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Pessimistic Optimist - OM2D PLAY!

In this class everyone was given a game topic for which we should design an online or offline game, its concept, goals, rules and the style as well as the visual language.

My topic

I was given the topic gratitude.

For me, gratitude is a feeling that is particularly closely interwoven with mindfulness. Gratitude can be learned and trained by going deep within oneself or by putting oneself in the shoes of other people and life situations. This was a guiding principle while I was developing my board game „Pessimistic Optimist“.

Pessimistic Optimist

„Pessimistic Optimist“ is a board- and role-playing game for anyone old (or young) enough to be creative and put themselves in other people's shoes convincingly.

The goal of the game is to collect as many gratitude coins as possible to finish as the grateful winner. During the game, you can collect coins by coming up with funny and creative stories matching to your drawn character or by putting your luck to the test on the coin fields.



Sort the character and story cards and shuffle them. Place the story cards face down in the center of the board. Place your game pieces on the starting fields. Each player draws a character card and places it in front of them, visible to their teammates. You take over the character of your drawn person for the entire game.


The first player who reaches the finish line receives a bonus of 2 coins. 

  1. One of the players starts to roll the dice and moves his piece forward by the corresponding number of fields forward. If he is standing on a special field, he must perform the action. If he moves to a normal the next player takes his turn. 

  2. The first player who reaches the finish line receives a bonus of 2 coins. The game ends when all participants have reached the finish line. Then it is counted how many coins each player has played.

Special Fields

Gratitude Field Draw a card from the story pile. Think of a negative, funny, creative story from your character's life that corresponds to the word you drew. This story should be based on at least two key points on your person card. Afterwards, all players vote on whether your story was convincing. If you were convincing, you get a coin, but if they don't vote for you, nothing happens.

Ingratitude Fields Draw a card from the story pile. Think of a positive, fun, creative story about your life according to the word you drew. This story should be based on at least two key points on your person card. Afterwards, all players vote on whether your story was convincing. If you were able to convince them, you will not receive a coin. If not, one coin is deducted.

Coin Fields If you come to this special field, your fellow player can decide whether they give you (one or more) coin(s) from themselves. If one of the generous donors later comes to a coin field, he gets back the double from the coin bank.

Rule Stick to the instructions and always stay in your character.

Finding the right Style


After coming up with a concept for my game and refining it hour by hour, I started thinking about the style of my board game. I experimented with different styles and finally decided to go with the Papercut style. Even the font I developed for the headline looks like it was cut out with scissors. This style gives the individual elements of my game three-dimensionality and a creative touch.

First Implementations

I decided to develop the following elements = 

  • game instructions

  • 2 types of playing cards

  • game board

  • board game box

  • game pieces

  • coins


My first prototypes / prints

Spielanleitung  V2-03.jpgSpielanleitung  V2-03.jpg
Spielanleitung  V2_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielanleitung  V2_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg
Spielanleitung  V2-02.jpgSpielanleitung  V2-02.jpg

From the feedback in the course, I found that in my game instructions I should simplify the form taken up from the game board, create more hierarchy in the text, and revise the layout. I also wanted to work more pictorially to lighten up the game instructions visually.

Personenkarte 1_Zeichenfläche 1.pngPersonenkarte 1_Zeichenfläche 1.png
Personenkarte 1-02.pngPersonenkarte 1-02.png

I wanted to work on my cards with a second contrast color instead of monochrome and lighten the shadows a bit.

Spielkarte 1_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielkarte 1_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg

I also wanted to rework the game board and put some text on it, as well as fill in the unused space around the playing fields.

Spielkarton_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielkarton_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg
Spielkarton V2_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielkarton V2_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg

For the game box, I decided to create my own font instead of using the Montserrat font I usually use, and not partially obscure it behind the waveforms. 

In the penultimate lesson, I decided to flesh out the narrower sides of the box more, as they had seemed relatively empty.

Final Results

Spielanleitung  V3_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielanleitung  V3_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg
Spielanleitung  V3-02.jpgSpielanleitung  V3-02.jpg

Personenkarte 1.pngPersonenkarte 1.png
Personenkarte 1.2 Odine-2.pngPersonenkarte 1.2 Odine-2.png
Personenkarte 1.2 Manni-2.pngPersonenkarte 1.2 Manni-2.png
Personenkarte 1.2 Klaus-1.pngPersonenkarte 1.2 Klaus-1.png
Personenkarte 1.2 Klaus-2.pngPersonenkarte 1.2 Klaus-2.png

Storykarte 1.2 3-02.pngStorykarte 1.2 3-02.png
Storykarte Rückseite_Zeichenfläche 1.pngStorykarte Rückseite_Zeichenfläche 1.png
Storykarte 1.2 4-02.pngStorykarte 1.2 4-02.png

spielbrettfinal_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgspielbrettfinal_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg
Spielbrett Rückseite_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgSpielbrett Rückseite_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg

front and back-design of the game board

coins_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgcoins_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg

Spielfiguren.pdf PDF Spielfiguren.pdf

Mock Up "Pessimistic Optimist"

Mock-Up Storykarte final.jpgMock-Up Storykarte final.jpg
Mock-Up Personenkarte.jpgMock-Up Personenkarte.jpg
Mock Up Spielbrett.jpgMock Up Spielbrett.jpg
Mock Up-Box Besser.jpgMock Up-Box Besser.jpg

Spielfiguren.pdf PDF Spielfiguren.pdf

Mock Up Coin final_Zeichenfläche 1.jpgMock Up Coin final_Zeichenfläche 1.jpg

Mock Up Anleitung 2.jpgMock Up Anleitung 2.jpg


Integriertes Design

Art des Projekts

Studienarbeit im ersten Studienabschnitt


foto: Prof. Alejandro Lecuna

Zugehöriger Workspace



Wintersemester 2021 / 2022