All Articles Kinsa Creative

Cribbage Board App Updates

Three years ago I built a cribbage board app as a proof of concept.

Jared Spool has observed that good design, when it’s done well, becomes invisible. It’s only when it’s done poorly that we notice it. I felt that version one of the app was close, but it could be better.

I noticed that while the interface for pegging seemed to meet the goal of mirroring the natural interface of a peg board, and adding points was fast and easy, the controls were positioned in such a way that they required rotating the wrist or body at an awkward angle in order to manipulate them (you can see the original interface in the article I first wrote about my Cribbage Board app). The device had to sit perpendicular to both players, the way a cribbage board would, and this was the design flaw.

Thinking of the phone itself as a board and the entire screen as an interface provides an opportunity to better emulate a physical board. The updated design continues to allow rapid pegging, but through the use of gestures.

The new version places a control area at both the top and bottom end of the phone so the device can sit directly between players in a 2-person game in such a way that they can manipulate the controls face on. The tally and sum values rotate automatically to face the player on each turn.

Pegging is done by tapping or long tapping on the player's side of the device. The points being added are shown at the bottom. A large digital representation of the front pegs position is shown while a smaller digital representation of the back peg sits on the other side of the vertical rule. As points are added below, the total value shown for the front peg increases while the back peg provides a reference to where things were.

The ability to identify specific gestures allows the same control area to do multiple things: single tap to add a point, long tap to add 5 at a time. Swipe to the side to wipe them away. Shake to reset. Swipe up to review the history and undo an arbitrary movement.

Available in the App Store

The app is available in the US app store, the UK app store, as well as most others.


Email us at