In 2019, the Asmodee Group launched a new studio, Gamegenic (Gamegen!c) to produce tabletop gaming accessories. Their deck boxes, card sleeves, playmats, and card binders are mainly aimed at collectible card games (CCGs), but can also be used for roleplaying games, board games or wargaming products that also have a large amount of card, dice, and token components. Launching this month is the Gamegenic Essentials Line and following up from our first article, where we looked at the new Deck Boxes, Card Binders, and Pocket Pages, in this article, we'll look at the new sleeves and playmats from the Essentials Line.
You can buy all your game sleeves and accessories from our Tabletop Sponsor, Firestorm Games.
Gamegenic split their sleeves into 2 types, Prime and Matte Prime. These are available for standard-sized cards and also in a color-coded game-specific line of board game sleeves.
Prime / Matte Prime Sleeves
Both Prime and Matte Prime feature high-quality materials to protect your cards during use and also deep-colored backs for tournament play. The Matte Prime sleeves are dulled down on the side that the card shows through to avoid reflections during play. Reflections can be distracting during long tournament play, but it also means that you and your opponent will be able to read the cards on the table, despite the angle or possible light reflection.
The Matte Sleeves do dull down the colors and in a game like the L5R LCG, with its incredible artwork, it does feel like a shame to not see it in full, but seeing them in use under the light with reflections does show the benefit of the Matte.
Inner sleeves are specially designed sleeves that allow you to double-sleeve a card. Single sleeving is adequate protection for shuffling and standard use, but a single sleeve leaves a gap where the card goes into the sleeve. Double-sleeving involves putting a sleeve the other way around on a card, before putting it in the outer sleeve so that the card is completely covered. This protects against spills and also cuts and scrapes as the outer sleeve takes the brunt of the damage. Gamegenic Inner Sleeves are designed to fit tight around the card so that it fits snug in the Matte Prime or Prime sleeve.
We found the inner sleeves with both the Matte Prime and Prime sleeves to be quite tight and would pull the sleeve out when slotting in. When you push them back in from the top, it creates a little air bubble that needs to be pressed out each time. It does give it a tight fit but could be time-consuming if double-sleeving a lot of cards.
Prime Board Game Sleeves / Matte Board Game Sleeves
Prime and Matte board game sleeves have the same features as the card game sleeves above, but they are sold in board game specific packs designed to perfectly fit those games. These follow on from FFG's previous color-coded system and also add new game systems to the available cards.
Worth specific mention are the Clear Exoshields available in Prime and Matte and are specific for Keyforge. Clear backs are essential for Keyforge tournament play and the Exoshield take the double-sleeved Keyforge cards perfectly.
There are 2 types of playmats available in the Gamegenic Essentials Line. The Playmat XP and the Prime Playmat (which also comes in an XL variant).
The Gamegenic Playmat XP is an incredible product. It's 3mm thick and lays flat as soon as it's unrolled. There is no movement on the tableside, and cards side easily across its surface with no friction. It feels thick and robust but rolls easily for transport. The Playmat XP is now our playmat of choice.
If you are considering it, there's a nice touch on the outside of the box with a sample fabric of both the top and bottom of the mat available for you to feel.
Prime Playmat / Prime Playmat XL
The Prime Playmat and Prime Playmat XL are the same quality, but the XL is an extra 19cm longer for larger playing space. They are just as slide resistant on the bottom as the XP, but you can feel the difference on the top of the playmat to the XP. Using the Prime playmat feels smooth, but when both are side by side for comparison, the Playmat XP is well worth the extra investment.
The Playmat Tube fits both the Playmat XP and Prime Playmat (including the XL variant). The Playmat Tube also fits into the Dungeon 1100+ from our previous article. The Tube is lightweight and the plastic will protect your playmats from scratches and water damage, but it doesn't feel thick enough to protect it from blunt trauma, and could shatter with enough force. The cap on the end is a rubber cap, that flits tight against the top for a great, waterproof seal, but with wear, it could loosen.
We'd like to see a Playmat Tube XP in the future, with a fixed vacuum sealed lid or catch and a thick plastic tube to protect the XP.
What do you think of the products from the Gamegenic Essentials Line? Which is your preferred sleeve? Are you a single or double-sleever? Let us know in the comments below.
All of the Gamegenic products used to produce this article were provided by Asmodee UK.