Case Study

L’Attaque – Board game restoration and re-design for 1920s game relaunch

To celebrate their 100th anniversary this year, Gibsons wanted to launch an extra-special copy of one of their first ever games, L’Attaque, and teamed up with Greybox Creative to manage the design.

L’Attaque was the first of the ‘big four’ military-themed, strategy-based games from Gibsons and was sold alongside Dover Patrol and Aviation in the 20th century. First invented in 1908 by Mademoiselle Hermance Edan, Gibsons obtained the rights to distribute L’Attaque in English-speaking countries from the 1920s and it was printed and manufactured from their premises in Aldersgate Street, London, until 1940, when their site was destroyed in The Blitz. Originally marketed as the ‘game to rival chess’, copies of L’Attaque are featured in various historical museums, including the V&A in London.

Gibsons had limited copies of the original game and no digital artwork files, so they required Greybox Creative to scan and retouch every single element. This lengthy process included everything from the playing pieces to the rules and the box artwork, and because the original box was so flimsy, they had to be extra careful when handling the components.

Gibsons wanted a design that would celebrate their 100th anniversary and remind customers of the original game. Therefore, Greybox Creative decided to use a 1940s version of the game as inspiration and stick to the same colour palette and silhouette design. The colours were enhanced to stand out on shelf and Gibsons’ special centenary badge was proudly placed on the front of the box. 

Gibsons decided to include the original rules inside the box as a memento for the customer, so the original rules, as well as an updated version, were laid out using a typewriter-style typeface.
Finally, each playing piece had to be scanned, edited and enhanced which was a long and meticulous process as there were a total of 52 playing pieces in the game. Each piece was backed with either a blue or maroon colour which complements the entire design.
Gibsons were thrilled with the finished product and the new version of L’Attaque took centre stage at many of their 2019 trade shows. The vintage design with its eye-catching red and blue colour scheme makes the box stand out on-shelf and draw customers in. L’Attaque is already performing well in John Lewis and Gibsons are expecting positive sales during the upcoming AW19 season.

Scope of Work

  • Packaging design and artwork
  • Artwork restoration