Hollandazed: Thoughts, Ideas, and Miscellany — game publishing

H & M REDUX (by Amabel Holland)

Mary Russell

Comments 8 Tags game publishing

H & M REDUX (by Amabel Holland)

One of the first games we signed was Sean Chick's Horse & Musket: Dawn of an Era. As others have remarked, it's a somewhat unusual entry in our catalogue. We're mostly known for unusual and experimental titles with a small footprint. Horse & Musket, with its twenty scenarios, three dozen optional rules, thirteen unit types, and five sheets of counters, definitely feels like an outlier. We didn't know that at the time, of course. When we signed the game – shortly after getting Hollandspiele off the ground – we figured that bigger, more traditional hex-and-counter games like Horse & Musket...


JUST NOT FEELING IT (by Tom Russell)

Mary Russell

Comments 2 Tags game publishing

JUST NOT FEELING IT (by Tom Russell)

When I was in my twenties, I was pretty clueless and very stubborn (a potent combination). I confused a love of puns with a personality (in addition to being clueless and stubborn, I was also unfunny). I was adamant that a reel mower was more effective than gas or electric (I was also cheap). I was pretty sure I was a boy (still scratching my head on that one). And I was convinced that a press-your-luck dice game about panama disease should not only exist, but should be about an hour long. This was monumentally dumb for a number of...


FROM THE ARCHIVES: OWNING IT (by Tom Russell)

Mary Russell

Comments 1 Tags game publishing

FROM THE ARCHIVES: OWNING IT (by Tom Russell)

Before there was a Hollandspiele, there was a "Hollandspiele", the vague idea that Mary and I wanted to publish board games. We talked about it periodically for several years before we took the plunge, and there were a number of reasons for the delay. We needed some practical experience. I needed to learn my craft as a designer, and I wanted to develop some kind of reputation that could jump-start the proceedings. And then, of course, there was the fact that we didn't have any money. For years we existed perpetually on the brink of financial collapse and disaster. Being...


FROM THE ARCHIVES: THREE WAYS TO EVALUATE A DESIGN

Mary Russell

Tags game design, game development, game publishing

FROM THE ARCHIVES: THREE WAYS TO EVALUATE A DESIGN

When we evaluate a design submission, the first thing we do is take a look at the rules to get a sense of the thing. If it captures our interest, we then proceed to getting the game on the table. I don't have hard numbers on this, but I'd hazard a guess that only about a third of the submissions that we turn down get to that second step. If we've taken the time to print up a copy of the game, or to ask the designer to go to the expense of sending us a playtest kit, then we...


JELLYFISH (by Tom Russell)

Mary Russell

Comments 3 Tags game design, game publishing

JELLYFISH (by Tom Russell)

Probably the thing I'm most terrified of is jellyfish. Mary found this out when we were watching a movie in the theater - I don't recall which one, but there was a shark who was a bad guy - and suddenly there were jellyfish on the screen and my whole body seized up. I was holding her hand at the time because that's the kind of mushy stuff we're into, and as a result, I squeezed her hand too hard. After the movie, I tried to explain it to her - their monstrous appearance, their vicious sting, and above all...