Sunday 17 December 2017

Publishing Advice #29: Do you need a business partner?

Do you need a business partner? It's a very tricky question. All depends on your personality, preferences and circumstances. I can't really advice you, and the decision is solely up to you. I'm not writing today about pros and cons of having a business partner, neither trying to convince you to take on a partner or not. If you'd like to dig dipper, I recommend an excellent article by Jamey (Stonemaier Games) Kickstarter Lesson #45: Partnership. It's as I believe a good introduction to my article.

In this post, I'll just share my story, what happened recently in my life and how this is changing things around. It's going to be a very personal story. Maybe you will find it relevant to your situation. I'd love to see people being inspired to look from a distance on their lives and business and make the best decision possible.

Wednesday 27 September 2017

Meet us at Bristol Anime and Gaming Con

Personally, I'm a big fan of conventions. It's always a hectic time but very satisfying and fruitful. I love to meet new people and know their opinion about things I do. It's an opportunity to know better your fans, other designers, publishers, distributors and shop owners. It's not a place to make money but build new relationships and get new connections. But in the first place, I'm there to have fun!

Another crucial thing about taking part in conventions is the fact that many positive and uplifting conversations during these events are recharging my batteries.

On 7-8 October I'm going to take part in Bristol Anime and Gaming Con. I'll be playtesting my new design Krill (you can read a little about it on my Krill diary series). My fellow designer Richard Buxton will be presenting his amazing game Master of Olympus and definitely visit his blog!

Would you like to stop at our place and say hi? It would be great to have you there!

See you soon :)

Tuesday 27 June 2017

Publishing Advice #28: Retail Margins and Kickstarter

Kickstarter is the beginning of the sales chain. After your campaign finishes, you got traditional distribution. A healthy relationship with distributors and retailers is crucial. If you do not look after the post-Kickstarter tail, your product most likely will die, and you will lose a great opportunity to expand.

So why the post-KS tail is more important than Kickstarter campaign itself? Simply because KS is just a small part of your market. The biggest market is waiting for you!

Wednesday 21 June 2017

Publishing Advice #27: How to Get People to Talk About Your Game?

How can you stand out with your "best game" in the world when there are more than 1000 new games published every year? Competition is horrendous. There are loads of incredibly good games out there. Everyone knows that to succeed as a publisher, you need an outstanding game, not just very good but outstanding. But can this guaranty your success? Not really - there is much more in it! You need to do your homework, but now I'll write about something different! About something which will help you to stand out!

Thursday 8 June 2017

Publishing Advice #26: Facing Haters part 2 - Open Letter to Fans

Constructive criticism, again, is a very helpful and healthy thing. All professionals always appreciate honest opinions as they're extremely useful. But now and again we have "privilege" to hear rude opinions regarding our games without any reason or explanation. Or experience cruel behaviours towards our personas.

A while ago I wrote about facing trolls and dealing with hate as a designer. And the best thing you can do is to ignore them and give your time to your fans - people who deserve it! Read Publishing Advice #10: Facing Haters.

But now I will talk how fans can help us: designers and publishers in facing haters.

Wednesday 31 May 2017

Publishing Advice #25: Playing vs Playtesting

As you probably noticed, quite often I'm writing about being efficient and productive. As a father of six plus one on the way with a "normal" job, my time resources are very limited. All that forced me to think more about time management!

And as you probably already know (especially if you are reading my blog), playtesting is one of the aspects where you can waste a lot of time.

And I'm often seeing that some designers and publishers are advertising their games as playtested 100 times or even 1000 times. But that can be quite misleading as not everyone understands what playtesting means.

Did you ever think that playing a prototype doesn't mean playtesting it? Are you really playtesting your prototype? Actually, it's critical to distinguish these two things. Let's then have a better look on this!

Tuesday 9 May 2017

Publishing Advice #24: Four Types of Playtesters

About two weeks ago I had a privilege of taking part in Ignacy Trzewiczek's conference about board game design. Having a chance to listen to one of the most experienced and respectful board game designers is the best way to learn new things and avoid mistakes! A significant part of the speech was dedicated to playtesting prototypes. And a big part of it about categorising playtesters. I never thought that different types of playtesters are helpful in various stages of the game development. And sometimes certain kinds of playtesters can be even harmful. Here's what I learned:

Monday 24 April 2017

Mateusz at Pyrkon 2017 - Biggest Polish Fantasy Convention

A last minute info!

I'm visiting Poland to bring Krill prototype to the biggest Polish fantasy convention Pyrkon. Come along and say hi! It will be lovely to meet you and have a quick play with you in my new game. Very exciting!

You can find me at my fellow publisher's stand - company Let's Play. Let's play is known from their game Labyrinth: Paths of Destiny.

See you soon.

Thursday 13 April 2017

Krill Diary #2: Prototypes for Playtesting

It's obvious that proper prototypes are crucial in game playtesting. The same game can provide players different experiences depending on how the prototype is made. That's why I'm always trying to make the best prototypes from the very beginning. 

Today I'll write about Krill prototypes which I made for playtesting and blind playtesting, and below you can find a short tutorial how to create a prototype like mine. I know that every designer has their own favourite method of making prototypes for their games that suit their needs; however, I'm sure that you'll find this article useful.

Saturday 11 March 2017

Krill Diary #1: Introduction

It was a beautiful evening; my children were hanging around looking to do something interesting. We needed a good plan how to finish the day! There was a little vote, and yes, everyone chose movie Happy Feet 2! It was probably a millionth time I watched it; however, the movie was still enjoyable.

During the film, Magda asked me a question: Daddy, why you won't design a board game?

As going back to design and publishing was on my mind for a while, I did like that idea!

It sounds like a good thing to do Magdalena! So what's your idea? - I asked

Maybe create a game about krill! - she answered

Friday 24 February 2017

Publishing Advice #23: BoardGameGeek Microbadge Submission Process

BGG Microbadges are one of those little geeky things. They won't sell your game or promote it. To be honest, I can't see them making much difference in how are you going to do with your game. However, they are meaningful to active BGG users. Even only for this reason, it's worthy to submit a microbadge of your game or company so your fans can display it under their avatar.

Friday 17 February 2017

Gaming with Kids #5: I Don't Wanna Play with You! Really?

My children have so many cool things to do. Drawing, playing on tablets or consoles, watching movies, and they got a big room filled up with toys. Sometimes board games are not their number one choice, and I respect that. Often when I offer them a lovely board game evening, they will just say "NO". Especially Key Stage 2 children. And that's OK. But does it really mean they don't want to play?

Thursday 2 February 2017

Publishing Advice #22: Kickstarter Retail Pledge Levels

Attracting potential backers and convincing them to pledge a game is a tough task. There are many different factors which we have to consider when preparing a marketing strategy so our game can be funded - in the best scenario in first 24 hours. Retailers can significantly help us to achieve that goal. It's important to remember about them when creating our pledge levels and overall strategy!

James Hudson from Druid City Games asked Dave Salisbury (owner of Fan Boy Three store) what he wanted to see in a Kickstarter Retail Pledge Level. Here is his response.

Thursday 19 January 2017

Publishing Advice #21: Writing Designer Journal / Diary

People were writing diaries and journals from hundreds of years. It was an excellent way to record their efforts, feelings, events; to tell a story of their lives and to help themselves to remember important things!

From time to time people are publishing designer journals to tell stories of their creations! So creator journal is not only a personal thing but a mixture of designer's efforts, progresses, struggles, issues, lessons learned, successes, thoughts and emotions but focused around his idea or project. Often designer journals are for the public to help and teach others and to promote the game, and on this kind of form of creator's journaling, I'll focus now!