If you’ve been following our Kickstarter you may have read the bit where we mention celebrity game designers. You probably read it fast, though, because there was so much else to look at. You definitely didn’t stop and think hard about it, because if you did, your brain would have exploded a bit, which we know to be a fact because we just tried it and zpppftllmb.
Here’s why. Literally in no particular order, these are the people contributing new, unique, unpredictable, wonderful games that YOU will get to play if you back the project at any tier.
Jane has been pioneering new ways to play for years, from World Without Oil to the Lost Ring to Superbetter. She just gave a talk at GDC that might change the way you play games forever. No joke; checking out that link will make you live longer.
You know Doug from the multiple-awarding-winning Johann Sebastian Joust, or by extension from the Sportsfriends Kickstarter. Or perhaps from the mayhem that is B.U.T.T.O.N. or the headlines that accompanied Dark Room Sex Game, which are two games we never want to see a mash-up of.
If you’ve read a good book on game design then it either references Bernie DeKoven’s The Well-Played Game or it was Bernie DeKoven’s The Well-Played Game. And whatever you’re up to in games, and whether you know it or not, you’re influenced by his work on the Interplay Game Catalog and at the New Games Foundation. Or you’ve played his Lego games. Basically, Bernie DeKoven!
To know Bennet Foddy’s games is to hate Bennett Foddy. Partly because QWOP and GIRP are the gaming equivalent of a big brother who holds a ball just out of your reach, and partly because they’re wonderful, nuanced, clever pieces of design you wish you’d thought of first.
From Boom Blox to Journey to Glitch, Robin has spent her career making games that take what we think we know about videogames and adding innovative mechanics, new social dynamics, and fresh aesthetics. Which, co-incidentally, is also the super useful critical theory she helped establish.
We last saw Ricky debuting his sixteen-button teen-life Keita Takahashi collaboration - Tenya Wanya Teens – at the Experimental Gameplay Workshop. You might have seen him at an awesome Wild Rumpus event. Just let all of of those words sink in for a minute and then think about the kind of Tiny Game he might make.
PAN Studio literally put the heart in Hide&Seek’s last big installation game – building an amazing interactive structure hidden at the core of a Paris art centre. But they’ve been game-making much longer than that – from live action Resident Evil games to AR versions of The Royal Game Of Ur
You maybe just backed James’ Alas Vegas on Kickstarter – a new approach to RPGs modelled on an HBO miniseries structure. Or maybe you’re a fan of Once Upon A Time, or The Extraordinary Adventures Of Baron Munchausen. Or maybe you’re just about to go and order all three of those, because why wouldn’t you?
When we think of Kars, we think of someone who is annoyingly clever on Twitter, too much of the time. But when he’s not doing that he’s designing party games which actually lead to a party, or games that you actually play with actual pigs.
We first got to know Fred when researching some of the earliest players of Mafia in the world. Although, really, we first got to know him through the music and art of Lemon Jelly. These days Fred is making things that are art and music and games all at once, like Electricity Comes From Other Planets.
One of the good books on game design that you read that referenced Bernie DeKoven was almost definitely Rules Of Play, co-authored by Eric. Alongside writing, he’s been ever so slightly busy founding Gamelab, and birthing Diner Dash, founding the Game Design Challenge and producing extraordinary physical games like Sixteen Tons.
Few games manage what Metagame and Backchatter did – actually becoming conference staples and overtaking bar-room conversations. And those are things that Colleen makes when she’s not running PetLAB or teaching game design at Parsons.
For five wonderful years Scott taught the world how to play boardgames (here he takes you on a tour of much-loved Word On The Street), but he’s also the director of the Because Play Matters lab and the designer of Tulipmania 1637.
Coney are many people and many more ideas. You might know they from Small Town Anywhere, a theatre piece with fewer actors than is traditional (none) but more rules (some), or House Of Cards a playable exploration of some of the most backstabby periods of English history.
So, there you go. If like music or sex or pigs or feeling good about yourself or flowers or stories or buttons or sports or Twitter or gambling or Lego or hats, then stop for a moment to think that these people – right now – are designing Tiny Games for you, and all you have do to get them is to pledge…