Tuesday, May 7, 2019

People Behind the Meeples - Episode 170: Brett Picotte

Welcome to People Behind the Meeples, a series of interviews with indie game designers.  Here you'll find out more than you ever wanted to know about the people who make the best games that you may or may not have heard of before.  If you'd like to be featured, head over to http://gjjgames.blogspot.com/p/game-designer-interview-questionnaire.html and fill out the questionnaire! You can find all the interviews here: People Behind the Meeples. Support me on Patreon!

Name:Brett Picotte
Location:Willard, MO USA
Day Job:President of Brettco, Inc.
Designing:Over ten years!
BGG:Push Fighter
Facebook:Push Fight or Brett Picotte
Find my games at:My webpage is the only place right now.
Today's Interview is with:

Brett Picotte
Interviewed on: 1/11/2019

Brett Picotte is both a game designer and an inventor. In addition to designing the game Push Fight, Brett also has a few inventions to his name, including practice golf balls and a Jiu-Jitsu training dummy. Read on to learn more about Brett and his projects!

Some Basics
Tell me a bit about yourself.

How long have you been designing tabletop games?
Over ten years!

Why did you start designing tabletop games?
I created a game for just for myself, one that I could play solo or with others. I had a need.

What game or games are you currently working on?
Push Fight for 2-4 players.

Have you designed any games that have been published?
Yes, Push Fight was published briefly by Penny Arcade.

What is your day job?
President of Brettco, Inc.

Your Gaming Tastes
My readers would like to know more about you as a gamer.

Where do you prefer to play games?
Family gatherings.

Who do you normally game with?
My nephews.

If you were to invite a few friends together for game night tonight, what games would you play?
I have a couple of games I invented by can't mention yet.

And what snacks would you eat?

Do you like to have music playing while you play games? If so, what kind?
Yes - Beatles.

What’s your favorite FLGS?
I don't have one.

What is your current favorite game? Least favorite that you still enjoy? Worst game you ever played?
Golf for all three questions. :-)

What is your favorite game mechanic? How about your least favorite?
Pushing is favorite. I don't have a least favorite.

What’s your favorite game that you just can’t ever seem to get to the table?
Monopoly - still one of my favorites for sentimental reasons.

What styles of games do you play?
I like to play Board Games, Card Games

Do you design different styles of games than what you play?
I like to design Board Games

OK, here's a pretty polarizing game. Do you like and play Cards Against Humanity?

You as a Designer
OK, now the bit that sets you apart from the typical gamer. Let's find out about you as a game designer.

When you design games, do you come up with a theme first and build the mechanics around that? Or do you come up with mechanics and then add a theme? Or something else?
With Push Fight, I came up with the board first. It had a theme, too - playing a game on a raft in the water. Losing meant taking a dip.

Have you ever entered or won a game design competition?
Never entered.

Do you have a current favorite game designer or idol?

Where or when or how do you get your inspiration or come up with your best ideas?
I invent things that I need. I'm currently looking for a manufacturer for my golf practice ball.

How do you go about playtesting your games?
I play with family and friends.

Do you like to work alone or as part of a team? Co-designers, artists, etc.?
I like to work alone.

What do you feel is your biggest challenge as a game designer?
Getting it published by someone who wants to make it a huge success.

If you could design a game within any IP, what would it be?
A gambling game.

What do you wish someone had told you a long time ago about designing games?
Nothing really.

What advice would you like to share about designing games?
Have fun with it and don't expect to become rich.

Would you like to tell my readers what games you're working on and how far along they are?
Published games, I have: Push Fight
Games that will soon be published are: Can't say yet.
Currently looking for a publisher I have: If Penny Arcade doesn't produce anymore games, I will be looking for a new publisher.

Are you a member of any Facebook or other design groups? (Game Maker’s Lab, Card and Board Game Developers Guild, etc.)
Yes, several groups. Abstract Nation is a cool one.

And the oddly personal, but harmless stuff…
OK, enough of the game stuff, let's find out what really makes you tick! These are the questions that I’m sure are on everyone’s minds!

Star Trek or Star Wars? Coke or Pepsi? VHS or Betamax?
Star Trek, Coke, VHS

What hobbies do you have besides tabletop games?
Martial arts and sports

What is something you learned in the last week?
How to play Presbyterian Guitar by John Hartford on my guitar.

Favorite type of music? Books? Movies?
Rock and roll, bluegrass. Currently reading The Phenomenon (a book about Rick Ankiel) and just saw Bohemian Rhapsody. Great movie.

What was the last book you read?
The Phenomenon

Do you play any musical instruments?

Tell us something about yourself that you think might surprise people.
I'm old

Tell us about something crazy that you once did.
Volunteered to be the first victim for the 5th ranked fighter in the nation at a karate tournament.

Biggest accident that turned out awesome?
Can't think of one.

Who is your idol?
Royce Gracie

What would you do if you had a time machine?
Go back to my high school and college days. Fun times.

Are you an extrovert or introvert?
Right in the middle.

If you could be any superhero, which one would you be?
Spiderman so I could shoot webs.

Have any pets?
Clyde the spoiled Coonhound/German Shepherd mix and Toby the cat.

When the next asteroid hits Earth, causing the Yellowstone caldera to explode, California to fall into the ocean, the sea levels to rise, and the next ice age to set in, what current games or other pastimes do you think (or hope) will survive into the next era of human civilization? What do you hope is underneath that asteroid to be wiped out of the human consciousness forever?
I hope Push Fight survives. And, it would save me a lot of time if my golf clubs got wiped out.

If you’d like to send a shout out to anyone, anyone at all, here’s your chance (I can’t guarantee they’ll read this though):
Hello to all who love my game.

Just a Bit More
Thanks for answering all my crazy questions! Is there anything else you'd like to tell my readers?

I have an accounting degree and somehow passed the CPA exam. That's probably why I like the details of game design so much. I also invented a Jiu-Jitsu training dummy we call Bubba. I built Bubbas for a long time, and they are great for practice.

Thank you for reading this People Behind the Meeples indie game designer interview! You can find all the interviews here: People Behind the Meeples and if you'd like to be featured yourself, you can fill out the questionnaire here: http://gjjgames.blogspot.com/p/game-designer-interview-questionnaire.html

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