Lost at Sea? Good.

There’s a step in the creative process when you reach a point of near-panic, unmoored from well-known places, where your understanding of the problem outstrips your knowledge of solutions. You’re lost at sea, surrounded by gliding monsters. Then, one by one, you chart the stars. This is not a failure of the creative process, this […]

A Brief Tutorial on Tutorials

I recently got asked about my thoughts on how to create a great tutorial. This is something I’ve talked a lot about but never written a post on. That time has come. Summary Make them Curious: Curiosity is the motivation to learn something. Lots of people talk about the need to provide an obvious value […]

How to be a Great Collaborator

“You want to be someone that people are excited to share their ideas with.” Whenever a new designer asks me for mentorship, this is the first thing I tell them. Many people instinctively point out problems with ideas, and problems often don’t have easy solutions that can be invented in the moment. If you do […]

How Do You Win a Creative Debate?

“How do you win a creative debate?” I got asked this once during an interview and my brain just froze. I didn’t know how to answer. I finally said, “By asking questions.” My proudest moments in development are when we make something that’s better than any of our individual visions. On Faeria, I pitched an […]

Who counts as a Real Game Developer?

I’ve seen some people in QA, Community Management, Project Management, IT, and other vital roles at game studios be reluctant to take credit for being “game developers”. The test is simple: If we can’t develop or support the game without you, you’re a game developer. It’s that simple.

Making Travel Interesting in TTRPGs

A lot of people ask about how to make travelling fun in TTRPGs. Sometimes I end up writing my thoughts on this question twice in the same day. I thought I’d repost one of my recent answers here for reference. The journey must be as fun as the rest of the adventure. A problem arises when […]

How to Make Great Random Encounters (for RPGs)

I love practicing game design in TTRPGs (tabletop roleplaying games). I’ve run D&D summer camps for kids, games for friends, games at work, games in most major systems, and systems of my own design. I’ve also run hundreds of sessions in random-encounter-heavy sandboxes. Many of my players have loved the open-ended experience and wanted to […]

Why Spend $500,000 on a Free Game?

The $185,000 Toy In November 2019, Hake Auctions in York sold an ancient artifact for $185,850. That artifact? A plastic action figure of Boba Fett, standing just 3.75 inches tall. The prototype Boba Fett is one of the rarest and most desired toys in any star wars collection. When its missile launching rocket pack was […]