This project has been a long time coming. When I finished my Forbidden Stars insert I was satisfied. I had created an insert for a brand new game where none existed that I could find. And I had designed it in SketchUp. That experience sated me for a time, not to mention life busyness. But I always knew I would come back since it is just so much fun.

Enter: Mission Red Planet.

When I start the process of creating an insert I look around BGG and Google to find some inspiration. In the case of this game, I found this one. I really liked the way this insert used a tiered section to store the board pieces. So I started there.

I really like the way this insert turned out. All of the board set up components are in one three-tiered section (Mars, Launch Pads, ? Resource tokens). The Locations and Point tokens come out sorted and ready to play. Each player gets their pieces and cards in one box. The game can be set up and taken down with minimal effort and it is stored well.

This is a must for inserts. I’m not just trying to store a game. I want to lower the barrier to getting it to the table. Being able to set a game up accomplishes this and makes a game more appealing to get out, especially when you are a player with limited time.

Ok, I’ll quit talking now. Here are the plans.

5mm Foam Core
Self-healing cutting mat
Metal ruler with cork back
Elmer’s Glue All
Retractable Utility Knife
Dressmaker pins

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If you haven’t built a foam core insert before check out our Foam Core Basics post.

One of your fellow astute builders left a very important comment below that I want to highlight. Wayne brought up the order he would recommend this insert be built to avoid rework. Here is the order he suggested:

  1.  Build the base and walls first, but do not put any interior dividers in yet.
  2. Next build the Player Component Boxes as this will give you the correct location of the Long Interior Divider.
  3. Now build the Token Lift Base as this will give the correct position of the Short Interior Divider.
  4. Proceed in any order from this point.

Thank you, Wayne for taking the time to give something back to the group!


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Lessons Learned:
  • SketchUp is a great tool and a great place to start. But make sure if you use it you test out your plans in the real world as thoroughly as possible before assembling.
  • Cutout pieces make for great storage and setup but are are time-consuming and hard to do with the tools I have. I need to look for some new tools to make these easier.