[18 Oct 2014 | No Comments]
I Love Operation Campaign… Inventors helping inventors and a peek behind the curtain

The thing I love about being in this industry is that there are so many inventors willing to help and support other inventors.  We’re all in the same boat for the most part — sometimes things are great and sometimes things just plain suck, but we’ve each had our fair share of good and bad.  We also know that as much as the business has a happy side, there are definitely the stories that don’t have endings like, “he plans on spending his retirement sailing off into the sunset in his …

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Game Industry Events »

[14 Oct 2014 | No Comments]
2014 TAGIE Nominees!

It’s that time of year again… (well actually it was last week but I’m a little behind)
The 2014 Toy & Game Inventor of the Year (TAGIE) Award nominees are:
EXCELLENCE IN GAME DESIGN

Dan Klitsner and KID Group and Hasbro Design Team, designers of Simon Swipe
John Neal and BMT Toys, inventors of Shark Mania
Oliver Morris, designer of Gravity Maze
Richard Garfield, designer of King of New York
Steffen Bogen, designer of Camel Up

  EXCELLENCE IN TOY DESIGN

Ayah Bdeir, inventor of CloudBit
Bang Zoom Design, Ltd., inventors of Chatsters and Frozen Ice Skating Dolls
Ian Bernstein, Adam Wilson and Sphero team, inventors of Ollie
Nick Grisolia and Pete Greenley, …

All Game Reviews »

[6 Oct 2014 | No Comments]
Gravity Maze: What happens when you mix toys and brainteasers!

I recently asked a teacher I was going to donate some games to what kind of stuff she was going to be able to use in her classroom.  It was the first time I was going to give her a few things and unlike most of the teachers I work with who are located within the city of Chicago, she’s a suburban teacher in a low-income school.  Immediately she said “Brainteasers!”  I didn’t have many of those on hand (as I don’t review all that many of them) but I …

Game Industry Events, My Two Cents »

[22 Sep 2014 | No Comments]
2014 Toy Hall of Fame Nominees Announced: Only one game in the bunch?!

Loyal readers know that every year I’ve got a beef with the number of games that are nominated for the National Toy Hall of Fame* and this year just makes me sad.  Why?  There’s ONE… yes only 1… game in the bunch this year: Operation.  Granted I think Operation deserves the nomination not only because it’s a classic that’s been enjoyed by generations of children (Longevity), but it also fits the rest of the Hall of Fame criteria of having “Icon-status,” fostering discovery, and learning through play (it totally teaches …

All Game Reviews, Family Games »

[5 Sep 2014 | No Comments]
Sushi Go!:  Fun little drafting game for those who have no idea what drafting is

Earlier this summer I completely flaked on the fact that I said I was going to bring this new game that I wanted to try out to dinner with friends.  Social media to the rescue!  Little bit of time on twitter and I knew my local game store had the title I needed in stock and I was pointed in the right direction when I got there.  Awesomeness.
So what was this little game that managed to slip my mind but had me excited enough to still run out and get …

Game Industry Events »

[20 Aug 2014 | 2 Comments]
Gen Con 2014: I missed it but here’s what other folks had to say…

I was already disappointed that real life was getting in the way of another year of Gen Con, and then grim reaper decided it was going to add to the fun by killing my computer on Friday.  So it was a double bonus, not only did I have to forgo playing ANY games over the weekend (sorry #GenCant), I spent it trying to revive my old computer, mourning it’s demise, forking over money for a new one and then moving stuff from the old computer to the new one.  I’ll …

Adult Games, All Game Reviews, Family Games »

[15 Jul 2014 | No Comments]
Hex Hive: A Math Game In Remembrance of My Mother

It was Bastille Day on Monday and (more important to this blog post) it was also my mother’s birthday.  Sadly she’s been gone for more than a decade, but I really do credit her with my passion for game design.  I come from a game playing extended family, but it was my mother who really instilled the math and strategy aspects of gaming into my impressionable young mind.  You see, my mother was a math teacher who loved to share her passion for the not-so-popular subject.  She taught at a …

Games for Kids »

[30 Jun 2014 | No Comments]
Picture Carousel: A Fun Children’s Game from Tactic

With MY vacation over it’s time to get back to reviewing some fun games!  (For those who are curious, yes, it was filled with all things important: beautiful scenery, leisure, games, good food, and nice people.)
I played Picture Carousel a few times before I took some time off, and found it to be quite a delightful children’s game!  While Picture Carousel isn’t exactly a new game, it is probably not well known by many people here in the US because it comes from Tactic, a Finnish company.  Marketed in Europe …