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New (?) Restoration Hardware edition

 
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alwaysPeacock
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 12:40 am    Post subject: New (?) Restoration Hardware edition Reply with quote



Saw this on a Buzzfeed list earlier today. Is this a new offering from RH, or did I just completely miss it the first time around?

Frankly, it looks like the nicest of the Franklin Mint inspired games. It's touted as a reproduction of the first edition though, so I figure the cards don't feature the FM portraits. I would assume since it's RH, the silvery furniture pieces are some kind of metal, versus the painted plastic of the other FM style sets.

Product page
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 1:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No you're right, it's new. But it doesn't really work. Just painting the room items silver doesn't change how elegant the rooms look. I never thought the 1949 Clue edition house looked this nice, especially considering the rudimentary drawings of the rooms. I don't really think this works.

I do wonder what the room cards look like, since the 1949 art work won't match these rooms at all.
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alwaysPeacock
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, I hadn't thought about the clash between the board and the card art. Good point. Then again, I haven't seen the cards, so it's possible RH chose to use the close up pictures of the furniture pieces instead.

As for the furniture, I'd have to see it in person to really judge it. If they're just painted plastic, I'd agree it wouldn't quite work. If they're pewter, though, like the bases of the suspect pawns in the RH games usually are, that could be nice.

I wish Clue had gotten the "Onyx" treatment Monopoly & Scrabble had a few years ago. A premium built, greyscale board with a few pops of color could have looked downright sexy on a game night.


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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

alwaysPeacock wrote:
Oh, I hadn't thought about the clash between the board and the card art. Good point. Then again, I haven't seen the cards, so it's possible RH chose to use the close up pictures of the furniture pieces instead.

As for the furniture, I'd have to see it in person to really judge it. If they're just painted plastic, I'd agree it wouldn't quite work. If they're pewter, though, like the bases of the suspect pawns in the RH games usually are, that could be nice.

I wish Clue had gotten the "Onyx" treatment Monopoly & Scrabble had a few years ago. A premium built, greyscale board with a few pops of color could have looked downright sexy on a game night.



I will all but guarantee they aren't pewter.

And yes it's possible the card art uses the Franklin Mint approach for rooms. Though that would be weird if they use the '49 artwork for everything else. And the Victorian Struzan Character artwork from FM doesn't seem right for such an informal looking game. Maybe they use the '96 Struzan artwork. I'm gonna have to get to an RH now to find out!

It's too bad they didn't take the Giant Clue approach with the 2D board, and removable furniture. I'd sort of like to see a 3D board like this, without the glass top, so that the rooms were open and accessible. Entering a room means putting your token down inside. Then the furniture could be pewter (though it wasn't in the giant edition), and removable for inspection. And of course weapons could be placed on the objects.

Frankly if they're going to paint them in a game like this, I'd rather see them painted to match real objects.

And I definitely agree about the Onyx version of the game. Clue would look very appropriate in black.
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Has anyone seen this edition in person yet?

Do the cards all have the 1949 designs, or do they have updated images reflecting the designs of the new game?
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alwaysPeacock
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I emailed RH about this edition earlier today. From their response:

Quote:
Thank you for contacting RH regarding our Premier Edition Clue®. I appreciate you taking the time to write, and for ensuring that you know all about your pending purchase.

While reviewing this item, the artwork will be from the original 1949 Parker Brothers edition of the game. The furniture pieces are made from cast-metal; the same material used for the weapon pieces and on the bottom of the player pieces.


Followed by the phone number & web link to place an order. So I'm assuming the "cast metal" in this is the same stuff RH used in their bookshelf version a few years ago. I got that one as a gift and can confirm it's quite sturdy stuff, whatever metal it is.
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I see. So the artwork will not match the rooms, which are VERY different. That's unfortunate.

But the furniture is cast metal? That seems odd. I mean they're under glass, and there's no way to remove them, or even touch them. If the rooms were accessible (and that would be a cool new way to market the Franklin Mint edition), then I could understand that. I'm not sure I really believe that. Even the furniture in the Giant edition was still painted resin, and those were to be handled directly.
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 04, 2017 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, I picked up a copy of the Restoration Hardware Premier Edition Clue game.

For starters, most of what the customer service reps told alwaysPeacock is incorrect. I can attest that the furniture pieces under glass are NOT the same pewter as the playing pieces — the are indeed plastic; most likely the same plastic used in all the other editions, just painted silver this time. I’m still perplexed as to why they still paint these things when the technology has long existed to make shiny plastic that looks like metal, but I’m sure it’s cost. Indeed, they changed the website copy to read differently, so as not to imply the furniture pieces are metal.

Quote:
PREMIER EDITION CLUE®
$365 REGULAR
$273 MEMBER
Welcome to Boddy Mansion, where Colonel Mustard awaits you in the lounge with a cordial, a lead pipe and a round of Clue®. Inspired by the original 1949 game, our commemorative version features retro tokens, vintage accents and quaintly furnished rooms beneath glass – the textbook setting for snooping and sleuthing.

HIDE DETAILS -

Retro edition inspired by the original 1949 game
Glass-covered playing surface
Sunken, 3-D rooms with miniature furniture and exacting detail
Wooden tokens with cast-metal bases
Solid wood cabinet with vintage hardware
Designed for play and display, the board does not fold for storage
DIMENSIONS
Overall: 17¾" sq., 3¼"H
Weight: 9 lbs.


There’s not much new here, otherwise besides the silver accents. The board squares are a yellowish/ivory color that tend to be more brown as they expand into the darker corridors towards the board edges. The surrounding border is a dark rusty, red/brown. Generally speaking, in real life, these colors don’t coordinate very well with the original Franklin Mint board artwork, and neither really does the silver accents. This game tries to clean up the formal filigree we’re used to seeing on the various Franklin Mint re-issues, by using simple lines, and rounded-rectangles. The box itself appears to be some kind of real wood veneer which has been distressed. It too is a bit rustic for the formal settings contained within the vignettes. And in perhaps the oddest touch, the Clue logo on one side of the board is a flat black metal plaque. It seems to me, an aged pewter would have been a better choice here to coordinate with the rest of the game.



The game components are essentially the same as the previous RH cloth bookshelf edition, which as essentially a 1949 re-issue. The tokens, and the weapons are all the same. The only difference here is the card Envelope, and Detective Notebook, both of which mirror the same design elements of the game board. The card backs are identical to the 1949 edition, but the faces are the same FM artwork we’ve seen before. Again, instead of gold filigree surrounding them, it’s silver, which doesn’t really go with the colors of the suspect cards. The weapon and room cards are merely photoshopped pieces from gold to silver. At least it’s not the original 1949 card faces, yet again. At least this is something different. However, I find the silver foil much harder to read, both on the cards, and the game board itself. The playing accessories come in a long brown faux leather box, which must be stored separately from the game, and thus prone to loss. What's further perplexing is that the box and instruction booklet are both brown and gold foil, begging the question of why wasn't it silver to match the rest of the game? As it is, it matches nothing.





As for the construction, some definite changes from their previous Premier edition, which I deconstructed here:

http://www.theartofmurder.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=103071#103071

Instead of the solid base which attaches to the top of the game with long screws, it’s a thin panel that fits into the base, which is permanently attached to the top, with numerous nails. This seems to make for a sturdier box, but it creates a pretty major problem — there’s no way to repair the game without completely undermining the construction. I haven’t yet tried to pry the interior side panels off yet, but it’s likely to be a real mess, not easily reassembled. Given the propensity for the furniture to break loose during shipping, I have to wonder what happens to all of the returned units that can’t be repaired. As it stands, this particular edition has seen some of the rooms shift such that the edges can be seen out from under the tile overhang. That was a problem with the earlier edition, but it was previously a very simple repair. This one is definitely not going to be.





All things considered, this is way overpriced for what it is, and doesn’t even really look that nice in person. It might coordinate with someone’s Restoration Hardware home decor, from a distance, but is definitely out of place in many other ways.

I'll report back after I finish disassembling it ...
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Michael
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where did you get it?
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eBay, where else? Wink
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What sort of price are they reaching on the second hand market?
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Obviously it depends on the condition. This particular edition doesn't come up frequently enough to create a baseline, but generally speaking all of them, including the original Premier edition that was the first Franklin Mint re-issue list between $150 and $250. That's still pretty steep when you figure that many of them can still cost $50 to ship from an individual seller. I've even seen the 2D one you just bought at Marshall's sell for $150. This RH version I bought was missing items, and has some damage, so I paid much less for it, hence why I bought it and subsequently dismantled it ...
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alwaysPeacock
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pretty shitty for the customer service rep to flat out lie about the materials used in the game. I would have expected better from a company like RH.

It's a shame this version isn't quite so nice up close. I'd had high hopes from the product photos that there might finally be a nicely built successor to the Franklin Mint game, but apparently not. Confused
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

alwaysPeacock wrote:
Pretty shitty for the customer service rep to flat out lie about the materials used in the game. I would have expected better from a company like RH.

It's a shame this version isn't quite so nice up close. I'd had high hopes from the product photos that there might finally be a nicely built successor to the Franklin Mint game, but apparently not. Confused


This game has a lot of similarities with the Frontgate Edition. They basically just darkened the ends of the paths, and switched to silver, but otherwise the color scheme is the same.


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Last edited by Murder by Death on Tue Jun 13, 2017 3:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a little more on the construction of this game:

After removing the interior side panels which were nailed to the outer frame, you can see three sides were glued in place, prior to adding the nails -- seems like overkill. The front was held in place with nails and the Clue logo plate screwed through -- no glue.




Next, the outer frame was nailed together on the corners. You can see this here -- such cheap construction.




Note this damage on the edge of the Ballroom. This was assembled this way, and passed their quality control!




I had hoped I would be able to fix this, but no. As it turns out, the entire upper board is glued together, unlike the original RH edition. You can see it here in this photo -- all the indentations (the dark areas) are where the board surface is glued down.




The rooms themselves are glued to the board, as well, meaning to repair a crooked room means prying off the glued on game surface, destroying it in the process, and then prying the rooms off the board. It's staggering that this Study was allowed to pass quality control.




Obviously once assembled, there's very little incentive to try and repair it, since it would basically mean destroying the entire board. About the only thing that can be done at this point is repair broken furniture in the rooms, and that still requires completely ripping out the inner side panels.

I had thought about using this game as an open box -- removing the glass and allowing pieces to be set directly into the rooms. But there are a few problems with that:

The board artwork is a pretty thin sheet of card stock, so the edges around the rooms which overhang the press-board under-layer, could be easily damaged. It's really too bad they didn't mount this to thicker cardboard, with room cutouts to make a more flat surface under the glass, to avoid bubbles, dips, and curls, as well as give them something better to align and attach the rooms to.

The second problem, and perhaps more important, is that the rooms aren't really large enough to place many pieces, or easily remove them. If this were the full-sized Franklin Mint dimensions, it would be a different story. But maybe with an extra large set of weapons it might work. I'll try it out sometime and see how well it works. But in order to do it, I'd really have to have a sheet of plexiglass or something with the rooms cutouts to protect the edges of the rooms.

Maybe the answer for these games is to eliminate the furniture from the rooms altogether. The artwork from the Marshall's game, and the Giant Edition could be used to create new flooring to affix to the bottoms to cover the holes. That avoids having to navigate around the furniture, with plenty of rooms to access tokens and weapons. Of course I guess the biggest problem is the dice would roll into the rooms and hit stuff. Maybe this isn't such a good idea ...
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Murder by Death
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm always a little perplexed on the design scheme of these Winning Solutions games. I'm sure Restoration Hardware had something to do with it, but in the end, I question the wisdom of such a rustic presentation, with such formal rooms, and playing cards. Moreover, I don't really understand this brown and beige, with silver accents, color scheme. It's even more perplexing when you consider the card back design in black and white.

The silver on white is hard to read. And it doesn't really work with the brown. Mrs. Peacock is the exception in blue, but Mr. Green above really clashes for my taste. I do like the simplicity of the clean and simple design, but it's kind of lost in the ornate VIctorian world of the characters and decorations.

And lastly, I've never understood why in editions that feature room items by way of identification, that the rooms don't have a different background than the weapons. I realize this all started with the Franklin Mint edition, but at first glance I can't tell if it was Mrs. Peacock with the Couch in the Dining Room, or what we know it to actually be. And while I'm at it, I never get tired of complaining about how lame the couch is for the featured item in the Lounge, especially when it's gilt.




I do have to wonder about the card backs. Why not go brown, with the same simple Clue logo design as the center board space, as they do on all the other luxury editions? Even the original Frontgate 1986 re-issue used the original 1949/86 design on a coordinating brown background -- so why not do something similar here?

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cacums
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That silver and white is awful! The brown/gold looks so much cleaner.

Shame they don't have better eyes approving the work.
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