Tuesday, September 7, 2021

People Behind the Meeples - Episode 297: Wrenegade Studios - Paul, Dan & Alex

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:Wrenegade Studios - Paul, Dan & Alex
Day Job:Data analyst.
Designing:Six months to a year.
Blog:Wrenegade Studios Blog
Facebook:Wrenegade Studios
YouTube:Wrenegade Studios
Other:Our discord: https://discord.gg/nAcXF6uuvS
Find my games at:Our website will have all the information when ready but join us on social medias to keep up to date with the latest news.
Today's Interview is with:

Wrenegade Studios -
Paul, Dan & Alex
Interviewed on: 7/16/2021

This week's interview is with Paul from Wrenegade Studios. He's answering for the entire team, which is three brothers and cousins: Paul, Dan, and Alex. They've been playing games together for decades and have recently started making games together! Read on to learn more about Paul and the Wrenegade Studios team!

Some Basics
Tell me a bit about yourself.

How long have you been designing tabletop games?
Six months to a year.

Why did you start designing tabletop games?
After a 6 year campaign of Dungeons & Dragons 5e we needed a short break from all the sorcery and combat and decided to try our hand at some new games. Whilst searching for our new weekly game we would suggest ideas of games that we should look for. As most of these searches came up blank, as there was nothing close to what we were looking to play, we all of a sudden we had a list of games that were not on the market or available to play.

Cue bright idea!

Why don’t we make these games for us and others to play?

We have enjoyed gaming with each other for so long that it would be great if we could create something that brings people together the way games did for us.

What game or games are you currently working on?
Currently we are working on multiple titles. Our main focus is a paranormal investigation RPG called "Haunted: Beyond the Veil". The core concept is a modern investigation game that requires players to interact with the world around them in order to placate entities while trying to capture evidence of their existence for monetary and reputation gain... find out more at https://wrenegadestudios.com/

We are also working on numerous expansions that add to the "Haunted" world as well as a follow-up that exists in the same world.

As well as our main game we are also working on lighter weight projects that we hope to bring to the market sooner.

Have you designed any games that have been published?
No this is our first venture into creating games. We have loved gaming since we were young and have always created our own games and content but it wasn't until we finished a 6 year campaign of D&d 5e and were trying to think of what to play next. We all had an idea for something to play but could not find exactly what we were looking for. It was then that we decided that we should just create the game ourselves. A few months later and we now have 6 projects that we are currently developing.

For more information we have an 'about us' section on our website at https://wrenegadestudios.com

What is your day job?
Data analyst.

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

Where do you prefer to play games?
Due to covid we are currently restricted to online play on platforms such as Roll20 and tabletop simulator, where we hope to release early testing versions of our games too, but once the restrictions are lifted we will be getting together to play round the table.

Who do you normally game with?
We are all family that gamed together for over 35 years!!

If you were to invite a few friends together for game night tonight, what games would you play?
Our main love is TTRPGs such as Dungeons and dragons but that doesn't stop us delving into board games such as Wingspan, Ticket to ride, Mansions of madness etc.

And what snacks would you eat?
Well haribo is always welcome at our table.

Do you like to have music playing while you play games? If so, what kind?
Unless it is for atmosphere we tend to be chatting too much to hear any music.

What’s your favorite FLGS?
We are spread across the UK and all have our own separate FLGS stores that we love.

What is your current favorite game? Least favorite that you still enjoy? Worst game you ever played?
Our favourite is the game that hooked us into this world of gaming, the way it has for so many, Dungeons & Dragons.

The least favourite that we still enjoy is Talisman. The game is a monster and should be burned but only once we have finished playing it.

The worst game we ever played has to be the family destroyer... Monopoly! lol.

What is your favorite game mechanic? How about your least favorite?
Probably 5th editions advantage mechanic as our favourite and least favourite is Monopoly's roll 3 doubles and go straight to Jail!

What’s your favorite game that you just can’t ever seem to get to the table?
At the moment it has to be Everdell, which was a present for fathers day that I just haven't got to the table yet.

What styles of games do you play?
I like to play Board Games, Card Games, Miniatures 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, Miniatures Games, RPG 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?
We design our game around the theme first.

Have you ever entered or won a game design competition?
not yet!

Do you have a current favorite game designer?
Wizards of the coast, Jamey Stegmaier, Isaac Childres

Where or when or how do you get your inspiration or come up with your best ideas?
Usually doing mundane things or last thing at night when we really should be sleeping is when inspiration hits.

How do you go about playtesting your games?
Rigorously, but at the moment due to the pandemic we are currently testing internally on Roll20 and Tabletop simulator. We plan to roll out testing to others soon and hopefully hit up a few gaming cons to run play tests and show off the worlds we have created.

Do you like to work alone or as part of a team? Co-designers, artists, etc.?
We work as a team, always have, we all have separate skill sets that cover all bases of game design.

What do you feel is your biggest challenge as a game designer?
Time and getting noticed.

If you could design a game within any IP, what would it be?
This is tricky as there are a few different answers from different members of the team. Here is a collation of the answers: Forgotten realms, Marvel universe, Middle earth.

What do you wish someone had told you a long time ago about designing games?
Don't wait, just do it!

What advice would you like to share about designing games?
Make sure you engage with the game designing community, they are a welcoming bunch full of really helpful information that is invaluable to first time designers.

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: Pocket Battle: Titans. Pocket battle Vs (Versus): Zombies
Games that are in the early stages of development and beta testing are: Haunted: Beyond the veil (based on scale of game)
And games that are still in the very early idea phase are: Cryptid Hunters (Working title)

Are you a member of any Facebook or other design groups? (Game Maker’s Lab, Card and Board Game Developers Guild, etc.)
You will find various members of our team as well as our official FB page across most game design groups.

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 wars. Next...

What hobbies do you have besides tabletop games?
Video games, reading, drawing and many many more.

What is something you learned in the last week?
There is a squirrel in the Arctic that hibernates for 7 months of the year.

Favorite type of music? Books? Movies?
Anything in the rock music genre. Fantasy and horror for both Books and movies.

What was the last book you read?
Ghost hunters: A guide to investigating the paranormal by Yvette Fielding and Ciaran O'Keefe

Do you play any musical instruments?
Two of us play Guitar.

Tell us something about yourself that you think might surprise people.
We tracked our family history all the way back to the ancient Egyptians.

Tell us about something crazy that you once did.
We once had a gaming session that lasted over 27 hours.

Biggest accident that turned out awesome?
Our children lol

Who is your idol or hero?
For all 3 of us... Our Dads.

What would you do if you had a time machine?
So many things, Probably make sure we went back and got Socrates, Abraham Lincoln, Jimi Hendrix, Billy the Kid and Napoleon to help us with our history report.

[GJJ Games] Excellent!

Are you an extrovert or introvert?
Introvert that delve into extrovert every now and again.

If you could be any superhero, which one would you be and why?
Batman/ Ironman then we would have the funds to self publish!

Have any pets?
Two of us have Dogs. And also Guinea Pigs.

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?
We hope any form of discrimination, racism, prejudice is wiped from the earth... along with Monopoly!

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):
Any and all publishers ;)

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

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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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