Introducing our new member – James Ng! When I first started this journey of designing games six years ago, if my memory doesn’t fail me, he was one of my first testers. I still remember the game was so unbalanced it couldn’t even reach the end condition properly. Since then, it has been a long journey forward and he tested many variations of my design. From now on, James will be our community representative. So this is a good opportunity for an introduction and a short interview. Here we go!
1. What kind of board games do you like and why?
I tend to like most worker placement games that I have played. I like the feel and planning that comes into making the most of your workers in order to plan for a future goal. It always feels satisfying to see a plan come to fruition. I guess that is the case with a lot of good strategic board games, and one that those of types of board games should try to promote in their players.
2. You’ve helped a lot with game design, how do you feel about it?
I think game design can be a very interesting job. It’s an open box and there’s so much you can do to accomplish your goal. A game also has many goals to carry out. Fun to play, interesting, engaging, interactive, etc. It can be challenging to make sure your game checks all those boxes.
Personally, I wouldn’t say I am an expert in terms of game design. My experience with it comes from just playing many games (like most people). It can be hard as a game designer to get out of your own perspective to see your game from the outside. That’s what you want though, because you want the game to be fun for a group of people, not just you. Not to mention, working on a game can give you bias towards it and how it plays.
3. What are you currently playing?
I haven’t had the opportunity to play as many board games in recent times. But my girlfriend had recently bought a set of Machi Koro after playing it at a friend’s house and liking it. So I’ve been playing that with her and her younger sister. It’s an easy to play game to relax on. If I get the chance to find people to play with, I’m also always up for a game of Stone Age.
4. Will you consider a career in the games industry, board game or otherwise?
I do love to play video games and board games, not only for the fun they have, but to see how game creators make and improve different aspects of their game genres. I also appreciate them as a creative outlet and interactive medium (unlike movies and books).
In terms of being part of the industry as a career, I’ve never really considered it, as I can’t really imagine myself finding a role in it. Though if given an opportunity that suited me in the industry, I would definitely look into trying it out!
That’s all for now! We will hear from James again soon enough. On Friday, we will begin discussion on Lady Luck in games.