Category Archives: Design Diary

Design Diary: Genesis of an idea

Time has come in this gamer’s life where I decided that I could, nah, I should design a game. I’ve played enough games, I’ve seen enough systems both good and bad and I’ve got a head full of ideas. I mean, I already design games, right? Video games, but they’re the same, no? It can’t be that hard, right? it’s just cardboard and dice after all. There’s no logic. No frame rate to worry about, things are much simpler, right?

Well… no. Easy is hard to do. Making a board game, you can’t hide behind the pretty graphics and the soaring soundtrack. It’s just you, your systems and the cardboard pieces. Usually, the first time you design a game (board or video), you tend to do too much: too many rules, too many options, too many steps. The key is to be able to find the center of the design and pare down, remove the stuff that isn’t necessary and get to the core. Easier said than done.

All this to say that I too have decided to attempt to design a board game or two. So far in my life, I’ve always attempted to make things that I was fascinated with, in order to better understand them and to see just how difficult it is to do simple things. I’ve not always been successful, but the times I was (making beer, video games, writing), I think I did it very well. So, let’s see just how I well I do at that boardgame design thing. Continue reading