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What is the Board Game Design Lab?

BGDF is partnered with the Board Game Design lab - an effort by BGDF user Gabe Barrett to create and curate regular content for game designers.

The Board Game Design Lab:

  • Curates articles from around the web, guiding users through the process of game design and publishing.
  • Publishes a podcast, with insightful interviews with industry veterans
  • BGDF is happy to have Gabe in our community, and his contributions to the site through BGDL.

    Take me back to the BGDL blogs!

    Adventure Challenge Winner Announced!

    The Game Crafter - 2-Bit Bandits is the winner of our Adventure Challenge!

    We now have a winner for the Adventure Challenge and it’s 2-Bit Bandits by Sporktopia. Our guest judge Alisha Volkman, has written up a document with feedback for all the finalists.

    We’d like to thank Alisha and all our contestants for participating. But now is no time to rest on your laurels. There are 3 more contests running right now!

    Click here to read the official news post on The Game Crafter

    BGDL 13 - Jamey Stegmaier: A Day in the Life of a Pro Game Designer

    Jamey Stegmaier, designer of Scythe, is back on the show, and we’re talking about what the schedule of a pro game designer looks like. It’s easy to have a romanticized idea of what being a full time designer is, but it doesn’t quite line up with reality.

    We talk about the daily fires that have to be put out, how to be intentional with your time, ways to become more efficient, and much more.

    Check out the episode here:

    BG Design - Simple Advice for Writing Game Rules

    The thoughts of an unpublished layman/hobbyist game designer

    Sitting down to write out the rules of a game is one of the most daunting tasks a games designer will ever face. The thought process, methods, and interests of a designer, a writer, and a player are all very different. As designers we need to first understand the design of the game, become a great writer to express it, and think through as what information a player will need to understand and successfully play the game. As designers shifting into the role of a player is not all that hard, but becoming a writer is somewhat more challenging.

    BGDL 12 - Emerson Matsuuchi: How to Design a Great Hidden Movement Game

    Emerson Matsuuchi, designer of Specter Ops, goes into all the ins and outs of putting together a hidden movement game.

    There are very few hidden movement games out there right now which means there’s still a ton to be explored. Emerson discusses the challenges he faced and his insights on the topic.

    Listen to the episode here:

    Archon - Circlet of the Heavens: Introduction

    I had a design from many moons before that disclosed "partial information". Now the system was not correct, since there were errors made in the design of the system. Today I took a 2nd look at that system and found my mistake. It uses an RPS-5 with partial information.

    Introducing GameCon & Sample Art

    Steampunk Goggles

    We at Winsmith Games (all two of us) are working towards publishing our first game this year, GameCon. Our kickstarter campaign will be launched a week before GenCon 50, where we plan to have "GameCon: Learn & Play" events.

    We are thrilled to have the opportunity to team up with Benjamin Raynal and Sebastián Koziner. Benjamin was the illustrator for one of my personally favorite games, King of Tokyo. Sebastián has been the graphic designer for many successful Kickstarters.

    Quick video about packaging options available for your game

    The Game Crafter - Large Retail Box

    Steve Ruduski from The Gaming Careers Podcast talks about packaging options for his upcoming game and why he ended up choosing The Game Crafter’s Large Retail Box.

    Click here to watch the video on youtube

    BGDL 11 - Ryan Laukat: The Intersection of Art and Game Design

    Ryan Laukat, founder of Red Raven Games, discusses how to create a beautiful game that is also functional. Ryan does his own art for all of his games, so he has an incredible understanding of the tug of war a designer and artist can have when trying to make a game look great but also work well for the players.

    We also talk about some best practices when hiring and working with an artist.

    Check out the episode here:

    Games as Art (with a capital A)?

    To me, games are models of something, not a medium for conveying "meaning" and "significance." If, say, the model is history, then the players may learn history (a form of meaning). And they can learn a variety of other things from games. But this is usually a byproduct of the interest in the game, not the purpose of the game.

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    by Dr. Radut