Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Designer Advice- Helping Yourself by Helping Others

If you are reading this you are either a regular follower of Dr. Wictz or…OR…you are the purpose of today’s discussion.

Today I am talking about how the Button Shy Rookie series is a concrete example of applying Cardboard Edison lesson on how to help yourself in boardgaming by helping others.

I do not want to completely go over Cardboard Edison’s points, you can see them make those points at the link above.  Instead I am going to focus on how the Button Shy Rookie series helps me by helping others to hopefully inspire you to take on a similar style project.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Button Shy Rooke series, I wrote a series of posts on Board Game Designers whose first published game was released by Button Shy who also later had another boardgame released by a different publisher.  Each post connects something from each designer’s first publication to their most successful non Button Shy publication.

Despite the word order of the adage, the first step is to help others.  There are three key groups helped by the Button Shy Rookie Series.  Designers are getting publicity about their games.  In particular the series introduces fans of specific games to other games made by the same designer.  Because the series focuses on commonalities between games designed by the designer, the series nudges fans of a particular designer to consider if they are in fact a fan of the designer in general. 

Publishers benefit too, especially Button Shy.  The series introduces fans of Button Shy games to titles published by non-Button Shy publishers.  For Button Shy, the benefit is two fold.  First, the series introduces folks unfamiliar to Button Shy to the company’s games.  Second, the series provides a way for current fans of Button Shy games to further explore in-depth the Button Shy Universe they love.  The series may even introduce Button Shy fans to new Button Shy titles they wish to try out.

That last part makes clear who is the third group that is helped out by the Button Shy Rookie series, boardgame players.  The series provides boardgame players with a greater understanding of the connections to the games they love.  Be it a particular title, designer, or publisher.

How does the Button Shy Rookie series help me?  Remember, the key lesson I want you to take away is Cardboard Edison’s advice on how you can help yourself by helping others.  There is the oblivious, some of you are reading a Dr. Wictz blog post for the first time because you saw the reference to this post in the Button Shy Rookie series.  A careful scan of the series will also turn up something else, Dr. Wictz is a Button Shy Rookie.  Creating the series enables me to promote my own games, You Fool and Robotech: Reconstruction.  By writing about other designers, I attract a larger audience to my games than if I just wrote about myself.

While a project like the Button Shy Rookie series takes a ton of work, I started working on it in February 2022, it has the benefit that I  know the project will get published.  Robotech: Reconstruction just hit retail at the end of 2022.  I cannot guarantee any boardgame media will cover the game, but by creating my own media content, I insure there is at least some coverage.