Tuesday, February 9, 2021

People Behind the Meeples - Episode 265: David McCord

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:David McCord
Location:Ionia, Michigan, USA
Day Job:Graphic Designer
Designing:Over ten years!
Webpage:www.NewVentureGames.com and www.dmccord.com
Facebook:New Venture Games
YouTube:https://www.youtube.com/user/daibhre (soon "NewVentureGames" too)
Other:BGDF, IGA, just beginning to dabble in Discord.
Find my games at:The Game Crafter and Red Hen Toys - some are on Amazon but hard to find.
Today's Interview is with:

David McCord
Interviewed on: 1/1/2021

This week we get to meet long-time designer, David McCord. David has a number of published games to his name, and a ton more in the works. Right now he's running a Kickstarter for his latest game, Mining Mars, so be sure to check it out! Read on to learn more about David and his variety of projects.

Some Basics
Tell me a bit about yourself.

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

What game or games are you currently working on?
"Mining Mars" (and about a dozen others)

Have you designed any games that have been published?

What is your day job?
Graphic Designer

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

Where do you prefer to play games?
Indoors, within a half hour of home.

Who do you normally game with?
Aside from myself, and under "normal" circumstances, there is a local game group.

If you were to invite a few friends together for game night tonight, what games would you play?
Ticket to Ride, Splendor, 7 Wonders, Castle Panic, Takenoko, Dixit, The Captain is Dead... so many more...

And what snacks would you eat?
Generally stuff with cheese, and Vernors.

Do you like to have music playing while you play games? If so, what kind?
Not usually, but if so, something unobtrusive... instrumental music.

What’s your favorite FLGS?
Rookies in Lowell, Mich.

What is your current favorite game? Least favorite that you still enjoy? Worst game you ever played?
Endangered; Fluxx; Snake Dance (but my grandkids love it).

What is your favorite game mechanic? How about your least favorite?
Resource Management; games with physically acting-out stupid challenges.

What’s your favorite game that you just can’t ever seem to get to the table?
Ubi - or Amuse-Amaze

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

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?
Usually the theme, but a specific aspect, challenge, or relationship within the theme.

Have you ever entered or won a game design competition?
Yes and yes. A Game Crafter 24-hour Design Challenge at GrandCon in 2015.

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?
Usually ideas come to me just as I'm drifting off to sleep, or waking up.

How do you go about playtesting your games?
Myself, my family, my game group, contacts through Facebook groups. Recently starting to generate Print-n-Play and Tabletopia versions of prototypes, and hope to playtest that way in the future.

Do you like to work alone or as part of a team? Co-designers, artists, etc.?
Just me, but my son is my primary "sounding board" for ideas.

If you could design a game within any IP, what would it be?
Bone by Jeff Smith. Or the James Blish "Cities in Flight" series.

What do you wish someone had told you a long time ago about designing games?
Find a collaborator that loves the business & marketing side. (I do not.)

What advice would you like to share about designing games?
Study games of all kinds and all ages for ideas and perspective and inspiration.

Would you like to tell my readers what games you're working on and how far along they are?
Published games, I have: CardBoard; Tesla: Master of Lightning; Battlefield:Medieval; Battlefield: American Civil War; Battlefield: Space; Victor or Victim?; Stones; Apex - Escape from the Apes; Over the Edge; Bonnets, Bustles, and Boots; Sancti et Malum; Causeway; Master of Worlds; and others...
Games that will soon be published are: Mining Mars; Piracy; Hugs & Bugs; Witch's Wares; Beggar's Banquet; Baron's Bridge; Bohemian Bards; Tower of the Winds; Pursuit of Progress; Just a Matter of Time; Gee Haw; Roots and Rhizomes; Rhombus; and others...
Currently crowdfunding: Mining Mars
Games I feel are in the final development and tweaking stage are: The list is maybe a dozen games... see above.
Games that I'm playtesting are: The list is maybe six games... see above.
Games that are in the early stages of development and beta testing are: THIS list is even longer!
And games that are still in the very early idea phase are: And there are dozens of ideas in this list, too.

Are you a member of any Facebook or other design groups? (Game Maker’s Lab, Card and Board Game Developers Guild, etc.)
Yes... quite a few, actually. Hard to keep up with it all.

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; used to be Coke, but I gave it up (for Vernors), VHS

What hobbies do you have besides tabletop games?
Music, Art, History, Woodworking, Scouting, Costuming

What is something you learned in the last week?
How to use OBS video software, and a former co-worker has opened a furniture store!

Favorite type of music? Books? Movies?
Music: Depends on my mood, but prolly '70s "folk rock"; Books: History or Biography; Movies: Almost anything before 1950, plus Superheroes and "intellectual" Science Fiction (makes ya think).

What was the last book you read?
"The Botanist" - a crime story by a friend of mine. (Not very good, actually.)

Do you play any musical instruments?
Yup: Guitar, ukulele, banjo, mandolin, and a few others.

Tell us something about yourself that you think might surprise people.
I have never drunk any alcoholic beverage (more than a sip to see why), taken any sort of recreational drugs, used any form of tobacco (except for one weekend in Junior High), and very, very rarely use "foul language".

[GJJ Games] Yay! I’m right there with you, never drank, smoked, done drugs (other than caffeine), and rarely use foul language. It is possible!!!

Tell us about something crazy that you once did.
Oh, man... that's a long list, too. There was this one time...

Biggest accident that turned out awesome?
Good question... Maybe falling in love with the right woman. Didn't mean to, but it turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me.

Who is your idol?
R. Buckminster Fuller

What would you do if you had a time machine?
Seriously, I would probably destroy it. Far too risky.

Are you an extrovert or introvert?

If you could be any superhero, which one would you be?
Jim Hensen. (This is a little facetious, but he's dead anyway, so...)

Have any pets?

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?
(A) Art (visual and audible) (but there will always be games.) (B) Politics and Greed (yeah, right)

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):
Scott Bultman of Red Hen Toys - my project collaborator helping to bring my game designs to reality.

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

Think globally; Act locally. Make love, not war.

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

Did you like this interview?  Please show your support: Support me on Patreon! Or click the heart at Board Game Links , like GJJ Games on Facebook , or follow on Twitter .  And be sure to check out my games on  Tabletop Generation.

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