When Your Gut Asks You Questions



It’s interesting how you come up with ideas for designing games. I think I’ve always been an ideas person since I was a child, and by that, I mean I would take apart clocks, old phones, radios, and stuff. But I never tried to put them back together. Instead, I would try to use the gears and components to make something new, as if it were possible. LOL.


Sometimes my father would come home and find me on the floor with a recent purchase he had made. That would be enough for a good butt whipping. I was fascinated by inventions and the process involved in making things. When you look at something, and your gut asks you, “How does it work? Or What else could it be?”


From writing music, when I start to learn a familiar melody, then in minutes, I’m writing a new song with new lyrics. I could never learn the piece I started learning. I would look at my teachers' signatures on a chalkboard (from elementary school to college). Then steal the script letters that caught my attention and find ways to incorporate them into my writing style. I think that feeling of looking for something new out of something already existing plays a strong in my sculpting. Finding a form out of a block of stone or wood.


I’m an avid Sudoku player. I take the newspaper or game book to my favorite diner to play a game before beginning to write ideas, lyrics, prose, or texts. The more I played, the more my gut asked, “Is it possible for Sudoku to be a two-player game?” It would be the same game with players having to logically explain their moves when challenged by their opponent.

At first, I brushed off the question, but like a splinter in my foot, I’d be reminded of it. I think the brain has a “problem-solving department” that works on things, especially when we sleep. I keep a writing pad by my bed, and the puzzle pieces begin to fall into place. Duo Coup™ came about as an answer to that question from the gut.


I’m sure many game developers have that gut instinct that drives them to create. That idea sitting on the porch of one’s imagination and won’t leave. It can be birthed by something old, something new, or something borrowed… you get my drift.


You should ignore people that tell you to leave ideas alone. I remember a young lawyer telling me that no one could design a “world-standard game” like Chess, Parchisi, Checkers, etc. He said that era is over. He felt the best way to make money in game design was to follow the crowd and base a game on what’s happening – movies, pop culture, etc. I strongly disagreed with him. I feel Gin-Go has a good chance.


Don’t let others discourage you. Take your ideas out to lunch and treat them to a hot dish of imagination. You’d be surprised where they might take you.


––– Duo Coup™: Sudoku for Two will be available for sale in December 2022. –––

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