So today i’ve been given the all clear on developing the latest touches on a boardgame i’m technically not really no honestly working on.. I was first asked to join this project as a freelancer around July, where my confidence swelled somewhat as I mulled over the notes of the previous writers work.
I understand that everyone’s different in terms of writing ability, but I feel that you should keep out some of the more personal fetishes and ideas you have when trying to market a boardgame, especially when it’s not your own. I’m still a little shocked that someone would go into detail about a woman crushing their lovers to death with her hips, which is great even if it’s stolen from a Bond film, but to be honest not the sort of thing you need in your boardgame backstory.
You never know and I might be wrong. Perhaps when this game is out the company will receive angry death threats wondering why more time and effort hadn’t been put into: characters preferred sexual positions, favourite chocolate, and attires that are both arousing while able to take a blow to the groin without much worry.
I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to develop a boardgame, especially so early on in my career, but I will be honest and say that game mechanics and mathematical formulas aren’t my forte. My approach to dealing with this problem was to address it as a writer (which I am) and turn it into a story-telling style game.
Since starting on this project I have developed so many strange stories surrounding the world, which has changed from a Game of Thrones style concept, to Futuristic inter-planetary wars, to something involving Genie servants and demons trapped in swords, to something different again. For me it’s all about the story, because i’m a writer, and it’s hard to write about something you don’t really believe in or like.
I have thousands of words that won’t make it into the games and that’s great because it means I can use it for something in the future. I spent days trying to figure out the mechanics of warrior clone women, living on a world where everything is grown for the eventuality of war. Shrubs and trees that will one day grow into spacecrafts, and soil and foliage designed to be nutritious and sustainable during combat situations. Even if I didn’t get to put it in I was proud.
Now i’m writing little backstories for encounter cards, which is probably one of the highlights of the whole process. As I was once an easily bored boy playing boardgames with my family, I understand the importance of random exciting moments. I’m writing about groups of refugees escaping from wars Players won’t be directly involved in, proud knights of dead orders, and strange monster freshly-emerged from the darkest recesses of the world. It’s great because it’s developing something, and creating history.
I’m also slowly realising that i’m breaking my rules as a writer in order to keep myself open-minded for different work, as I have written a vampire story and one about a writer. i had promised myself that I wouldn’t do either concept as I had grown bored with seeing it before, but I accidentally ended up doing both over the past week, and I felt a little dirty.
Neither are your typical sorts of stories, especially the writing story, which I only realised half-way through there was a writer in the story, but at least it wasn’t me. I’m glad I wrote them, and even if they never see the light of day (sorry) I can say I haven’t seen either idea done quite in the way I have done them.
The vampire story came from the more classical, romantic style, where I wanted to know what scared vampires. I wanted to know what a vampire would regret upon being turned, and what it must be like having the understanding of a woman trapped by the age she had been turned in, and the effects that would have as they aged. I believe that vampires are far from humanity in viewpoints as they are instantly bound to a certain way of thinking, while the world around them advances and becomes more enlightened.
The reader story is a little harder to explain, and I don’t want to give anything away, but it started as a dream, where I would constantly miss a famous author in an airport, but it was their parting remarks to my brother that stained my mind afterwards. The story quickly became one set in our world, but one that contained different laws and rules. It ended up becoming a story about something that could write people, sometimes developing them poorly, while other times fabricating the truth so someone else becomes far more significant.
If you like the cut of my jib, and you want to support me so I can buy coffees or pens or something, then head over to my Patreon through my Twitter, and donate a couple of dollars. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my post, and remember that now’s the best time to start your project, so just pick up whatever tool it is and get it done.