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Design

Mechanics

Theme Attracts You, But Mechanics Keep You

I was discussing the age-old hot potato of theme vs mechanics the other day with the Boardgame Opinions team.  The question had been phrased as, “Which is more important: theme or mechanics?”  Not surprisingly,...
Mage Knight Boxfront

BGG Top 10 Designers

I came across a very interesting article on BoardGameGeek (BGG) the other day: the All-Time Designer Ranking (2018).  Tony Chen (who himself is a designer) has come up with a formula that looks at...

Pie Face (part 1)

An undisputed classic of the heavy strategy genre, the mechanics of Pie Face are notoriously difficult to master. Indeed the skill cap for this game is so high that even people who have played...
Copyright Theft

Copyright and Theft

What happens if you design a game, show it to a publisher and then they steal your idea and make the game without you?!  Is there anything you can do?  As a designer, do...
Agra Board

The End of the Game

Have you ever been playing a game where you’re slowly building your engine, you’re ready to start raking in the victory points (VPs) and then suddenly the game ends?  “What?!  No!  I need five...

Asymmetric Players

Asymmetric Americans The American continent is home to some of the worst inequality on the planet. North America has it all – five reinforcements per turn with only three entry points, while South America...

Points Salad

Out to lunch… Today’s topic is a shameless excuse for me to write a post consisting of a mish-mash of disparate points with no clear links between them and no coherent argument running through...
Twizzle

I am the law!

Designer humans. I shall begin by considering a matter of great relevance to the modern boardgamer – the former occupations of the Popes, both current and historic. Pope Francis apparently once worked as a...
Risk: Godstorm

Designer Spotlight: Mike Selinker

Mike Selinker is an old hat in the boardgaming industry.  He has worked at Wizards of the Coast and Avalon Hill, and has founded his own publishing company: Lone Shark Games.  Of course, he...
Mombasa

Designer Spotlight: Alexander Pfister

Alexander Pfister will always have a place in my heart as Great Western Trail was the first game we ever reviewed on the Boardgame Opinions channel. Despite only designing his first game in 2010...