What? No girl villagers?
Here’s a little background that I thought you might find interesting, and provides the reason you don’t see any girl villager artwork in Ultimate Werewolf.
When I created Ultimate Werewolf back in 2006, one of the reasons I did so was because of the limitations of other commercial versions of Werewolf at the time, and because of repeated plays with those versions showed some of their flaws, which to me indicated a lack of playtesting with the final artwork/design before it was shipped out.
One of the more egregious examples of this is in the Lupus in Tabula set from DaVinci/Mayfair (which has largely disappeared from store shelves at this time). I picked this up because I liked the idea of all the different pieces of artwork for villagers (I had to write "Villager" on each card after the first round of play when no one could figure out what role was on their card):
After all, I thought, why should everyone have the same picture of a villager on their card? It turns out, because giving each player a different picture of a villager breaks the game! It only took a single play of the game (after the initial "What role do I have" aborted one) with those cards to figure this out: one person said “my villager is a girl with a green apron” and suddenly everyone was describing the unique villager on their card. Except the werewolves, who were pretty much screwed. So in order to play with that set, a new rule had to be added - not only can you not show your card to anyone, you can’t describe it either.
I learned an important lesson that day: For werewolf, the card design/artwork should never be a factor in who wins or loses. Well, actually I had already learned that from repeated plays with the Miller’s Hollow version of the game, where countless games were stopped part way through because players couldn’t figure out their role (there is no text on those cards, just highly stylized artwork that can be misinterpreted easily), just like the first game of Lupus that had to be stopped. But it also underscored the importance of playtesting with the final artwork (I find it hard to believe that this was done with Lupus in Tabula, ever, because if it was, they would have at least included a sentence or two about this in the rules to help players avoid breaking the game).
This is just one of the factors that has influenced the direction of Ultimate Werewolf, and is why you’ll see that even though we have sixteen different artists, every villager is a guy with a green hat and a blue shirt:
And yes, that one in the lower right is from Doris Matthäus…hopefully we’ll have the rest of her artwork shortly (I’ve seen a preview of her werewolf, and it’s awesome…in a hedgehog kind of way, as you might expect).
Files (except for Doris’s artwork) have been sent to the printer and are being scoured over by the crack prepress team. So far, things are on schedule…