There's a huge variety of board games out there, though the boards themselves usually focus on one of two shapes for maps and movement - hexes and squares.
I'd never thought deeply about the comparison between hexes and squares before, so the first thing I wondered about is, how much of a difference does it make? Both are regular shapes and tessellate perfectly. Other than the number of tiles directly adjacent to each other, what significance is there?
Turns out, the answer to that is quite a bit! Mathematically, a hex board will make a lot of difference in games which involve travelling and is something designers need to consider. If you've ever made your own RPG, for example, you may have had to weigh up the pros and cons of hexes versus squares.
Hexes seem to be something of a newer adoption in board games. Think of the old classics - chess, go, draughts - and they're usually on square boards. Hexes came to prominence in the late 20th century, thanks to games such as Gettysburg and early RPGs like Traveller.
As a player though, does it matter? If say, Star Wars: Imperial Assault used hexes instead of squares, would that change your opinion on the game? How important is movement and distance to you when playing board games? Let us know - do you prefer hexes or squares in your board games?