A Few of our Projects...

RT Beauty Med TN

“Road Trip” Game

This game is probably our most pleasant surprise, having sold over 60,000 units to date (almost enough to fill CenturyLink Field in Seattle!)  The packaging is certainly the hero on this one; we worked for months with our factory to create a tin that would replicate a vintage “Airstream” trailer.  But the game inside is equally strong.  Winner of over 9 industry awards, it is a fun word game that combines elements of “Scattergories” and “Mad Libs” in a dash across the USA.  A vintage map playing surface, wood paneled station wagons, a unique letter die, and hundreds of fun cards make “Road Trip” a winner for all ages.

mahjongg

American Mah Jongg Set

A large national catalog brand was looking for a portable, economical Mah Jongg game that their customers would see as a real statement piece for home or travel.  We walked the booths of the Temple Street Night Market in Hong Kong looking for inspiration, and found several old Mah Jongg sets in beautiful wooden boxes, inlaid with ancient Chinese script on parchment paper – perfect!!!  We bought a few up, sent them to our developers, and came through with this elegant travel set at a very competitive price.  Mission accomplished!

Fuzzy Dice Spread TN

“Fuzzy Dice” Game

“Fuzzy Dice” came on the heels of the successful  “Bananagrams” game – which is a word game in a banana shaped zipper pouch.  A National Retailer was looking for fast, fun games in iconic packaging.  What could be more iconic than a set of vintage “fuzzy dice”?  We worked fast to develop a series of games using a custom deck of cards and oversized dice, all zipped up neatly inside a set of real fuzzy dice!  Our last challenge was to create retail packaging that would properly display the product on shelf.  Working with our designer and factory partner, we came up with a tray pack in which the dice seem to be “hanging” from a rear view mirror.  Creative and functional - this item is currently open for license.

Mancala Spread TN

Cultural Classics “Mancala”

There are literally hundreds of Mancala games on the market.  But none that really capture the rich tradition, beauty, and elegance of the oldest Mancala boards originating in Africa centuries ago.  We wanted to create a product that would hold true to some of the imagery and themes from the game’s African roots, while still hitting a price point that was key to our retail client.  Through modern processes, we were able to create replica trading beads, a distressed wood finish, and even a wood burn on the outside of the board in what many consumers said was the nicest Mancala set they had ever seen!  This item is currently open for license.

 Pachisi Spread TN

Cultural Classics “Pachisi”

When a retailer was looking for an “authentic” Parcheesi set, we dug in and did our homework in creating this vintage “Pachisi” set (which is the original spelling of the name).   In ancient India, it turns out that the game was often played on a cloth mat, using “throwing sticks” instead of dice, and beehive-shaped mover pieces.  Our factory accepted the challenge of bringing together a printed cloth, wooden pieces, and contemporary packaging, and our designer captured a palette that made for a rich work of art.  We added a pocket at the end of the mat to act as a storage area, allowing the whole game to roll up and be tied together for easy transport.  This item is currently open for license.


 
revised captains mistress TN 

Cultural Classics “Captain’s Mistress”

While there are numerous versions of this original “Connect 4” game on the market, our retailer wanted something that was a step up in quality and price.  We sought out a mild wood with good heft and depth, and beautiful marbles that resemble the glass “floats” that were so prevalent in old time seafaring.  In order to command the premium price, we created a window package so the consumer could see the quality of the materials inside.  We also enhanced the box with a maritime wood burn seal to add to the authenticity.

 dontloseyourshirt

“Don’t Lose Your Shirt”

Addressing the latest trend toward all things “Retro”, we worked with one of the premier Game Inventors in the industry to develop this fast, fun game which would come packaged in an old school bowling bag.  Complete with an assortment of colorful bowling shirt cards and vintage poker chips, “Don’t Lose Your Shirt” is a perfect addition to poker night, Bunko parties, or as a gift for your favorite game fan.  This item is currently open for license.

 These Go To Eleven Spread TN

“These Go to 11” Game

A national retailer was looking for a game that would appeal to their consumer base of avid music fans.  Rather than just slap together another music trivia game, we decided to go all out on “These Go to 11” – a dice game in which players build their guitar collection by getting as close to “11” through a series of rolls.  A fast & furious game with a few surprising twists, the highlight of the product is the amplifier tin, and the cool die cut guitar heads – each modeled after a famous style.  A must for rock & roll fans, dice game lovers, and aficionados of the movie “This Is Spinal Tap”!  This item is currently open for license.

 Vintage Marbles white background TN

Vintage Marbles Set

This set was developed for a Fathers’ Day promotion at a National Retail chain.  They wanted to get “back to the basics” and offer products that would appeal to the nostalgic side of fatherhood.  What could be more nostalgic than getting down on the floor and shooting marbles with your kiddos?  We wanted the entire set to harken back to a better time, so we included a real wooden shooter and bridge, felt “knuckle down” mat, and a bag of 50’s style marbles.  For the carrying case, we designed a canvas bag that was similar to the old time “Klein” tool bag that so many of our grandfathers used to haul wrenches around.  A retro color palette completes this competitively priced set.  This item is currently open for license.

stonesoftheworld 

Stones of the World Solitaire

Sometimes in our travels, we will see a piece of craftsmanship that inspire an entire product development.  Such was the case with this beautiful solitaire set.  The swivel lid was a feature we saw on the road in Asia, and the notion of storing playing pieces in a hidden compartment seemed to be a nice touch.  We’ve seen round wooden solitaire boards with marbles before, but the structure of this board was unique, and we dressed it up with real stones from around the world.  The rules detail each of the stones, their origin, and significance.  Finally, a deck of cards with an elegant graphic completes the set. This item is currently open for license.

headliners 

“Headliners” hidden message figures

Back in the 60’s, Pride Creations out of Japan created a line of novelty figures called “Popsies”.  These figures were handpainted wooden cylinders that, when pushed down, revealed a hidden message that “popped” out of their heads.  We found them on ebay and immediately saw the opportunity for a revival!  Working with a few collectible industry vets and our development team, we are bringing this wonderful concept back to life as “Headliners”.  Done in ABS plastic and a screen printing process, these figures are a definite upgrade from the old wooden versions.  And with replaceable message boards the possibilities are endless.  Launching soon!

Microbes Attack Large

Microbes Attack Brain Teaser

When we first saw this puzzle, from the inventor of “Kanoodle®”, we knew it was a hit.  However, the packaging was bland and all of the instructions were in Taiwanese!  We worked closely with the inventor and our development team to recreate the puzzle with the “Microbes” theme.  Using a high clarity plastic and an intricate mold, we put the puzzle in a petri dish style case; our designer created a B-movie look for the packaging, with an acetate window so that the pieces inside could be in clear view at retail. We topped it off with a special section in the instruction book highlighting fun facts about microbes – a nice touch to add to the educational element.  This item is currently open for license.

highlights pic TN

Find It® Game - Highlights® Version.

Over the years, we’ve developed a number of custom Find It® Games for our retailer base.  One of the best examples is this “Highlights for Childrens®” version that was created as an exclusive for a national retail chain.  We worked with the Find It® team as well as the Highlights® team to create a fun new version that included a “Hidden Pictures®” book and a vibrant packaging look.  Despite being an in & out seasonal item, this version sold over 20,000 units.  We continue to develop derivatives and custom exclusives for retailers under the Find It® brand, most recently bringing an “Elf on the Shelf” version to market.

celtic challenge

“Celtic Challenge” solitaire game

We found the basis for this elegant game at the Chicago Toy & Game Inventor’s Convention in Chicago.  The inventor had mocked up the concept on small wooden chips and a felt mat.  We found it to be addictive, but struggled with how to bring it to life for our client.  Deciding to go the “coffee table game” route, we went with a wooden base, and engineered the original interlocking tiles out of clay.  Our factory partner found an efficient way to make the mold for the tiles, and after several tries figured out how to “antique” the tile surface in a way that made this a game for the ages.  While it is essentially a solitaire derivative, the rich look and feel makes “Celtic Challenge” seem like it predates even the earliest solitaire games. 

statefair bingo

“State Fair” Bingo

At the request of a national chain, we sourced an old fashioned bingo  spinner cage that became the centerpiece of this “State Fair Bingo” set.  The buyer was enamored by a set of vintage bingo cards she had found, featuring sliding windows and advertisements from small local businesses.  We replicated the look and feel of the cards, even going so far as to fabricate local “businesses” that advertised on the cards.  Despite a hefty price point – the set was $25 at wholesale – the retailer sold this set well, and kept it in the assortment for a number of years.  It is currently being offered by University Games.

bowling knights

“Bowling Knights” tabletop bowling pins

At Front Porch Classics, we wanted to create a new format for our games – packaging that would set our games apart and work for a variety of games or activities.  We settled on a tube, and “Bowling Knights” was one of our first products to launch in this format.  With a fun tongue-in-cheek name and whimsical pieces, “Bowling Knights” was an instant hit, and continues to be sold under the Front Porch umbrella at University Games.

Skee Bean laid out TN

“Skee Bean” outdoor skill set

As part of an outdoor play initiative, we developed a series of games featuring sturdy woods like teak, durable materials, and easy portability.  “Skee Bean” was probably one of our best examples.  The teal rings all nest inside each other for storage, yet when laid out make a playing surface that is over 6’ long.  For the graphics, we decided on a vintage carnival font and bright color palette.  The bean bags featured seed packet images, and the waxed canvas zipper pouch made storage a breeze.  We’ve gotten feedback from skeeball clubs across the country that this is one of their favorite products!

Derek Tiki Purple SM TN

Derek Yaniger “Party Puzzle Pack”

For this series, we contracted with internationally known “beat artist” Derek Yaniger to create a line of puzzles that would all feature a cocktail / tiki theme, and be challenging enough for the real puzzle enthusiast.  The monochromatic color palette added a degree of difficulty, and the artwork was worthy of framing.  But the icing on the cake was that each puzzle came with a shot glass or rocks glass; each glass featured a unique Derek image printed on the side in full color.  The glass showed through a window in the box, allowing consumers to choose their style and prompting them to collect all 3 limited edition puzzles.  Possibly the most fun part of this project was getting “iced in” with Derek at some pub in Atlanta – he is one cool cat!

big kahuna

“Big Kahuna” Tiki Solitaire set

Another Fathers’ Day gift request, we designed this set to resemble an old style cigar box.  Enhanced with Polynesian dancers and tiki graphics, the box itself was a work of art.  Inside, a beefy block of wood served as the solitaire board.  The coup de grace was the “ivory” looking pegs that were carved to resemble small tiki statues.  We searched through reams of tiki images before finding the ones that were just right.  The juxtaposition of the antiqued “ivory” against the rich wood of the board made for a great looking set.  We added a custom deck of cards to complete the set, and all at a great cost from the factory.  This item is currently open for license.