TGC community member, Gareth Graham, made a video that provides a couple of tips for new game designers.

He also created a getting started video that shows how to make a simple board game using the online game editor at www.thegamecrafter.com.

Summoner’s Grimoire is now on Kickstarter!

Summoner’s Grimoire is the best kept secret of the occult world. It was mentioned in the Necronomicon, the Book of Enoch, and the Dead Sea Scrolls (all of whom gave it five stars). HP Lovecraft allegedly played Summoner’s Grimoire with his 2-6 closest tentac-err… friends.

Summoner’s Grimoire has two modes: fast, tactical, and entertaining Basic Mode, & strategic, detailed, and cunning Advanced Mode. Both are packed with tactical action and tough choices. Summoner’s Grimoire uses few rules to create complex and meaningful tactical choices. You can learn how to play in just a few minutes by watching our video!

Visit the Summoner’s Grimoire Kickstarter to back your chosen Patron today!

Note: This article is being promoted on TGC News because the designer is participating in The Game Crafter’s Crowd Funding Promotion. If you would like to be promoted by The Game Crafter then read the details here.

Featured Article: The Final 10% Takes 90% of Your Time

By Michael A. Hawker

I’ve used The Game Crafter to prototype a number of games over the years. I really enjoy designing games, and I have a lot of fun in the process. It’s my hobby though, so investing time is always a precious resource. It takes a lot of effort to really add that last bit of polish on a game especially between editing, testing, balancing, and making sure everything still works. When it does work though, it’s a big sigh of relief and a huge accomplishment.

Originally, I started this particular project for the Mystery Challenge; I set out to think about the idea of the classic game of Memory/Concentration. Memory hasn’t changed much over the years, but I thought there must be a way to make it a bit more strategic (over just having a good memory). That led me down an interesting path, but without much glue holding it together. As I thought more about the Mystery theme of the challenge, Afoot was born!

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Afoot is a two to four player mystery memory game that can be played in 20-30 minutes. In addition, it adds strategic components to the traditional game of Memory as well as the deductive reasoning and logic of solving a murder mystery from Clue (without having to run around a mansion). The pace of play is quick and keeps everyone engaged as paying attention at all times is important while you try to solve the mystery and earn points.

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The main twist from a traditional game of Memory is that players interact with the board and can swap clues from the board (image above) with ones kept hidden in their hand (image below). Every match they make will give them a few points and an additional benefit. And by tracking what information they’ve been seeing – they can deduce the mystery at the end of the game for extra points.

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I’m currently working on a deluxe edition of Afoot as well with its own custom screens and support for at least another player. I hope to have it with me at PAX Dev and Prime this year, so if you want to try it out just track me down or check twitter: @MikewareXGR. And if you’ll be at PAX Dev, be sure to check out my talk on video game use in education: You Have Died of Dysentery: Games in Education Are Still Alive.

Nightlight - A Cooperative Card Game Now on Kickstarter!

Join the fight against the Nightmare! Defend the Nightlight as a stuffed animal hero!

Nightlight, a unique card game featuring stuffed animal heroes facing down childhood nightmares, has just launched a campaign on Kickstarter with outstanding response.

As a stuffed animal in a child’s collection of toys, you and up to three friends must defend the nightlight from terrible creatures that are trying to snuff it out. Arm yourself with your unique deck of skill cards and the weapons you salvage from the toy chest to fight back the creepy-crawlies and unknown shapes threatening the dream that gave you strength. Survive three rounds, and you win! 


Nightlight is the first project of BNKB Games. Raising over 40% of their funding goal within the first 24 hours of launch, BNKB Games is excited to continue the campaign and defend the nightlight with further pledges and Stretch Goals! We need your help to defeat the Nightmare.

Defend the Nightlight Today on Kickstarter!

Nightlight has a variety of pledges ranging from $5 to $250 and more. The $100 Pledge Level allows players to create an expansion with their own childhood stuffed animal incorporated into the game. After completion of the campaign, backers simply send BNKB Games a photo of their favorite childhood stuffed animal or toy and our artist and design team will create a unique character card based on your childhood friend! 

For example, a rough sketch of a possible new addition to the Nightlight heroes’ team!

For more info or to join the Nightlight Campaign, check out the Kickstarter. Spread the word, and like on Facebook, follow on Tumblr, and see the page on BoardGameGeek. Keep the Nightlight burning!

Note: This article is being promoted on TGC News because the designer is participating in The Game Crafter’s Crowd Funding Promotion. If you would like to be promoted by The Game Crafter then read the details here.

TGC community member, Gareth Graham, has created an excellent tutorial video for getting started with The Game Crafter’s print on demand service. It teaches viewers how to download templates, navigate the site, and make a basic game. Thanks Gareth! If you like the video, be sure to let him know!

Pledge Levels

Figuring out what your pledge levels might be can be really daunting. But make no mistake, they should be based upon math.

Make Profit

At bare minimum, any pledge levels you post need to include all your costs (production, shipping, stretch goals, taxes, kickstarter, credit cards, royalties) plus some profit for yourself. Even if you don’t care if you make any money on the campaign, you should include some profit so that you have a buffer against unforeseen expenses. 

Make sure your pledge levels have the shipping costs to your country of choice (probably the United State) built-in to the amount. People like “free” shipping, even though it’s not actually free.

Early Bird

We don’t believe early-bird levels are worth the expense. However, there are some very big advocates of them such as Jamey Stegmaier (http://stonemaiergames.com/kickstarter/). In our estimation, early bird rewards will cause you more grief because backers who don’t get in on early-bird feel slighted, and often the way people price early-birds means they take a loss or at least make no profit on those rewards. If you do decide to have early-bird pledge levels then price your game accordingly to ensure you make profit even on those pledge levels.

Premium Rewards

We are huge advocates of premium level rewards. This is to say, creating some sort of a bundle that makes you more profit while also offering more value to the customer. This can come in the form of bundling two games together, although that can be a tough sell. More often it comes by creating pledge levels with extras such as a roll-up game mat, a special set of tokens, faster shipping (these rewards ship first), auto-graphed copies, etc. Keep in mind though that these are meant to be premium rewards. Therefore, you should be making more profit per copy on these rewards as well. 

$1

Some people will want to get your updates, but have not decided to back your campaign yet. For them, create a $1 pledge level. Not $5, or $2 or $10. Just $1. You need not offer anything but your thanks with this level. However, a nice touch is some desktop wallpaper with art from your game.

Crazy Rewards

You’ll see some crazy $1000+ reward levels on some projects. Unless you can offer dinner with an A-list celebrity, do not offer these crazy reward levels. They just make you look like you have lost touch with reality.

Stay tuned for more great articles on how to run a Kickstarter. Next time we’ll be talking about building your Kickstarter page. 

The Game Crafter Community Social @ Gen Con 2014 is TONIGHT at 7pm!

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We will be hosting the TGC Community Social at O’Reilly’s Irish Bar and Restaurant at 7pm. The restaurant is about 3 blocks from the convention center and the address is:

36 S Pennsylvania St
Indianapolis, IN 46204

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They have plenty of food/drink options and we can hang out as a group at our reserved tables. Right now we are planning on roughly 30 people.

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Across the street is Scotty’s Brewhouse and they have the awesome outdoor patio we’ve enjoyed the last 2 years. We’ll probably roll over there after awhile and enjoy some fresh air on the patio. (if the weather cooperates)

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O’Reilly’s Irish Bar is roughly 3-4 blocks from the convention center.

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No Gen Con Tickets Required.

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See you tonight!

Gamer’s Remorse reviews Zombie House. This game can be purchased in The Game Crafter’s online shop.

Reviewer Quote: "there’s absolutely thrill and I love that part of the game. You feel like someone is chasing you and you’ve got to get out of there!"

Gen Con 2014 has begun! Stop by The Game Crafter’s booth (#1645) to see all of our custom printable components and game pieces! We also have custom badge ribbons that we are handing out to TGC community members!

Watch the video above to see a sample of what’s at our booth! See you soon!

The booth is ready to go!

The booth is ready to go!

On The Road To Gen Con

We’re driving to Indianapolis today to get set up for GenCon 2014. Hopefully you’re coming to GenCon as well. If you are, please stop by our booth. We’re also running a TGC game night and a community social night. Hope to see you there!