January 2015 archive

Design Diary #3 – Game Thoughts

I did a quick vlog while Pete was busy, so it’s a little shaky (sorry!). I talk about my design thoughts, where we’re at now, and what theme we’re probably going with – dungeon crawler on a train (ala Snowpiercer). This is so totally different from anything else I’ve designed – but that’s okay. It’s going to be really themey, though we’re doing some innovative things with the mechanics, I think.

DFW Nerd Night Game Design Challenge…ahhhhh!

I’m trying this thing where I vlog the DFW Nerd Night Game Design Challenge. This is the first time I’ve done any sort of video that I’ve actually uploaded. I’m hoping that this will be a good way to chronicle my thoughts without having to wait until I can sit down and write something.

Also it terrifies me, and I find that terror usually represents an excellent opportunity for growth.

Anyway, enjoy! This is my first one, so, you know, be gentle.

Designing & Writing About Design

So, last week I got some tremendous news: After writing a small handful of guest articles, I was invited to join the League of Gamemakers as a regular writer. My first piece went up last week, and it’s about designing games with your partner.

Meanwhile, I’ve been writing for Play Unplugged for a few months (upcoming: my review of Sellswords!). It’s been interesting to write about the world of games from these two perspectives. As a designer, I want to critique games and think about what I would have done better. But as a reviewer, it’s important to think about what’s been presented, rather than how I would do it.

I’ve enjoyed covering the world of games from both of these angles. I’m hoping that some of my other upcoming projects also shed new light on the world of game design (Pete is planning to start a print-and-play review blog, I’m jumping into the world of video reviews, and of course, I want to keep my own Concise Critiques going). In the meantime, if anybody wants to talk game design, I’m on Twitter as @athingforjaz.

A Concise Critique of Machi Koro

I’mma be brief, here, because let’s be real: I LOVE MACHI KORO. The gameplay itself isn’t anything stunning, but when you add that art…ooh, I’d do anything for that art.

I love building towns and tableaus. I love taking something normal and making it adorable. I love rolling dice. I just wish there were MORE opportunities to roll dice.

Downsides: Not enough dice rolling.

Upsides: Adorable!

Good for: People who like rolling a moderate amount of dice.