Episode #78: Reasons to Theme Your Prototype

(link for direct download of podcast episode)

We go over the top 5 reasons to theme your prototype and some discussion around them. If you want to have them spoiled, here are some of our notes on each one:

5) Theme makes it easier to learn your game. It drive cohesion, direction, and rules comprehension.

4) Some publishers really care about theme (like Brian) so you’ll get more opportunities if your game has one. You’ll get in the door. Theme sells better than math. Games are an experience, and theme tells your story.

3) A themed games is more interesting to players so you’ll get more playtesters. It shows your playtesters that you respect their time and level of enjoyment.

2) Save the publisher time by showing them it is complete. A game with no theme isn’t done yet and they would usually not do that work if they can avoid it. Once you’re in the door, you’re more likely to stay there.

1) Theme is part of the design. Why are we even talking about them as if they are independent parts?

 

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Episode #77: Getting Your Prototype Played at Smaller Conventions

(link for direct download of podcast episode)

5) Teach games and then ask if they want to try your own game afterwards. (know your audience and be respectful of time)

4) Setup in open gaming and grab drive bys and/or have good signage.

3) Setup an event with local designers there through meetup/facebook so you can all play each other games. (then anyone who is interested can go out to lunch/dinner afterwards)

2) Setup official events and offer prizes/bribes. (make sure you have a way for people to be notified when they can get it and/or get their name in the rulebook)

1) Find or create your own prototype room.

Getting More Prototype Plays

Podcast Link: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/BGBP069.mp3

Today we talk about ways to get people to play your ugly prototype! Some topics:

  • Imaginary friends
  • Design partners or other trusted designers
  • Protospiel/Unpub
  • Designer groups
  • General playtesting groups
  • Fostering an inviting community
  • Print-and-plays
  • Conventions at a free table
  • Conventions as an event
  • Other convention options
  • Digital simulations
  • Paid playtesting

Resources

 

How to Use Print-and-Plays

How should you use print-and-plays as a designer, publisher, or indie creator? We discuss some options!

  • Advantages
  •  Early Feedback
  • Kickstarter
  • Limited or Full Version?
  • What do players use them for?
  • Shopping Ahead
  • Evaluating Gameplay
  • Evaluating Art
  • Why a P&P isn’t giving the game away.
  • Translations
  • Other components
  • PnPs at Cons

Audio/Podcast Version: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/BGBP042.mp3

Finding Art For Your Prototype

The Forbidden Limb debuts on The Dice Tower Network with tips on finding art for your prototype.

Audio/Podcast: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/FLP016.mp3

Links mentioned:

Top 9 Designer Considerations for Publishing Contracts

Jeremy tells us the top 9 items he believes designers should consider adding to a publishing contract before they sign it.

Audio/Podcast: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/FLP015c.mp3

We don’t have video for this one due to some camera issues. Sorry about that!

Publishing Contracts

Learn about the important clauses in a contract between a tabletop game designer and publisher. What does a contract look like and what do you want to make sure is included, both from the publisher and designer perspective?

Audio/Podcast Version: http://traffic.libsyn.com/theforbiddenlimb/FLP015b.mp3