Design the box


Example box showing the front with the product name, an image and a tagline
Participants design the box for a new product (even one that will never be sold in a box). In doing so, they identify key features and selling points for the product.

To use this game, ask participants to design the box for a product. On the front of the box, they should include:

  • The name of the product
  • A tagline describing the product

On the back of the box, they should include:

  • Key features (3-5 features only)
  • Constraints or requirements (again, just a short list)

The game should be played with a physical box, post-it notes and thick markers (thick so people don’t go into a lot of detail).

How to


You’ll need:

  • A product, service or system to be the focus of the activity
  • Something to be the ‘box’, such as old cereal boxes covered in white paper.
  • Fat markers

You may also prepare an instruction sheet and an example of the activity.


Back of an example box showing features and constraintsStart by explaining what the aims of the activity are Рto come up with ideas and features for a product and succinctly describe them.Explain the product or service idea. You may want to provide a lot of background, so participants focus on their ideas in some detail. Or you may want to provide only very sketchy background so participants focus on generating high level ideas. Get people into teams (teams of 3-5 work well). Allow enough time for the teams to discuss the idea, focus on what they would like to present, and prepare their box. This may take anywhere between 15 minutes and an hour, depending on the complexity of the topic.When everyone has prepared their box, ask each team to explain what they have created and some of their rationale.


There is little work needed to analyse the outcomes from this game. As the key idea of this game is to identify key features, pay attention to these and the underlying rationale for including them.

Related links

Using design games. Jess McMullin, Boxes and Arrows

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