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Showing posts from December, 2022

Game Design Journal: Materials Testing

Doing some materials testing so I can start doing some home publishing for my little games. I think putting in the elbow grease allows me to cut out some of the POD folks and to, ultimately, save on shipping costs. I learned that 42 pound ( link ) works great for internal pages. It doesn't show the other side and does a good job stopping marker bleed from the other side. I used Pentel markers for it and was surprised to see how it stood up to the ink. So, yes, I'll be using these for internal pages. I think 80 pound will be really good for covers.

Fair Use in the Coloring Book

Fair Use is an interesting thing. I've been sharing little snippets of my 90s Video Game coloring book and got my first side-eye comment that it's obviously (it is) a coloring page from a screenshot of a video game. I was doing some digging on the web and found a really good article written by Northwestern University on the subject ( link ). Specifically they put together a coloring book (how serendipitous!) of work in their art collection. Columbia also has a good page on just explaining these four categories to consider ( link ). I decided to fill it out in the same way for what I'm doing with this 90s Video Game coloring book. 1. The Purpose and Character of the Use The coloring book is designed to celebrate and used as a teaching tool that showcases influential and relevant video games from the 1990s. The work itself is also transformed as the utility of the original work has changed substantially (i.e. a coloring page will not be confused with a video game nor be confu

Non-Profit gears turning.

In addition to cranking out 10 or so Quests Over Coffee cards, my brain has been cranking on starting a non-profit. I've gone through this phase a number of times in the last few years, but it seems like there's nothing stopping me from actually putting the nose to the grindstone to make some progress in it. What used to be one about getting new board games and card games into the hands of the needy has turned into something that takes a sprinkling of my "toy store" idea and wanting to help those in need. I think I may have talked about this already yesterday, but my days are quite full and I'm forgetting. On a personal note, I successfully brined and cooked a turkey yesterday. I may never not brine a turkey again. That was the best tasting turkey I've ever made and it the most non-dry turkey I've ever made. Thank goodness for that probe thermometer! What a joy to use. Pim Pam is doing well. It's over $400. Looking forward to getting that in the han

I guess that was my final day.

It was a bittersweet moment yesterday when I said goodbye to many coworkers that I respect and care about. We were in the trenches of fintech for the last two years and we really built some strong bonds. Hoping all the best for them. The Kickstarter campaign continues to do pretty well and I'm excited for the final outcome! It's in the "middle of the campaign" lull, so I'm hoping to see more uptick in a week or so when it gets closer to finishing up. Been busy putting together the other parts of it and getting into the nitty gritty of financials and COGS around it. Totally forgot I needed to pick up some shipping boxes for them and game labels for the mint tins. I have the bones of the "Back of the Box" coloring book in place. I just need to get the prototype book so I can take some photos before kicking off the promotional "notify me" campaign. Deciding to launch it in January so people aren't overwhelmed before the holidays or by my ins

Can't forget the Quests Over Coffee crowd. Today's my last day.

It's my last day at work. It's bittersweet. I'll miss many of the people I worked with. We really delivered and shipped some amazing things. I'm not going to miss checking my phone at all hours for messages, feeling the need to get online at 6:00a to help put out a fire, or bringing my computer on vacation. They'll be fine. They already have the job rec for my backfill out in the wild (the body's not even cold yet!). I know hiring is difficult and can take months end-to-end, so no ill feelings! I've been so hyperfocused on the new projects as of late that I just need to shift gears and get back in the Quests Over Coffee world again. The December theme should be fun to put together! I put together a digital demo of Pim Pam so people could get a feel for the gameplay (minus the Wild card) to see if its speed/quickness is for them. Hopefully it allows folks to make an informed decision! You can try it here:

Pim Pam funded! T-minus 1 day.

I also created a digital demo so folks can try out the mechanic: Looking forward to my last day tomorrow.

Pim Pam live! Working on a digital demo. T-minus 2 days.

The Kickstarter is live! It's been live for a few hours now and it is doing ok! The goal is pretty low ($100). Just wanted to get it out there. Here's to hoping a few extra bucks for the holidays. I'm also working on a digital version so folks can try the mechanic on their own.

Kickstarter complete. Launches tomorrow. T-minus 3 days.

Got all the stuff ready for Pim Pam. Hope that I can generate that cool $100 in 2 weeks! Here you can see how to play:

One week of prep and recap. T-minus 4 days.

Over the last week I've done a lot of prep to get ready for the professional break and, dare I say, creative genesis! Looking back at this past week I really got a few things out: sent Pim Pam to the printers, got the Kickstarter page ready, completed two Back of the Box coloring pages, shipped the prototype book so I can make that Kickstarter page, arranged Spooky Scary Skeletons for my kids to play on piano, uploaded a YouTube video of that and made the sheet music available, decided to audition for The Voice, and decorated the Christmas tree! Looking forward to my last day on Friday!

Perhaps I should catalog the daily accomplishments. T-minus 5 days.

I was thinking to myself the other night that I should probably be "doing more" with the time that I have. Then I realized that I was actually accomplishing quite a bit, but wasn't cataloging it very well. It should be a combination of both the big picture goal as well as the steps along the way to show progress. Yesterday I broke out my guitar and played music for an hour. When I was younger I did this every day. As I got older it sort of just, I dunno, stopped. My accomplishment yesterday was music related and I'm quite stoked about it. I arranged a simple version of "Spooky Scary Skeletons" for my kids and I also decided I'm going to try out for The Voice. It's all virtual, so no real harm in just submitting a video. Why not? I wanted to do it a few years ago, but got cold feet. This is my vacation, so I might as well give it my all! We also got the Christmas tree decorated.

The weekend counts, right? T-minus 6 days.

Besides the regular deulge of chores, I was struck by some creativity when I watched my eldest stack a bunch of 2" x 2" wooden squares together to make a little building. I thought to myself, "what if I created a board like in the board game Labyrinth with 1/4" spaces between so you could create small-ish dungeons with these squares". Might have to give the prototype a go this weekend between decorating. A little bummed my ping pong card game doesn't show up until Monday, but that's okay! More time to work on a few other ideas.

Coloring prototype on the way. T-minus 7 days.

I put together a prototype coloring book and its being printed right now. Turns out the cost of it is pretty affordable, so a $11.99 price tag isn't crazy for the consumer and there's still some profit to be had. I'll be using this to produce the Kickstarter campaign. What's also been good is that I set a goal for myself of gross profits I'm looking to hit in the 60 days from when I'm not working. While $10k gross isn't a huge amount, I think it's an attainbale goal. Note this is gross, so doesn't include COGS. Already started putting it in a spreadsheet so I can start tracking it. I'm still really looking forward to the upcoming time! No regrets yet.

Delightful. T-minus 8 days.

It's the fourth day since I let folks know that I'll be leaving the company. I'm still feeling at ease. Peaceful even. The leadership is still oddly silent about it and my direct managers are radio silent. I got feedback from the CEO that they thought I was quiet quitting, which came across as 100% surprise to me, and maybe explains the awkwardness. In any case, it's their job to have shared that feedback with me so I could address it. Strange! I was able to complete another coloring page last night. The prototype cards for Pim Pam were also shipped yesterday. Looking forward to launching that one soon! And while not a job replacement, my $90 of Patreon funds are being processed right now. Here's to strong hope and positive thoughts!