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Token Vessels Review

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On Sep 15, 2023
Last modified:Sep 15, 2023


If you are a gamer of a certain vintage, at some point in your gaming life, you got the scoop on silicone muffin cups as a great way to hold game components. I have a set of 20 or so, in five different colors, and while I have used them to bake muffins, mostly they serve as impromptu game-piece holders.

Muffin Cups
All the cool kids in 2012 were buying these muffin cups to store game pieces in.

But spoiler warning folks because as of today, those muffin cups are being retired from their gaming usage and will only be used for cupcakes and muffins from now on. Because I have found Token Vessels. OMG! 

Token Vessels are a hybrid of a token storage bag and a tabletop token dispenser. They can do exactly what the muffin cups do, but so much more.

Token Vessels
Muffin Cups are out. Token Vessels are in.

Depicted above are six of the small-sized token vessels, holding the same set of tokens as the muffin cups. These smaller vessels are about the same size as my larger muffin cups, but they provide greater visibility because the holes allow players to see through the sides. While I was generally able to match up the color of my tokens with my muffin cups, you can see I had to put gray envelope tokens into a red cup, which always rankles me a bit.

Now with a very neutral white color, it doesn’t really matter what color tokens go inside. But you might also notice the token vessels have a small metal circle attached by a string, and comes in five different colors, one of which is a shiny silver. This allowed me to mostly match the colors of my tokens with the vessel, but then to use the neutral metal when they did not. And I have plans to purchase some small circular stickers to deal with my residual OCD there.

This is just the beginning though. Because the token vessels are also much more flexible than normal silicone cups. The holes make them more like a net than a cup, and so when you pull the string through the metal circles and clip them in place, they become closable storage bags too!

Token Vessels Bag
Voila, your cups become bags with the pull of a string!

The cups become storage bags and now the holes, besides being somewhat see-through so you can see what’s inside, also serve to make the silicone more malleable/compressible. Plus the metal circles that cinch the bags shut provide additional means of identifying the contents. This is the real reason I’m getting colored stickers, because I plan to use token vessels as storage bags in a lot of my games.

Those of you who typically use Ziploc bags for storing pieces and then pour the bags’ contents into muffin cups when getting ready to play have probably already seen how much more convenient Token Vessels are. I just stash these six squishy, little bags into my game box and when it’s time to set up, all I have to do is uncinch the metal clip, and voila, cups of tokens are presorted and ready to go.

Token vessels big
Token vessels come in two different sizes, each available with 5 different colored cinches.

Token vessels come in two sizes. The ones depicted above are the smaller size, but they are still able to hold a decent amount of game stuff. The big ones are bigger still. In the photo to the right, the small coins from Brian Boru are held in the smaller vessel and the larger coins from that game are in the larger-sized one. (Cell phone included as well to give you a sense of the sizes).

The large cups also transform into baggies, though they take up a fair bit more space, even in their most compressed format, compared to the small size.

All in all, though, these are versatile and extremely useful storage containers combined with great on-the-table token organizers. And they feel great to the touch as well.

Token Vessels Comparison
Size comparison of the big and small vessels in storage-bag mode.

What a treat these tokens are. The good people at Token Vessels sent me 10 of each size to try out for free, and I find the small ones so useful I’ve already ordered (with my own money!) another 20 of them to put into my favorite fiddly games with lots of cardboard sorting issues. My plan is to keep buying them in chunks of 10 or 20 until I run out of games with 5 or more Ziploc bags inside. After that, I might stop buying them but maybe not. Gamer, get you some of this sweet, sweet silicone.

This is a 5-star product, with extra exclamation points!!! The kind of people who play games intensely enough to have read down to the bottom of a review of a game component storage device—you, dear reader—are going to go gaga for Token Vessels, like I have.  I can’t wait for deluxe versions of games to come with these pre-loaded inside the shrink-wrapped box, but until then, these are my must-have after-market upgrade for any token-heavy game. Hooray for Token Vessels!

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Andy Schwarz
Andy is an antitrust economist with a subspecialty in sports economics. Andy has served as the case manager for the NFL and for a series of plaintiffs’ classes suing the NCAA. He was one of the initial sponsors of California SB206, which helped restore college athletes’ name, image, and likeness rights in the state of California and launched the NIL moment. Andy’s latest project has been to combine this passion for college athletes’ rights with his equal love of all things Euro board gaming to create the board game Envelopes of Cash. Andy holds an M.B.A. from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA as well as an A.B. in history from Stanford University, and an M.A. in history from Johns Hopkins.

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