Games DesignLet's start with the bad news. My games design goals were to make four new versions of Codename: Vacuum, make some progress on Dragon and get Zombology ready for hawking to a publisher/self-publishing. I've done nothing with Vacuum since January, so only one new version so far this year and I've not touched Dragon (though that will probably be the focus of my NaGa DeMon efforts this year). Zombology has been my main focus for the last six months. I've made good progress, but this last week's feedback (see below) has made me think I'm not as close as I was hoping. But there's still four months to go so I might yet hit this one. Vacuum is looking more doubtful.
BloggingMy blogging goals were to get 40K page views and 10 new followers along with posting every Monday (plus more during NaGa DeMon in November). I'm at 19,200 page views, which considering the massive bump I got last November means that I should be able to hit that assuming I do NaGa DeMon. I've got three new followers, so that one is looking pretty difficult - I'll probably miss it; but I've not missed a Monday yet, so that is looking good too.
GamingI had two goals from a gaming of point of view: play at least 365 games this year and play every game in my collection at least once. On the first point I'm doing very well: 274 games in the first six months of the year, I'm pretty sure I'm going to ace this one! And on the second point, I've got nineteen games in my collection yet to play (excluding nine games that I've excluded for sentimental or other reasons). This should be pretty achievable too, but I think a few of those will probably leave my hands in search of more accommodating owners. Citadels, Cleopatra and the Society of Architects and Pirates of the Spanish Main are currently candidates for jogging on. Qwirkle, Tigris and Euphrates and Snow Tails have already left the stable.
In other news, it was Newcastle Playtest again this week. We started with a couple of games of Zombology and it got pretty mixed feedback this time, those people who enjoyed it last time seemed to enjoy it again, but Paul in particular really didn't like it. He felt like he had no control and no idea how to win. It's a ten minute game, so I'm ok with it feeling pretty random, but I don't want it annoying people. I've also heard back from a couple of my blind playtesters. One of them emailed with a few rules questions that will help me improve the clarity of the rules, the other has played it once. He was generally positive, but said it needed work and had a bunch of suggestions, so I think I need to go back to the drawing board and address these concerns. I'm thinking of taking a couple of types of cards out, but that leaves me with some slots to fill - ideally with cards that make it more interactive and fun without becoming more complicated. Hmmm.