Dice Tower Newsletter

Scott Caputo

Bezier Games has announced their newest game, Whistle Stop, by designer Scott Caputo (Kachina, Voluspa). In 1869, the driving of the golden spike sparked the start of the great railroad expansion in the U.S. In Whistle Stop, players build train routes west across the U.S., picking up goods and selling to small towns along the way. In exchange for goods, players gain shares in the railroads, or can hold the goods for bigger payoffs when they reach the west coast.

Players will need to optimize their actions, possibly gain new actions, block the other players and lay new tracks while managing their limited coal resources. The Game includes game board, 5 player boards, town tiles, coal, gold and whistle tokens, 60 resource cubes, 25 wooden trains, railroad shares, and upgrade cards. Whistle Stop supports 2-5 players and plays in just over hour, and will be released August 2017 at Gen Con. Pre-orders will be available at Bezier Games.

scott-backdoor-man

In a recent article posted on the League of Gamemakers, Scott Caputo relates his experiences in getting not only his games published, but also his poetry by using a method he calls the “back door.”  In lieu of more traditional methods of finding a publisher for a game (emailing publishers, etc.), Caputo explains how much more effective it was for him to find someone willing to publish his work due to networking.

“Given two equally talented designers, I firmly believe the one who is better at networking will get published first,” Caputo states.  “You will cease to be an unknown name on one of a thousand emails, and instead, you will be a known commodity, someone they feel they can bank on, and that can make all the difference.”

Caputo lists several strategies for making these important connections:

  • Making connections/friends with publishers
  • Volunteering in the [gaming] community
  • Keeping your contacts alive
  • Taking time to build your network
  • Kickstarting your own thing

To glean more from Caputo’s experiences, read the full article on the League of Gamemakers website.

Picture From Scott's BGG Profile

Picture From Scott’s BGG Profile

From the designer of Valuspa and Kachina Scott Caputo a very insightful blog post has been posted on League of Gamemakers blog.  As someone aspiring to design a game one day it can be a little daunting thinking about trying to do your game pitches to publishers.  Scott talks about the fact that after having published Valuspa he went to Essen with expectations maybe a little too high.  This post is about what he learned from pitching his games and the feedback he got and didn’t get from some of the publishers he was dealing with.

voluspa

Often it is not until you take a broader perspective on the things you ahve learned that the lessons truly sink in.  For Scott he talks about the experience developing that broader perspective so that he could improve upon the games that he presented to publishers.  He doesn’t say it but it is possible that some of the things he heard initially were not as positive as he took them out to be and were more people being nice.  While others were maybe a bit more direct and while it was not as pleasant hearing the raw message in the end it was likely more beneficial.

I would strongly encourage you to head over to the League of Gamemakers blog to read his story here.