Our fourth post on all the pitches we had with publishers at this year’s Gathering of Friends! You can read the previous posts here:
Gathering of Friends in review Part 1- ZMan/Filosofia
Gathering of Friends in review Part 2 – Days of Wonder, Ystari, Abacusspiele, R&R Games, Zoch
Gathering of Friends in review Part 3 – Huch & Friends, Toy Vault, Mercury Games, Think Fun
We met with Stephan from iEllo and we were surprised that he liked the first game that we started pitching to him: Chainables. We actually hadn’t pitched this to many other publishers because we had brought it last year and found that a language game wasn’t a top priority with a lot of the German publishers! But Stephan really liked it and wants us to submit a Print and Play to his partner to try it. Of our other games, Stephan really liked What’s That and Zombie Slam. When we were pitching What’s That, he was nodding and getting the idea of the game – but then when I said the last part of the pitch – that everyone has to work together and figure out the commonality between everything – he lit up and said, “I want it! Let’s play – but I want it!” That felt good! He also liked Herdables and said if we could make it play up to 4 players then we should submit it.
We also played Ignotus with him and he was digging it right up until the end. The game had players getting rid of tokens – but the endgame proved to be a bit of a letdown as one player could have 1 token left and no one could do anything to stop it. He had liked it up until that point and then had to pass on that one. He did want to take Chainables, Zombie Slam and What’s That though – so…win!
Afterwards I was sitting with Sen and Josh Cappel and asked them to help me figure out how to fix Ignotus. As we were playing Josh was not really liking it because he doesn’t like deduction games. His thought is “you either 100% know it or you 100% don’t know it” and so he wasn’t too interested in the game. We persisted and Josh almost flippantly said that the game would be better if we could bluff. Hmmm –that’s interesting. We immediately tried it and it worked awesomely! Now it wasn’t about getting rid of your tokens but by gaining points – which you could only get if you guessed someone’s Goal Card. I met up with Think Fun and Huch & Friends again to let them know about the changes and they were both happy with the new direction for the game! It’s amazing to me that some of our games got interest from publishers – then we changed them while we were at the event and had to re-pitch them! I am way more confident with both Ignotus and Lions Share because of the changes we made though!
Our final meeting was with Cedrick from Repos. We kept seeing him while he was playing a game (like the 7 Wonders expansion, Babel) and we almost never met up. Fortunately we caught him on the last night he was there as he was heading back to his room for the night – lucky!! The only game we showed him was What’s That. We had shown him this game last year but we worked all year to improve the App and eventually it became so late that we decided to re-pitch it to him. We asked him if Repos had any ability to make apps and he whipped out his iPad and showed us the 7 Wonders App that is launching soon. It looked pretty damned amazing. We were convinced that they could do this game!! He left with his continued interest in the game and since the Gathering we have set him up with the App and are anxiously waiting their thoughts on the game once they playtest it in their offices.
So that’s it! A whirlwind of 10 days! Here’s a summary of the games we brought and the interest we got from publishers:
What’s That: Repos, iEllo, Mercury
Lions Share: Huch & Friends, Hans Im Gluck
Zombie Slam: iEllo, Mercury, Huch & Friends, Zoch
Rock Paper Wizards: Z-Man/Filosofia, Stonghold Games
Herdables: Huch & Friends, iEllo, Days of Wonder told us to connect with Blue Orange
Pig Goes Moo: Zoch
Ignotus: Think Fun, Huch & Friends, Abacusspiele
Towers of Nakh: Boo – no interest for this one. Weird – I thought this one would have appealed. We’re going to see if we can simplify it more, but I think it was a pass for most because of trying to think in 3D space was hard for many. I think there’s a publisher out there for this though!
That’s it for all of our pitches, but I have one more post about what else we did at the Gathering: play games! 🙂
More picks! This time I think there’s only 1 of a publisher rep though…Stephan Brissaud from iELLO (pronounced “Yellow”, if you were wondering). Here he is playing Ignotus.
Jay and I played this iELLO game, Phantom Society – oddly, a logic/deduction game as well, with William Attia and Martin Ethier. They played the ghosts and they CRUSHED us.
We also met the owner of Funagain.com during that pitch. He was looking to establish a fulfillment service specifically for small publishers that ran Kickstarter campaigns. Maybe we’ll here more about that in the future! No pic, though…
After all our pitching was done, we got to play a lot of other games, including the following:
Coconuts from Mayday (monkey-shaped catapults fling coconuts into cups)
Machi Koro from Pandasaurus (Setminion or Dotters of Catan – whatever you choose to call it, it’s awesome)
And of course, some Tichu from AbacusSpiel. Here’s Jay’s best hand of the game – a straight from 2 to the Ace that he got to play after I played the dog in the first play of the hand.
We played the prototype Prime Time, designed by our friend, Gil Hova (Prolix, Battle Merchants). Canadian ex-pat Greg Daigle (Hawaii) joined us in as well.
And those of our fellow Game Artisans of Canada, Martin Ethier, Michael “Call me Max” Xuereb and Al Leduc (FrankenDie).
Can’t hardly wait until next year!