Tussie Mussie, designed Elizabeth Hargrave and published by Button Shy Games, is an 18-card, I-cut-you-choose game set in Victorian England. It continues the Button Shy model of clever game mechanics that fit in your pocket, and within those design constraints it’s also colorblind friendly!
Tussie Mussie uses double-coding to provide a second distinguishing feature among the different card colors. It also adds a clever trick that I’d consider “triple-coding,” as can be seen in the image below.
Note the scoring condition of the Violet: “+1 for each of your purple cards, including this one.” Along with clarifying how the card is scored, it literally told me that this card’s color is purple. It also named the card Violet. See that the adjacent card is called a Red Tulip.
Jason Tagmire shared the desire and challenge of addressing color vision accessibility in Button Shy’s designs.
“We usually try to double code as much as possible. With 18 cards, everything can be tighter than normal, and color palettes often lean towards thematic over mechanic, but we always have it in mind.”
More Flowers. One new expansion to Tussie Mussie adds two new colors to the mix – orange and green. I start to get nervous seeing yellow, orange, and red in the same game, but it appears from the Kickstarter page that the team has continued to carefully pattern each card to help colorblind players tell them apart.
Ribbons. The current expansion also includes ribbons – new items that can be added to the player’s typical 4-card arrangement for additional scoring. Along with subtle distinguishers that remind me of The Isle of Cats‘ ears-and-tails, each of the ribbon colors is clearly identified by name at the top of the card. Triple coding again!
I’ve had the pleasure to review several of Elizabeth’s games (see Wingspan and Mariposas), and I provided first impressions of the Button Shy 2021 reprint campaign. The Tussie Mussie expansions continue to use clear descriptions and double-coding to support colorblind gamers. From the fun I’ve had with the base game and the look of these new additions, this was an easy Day 1 back for me!
Check out the Tussie Mussie: Expansion Collection campaign for yourself!
Image Credits: Button Shy Games
Note: I’ve had extensive hands-on experience with the base game components. My review of the expansion content is based exclusively on the images in the Kickstarter campaign page. The components and final art may change in the final published version.