Episode #39 – Leaders Of Euphoria

What do you do when the very first game you ever publish is a smash hit? Why, borrow the license to another popular game, apply, rinse and repeat, of course! If only it was all that easy… In today’s episode, we speak with Brian Henk and Clayton Skancke, the founders of Overworld Games, and the designers and publishers of the upcoming social deduction game, Leaders of Euphoria: Choose a Better Oppressor.

During our discussion, we chat about the advantages of working with other designers (and publishers), the up’s and down’s of self-promotion, and the challenges of designing a game that requires players keep their eyes shut. We play the Game Design Challenge and create a tale of scandal and intrigue at the public library (without making too much noise and disturbing the librarian).

You can check out Leaders of Euphoria on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1026360181/leaders-of-euphoria-choose-a-better-oppressor

You can connect with Overworld Games on their website, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. You can hear more of Brian’s wise counsel on his podcast, Board Game Business Podcast.

Episode #38 – Cobras

Your village has a bit of a problem… it’s infested with snakes. And what does any red-blooded entrepreneur do about it? Why, breed more snakes so you can profit from the tragedy, of course! In episode 38, we speak with Chris and Suzanne Zinsli, the founders of Cardboard Edison, and the designers of the trick-taking game, Cobras.

During our conversation, we discuss how to “accidentally” create a game,
how to find inspiration from malfunctioning neon signs, and how to develop the skill of letting go. We play the Game Design Challenge and design what may go down in history as the hippest game for rodents ever.

You can check out Cobras on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cardboardedison/cobras-a-trick-taking-game-for-1-5-players

You can also connect with Cardboard Edison on their website, Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr.

Episode #37 – Tavern Masters

It’s common knowledge that every good roleplaying campaign starts at the tavern. But when was the last time you gave that tavern much thought? What kind of drinks do they serve? How do they attract their patrons? And most importantly, how profitable are they? In this episode, we speak with Dann Kriss, the founder of Dann Kriss Games, the creator of the upcoming engine building game, Tavern Masters.

During our discussion, we chat about the value of sneaking in old 90’s references into your game, the benefit of designing the game expansion before releasing the base game, and the disadvantages of offering “extra fluff” during your Kickstarter campaign. We play the Game Design Challenge and create perhaps the most polished game ever invented in two minutes.

You can check out Tavern Masters on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dannkrissgames/tavern-masters-card-game

You can also connect with Dann Kriss Games on their website, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Youtube… phew, that’s quite the list!

Episode #36 – Upwind

You’re two hours into the most epic campaign ever told. The story is incredible, your character is memorable, and your dice are cooking. Too bad you’re about to be ambushed by a horde of goblins. Oh sure – you’ll slaughter them easily. But it will take the rest of the night to just grind through the encounter. If only there was a better way.

In episode 36, we speak with Jeff Barber, the founder of Biohazard Games, and the creator of the upcoming roleplaying game, Upwind.

During our conversation, we discuss when you should start promoting your Kickstarter campaign (hint – it’s never too soon), why you should never plan a thematic gaming experience in the woods at night, and how the best games integrate their settings and their mechanics into one harmonious experience. We play the Game Design Challenge and a post-WWI, alternative-reality, dart-throwing game.

You can check out Upwind on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1875712273/upwind-rpg-treasure-planet-meets-studio-ghibli

You can also connect with Biohazard Games on their website, Twitter, and Facebook.

Episode #35 – Dracula’s Feast

We’ve all been there – game time with the family and you need something a younger audience can get their head around. Do you reach for the latest Hasbro roll-and-move? Please, NO! In episode 35, we speak with Peter C. Hayward, the founder of Jellybean Games and the designer of the family-friendly hidden-role game, Dracula’s Feast, who shows us what it takes to design games for children, that adults still really enjoy!

During our conversation, we chat about creating a game with simple structure but deep content, the value of providing premium options for your backers, and why true game development happens on the cutting room floor. We play the Game Design Challenge and create a press-your-luck Halloween party game for the coward in all of us.

You can check out Dracula’s Feast on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/peterchayward/draculas-feast-a-monstrous-game-of-secrets-and-ded

You can also learn more about Jellybean Games on their website, Twitter, and Facebook. You can also listen to Peter on his podcasts: Being Honest with my Ex and Let’s Write a Movie.

Episode #34 – Rising 5

Pretty much anyone can create an app these days, or a puzzle game, or even an adventure game. But I can only think of one team that can combine all three! In episode 34, we speak with Jamie Johnson, one of the founders of Holy Grail Games and the co-publisher of the app-assisted, puzzle/adventure game, Rising 5.

During our conversation, we discuss why you should never play a war game with a body builder, what the difference is between a game designer and a game developer, and how to create a game that is more than just good, but truly stands out. We play the Game Design Challenge and create a dexterity-based, worker placement game that involves a fuzzy version of Liam Neeson.

You can check out Rising 5 on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/148661905/rising-5-runes-of-asteros

You can also learn more about Holy Grail Games on Facebook and Twitter.

Episode #33 – Luminous Ages

In a world where reality is controlled by dreams, and dreams are controlled by dragons – the individual who controls the dragons reigns supreme. Will you unite with your friends to defeat the evil Mare alliance or compete head to head to become the one Dragon Master? In this episode, we speak with Anthony Christou, the artist and lead designer of the upcoming collectible card game, Luminous Ages.

During our discussion, we chat about building a foundation of game design through Legos, why every project should be a passion project, and why Donald Trump is ruining Gen Con for everyone. We play the Game Design Challenge wherein Anthony commits to publish his Alien Plants game just as soon as Luminous Ages funds (we’ve got it on tape).

You can check out Luminous Ages on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/luminousages/luminous-ages-card-game

You can also learn more about Luminous Ages on their website, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Instagram.

Episode #32 – Special Committee

Every US citizen has multiple people representing them in congress. But do you know who they are? Do you know what they are trying to accomplish? If this sounds like the makings of a great deduction game, you’re in good company. In this episode, we speak with James Taylor, the creator of the upcoming political / social deduction game, Special Committee.

During our chat, we discuss strategies to overcoming a mid-campaign lull, the pros and cons of setting a sizable Kickstarter goal, and how to weather a major hurricane by recreating classic board games with hotel accessories. We play the Game Design Challenge and create perhaps the most terrifying game any PTA board member could imagine.

You can check out Special Committee on Kickstarter at:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1883736289/special-committee-a-politcal-strategy-tabletop-gam

You can also follow Special Committee on their website, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Episode #31 – Vengeance

They took you. They beat you. They made you suffer. And now… it’s time for revenge. Grab your weapon of choice and join us!

During episode 31, we chat with Gordon Calleja, one of the founders of Mighty Boards and the designer of the revenge-themed miniature game, Vengeance.

During our conversation, we talk about the risks and reward of designing a miniature-based game, why you should concede your game’s story to your players, and the importance of following Nike’s advice (and just do it). We play the Game Design Challenge and create a very meta party game of hidden information.

You can check out Vengeance on Kickstarter at: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mightyboards/vengeance-2

You can also connect with Might Boards on their website, Twitter, and Facebook.

Episode #30 – Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty’s Web

Despite being one of the most celebrated authors of all times, there is one thing you need to know about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: he wasn’t all that great of an author. But that doesn’t keep us from falling in love with his lead character, Sherlock Holmes.

In this episode, we speak with Lucy Keifer, the daughter of famed game designer Jim Keifer, a founder of Keifer Arts, and one of the creators (along with her father) of the upcoming co-op deduction game, Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty’s Web.

During our chat, we discuss what it’s like being raised in the game design industry, the true lesson Monopoly teaches us all, and advanced strategies for balancing a cooperative game (involving stuffed animals). We play the Game Design Challenge and create a bluffing game for dumping your family’s junk.

You can check out Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty’s Web on their Kickstarter page at: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/118555799/sherlock-holmes-and-moriartys-web

You can also connect with Keifer Arts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.