Tuesday, November 19, 2019

People Behind the Meeples - Episode 198: Sarah Trice

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:Sarah Trice
Location:Maryland, USA
Day Job:Sales Associate at a local Walmart
Designing:Five to ten years.
Today's Interview is with:

Sarah Trice
Interviewed on: 8/13/2019

This week we get to meet Sarah Trice, a designer who is working on getting her name out there with several game designs. Read on to learn more about Sarah and her projects, and stop by to play her games at UnPub 10 next year!

Some Basics
Tell me a bit about yourself.

How long have you been designing tabletop games?
Five to ten years.

Why did you start designing tabletop games?
I definitely made a few games as a kid. I don't recall what exact age I was though.

What game or games are you currently working on?
I'm working on 2 asymmetrical 2 player games. One is a Christian war game, and the other is based on 2 animals in a food chain. The 3rd game, I'm working on is a roll and write party game about making the next best destination to travel to.

Have you designed any games that have been published?
Not yet, but hopefully, one day that will happen.

What is your day job?
Sales Associate at a local Walmart

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

Where do you prefer to play games?
Either at board game night or at home

Who do you normally game with?
Mostly friends and family

If you were to invite a few friends together for game night tonight, what games would you play?
It depends on which group of friends that I invite. But I'll definitely list some favorites: A Game of Thrones 2nd Edition board game, Superfight, Bad Medicine, Robo Rally, Red Dragon Inn, Just One, Azul, Betrayal at House on the Hill and Machi Koro.

And what snacks would you eat?
I'm eating pretzels, chips, oreos, carrots and dip, and probably drinking some soda.

Do you like to have music playing while you play games? If so, what kind?
Not too often, I guess it happened more often when playing D&D.

What is your current favorite game? Least favorite that you still enjoy? Worst game you ever played?
Superfight is probably in my top 10 favorite games. It is easy to get to the table and doesn't require much thought, but it can still generate so much laughter. It also can be rather competitive. Quelf is easily one of the worst games I've ever played. Something about quacking like a duck for no specific reason, just doesn't really sit the best with me.

What is your favorite game mechanic? How about your least favorite?
I really like Betrayal at House on the Hill's flipping room tiles mechanic. I would really love to make a game with that sort of mechanic some day. I'm not a big worker placement player; it probably isn't my least favorite mechanic. But it does trend that direction. I think I get analysis paralysis when trying to decide what my best course of action.

What’s your favorite game that you just can’t ever seem to get to the table?
A Game of Thrones 2nd edition board game, Technically, I don't currently own it. Some of my friends own it, but it takes planning ahead to set a time to round up enough players to have time to play it all the way through.

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

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

OK, here's a pretty polarizing game. Do you like and play Cards Against Humanity?
It has been a while since I last played it. I have to be in the mood for it and with the right group of people. I generally preferred when I made my own decks for it online, and then played with a group of online friends. Basically, all the decks I made were a bunch of inside jokes we had with each other, so it got pretty hilarious at times without going all that awful.

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?
I think I can go either way. But I think I am more a mechanics first person. I'll have a thought about what I want to see happen and then shoot off from there.

Have you ever entered or won a game design competition?
I've entered some game design competitions. I haven't won though.

Do you have a current favorite game designer or idol?
I have too many to count.

Where or when or how do you get your inspiration or come up with your best ideas?
Pacing around the Kitchen/Dining area or in the Bathroom or Driving

How do you go about playtesting your games?
This is where I struggle. I attend Unpub events to get playtests, but I struggle to do this more in my local area.

Do you like to work alone or as part of a team? Co-designers, artists, etc.?
I generally work alone. I feel like it would be cool to collaborate on designs with someone at some point.

What do you feel is your biggest challenge as a game designer?
Getting my games to the table to playtest has been my big challenge so far.

If you could design a game within any IP, what would it be?
Stargate Atlantis, Stargate Sg1, Quantico (tv show), The Perfect Insider drama, The King's Avatar (Chinese drama)

What advice would you like to share about designing games?
Write it all down, even if you think you will remember it all. Allowing yourself to free up your brain to have other thoughts can be beneficial. Also, get plenty of sleep, lack of sleep can reduce your creativity. While receiving plenty of sleep will allow your brain to transfer short term memories into long term memories there by (at least in my mind) allowing you to have more opportunities to think about your game.

Would you like to tell my readers what games you're working on and how far along they are?
Games that I'm playtesting are: In My Place
Games that are in the early stages of development and beta testing are: Saul and Paul, Possum and Buzzard

Are you a member of any Facebook or other design groups? (Game Maker’s Lab, Card and Board Game Developers Guild, etc.)
Women of Board Game Design

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?
Stargate Sg1 and Stargate Atlantis, Both Coke and Pepsi, VHS was cool

What hobbies do you have besides tabletop games?
Dancing, reading

Favorite type of music? Books? Movies?
I like lots of types of music. Not country though, Rock and Alternative are probably the most prominent. I don't know if I have a favorite book or movie type. Mostly fiction I guess

What was the last book you read?
Stiletto by Daniel O'Malley (Please read The Rook aka book 1 first)

Do you play any musical instruments?
piano and steel drums

Who is your idol?
Simon Sinek, Michael McIntyre, and James Veitch

What would you do if you had a time machine?
Maybe go back and fix a regret, otherwise hopefully destroy it so as not to be tempted to abuse it

Are you an extrovert or introvert?

If you could be any superhero, which one would you be?
Deku from My Hero Academia

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):
Hi AnnMaria Jackson-Phelps, you are awesome.

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

Triceratops kind of has my name in it. Trice, Sarah hehe. My middle name isn't tops though.

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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