refined and balanced graphics?
Well, we too, who before being publishers we’re big gamers, suffering exactly like you from compulsive purchases based almost exclusively on the graphic appeal of some board games.

In recent years, board games with a high level of design have become more and more distinguished.

Once upon a time there was the board game made of cardboard and plastic…

Once upon a time there were players not careful about style and details. Those were the years of Monopoly and Risk and the goal was simply to play and not to enjoy a certain aesthetic quality that satisfies the eye and the touch.

This is a new era for board games

Once upon a time, precisely, people didn’t pay attention to these details, but today the ever-growing board game sector is changing and after the ’80s we can fully speak of a new era for board games.

Many board games are produced every year, thanks to crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter that allow even those who are not publishers to produce and sell a board game (see our Kickstarter campaign). At the same time, the game industry has made huge strides in aesthetics and design.

And here we are at the top five!

With that being said, we are bringing you some of our favorite board games with a great design.

We will not be judging the gameplay here but only the aesthetics. Consider that we at Arcastudio are true design addicts (it’s our job, just look at how much care we put into the creation of OTTO)

1) Canvas

A surprising artistic game

The visual impact of the materials and illustrations of Canvas is undoubtedly what strikes you about this board game.

A true artistic board game, so much so that the box itself has the double function of a painting that can be hung on the wall thanks to a special slot on the back. Brave choice that of the box, which obeys perfectly to the law of design “Less is more” as on the front there is not even the title of the game and the illustration continues on the edges as a real canvas.

Canvas, a board game with a unique design

The information that is usually found on the front of the box has been moved to the top edge from where the box can be opened like a drawer.

What about the contents of the box? The component we liked best is the game board which is actually a rolled up fabric mat.

2) Omnia

A true design project

We chose Omnia that despite being a card game has been treated and managed as a real design project. We really liked the illustrations, curated by Roberta Esposito, who was able to synthesize with extreme elegance and simplicity the life and works of Leonardo da Vinci. This board game in fact celebrates the great master Leonardo, making us take a dip in the middle of the Italian Renaissance with high quality materials and great attention to every detail. It is no coincidence that this game has won the award of “Best Artwork – unpublished game 2019“.

3) Pax Pamir

A board game with great materials

We have chosen Pax Pamir mainly for the quality of materials: very high! The components of this game are really crazy:

  • the fabric dashboard is really well-made;
  • the resin blocks are a pleasure to the touch;
  • the wooden counters, very well cared for;
  • the cards of high quality and the boards in cardboard rather thick.

In short, we fell in love with the materials immediately, once opened the box.

4) Wavelength

A dive into 70s design

The psychedelic graphics of the box leave no doubt: with Wavelength we teleport to the 70s.

And once you open the box?

The main element is the plastic wheel that reminds us of the design of vintage household appliances of the past, but also the internal organizer, so clean and tidy, gives us an idea of how essential forms count in this game. The predominant Material is plastic, which as you know we do not like very much, but given the context to which the game refers, we can say that “it’s ok”.

5) OTTO Game Over

The board game with a unique design

Finally OTTO Game Over, our lucky baby.

We are obviously biased, but the elegance of this board game is certainly undeniable.
The materials we used are just paper, cardboard, fabric and wood. Basically, you won’t touch anything that’s plastic when opening the box of OTTO.

OTTO Game Over - a game with a crazy design

The cardstock organizer allowed us to play with OTTO’s graphics through the covers of the rulebooks.

But what makes this game a true aesthetic board game are the essential and universal shapes you can form with the tiles and the choice of colors.

A somewhat countertrendy choice: a sober and functional black and white on which the yellow, red, blue and green of the wooden scoreboards stand out.

OTTO Game Over - board game with a great design

Have we intrigued you?

What will be the game play of such a pure and abstract board game?