Episode #140: Daniel Doan and Black Shell Media

Description
This week Dirk and David are joined by Daniel Doan of Black Shell Media. Daniel’s career in games started with mods for the original Starcraft and grew into his breakout game, Sanctuary RPG. He then moved on to publishing and working with other designers on getting their games to market. Daniel offers advice on how to keep game designs focused and work with focus testing in order to deliver a final product that sells.

Contact Info
Dirk Knemeyer – @DKnemeyer, www.CQGames.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Daniel Doan – @doandanial, www.blackshellmedia.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:16 – Daniel’s background
  • 0:03:14 – Starcraft mods
  • 0:04:55 – Sanctuary RPG
  • 0:09:42 – Development and publishing
  • 0:12:55 – Overture
  • 0:20:47 – The rewards in company building
  • 0:25:03 – Black Shell Media
  • 0:31:53 – Influences
  • 0:35:45 – Future platforms
  • 0:40:10 – Future of BSM
  • 0:46:14 – Board game design
  • 0:49:32 – Focus testing

Episode #139: Justin Gary

Description
Dirk and David are joined by guest Justin Gary, accomplished game designer of many deckbuilding games. Justin’s career started as a professional, award-winning player of Magic: the Gathering and has continued with several successful designs. His creations include Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer, and Solforge. He and David talk shop this week about deckbuilding games, including communication to players and strategies for expansions.

Contact Info
Dirk Knemeyer – @DKnemeyer, www.CQGames.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Justin Gary – @justin_gary, www.justingary.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:22 – Justin’s background
  • 0:01:50 – Ascension
  • 0:13:34 – Expansions and mechanics
  • 0:19:14 – Influence of Magic: the Gathering
  • 0:21:27 – Early projects
  • 0:26:05 – Law school
  • 0:29:27 – Current projects
  • 0:32:56 – Kickstarter
  • 0:37:07 – Deckbuilding mechanics
  • 0:48:33 – Game design process
  • 0:54:37 – Future goals

Episode #138: Checking in with Harrison Pink

Description
Return guest Harrison Pink stops by to catch up with Dirk and David and let us know what he’s been up to. Harrison recently moved to a new studio and is working as a world designer on the next Mafia game. He also had the opportunity to travel to China to talk at their GDC conference. He talks about designing for open world games, lessons he’s learned about what players want, and his international travels.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer – @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Harrison Pink – @colonialpink, harrisonpink@gmail.com, blog.harrisonpink.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:37 – Harrison’s new digs

  • 0:02:56 – World designing

  • 0:08:10 – Team culture

  • 0:14:47 – The Mafia series

  • 0:27:42 – Lessons learned

  • 0:30:20 – Other activities

  • 0:36:51 – Talking at GDC China

12
Jan 2016
AUTHOR brian
CATEGORY

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Episode #137: Once More Into the Mailbag

Description

Dirk, David, and Rob tackle more listener mail in this week’s episode. We had a lot of great questions come in from our listeners that cover royalty free assets, distribution for board games, and some more from Dirk on Tesla and Edison.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.CQGames.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Rob Daviau -@RobDaviauGamer, rob.daviau@ironwallgames.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:01:11 – How do you know when the mechanics are done?

  • 0:10:53 – Not using regular distribution

  • 0:22:25 – Using royalty free assets?

  • 0:33:01 – Do you have any recommendations on finding royalty free assets?

  • 0:41:37 – What are some clever design decisions that were used to cover up flaws?

  • 0:45:50 – Can you comment some more on Tesla and Edison as people?

  • 0:51:12 – Asymmetric design between two players

  • 0:59:40 – Rules-based programming

08
Dec 2015
AUTHOR elizabeth
CATEGORY

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Episode #136: Playing Catch-up

Description

We’re back! Dirk, David, and Rob are here again to talk about game design after a flurry of activity and travel. David is knee-deep in Star Trek Timelines and Rob is pleased with the success of Pandemic Legacy. Meanwhile, Dirk was invited to the laboratory of Thomas Edison thanks to the work he did with his game Tesla vs. Edison.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Rob Daviau -@RobDaviauGamer, rob.daviau@ironwallgames.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:34 – Star Trek Timelines

  • 0:07:02 – Game pacing

  • 0:17:49 – Risk Legacy and Pandemic Legacy

  • 0:27:48 – Expertise, failure, and learning

  • 0:35:53 – Edison Innovation Foundation

  • 0:47:59 – Chronicles

  • 0:48:00 – Disruptor Beam

Episode #135: Isaac Childres and Gloomhaven

Description

Dirk and Rob sit down with game designer Isaac Childres to talk about his self-published and Kickstarted game Gloomhaven. Rob seems to have found the game he’s been looking for all along and has plenty of questions for Isaac, who has published several games on his own and appears to be looking at a hit with Gloomhaven.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
Rob Daviau -@RobDaviauGamer, rob.daviau@ironwallgames.com
Isaac Childres – @cephalofair, cephalofair.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:19 – Gloomhaven

  • 0:06:43 – Retirement mechanic

  • 0:14:06 – Inspirations for Gloomhaven

  • 0:27:40 – Publishing

  • 0:33:12 – Previous games

  • 0:42:51 – Publishing lessons learned

  • 0:50:23 – Upcoming games

Episode #134: Expansions and Post-Launch Support

Description

Dirk, David, and Rob get together to talk about what happens when the game has shipped and there’s still more to do. Post-launch support can come in the form of features that were originally left on the cutting room floor, expansions to existing content, or continuations of a line with new product. All three of our panelists have experience with expansion content across different industries and share their insights with the listeners.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Rob Daviau -@RobDaviauGamer, rob.daviau@ironwallgames.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:51 – Content at the end of the game design

  • 0:08:03 – Business models and design

  • 0:23:51 – Expansion design for tabletop

  • 0:31:51 – Who’s doing expansions right?

  • 0:38:27 – Map expansions

 

Episode #133: Designer Alex Kevern

Description

This week Dirk and David are joined by game designer Alex Kevern. Alex has followed the path from gamer to designer and brought several different games to market with a myriad of publishers. He offers his experiences dealing with different publishers as well as modifying themes for games and working on Kickstarter.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Alex Kevern -@alexwithideas

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:16 – Alex’s background

  • 0:03:54 – Daxu

  • 0:11:17 – Changing themes

  • 0:16:05 – World’s Fair

  • 0:24:50 – Kickstarter

  • 0:27:45 – Expansions

  • 0:34:01 – Gold West

  • 0:39:46 – Working with publishers

  • 0:46:12 – Future projects

 

17
Sep 2015
AUTHOR elizabeth
CATEGORY

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Episode #132: Rob’s Back, Time for Listener Mail

Description

Rob is back from vacation and it’s time for some more listener mail. Is it possible to play a game that is fun but not good? Should you share your ideas with people before publishing your game?

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
Rob Daviau -@RobDaviauGamer, rob.daviau@ironwallgames.com

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:36 – Pitching to publishers

  • 0:16:52 – Fun games that aren’t good

  • 0:25:44 – The goals of game design

  • 0:32:18 – How much do you share an idea before publishing?

  • 0:40:47 – How do you take on choices in design?

Episode #131: David Somerville and Trove

Dirk and David talk to game designer David Somerville about his game Trove and experiences publishing his first game. David shares his insights as far as community management, how to hand things over, and pitching your games. Other David shares that he really, really wants to be a cave.

Contact Info

Dirk Knemeyer - @DKnemeyer, www.artana.com, Dirk@Knemeyer.com
David Heron – @DavidVHeron
David Somerville – @thisistrove

Episode Outline

  • 0:00:18 – Dave’s background

  • 0:02:31 – Trove: The Crystal Caverns

  • 0:13:04 – Staying current while designing

  • 0:15:21 – Getting set up with a publisher

  • 0:26:20 – Earlier games

  • 0:39:18 – Advice

  • 0:51:28 – Pitching your game

21
Aug 2015
AUTHOR elizabeth
CATEGORY

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