Mage Knight is a true tabletop game, in that it usually takes up the entirety of your tabletop. Setup and Teardown time can also detract from the overall experience of playing – especially if you’re in a situation where you can’t leave it out between sessions! The Broken Token Mage Knight Organizer is a product built to try and take some of the pain away from setting the game up and then putting it away.
Disclaimer: I am reviewing this product based on owning the Mage Knight base game and the Lost Legion expansion. I was not able to test it with Krang or Shades of Tesla expansions.
Before The Mage Knight Organizer
To understand why I took a look into finding a storage solution for Mage Knight, it’s important to understand just what the situation looked like beforehand. I present to you: Baggy Hell
This is the box with the original insert removed. The original insert actually works okay for the base game. Adding the Lost Legion expansion increased the amount of components in the box, and things started to get a bit hairy.
Simply opening the box started to become intimidating, and the setup time ended up becoming a prohibitive factor in getting one of my favorite games on the table. Opening up every one of those baggies and then sorting what needed to be sorted took somewhere close to 15+ minutes, and lasted about the same amount of time once finished up.
The Mage Knight Organizer advertised cutting that down considerably. It seemed like it would be worth checking out to find out for sure.
Opening The Beast
The package arrived two days later (thank you, Amazon Prime!). Upon taking a look at the packaging, I was a little bit underwhelmed as a first impression.
At first glance, the Broken Token Mage Knight Organizer seems like it barely had time to get showered and dressed for work.
“Magic Night”?? Are we even talking about the same game? This is starting to look like some bad late 80’s/early 90’s Final Fantasy English translations.
My feeling of being underwhelmed was about to be quickly replaced by polar opposite feeling of being overwhelmed. Opening the Mage Knight Organizer, one of the first things you see is the Assembly Instruction. This is the point where you start to wonder what you’ve gotten yourself into. It’s not quite as bad as an Ikea assembly document, but it’s got teeth.
The Broken Token Mage Knight Organizer is not messing around.
At this point, the package contains a bunch of punch-outs. Should be no problem, right? We’re boardgamers – punching out is approximately 10% of the hobby. The Mage Knight Organizer isn’t made of cardboard, though. Some of us probably even enjoy punching out cardboard. Nobody enjoys punching out wood.
Each of the pieces takes a good bit of time to get out cleanly, and there’s definitely some potential for little baby splinters. It’s also a good idea to bust these out somewhere that you can easily sweep or wipe clean afterwards, because there will be sawdust everywhere.
I did my best to keep the pieces in the Mage Knight box, but even then it isn’t like you can just stack a bunch of them on top of each other. Most of the pieces have a unique shape! You’ll end up having to create a few different piles to have an easy time finding the ones you need.
At the early points in constructing the Mage Knight Organizer, I definitely considered turning back. If it wasn’t for all of the bits already spread around, and the price of it I probably would have put it all back away and given up. This is one instance where the night is darkest before the dawn, or whatever Alfred said.
Once you get past that initial punch of constructing this monstrosity, the effort starts to pay off in a big way.
It takes a little bit of pushing and pulling, and then a bit of glue as well. Once you get that base down in the box, though, the Mage Knight Organizer starts to take form and it’s much easier to pick up some momentum.
The individual pieces fit together really snug, and in some cases require a lot of pressure to fit them in. It almost feels like you’ll break them at some points as well. Once you have them fitting, with some more glue, they hold together really nicely and each little compartment was designed with all of the Mage Knight pieces in mind.
Finally, once all of the pieces have been constructed, you can lay the others down on top of the base and see just how everything fits in the box. The Mage Knight Organizer in the box looks great at this point – but the real test is putting the actual components in!
After the Mage Knight Organizer
The dividers are the last pieces to go in, and you can set them up with a bit of flexibility. This is a great feature and allows you to create card stacks that make the most sense for each gamer. The other awesome part about this is how it creates decks that are easy enough to pull from and play right out of the box!
In a game like Mage Knight, anything that can be left in the box and played from there in an organized manner is absolute gold. The Mage Knight Organizer gives you quite a few of these!
The other compartments easily slide in and out and fit snug on top of the base compartments and frame in the bottom. These trays are also very easy to just pull out and sit on the table to play from.
Monster tokens are a component that created a huge hassle before this, since they were typically in a bag and had to be sorted and all faced the correct direction before playing. Stacking usually was the easiest/neatest way. Now all I have to do is set the tray down and draw a face-down token of the correct color and place them in the back when they’re removed. This has the added benefit of bringing fresh monsters to subsequent games. It’s a minor perk, but one I really enjoy.
Looking back over the process of getting everything together, I want to make it clear that a lot of the writing about the early stages of assembling the Mage Knight Organizer was to really convey the feelings I had when putting it all together. It’s definitely a bit exaggerated, for dramatic effect more than anything.
The reality is that the Broken Token Mage Knight Organizer is worth every ounce of effort it takes to assemble. It is an absolutely excellent accessory to a highly-acclaimed game.
Setting up and tearing down Mage Knight before took somewhere in that 15 minute range. I’m sure that someone who played it more regularly would have a lower setup/teardown time.
This accessory cut both of those times down by anywhere from 5-8 minutes on each end, along with saving time of component management during the actual game.
Now, that kind of time savings might not be a huge difference to some gamers. Prior to having a kid, I wouldn’t have cared that much. If life starts becoming more hectic, though, cutting a game of Mage Knight down by 20-30 minutes could very well mean the difference between getting a game in, or leaving it on the shelf.
I bought the Broken Token Mage Knight Organizer for $32.00. The value of what it provides is worth it, to me. Hopefully sharing my experience with it can help you decide if it’s worth the purchase for you too!