1. Audience identification and research
this project, I was able to choose which target audience I wanted to
This being said, I strategically chose and
researched about an audience that is usually not interested in chess at
all. That Audience can be generally described as “tourists visiting Portugal”.
My research focused on particular points like
interests, income level, aesthetic preferences, and consumer
2. Product ideation and planning
well-defined target audience, I started to imagine what the ideal chess
game would look like for that audience.
At this stage, the
physical properties of the product (size, weight, materials, etc…)
started to be taken into account.
3. Visual language
Chess as well defined
semiotics which make the pieces recognizable. While
redesigning the pieces, I had to make sure that they
stayed recognizable even though they have a completely
different form from the original ones.
The pattern also had
to be carefully thought out to make sure it was different from the
classical one and attractive to the target audience while still being
recognized by any player.
4. Color palette
As I usually do whenever I
get to choose the style, I went for a
very simple and plain color palette. The main colors
are red and green, which directly
represent the Portuguese flag. The third color used, in
less quantity, was dark blue that can be found in
traditional Portuguese cutlery.
are of great contrast between each other and make it
easy, even for people with sight problems, to identify
the different pieces and teams in the game.
The board was
kept black and white to make sure that this game was still recognized as
chess and not any other board game.
5. Building the 2D version
To make this
game suitable for the digital world, in case I ever wanted to publish it
online, I designed a 2d version of it and built it from
cardboard and MDF.
The pieces were made
using laser cutting, while the board was hand-cuted
from cardboard. Both the pieces and the board were
hand-painted, the pieces with acrylic ink and the board
with colored pencils.
For this version of the product, I
also designed and built a simple package for the product to be sold
It is also with mentioning that
I operated and prepared files for both the professional
printer and laser cutter by my own.
6. Building the 3D version
Designing the 3D
version of the game was a matter of expanding the game previously
created on the Z-axis. However, this is not as simple as it sounds.
this stage, I had to worry about the materials,
ergonomics, weight, and
durability of the game.
For this version of
the game, I decided to make something bigger and heavier that was meant
to stay in a table instead of being carried around like
the 2D version. The materials used were PLA for the
pieces and both OSB and 5mm
acrylic for the playing board.
were 3D printed, while the board was cut in carpentry
that I have access to. Again, it is important to mention that
I prepared all the files and operated all the machines used.
Since this brand’s only market
is the one represented by “Tourists visiting Portugal”, the logo and
color scheme were chosen based on that audience.
previously mentioned, the colors used in the product were blue, red and
green. However, because green and red represented different teams while
blue is just a decorative color, I chose
blue as the main brand color
to make the brand unbiased towards the game.
The logo was
created by using a simplified silhouette of the Portuguese geographical
area and joining it with a modified sans-serif font.
name “Saudade” is a word from the Portuguese vocabulary that has
no translation in any language.
Final thoughts and reflections
During this 10week project, I got to learn a lot about the (guided)
development of a project from market research to the final product.
Most of these lessons have already been used in other personal
projects present in this portfolio.
I particularly enjoyed
the building part where I got to use the laser cutter and the
carpentry again, as well as trying 3D printing for the first time
(none of the equipment used belonged to the university).
I’ll be glad to answer any of your questions or give further
on any topic.
Drop me a line at
or contact me through this page.