Snakes and Ladders of Social Networking is a board game initially conceived Dr Anne Grand and Helen Dooley. Along with Prof. Rick Holliman, they found that the intimacy and well-understood etiquette of a board game – taking turns, moving forward, conversation, all promoted a related and rich discussion which they were able to harness as an ice-breaker at workshops they were hosting.

The design team: l-r Helen Donelan, Ann Grand, Peter Devine and Richard Holliman. Photo: Gareth Davies.

Anne and Helen commissioned me to develop a traditional boxed board game. I designed a board, cards and instructions for playing, as well as a poster, and packaging which means the game can be used for workshops, training, or department/faculty discussions.

In principle the job was a straightforward design task. The board layout, the illustrations of the snakes and the packaging where all developed within the general consensus of what these types of objects should look like. The budget was small and the team wanted the work completed soon as they were eager to get started. Finding printers who can produce a board to the standard I was looking for took some sourcing, and the game box was very difficult with generic solutions being the only real option.

The snakes and ladders board
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