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GAMA Expo 2024 - Designer Day Interactions

Today was a day filled with meeting new people, seeing some new designs and seeing how GAMA Expo was going to start working in Louisville, KY. So far, so good! The first Designer Day at Expo seemed to be a resounding success, capped by a night of play-testing.

Game Manufacturer's Association Designer Day Banner in a Hallway of the Galt House

One of the people I met today was Jon Lowman of Lowtek Games.

Jon of Lowtek Games with The Expedition at the Galt House, Louisville

Jon had a great looking little game for 1-3 players called The Expedition.

Cards from The Expedition show different colored planets and numbers

Next- designer Travis Deere sought me out and showed me his deduction game Paper Trail. I'll be honest - I had seen the game advertised before but I quickly passed over it. After seeing it in person I was wowed by the presentation of the game. It wasn't what I was expecting it to be at all.

You will see more of this game on the blog and YouTube channel soon.

Designer Travis Deere with his game Paper Trail

Coco Chen showed me her game - Toasty Toasts. It's a super light game with a take that element that isn't always my thing, but the artwork is amazingly cute and the whole thing was made by Coco. If you are into small card games you can play with almost anyone, I would encourage you to check out her game.

Coco Chen with her game Toasty Toasts

I won the game, and it was very easy and quick to learn.

Toasty toasts cards show bread and foods like chocolate spread, tomato, avocado, jelly, and peanut butter in cute and simple drawings.

There were lots of different designers of different levels of development on games which was good to see.

prototype of the game Apex: A 6 Turn Civilization Game

Yes, No, Bonuses, and epic story all form part of the experience of Misery Loves Company

I saw several other prototypes - a party game that surprised me was Ronald Melencio's Misery Loves Company. In the game, you are trying to guess how many other people have suffered the same misfortune as you. There are comeback mechanisms on points too. Cute ideas and implementation.

Sell Sheet for Misery Loves Company shows that it is 2-8 players, 12+ age, 25 minutes, low complexity, and medium luck game

Button Kingdoms (prototype with prototype art) by Samuel Barmettler was a truly unique take on deck building. The action economy of using your points to build your deck made for some highly interactive and interesting choices. I look forward to seeing more from this game - both in terms of gameplay and artwork.

I lost badly, but I highly enjoyed a flip and draw game which made you think about the artwork of Mondrian really stood out to me. I took my artwork home with me and I have been thinking about the game all night.

black, white, red, yellow, and blue squares fill a grid like piece of paper in different sizes.

I ended with a game which is now on my highly anticipate games list. - Pirates of the High Teas. The theme is pirates using ingredients to have a proper tea time on their ships.

Plus, you get to smash ingredients together to make the proper ingredients. The game needs some final tweaking, but I really enjoyed the theme and setting and can't wait to see more of the art.

Emily Vincent shows off the box for her Pirates of the High Teas game which is currently in prototype form.

Carla Kopp and Jason Hager played the game with me and we had a lot of fun. Really looking forward to where this game will go next.

Carla Koop of Weird Giraffe with Emily Vincent of Pink Hawk Games taking a selfie with me

*My coverage of GAMA Expo is due to my being part of the Hosted Media program from the Game Manufacturer's Association.


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