First up, games played. I played a lot of games this month, mainly due to several events: Beyond Monopoly, Dave coming round for Space Hulk, a games night, Psychocon in Leeds and a week-long games-fest of a holiday. Total games played in October: 52.
- Carcassonne: 12 plays (including the River, Traders and Builders and/or King and Scout expansions).
- Border Reivers: 8 plays - seven of those at the convention.
- Ticket To Ride: 6 plays.
- Lost Cities: 5 plays.
- Puerto Rico: 4 plays.
- Space Hulk: 3 plays.
- Formula Dé: 2 plays.
- Perudo: 2 plays.
- Apples To Apples: 2 plays.
- The Really Nasty Horse Racing Game: 1 play.
- Street Soccer: 1 play.
- TransAmerica: 1 play.
- Hey! That's My Fish!: 1 play.
- Saboteur: 1 play.
- Niagara: 1 play.
- Leonardo da Vinci: 1 play.
- Football Tactics 2006: 1 play.
I had not played eight of those before (Formula Dé, Perudo, Street Soccer, TransAmerica, Saboteur, Niagara, Leonardo da Vinci and Football Tactics 2006). So it was yet another good month for experiencing new games. As part of my quest to become a better games designer, I want to play lots of new games - improving my breadth of experience. Good progress made towards that goal this month. Which was my favourite new game? It's a toss-up between Niagara and Football Tactics 2006. Niagara probably just wins it by a nose. It's fast, fun, simple and features several innovative ideas (the clear discs representing the river, using the box as part of the board).
I bought one new game this month (Lost Cities), which has already got a good amount of play - a good choice, methinks. I like that it's fast and has a reasonable amount of strategy - the randomness doesn't put me off at all.
Looking forward November, I won't play anywhere near as many games, as I'm not attending any cons and I'm going to miss one of the Beyond Monopoly sessions due to visitors. Hopefully I'll get along to Paul's games night a few times, and see more of Dave though. Games I'm most looking forward to playing: Mission: Red Planet and Canal Mania, especially after Chris Farell's positive write-up. Hopefully I'll get a chance to play these this month.
So that's October from a player's perspective, how about a designer's perspective?
Border Reivers had a good month. I sold nine copies, including four in one week - the second highest ever weekly sales. It was well received at Psychocon, and has gained four more ratings on BBG, boosting its average above seven. I've finally got some sales to North America too, two to the US and one to Canada. I got in contact with the BBC MindGames magazine, and arranged some free publicity, and I was interviewed for a piece in Flagship magazine, though neither of those publicity effort have bourne any fruit yet as the articles have yet to be published.
Codename: Jorvik has seen a fair amount of play (not included above). It was starting to settle down before the holiday, but now I'm thinking I'll introduce some major changes and see if they improve things. If not, I can always backtrack to the last prototype and try something else. I also got my first order for Jorvik :-)
Codename: Sennon has seen a fair amount of new ideas, and a first attempt at a rules set and component list. I had hoped to take a prototype with me on holiday, but I ran out of time to make it. I'll need to get the prototype made this month in time for playing at Christmas with family and friends.
What does November have in store? I'm hoping to get a couple of new prototypes done for Jorvik and Sennon, and the BBC review comes out this week. I hope that I'll get a bump in sales from the review, but I've no idea if I will or not. The magazine is aimed at puzzlers (sudoku and crosswords, etc.) so they might not be interested, or I might get swamped with orders. Something between those two would be best - a modest bump in orders, but not so many that I really struggle to fulfill them.