Welcome to the house of The Fearless Squirrel, a place where I hope to share some resources and hopefully some ideas about the crafting of Tabletop Games from a newbie perspective. Also, besides my will, a place where I will butcher the tongue of Shakespeare relentlessly, so be ready for that too.
From the branches.
I’ve been working in the video game industry for quite some years and I have learned many (so many!) things during all this time: I’ve learnt how to make successful games, how to make money with them, how to work with a team as if we were an organism, how to make things faster and cheaper, how to keep quality without sacrificing all the previous and a list that would never end… but after all these years of clockwork and everlasting production sprints I had the impression that I had lost something: I think that I forgot, at least in part, how to make Games Fun. Or who knows… maybe I never knew how to do it in the first place and I just never noticed, it’s hard for me to tell. Fearing that I was losing my ability to create fun and engaging experiences, I’ve decided that it was time for me to go back to the roots of Games.
To the roots.
I’ve believe that most of animals (mammals at least) are biologically programmed to learn in a safe, simulated environment through what’s known as Playing. All cubs have rooted in their tiny cute brains a physiological mechanism for getting rewarded by the fact of learning without putting themselves in peril. As if it was something as important as reproduction or feeding. Cats love to play hunting while rabbits enjoy themselves playing to hide; dogs are happy retrieving sticks and seeking toys while squirrels play to throw each other from the trees and then climb again. We humans are no exception to this evolutionary trait and thanks to our over-sized brains and our over-aged cubs, we’ve managed to hack this biological reward mechanism and we’ve developed an artificial structure for playing with complex mechanic and social rules that we call Games. I may not have great virtues, but at least I can say that I am a human (no matter what captcha tests say) and because of that, I love playing and I can think of Games and enjoy playing and creating them.
And so, like the man cub I am, I jumped naively into the void from the high branches to have a deep, refreshing dive into the world of Tabletop Games and re-learn some essential things that I am missing. And more importantly, I wanted to do it as if it was a Game: with no pressure, just for the sake of Fun, just for the learning.
Through this process I’ll be generating a bunch of resources and probably some games that would be condemned to fade into the darkness. So here I am, starting this blog as a way to share the experiences and resources that I gather, and hoping that what I am doing for myself can be useful for someone else.
Thanks for being around here, and I hope that you can take something useful from this place.