Listen Here: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/BGBP074.mp3
Learn all about Jeremy’s “7 Rules for Writing Rules” and what Richard and Brian think about them. We actually disagree on this on more than most episodes!
Force yourself to write your rules right away and have them ready for your first playtest with real people.
Start strong. Tell a story as you give the theme.
Use software to maintain your rules and keep them always up-to-date.
Add notes to add diagrams later.
Put a component list at the end of the rules use a component diagram with labels.
Use 2nd person to specify “you”.
Use white space and formatted lists.
Today we discuss how to design around analysis paralysis:
Is it a bad thing?
Limiting your decision space
Add more options/decisions as you go
Allowing players to “mess up” the next player’s carefully laid plans
Reference cards to make decisions easier
Usability in graphic design or component selection
Keep players engaged
Walls of text
Put longer decisions at the end of a players so other players can take their turns while the other player is thinking
Brian had the pleasure of interviewing Vincent Salzillo, President of Double Exposure, Inc. His company organizes Gen Con events such as
First Exposure Playtest Hall and the new First Encounter Designer Showcase (publisher speed dating) events. They also organize conventions such as DEXCON, DREAMATION, and METATOPIA. Plus they run the Envoy programs. It’s a lot! This is what we cover in 30 minutes:
METATOPIA – A convention for game designers.
First Exposure Playtest Hall – A Gen Con event for playtesting your game.
First Encounter Designer Showcase – A Gen Con event where you pitch your game to publishers, in a format similar to “publisher speed dating”.
Podcast Link: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/BGBP069.mp3
Today we talk about ways to get people to play your ugly prototype! Some topics:
Design partners or other trusted designers
General playtesting groups
Fostering an inviting community
Conventions at a free table
Conventions as an event
Other convention options
Today we talk about how randomness affects our enjoyment of games. It’s slanted towards game design, but also has some crunchy publisher/indie creator perspectives as well. Topics:
Is randomness in games good or bad?
How does it affect your target audience?
Harnessing the power of randomness
Here is our podcast episode on the 10 questions you should ask yourself while designing a game:
If you’d rather not listen to it and you just want to ask yourself some thought-provoking questions about your game, here is the list!
Which feeling(s) am I trying to deliver?
Why would someone play or buy this game instead of others? What’s the hook?
Which core element will keep people engaged in my game?
Which decisions am I giving players that will keep people playing?
Which types of players am I targeting for my game? And what is the weight and play time will it have?
How many high-level strategies can you win with?
What is the single core mechanic in my game? (everything else you can cut, if needed)
How much downtime do players have?
How do players interact with one another and does it fit with the theme?
What is confusing players when they play?
What player counts can this support? Can you expand that count?
What will the MSRP be?
Do players feel like they are in the universe/theme?
Where will people be playing this game?
What is my exit strategy for this game? Kickstarter? The Game Crafter? Selling direct? Pitch to a publisher?
Can I make changes to the game to tailor it to the publisher I think would want to publish it?
Is this game too similar to an existing game?
Richard interviews Juliana Patel and Ariel Rubin who created the extremely successful
Escape Room in a Box: The Werewolf Experiment that is now being published by Mattel. He learns all their secrets from their 2,000+ backer debut campaign! Some specific topics:
Partnering with Mattel
Escape room game opportunities
Replaying escape room games
Playtesting an escape room game
Creating the puzzles
Lessons learned from the Kickstarter campaign
Finding your audience