Discussion: National Game Development Month 2012

This is the last of a series of four posts covering my participation in last year’s National Game Development Month. Each post dealing with one of the four rules for NaGaDeMon: Creation, Completion, Playtesting, and Discussion.

Alright, I realize that it’s no longer 2012, but I wanted to finish talking about NaGaDeMon and how a little idea grew into a real game.

Roach Coach is currently in limbo. A well established game publisher (Publisher A) has a copy of the prototype and showed some interest in the project, but I don’t know what happens from here. As I see it I have the following options:

  1. Prototype at Makers Faire
    Prototype at Makers Faire

    Work out a deal with publisher A. This is my favorite option, and I plan on giving this a little more time. I think the whimsical nature of the game matches well with publisher A and I think they would do a good job of getting it into the hands of people who would enjoy playing it.

  2. Pitch to publisher B, C, or D. This is probably what I will do if I don’t make any progress before the end of summer. There are a couple of other publishers that would probably be interested.
  3. Publish the game as a print and play on boardgamegeek. Since I’m not really concerned about making a profit, there’s no reason I couldn’t just put it up as a print and play. My biggest concern would be the dice. It can be done, but I was really looking forward to seeing some dice that were printed with the game icons. This isn’t a bad option. I really just want to be able to put that cool game designer badge above my geek icon. Yes, I am slightly insane, but that means that I am mostly sane, right?
  4. Try and kickstart the game and publish it on my own. This is my least favorite option. I think I could manage to get enough money to get some units into production, but then what? I don’t have the time or connections to get a game onto store shelves.
  5. Forget about the whole thing. This option requires the least amount of effort, so that’s a big plus; however, I’m afraid I would walk around for months with an invisible cone of shame around my neck, like the one Baron Mordo put on Doctor Strange when he was going to rat him out to the Ancient One, except that was more like an invisible metal clamp over his mouth that prevented him from talking. Okay, it would be nothing like that, but I would probably not feel good about myself.

So how do I feel about the whole process from start to almost finish? I enjoyed the challenge of trying to put together a playable game in a month, and I do plan on doing it again, but I think I will just plan on designing a print and play game next time. I think that would give a chance to really do everything within a month.

I would like to thank everyone who provided inspiration and support with playtesting. A big thanks goes out to Scott and Jen at The Crazy Squirrel Game Store for letting me share Roach Coach at Fresno’s Mini Makers Faire. Finally, super big thanks go out to Mark Jackson, who with some help from Dave Arnott, got my prototype to the right people at the right gathering.

2 thoughts on “Discussion: National Game Development Month 2012”

  1. I think you’ve got your options listed in priority order very well. Was that intentional? There’s no reason to drop it entirely. These days, PNP doesn’t even preclude professional publication later.

    1. Yeah, I wrote them out that way. I do think it’s worth trying to get it into stores if I can, but if I have to do that through PnP, then so be it.

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