Covering the full breadth of digital, tabletop, and role playing games, The Game Design Round Table inspires and educates aspiring and experienced game designers.
#278 Listener Questions June 2022
Kathryn teams up with Dirk and David to tackle another round of listener questions. Topics include microtransactions, free-to-play games, early game design steps, data in game design, and how designers can learn from other mediums.
#277 Diving into Cards as a Crossroads
Isaac Vega joins Dirk and David to talk about his experiences in the board game industry and how he has used cards in his games. First the trio discuss City of Remnants and how different components fulfill different roles in game design. Next, Dirk and David ask Isaac about his work on Ashes Reborn and some of its more unique systems. Finally, the group continues the discussion of Isaac’s games with some questions about Dead of Winter and its crossroads cards.
#276 Round Table on Market Considerations for Game Themes
Kathryn rejoins Dirk and David for another Round Table discussion of past episodes. First, in reference to the recent episode with Sydney Engelstein, the group talks about card-based expansions. Then the discussion turns to the various Zenobia award finalist guests who have been on the show—topics include unique themes, alternative funding for games, and how to utilize popular IPs while maintaining your own vision for the game. Finally, the group has a conversation about the Dave Scott episode and discusses how they’ve used customizable experiences in their own games.
#275 Diving Into Card-focused Adaptations and Expansions
Sydney Engelstein joins Dirk and David to talk about her history in game design and her work on multiple card-centric games. After discussing some of her earlier games such as the Space Cadet games, Sydney talks at length about her experience working on some of the popular game series in the Stronghold Games lineup: Aeon’s End and Terraforming Mars. The discussion covers what it’s like making expansions for the deckbuilder Aeon’s End, how the design for Ares Expedition streamlined aspects of Terraforming Mars by focusing in on the card play, and some advice on the more business–oriented side of game acquisitions.
#274 Damon Stone Talks Liberation Haiti
Damon Stone joins Dirk and David to discuss his game Liberation Haiti, a historical-themed deckbuilder and a Zenobia Award finalist. First, Damon talks about his experience in game design and development, including how he got started working with Fantasy Flight. Next, Damon talks at length about the historical setting for Liberation Haiti and explains how he mapped different mechanics to that theme. Other topics include how undefined time to prepare for a final confrontation can sometimes sink a game and how Damon chose to handle the random elements of a game that uses both cards and dice.
#273 Dave Scott Talks Everyday Heroes
Dave Scott joins Dirk and David to discuss the upcoming tabletop roleplaying system Everyday Heroes, a revived and updated version of the old D20 Modern system. Dave discusses how he worked with a team of game designers to create rulesets for a system and roleplaying space that has fascinated Dave for years. One topic is a deep dive into the problems with chase mechanics in RPGs and how those mechanics are handled in Everyday Heroes. Another big discussion point is how Dave and the team decided to give the game a more cinematic feel and capture the action hero stereotypes without straying into superhero status. Finally, Dave talks about what the design process for his team looks like right now and how they utilize a group of hundreds of playtesters effectively.
Excellent resource and community
GDRT has been providing thoughtful and relevant conversations with designers and game creators for years, and offers a progressive and thorough look into game design across the entire gamut of disciplines.
A joy to listen to
In the early episodes, the show had a slow start, but at some point in time, I found myself not being able to stop listening. Dirk and David have been a permanent part of my morning and evening commutes for work for quite a while now. I am only on episode 117, but I’ve learned so much about what it means to be a professional game designer, and what it takes to succeed in the industry. Even more with tips and tricks of the trade. Then their guest list has been amazing with their own stories and advice. I find the show a must, no matter what kind of games you design; as the cast has proven time and time again, inspiration can be pulled from anywhere.
This is a podcast worth your time. The hosts and guests are all quite knowledgeable about game design and are a pleasure to listen to. Frequently topics are brought up which I had not thought about before and, after listening, leave me more skilled as an aspiring game designer.