Sizes of boxes that feel... right

This comes partly inspired from the “Last game bought” comment from @acharlie1377 regarding boxes that feel right. Also, the latest review of Search for Planet X has factored into it.

I am looking at my collection, and two games really stand out for it: my recently purchased Brass: Lancashire, and my copy of Battle for Rokugan. Such sensible boxes. They feel so sleek and not oversized in any way, considering the amount of components inside and the amount of gameplay they bring within that space. If I had seen them on the shop instead of buying them online I would have bought them a lot earlier.

Which games do you recommend only because of this, or the size of the box makes a really good factor for buying them?


Only? None, but GMT games like Twilight Struggle tend to have satisfying boxes. Packed tight and very sturdy.


Oh, no, I am not saying that the game box made you buy it, but games that you really enjoy the box size and packing.

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Brass: Lancs is excellent. It’s about the 30x30 cam size but half the depth.

For me it’s any card game that comes in that double deck sized box. Such as 6Nimmt and the old German version of No Thanks.


I will take this opportunity to moan again about the hero realms storage box which is 3 times larger than the hero realms cards. I would not have bought if I knew this would deprive me of two spaces for good size games.

On topic watergate is the perfect size.


I think Ticket to Ride is the quintessential board game box size. I also have a thing for surprinsgly large boards, so something that concertinas out of a standard box always gets a good airing.

I find it much easier to appreciate a bad box (looking at you Gloomhaven and Jaws of the Lion), where it is nigh on impossible to get everything back in when you’ve finished.

Brass Birmingham is a great box (and I assume Lancashire is the same size). The only problem is that expect the edge to be black so I can never find it on my shelves.

Decrypto is a very pleasing box.


Paperback has a lovely box, which still works nicely when cards are sleeved (personally I appreciate allowances for sleeving in most games, but particularly in those which involve frequent shuffling).

For that matter, I’m pretty sure that a lot of care has been taken with the box in most (if not all) releases from Fowers Games.



“'Cause what you see you might not get
And we can bet, so don’t you get souped yet
Scheming on a thing that’s a mirage
I’m trying to tell you now, it’s sabotage”


FFG’s box sizes for Battle for Rokugan and Whitehall Mystery are very pleasing, especially because there’s a fair amount packed into those boxes.

I also have a soft spot for games feel like substantial experiences but can fit upright in a bookcase - think Decrypto-sized, or even Z-man Games’ slim boxes (Pandemic, Chinatown, Fae).

All my big boxes are hidden away in cupboards.


Doesn’t really count: the mini-box I designed and 3d-printed for Splendor that holds all the components in a quarter the volume. Good solid heft to it.

The tin for Iota:


The original wooden box for Junk Art with its compartments and sliding lid is very pleasing to me, and feels appropriate for all the wooden components.


I saw this thread, looked behind me and I’ll let the image speak for itself.

I admit it wasn’t precisely like that and I am miffed that the Dune box isn’t a perfect fit, but the way Rokugan and Paladins line up is just nice…

PS: those were all boxes I was going to name for this thread because I like their sizes a lot :slight_smile: in case it wasn’t obvious. Particularly Root and Pax Pamir… I like squares but a plain rectangle with out fancy equal sides is also fine.


I like the box for Tokyo Metro a lot:

I think I read somewhere that all of the games in the Tokyo series were designed to be able to fit inside a standard Japanese vending machine…


Going by my shelf, I’d pick
High Society - tiny box, beautiful finish and art
Kanagawa - same, fits the components and stunning by itself
Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective - so SATISFYING to have all the A4 books in a quality slipcase

Also as @yashima said, Dune. It’s compact and totally filled, and could easily have been produced in a double sized box with wasted space but is quite slim instead.


My 2018 Z-Man edition of Condottiere is another pleasing box on my shelves. I realise the older version is smaller, but I find the new box pretty dinky and attractive. I have a feeling the larger size is another allowance for card sleeving (and obviously YMMV on that being a good thing, depending on whether or not you choose to sleeve the cards).

I actually think I quite like any box which is an unusual size, but just right for its contents. Maybe some of these games don’t fit perfectly on the shelf with all the ‘standard’ boxes, but they might slot nicely into some gap which would otherwise be unused; and if I take them anywhere then I feel that they haven’t wasted any space in my bags; and as much as I like most of my boxes to line up nicely, the anomalies can be eye-catching for that reason alone.


For me, Search for Planet X still feels too big a box for the game. It’s not so much a standard game in a slightly smaller box, as a small box game in a slightly smaller than standard box. It’s a deluxified version of a back of a magazine puzzle! Almost the entire game is just a pad of paper, everything else is just frivolity. They’re similar to roll and writes in that way.

As with a lot of games the size of the board was the limiting factor. Otherwise could have easily been the size of Welcome to or the small/medium Osprey game boxes (King is Dead 2nd ed, or Cryptid). I don’t think many people would consider Ganz Schon Clever with a large board as reasonable. Considering the amount of information the board provides in Planet X, it does not need to be the size that it is.

Moving away from my spicy hot hot takes…

More generally, I kinda dislike the direction these conversations lead. I like that boxes give space to expansions. I dislike games with perfect size boxes and decent inserts that don’t fit the expansions in, with expansions inevitably having boxes that are too large for their contents but leave no choice because they don’t go in the core box (7 Wonders Duel!!!).

I love love love Pandemic, because the first expansion includes an insert that fits the first AND second expansions in the core box perfectly. Rarely see that level of forward planning. And it makes me not want to buy the third expansion, because where would it go?!

Having games with slimmer boxes would be appreciated for storage, but I don’t think general ‘size’ makes much of a difference. There are only two types of sizes: those that need to go on a shelf, and those that can be thrown in a drawer or box. As long as a box fits on the shelf, width and height are kinda irrelevant.


I, too, like the amount of game in the box to be in line with the size of the box. Small games small boxes, bigger games are allowed bigger boxes. I especially like it when a smaller box packs a punch above it’s weight class.

I am with you on that one. Games that know they will have expansions should consider fitting those in with the base game (and pack the expansion into as small a package as possible)

I am likely not buying the expansion for Paladins because I do not think I’ll get it to fit in the base box and I think it’s a waste of material that El Dorado and both of its expansions come in a fullsize game box. At least, everything ends up fitting in the base game box.

I don’t think Brass is getting any expansions so I am guessing those boxes are just a really good fit.

I didn’t mention Obsession above but that’s a game where the designer thought a lot about how to fit the expansions and the base game together in an organized way and that is one reason I enjoy getting out that game so much because the way it is organized inside the box is just so satisfying.

I like building inserts but I also love it when a game arrives here with something neat (and working) already in place–especially when that something is not made of plastic. As nice as gametrayz™ are for organization the extra amount of plastic that is added to games that wouldn’t need it…

PS: I am willing to forgive Root for not being able to fit in more than the first expansion because I kind of think they never anticipated the popularity of that game.


It reminded me of roll-and-writes as well. I can’t help but look at The Search from Planet X as competitive puzzle-solving. They can make the box and the playing pieces as nice as they want, but ultimately you’re spending the game looking at one boring-looking worksheet, and another slightly jazzed-up worksheet. It’s the kind of game you could even scale down to a cartographers-sized box if you replaced the board with a handful of cards that do the same amount of admin (admittedly, it would be fiddlier).


I love a good, book-sized box. It’s a weird qualifier, but includes games like The Crew, Ganz Schon Clever, Super-Skill Pinball 4-Cade, The Lost Expedition, and to a lesser extent, big-box games like Nusfjord or Agricola. It’s a perfect size to carry, hold, or even slip into a laptop bag.

Also, I’m probably in a significant minority on this, but I despise square boxes. When they’re small it’s not an enormous issue, but I could easily rattle off ten games I have stopped myself from buying specifically due to them coming in a square, Ticket-to-Ride-esque box.


Yeah, I think Root was a mixture of not anticipating the popularity and a decision that they’d release a big box whenever they’re done with the game. They refused to release a big box with the latest expansion for that reason, so there’s at least one more expansion to expect sometime in the future (although from interviews it doesn’t sound like Cole knows what or when that will be).