This marks the end of a very long day two at PAX for me so this blog should be fairly short.
First up being at PAX means that I’ll be able to get CBGtCG out into a lot of gamers hands, get some good feedback, and hopefully make more people aware of it before we go to crowd funding. If you happen to be at PAX you can come play the game with me tomorrow morning at the Unpub Booth until noon. Its right by the queue line.
I disappear for long chunks of PAX to go take on my shift as an Enforcer. I’ve been working as an Enforcer over in satellite theatre now for a few years and its always a blast. This year I’ll be taking on the slightly expanded roll of being deputy theatre manager. If you’d like to learn more about all that look here. The perks of this job are fairly obvious right off the bat. Weekend long convention access, a legitimate reason to take a “working-vacation”, and of course a rad PAX shirt. The real good stuff though lies a bitter deeper than that.
This convention really has its finger on the pulse of the gaming community in all shapes and forms. I mentioned this in the past when talking about streamers but its gotten to the point that just saying “Gaming Community” doesn’t seem to hit all the right nuances. There are so many sub-genres of the medium now between streaming stars and lets-plays, cosplay and more its getting hard to keep it all straight. I’ve seen panels fill up for the gameification of workout routines, education, and childcare. Not to mention the massively impactful work being done by the folks at Childs Play. It’s all a little overwhelming at times and it’s nice to see that the community as a whole has seemed to grow and evolve along with its members.
Final thought. The big take away for me this year seems to be the resounding excitement and hopeful future of VR. Oculus, Vive, and Playstation can’t seem to get those headsets into peoples hands fast enough, and every single person seems to have some great new idea about how this stuff will revolutionize their field when we start seeing it out in the world. The holodeck is not here now, but it’s real close.
(Edit 4/27 words. Also wanted to add in a huge thank you to everyone who played the game with me at PAX this weekend. It was a blast.)
Oh hush. Honestly, I had no clue what I was doing when I got started. "So how did you find yourself here?” I hear you asking, “staring down the barrel of an entirely new project with absolutely no professional experience?” Well, the beginning was actually quite simple. When Pat and I began this adventure we were sitting at his kitchen table after a particularly effective brunch-ing at his Brooklyn apartment.
without which no brunch is complete (img)
We had bantered briefly about his idea for a card game named Complicated Board Game the Card Game. We’d found our theme, pitched some cards and mechanics, and fitted them with titles. Thus adorned, we sat our slightly-drunk/slightly-hungover heads down with a stack of old business cards and threw together a suitable deck to try out our game.
not that type of suit
It didn’t take long for me, a doodler, to start sketching out goofy drawings on the bottoms of these cards. Each title turned into some basic pen sketch bordered in black sharpie. I didn’t put too much thought into them, I was just having some fun and trying to lighten the mood of our hastily made deck. Every now and again I’d steal the stack of cards and doodle some more while I thought on titles and mechanics.
rule #3: always use a suitable canvas size for your project
After about a week, Pat started to take a liking to some of my sketches and approached me. This was the tipping point, the moment. Here’s a quick summary of how the conversation went:
PAT: I like these. I think you should do the art.
JASON: Hmmm, okay that sounds fun.
And so we began. I looked through what I’d sketched in tiny and found out my themes - cheeky humor and a heavy outlines. I started amassing some visual research for the things I was drawing, and let myself sketch. As the project started getting bigger, I knew I’d need some better tools. I got them and, well there’s a lot more to it, but that’s another story for a later blog.
So do you think you’re cut out to illustrate a card or a board game? I don’t know, and you probably won’t know. The one thing you will know is that you won’t ever find out if you never try. What do you need? Drive, passion, and some skill at drawing in the first place. But more than anything, you have to want it. You have to drive yourself towards it. Once you get started, the rest of it’s just navigating down the channel, hoping you don’t get eaten by the Kraken.
not this guy
What did I need to take on this project? Well: drive, good friends with good ideas, and an understanding co-creator when an injury derails your momentum. But more on that later. I’ve gotta go fight The Kraken.
co-founder, writer, artist, carpenter, game-maker... space is infinite, hamburgers are not. Live life for the hamburgers [and their meatless counterparts].
Carbon based life form. Numbers, logistics, and game concepts.