Diary of a First-Time Designer - #1 Theory Test | Zatu Games UK

Zed has hand-picked an exciting and varied selection of games in this mystery box. Expect to receive some of the best games as well as a few surprises!

Subscribe Now »

Each Month we bring you a mystery box filled to the brim of games and goodies all coming from the same theme. This month it’s the turn of Big Potato Games!

Subscribe Now »

Looking for the latest new releases? Then this is the subscription for you, each month you’ll receive a mystery box full of the newest and biggest games!

Subscribe Now »

Menu

Buy 3, get 3% off - use code BOARD3 · Buy 5, get 5% off - use code BOARD5

Diary of a First-Time Designer – #1 Theory Test

Diary of a First-Time Designer - Issue One Theory Test

According to the Research and Markets website, analysts forecast that the global board games market will grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 29.15% during the period 2017-2021.…and you thought you were already spending too much on your hobby!

With such a crowded market, populated by such big names, why would anyone want to attempt to publish a game? With the odds even lower on publishing a successful game, why even try? Well, I thought, others have. Why not me?

Join me on a new multi-part series as I attempt to turn my jumble of half-conceived brain sparks into my first fully functioning board game.

Part One - Theory Test

I never planned to be a board game designer. Come to think of it, I never really set out to be any of the job-roles I ended up doing. I just, kind of, went with my instincts.

I’m convinced, as gamers, we all have an idea (or 10) rolling around in our heads. So, one day, I was simply driving home from work when the idea hit me: a worker placement game where you build a giant robot, that you use to defend the world against attacking monsters.

I wanted a game where you place a worker and invest in the building of something that you use in the game, as opposed to the ‘place workers, get things then dispose of those things for points’ approach I’d seen many times before. As much as I enjoy worker placement games like Lords of Waterdeep and Champions of Midgard, there often seemed to be a rather callous approach to the core mechanics; you get your warriors, you send them off on a quest and they (presumably) die to give you victory points.

I liked the idea of investing in something and forming a sense of connection to an ‘engine’. Viticulture does this well for me and I feel it encourages players to take ownership of their blossoming vineyard.

My half-an-hour drive filled my head with an abundance of ideas. I wanted to get home as soon as I could so I could pour all of my thoughts into, what ultimately became an eight-page Word document. I imagined a movie montage showing a frantic writer, hopped up on stimulants, rapidly banging away on his typewriter - panicked that if he didn’t type fast enough, the ideas would slip away from him.

I decided the working title would be ‘Kaijukazi’. It was literally just a place-holder for, what I hoped would eventually be, a catchy, striking and less clumsy board game moniker. Kaiju are, as I’m sure many of you are aware, giant monsters most commonly associated with Japanese science fiction movies. They are now more likely to have become more mainstream as a result of the Pacific Rim movies. I imagined my game to have some similarities to the theme but more on THAT in a future article.

I decided players would be responsible for a region of the world (roughly continents) which has its own Worker Placement Spots (WPS). The game would be semi co-op to the extent that, if the monsters attack any regions and destroy the WPS, it’s game over. I thought it would be a unique idea that the players would defend the board itself.

On the same day, my old school friend Martin agreed to meet with me that evening to talk about the game. In the last year, he has become co-admin of the largest Facebook board game group in the country: Board Game Trading and Chat UK. The current membership stands at over 10,000 and at least 100 new members join each month.

It wasn’t a surprise to me that Martin was asked to be an admin. He is extremely knowledgeable about games and was the person that introduced me to this lovely hobby. My hope was that we would collaborate and, if able, he would get more involved in the design process.

I genuinely believe that Martin possesses huge untapped resources regarding game design. He understands the mechanics and systems of games like no one I know and I felt absolutely certain he was the right person to take this journey with.

Next time in the First-Time Designer series - Mods and Monsters (and Martin)!

Excellent
08000075444
Bowthorpe Main Centre, Unit 15, Norwich NR5 9HA
Zatu Games is rated 4.91 based on 9115
Reviews

Great selection of games at great prices I always check with these guys whenever I am gonna buy a game and nearly always they are the cheapest! Tracked delivery within 48hrs for only £2.99 and I bought Four games this company is great.

Great selection of games at great prices I always check with these guys whenever I am gonna buy a game and nearly always they are the cheapest! Tracked delivery within 48hrs for only £2.99 and I bought Four games this company is great.

Clearly laid out site and good prices and quick delivery

Clearly laid out site and good prices and quick delivery

Excellent variety of games and excellent customer service. I highly recommend Zatu as the no 1 board game company in the UK.

Excellent variety of games and excellent customer service. I highly recommend Zatu as the no 1 board game company in the UK.

Great value and service

Great value and service

Zatu Games is a great website for both researching and purchasing board games of all types. It has, by far, the most competitive board game prices on the internet. Delivery is fast, and incredibly reliable. The frequent discount codes that reward bulk purchases are great for birthdays and other general presents alike. As a customer, I personally like the availability of a wide range of reviews, which are very helpful guidance in regards to determining my next purchase. It is a great website, which I would highly recommend to anyone considering purchasing board games online.

Zatu Games is a great website for both researching and purchasing board games of all types. It has, by far, the most competitive board game prices on the internet. Delivery is fast, and incredibly reliable. The frequent discount codes that reward bulk purchases are great for birthdays and other general presents alike. As a customer, I personally like the availability of a wide range of reviews, which are very helpful guidance in regards to determining my next purchase. It is a great website, which I would highly recommend to anyone considering purchasing board games online.

The website is really simple to use, and the prices are very cheap for a new gamer! Excellent service

The website is really simple to use, and the prices are very cheap for a new gamer! Excellent service

Very impressed with Zatu games, from start to finish my order was dealt with in a very professional manner, customer service is faultless, with their prices being so affordable this firm is second to none. Will definitely be getting my custom over and over, Extremely recommended!!

Very impressed with Zatu games, from start to finish my order was dealt with in a very professional manner, customer service is faultless, with their prices being so affordable this firm is second to none. Will definitely be getting my custom over and over, Extremely recommended!!

Very efficient

Very efficient

Amazing choice, amazing prices!!

Amazing choice, amazing prices!!

Nice price drops. Stocking up for the Xmas period so it has been a good experience

Nice price drops. Stocking up for the Xmas period so it has been a good experience

Read All Reviews