As we get prepared to launch Campaign Trail on Kickstarter tomorrow, I want to make sure that we offer the game at a fair price to everyone.

So I decided to revisit The Price is Right! I had written last year at this time about pricing games based on box size and component count. The article generated a lot of interest and many comments. Most people wanted to see me dig deeper, to see what the pricing model looked like when taking type of component into account.

I was able to come up with the following tool to take into account various component types. Try it yourself, just enter the total amount of each type of component into the boxes and press the button to get a suggested price for your game.

List the number of each of these types of components in your game:

Paper:        Cardboard:   

Wood:        Plastic:   


How did I get here? Well let’s dig a little deeper into where this tool came from.


We left off with a chart showing the price per component compared with number of components:

Price per component-01

This shows us that, given each component weighted identically, the average price of a game is $0.17 per component with games with fewer components priced at a higher price per component than games with a lower component count. We’re going to walk through this process and show how Campaign Trail fits, and what the number say the price should be. Campaign Trail has a total of 581 components. So, according to this graph, there would be two ways to calculate a price (by average price per component and by the trendline price per component)

  • $98.77 – Cost using $0.17/component (average price)
  • $75.53 – Cost using $0.13/component (trendline price)


Now, can we expand on this and take into account the actual type of components in a game?


The first thing I had to do was find out what are the common types of components found in most games? There are dozens of various components that are found in games (cards, dice, cubes, resource tokens, tiles, bags, etc). I decided that evaluating each of these individually was outside the scope of what I am trying to accomplish. Instead, I decided to group components into 4 basic categories:

  • Paper – cards, mats, rulebooks, score sheets, etc
  • Cardboard – boards, counters, tokens, tiles, etc
  • Wood – cubes, resources, meeples, pawns, etc
  • Plastic – gems, resources, miniatures, player pieces, etc


I found that most game components fit into one of these categories. The notable exceptions are glass (like the glass stones in Viticulture and Stones of Fate) and cloth (like the cloth bag in Village). Next, I looked up the games I used in my previous research and recorded the number of each of these types of components they had. Some games have a predominance of just 1 type of component (a deckbuilder like Dominion is all cards for example). Others were spread out and had a similar amount of each type (Dungeon Petz has almost equal amounts of all 4 types).

I then found an equation for the trendline in the price per component graph above so that I could compare each game with the trendline and determine if its type of components influenced how far off of the trendline it was. I then put all this data into a scatter plot to get a good feel for how components affected pricing.

Scatter Plot-01

Each quadrant represents one of the types of components. I broke the games down into 1-component games (represented by blue), 2-component games (represented by orange), 3-component games (represented by purple), and 4-component games (represented by green). The circles are for those games that have a price that is below the trendline (in the price per component graph given earlier) and the size of the circle is a scaled value of how much below they are. The squares are for those games that have a price that is above the trendline and the size of the square is a scaled value of how much above they are. And the diamonds represent those games that are on the trendline.

The red X represents where Campaign Trail would be on the plot, being composed of mostely wooden bits, cards, and a few cardboard tokens. It would be almost straight on the diagonal between paper and wood and pulled to the cardboard side just slightly.

Let’s take a look at each color individually and see what kind of patterns we can pull out.


Games with only 1 type of component

It’s clear when looking at games that are primarily 1 component type (I used every other component type <10%) that they only come in 2 subsets, paper or cardboard. Also, you can see here that these types of games are consistantly under the trendline for pricing, meaning they are generally cheaper games.


 Games with 2 types of components

First, notice there are 5 variations of two component games, represented by the red elipses. Most 2 component games come in some combination of paper and cardboard and are priced below the trend for price per component. However I did notice the small section highlighted by the yellow elipse where some of these games that are mostly paper and cardboard are priced above the trend. I did a little more digging and found that these are games that are mostly cards and chits but contain a few miniatures as well (i.e. Star Wars: X-wing), moving them slightly over toward the plastic side and making them a little more expensive. The other thing you can notice from this chart is that plastic and wood are really the premium components. For each 2 component set that contains either paper/cardboard on one side and plastic/wood on the other side, the price goes up as you get closer to the plastic/wood side.


Scatter Plot - 3 component-01

The games with 3 components come without either plastic or wood. Each one has both paper and cardboard. The data shows that those with a higher percentage of plastic components are generally priced higher. However, overall, games with 3 types of components tend to be priced higher (per component relative to the trendline) than all other games.

Campaign Trail is in the group of Paper/Cardboard/Wood and appears to be in a section where games are a little underpriced from the trendline. So Campaign Trail will eventually be a little less than $75.83 the trendline gave us.


Scatter Plot - 4 component-01

Games that have all 4 components tend to be very near (but just below) the trendline. These games follow pretty standard pricing patterns.


This was my question after doing all this research. In an attempt to fit this all together, I created trend graphs of how each component contributed to a game being above or below the trend for price per component.

Component Trends-01

These graphs show the deviation (0 being exactly on trend) from the trend that I showed in the very first graph. For each component a pattern emerges based on the percentage of that component that is found in the game (percentage is given along the x-axis).

I was able to use these to construct the formula used in the tool above. It is important to keep in mind that this formula does not take into account box size, which we discussed in part one. When pricing a game please keep both this price per component and box size in mind. For example when I put in our numbers for Campaign Trail, this is what I got out:

Campaign Trail Results-01

The formula does seem to overestimate a bit for those 3 component games with large component counts. However, I know that based on box size, Campaign Trail would be around $63 MSRP. Given that and given the $75 price via using the trendline from the beginning, we think that $69.99 if a fair retail price for this game. But you can get it for only $49 through our Kickstarter starting tomorrow!

Facebook Ad - coming to Kickstarter-01


I will continue to refine this model. The next step is to see if I can finetune this model a bit more and then incoporate other data such as box size, play length, and game weight directly into the model. Let me know if you use the model and if it gives you good results.