New Viz Collaboration: Pandemic the Board Game (Created in Feb 2020)

This blog post was written and due to be released in February 2020...and then the unthinkable happened.  

For Christmas in 2019, we bought our son the board game, Pandemic.  Unlike most games that we are used to playing, this is a team game where you work together.  You either win as a team or lose as a team.  We tried it and absolutely loved it!

Just a few days later, my brother Ken and his family came to town.  We asked if he’d like to play and he obliged, then informed us that he had bought that same game for his son this Christmas as well – twinning!  He had not played it yet, so we played and he loved it too!

The more I played, the more I stared at the game board.  The map (which you can see here) was gorgeous and as with many things I see throughout this world, I wanted to build it in Tableau.  I chatted with Ken and we decided to do it as a collaboration.  

We built this viz in February 2020 and then the unthinkable happened....a true Pandemic struck.  We thought it was in our best interest to wait to share just didn't make sense.  Then my wife and I (along with many friends) were diagnosed with COVID-19.  

It is now December, about nine months into the Pandemic and even though cases are still high, Ken and I figured it was probably time to release this viz.  It's not meant to downplay the virus in any way, but it is just one way for us to have a bit of fun.  Please know that this was designed long before we really even knew what COVID-19 was.  

Okay, that the actual board game, the city marks are intentionally spaced away from each other to provide ample room for game play.  We decided that we would plot the city marks at their actual center latitude and longitudes and connect them via makeline. 

The map was built in Mapbox and the city marks were built in PowerPoint using icons from the Noun Project.  Everything was brought into Tableau, plotted at actual lat/longs, and then connected via Makepoint and Makeline.  Users can then hover over a city mark to show that city and all connecting cities.  This was actually very tricky, but was solved using a combination of parameter actions and set actions.  I'm not going to give it away, but you may notice something a bit different about the functionality in this viz than you've seen in the past...I'll tell you about that later this week.

We hope you enjoy our viz collaboration, Pandemic!  Click the image below to be directed to the interactive version.  For more information and interactivity, press the “CLICK HERE” section at the top right of the visualization.

Kevin Flerlage, December 15, 2020

1 comment:

  1. Great job! This is one of my favorite games and I love what you have done with it and Tableau!


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