In mid 2012 Mike, Craig and I decided to finally follow our dreams and start designing and producing games. The first thing we did was to brainstorm game ideas. What kind of games did we want to make? Not as easy to answer as we thought it was going to be when we started. The first year or so, we were all over the place. Once a week, we would each present a new game idea concept for discussion.
The first game I started to develop in earnest was called Swoop! Bat edition. Swoop! was a set collection game where players are bats, flying around in the night sky, eating bugs. It turned out to be a nice, solid little game.
After working on the game for over a year, Mike and I were going over its merits and decided that the theme just did not work for us. This led to a few more months of development, trying to work out a new theme. Finally, Craig suggested a super hero theme. We really liked that idea and development shifted to alter the game to fit the new theme of catching villains. The game was renamed Queen City Hero (QCH).
While the game play was better with a super hero theme, the card design was a nightmare. We wanted a comic book feel and attempted to have the villain card sets form an actual story. This decision took us in a completely different direction. We were now looking at writing a comic book! Because of this, the game stalled and sat simmering on a back burner for nearly a year.
In the meantime, we developed King's Tournament and Squadron Dice, which I plan to discuss at a later date. We also worked on Space Privateer and Dwarven Smithy during that time. We set ourselves a goal to have games published and available for sale on thegamecrafter.com by the end of November 2015. QCH was in a playable state, had gone through some public play testing, but had no workable theme. We needed to make a decision if we wanted to reach our goal with it. It was ready except for story, art and final card design.
In the end, we decided to rename it and make it an abstract game. I came up with some Celtic designs for the cards and Mike offered the name Pedwar. Pedwar is Welsh for the number four and was chosen for the game mechanic of collecting sets of four or more cards. I then sat down at my computer and used Gimp software to create the card art and layout as well as the box art. We polished up the rules and the game was ready. The box art could have been better, but overall I’m content knowing I did my best. The game itself is probably best described as a rather light gateway game for players familiar with games using standard playing cards. It has that familiar feeling of games like Gin or Rummy, but added elements not commonly seen in games of that type. All in all, I think it's still a good, solid little game for the whole family.
Once we put Pedwar up for sale, I thought the game was finished. And in some ways it is. The interesting thing is we may have found the theme we were looking for. So, it's back to work on my first game. New theme, maybe new title, new mechanic elements I’m sure, but the core will be Pedwar. Keep a look out for new developments in the weeks to come! Thanks for reading.
Click here for more information about Pedwar.