Tag Archives: Board Games

Pacificon 2012

I just posted a monster entry, so I’ll try to keep this one short, for my sake as well as yours.

I’m attending Pacificon Game Expo this weekend in Santa Clara.  Greg is on vacation this week, so I am forced to go without him. However, I have a valiant friend standing in for him, because Pizza Theory must be sold! That’s right, I will be in the dealer’s room with Pizza Theory for sale.  Stop by to learn the rules, challenge me to a game, or bring some friends and challenge them.  Or just say hi to me. This may be the last time we personally sell Pizza Theory at a convention, so don’t miss it.

More importantly, I am hosting the 3rd official Pizza Theory Tournament on Sunday from 1 PM to 3PM.  If we have at least 18 participants, then the winner will receive a free copy of Pizza Theory. Already have one? You can gift it to a friend because you know they love pizza and board games almost as much as you. The maximum number of players is 27, so don’t let it fill up without you. Signup sheets should be somewhere.

I hope to see you there,

Brian Powers


Pizza Theory in the Newspaper!

photo courtesy of Jorgen Gulliksen (Napa Valley Register)

That’s right, there was an article written about Pizza Theory in the Napa Valley Register print newspaper on Saturday, March 3, 2012.  It also talked about the creators, Brian Powers and Greg Powers (that’s us!).  Thanks to Jennifer Huffman for the great article.  Go here to read the article for yourself!


SaltCON 2012

We returned to SaltCon in Salt Lake City, Utah this year from February 17-18.   If you’ve been following us, you might remember that we won the Ion Award competition at SaltCon last year with our game Pizza Theory, and connected with Gryphon Games to publish it.  Well, this year was the grand unveiling of the first shrink-wrapped copies of Pizza Theory on the one year anniversary of the award.

It was awesome to get our hands on the final product, and it was fun to introduce the game to new players with the clean artwork and components (no longer a prototype)!  You can see pictures of the game pieces and the box over at Board Game Geek.

We also hosted an official Pizza Theory Tournament along with Rick Soued of Gryphon Games, which was a blast.  We started with 18 contestants, and narrowed it down to 2 finalists after two rounds (with two wins to move on each round).  To round out the Final Match, Greg and I alternated as the third player, until someone could get 2 wins.  Those final games were intense, and I only got one win in the 4 games it took to select a winner.  Sadly, Greg was unable to win a game, which goes to show how deserving the finalists were!

While we didn’t have any new entry into the Ion Award competition, we had some friends among the finalists.  Wade Herrboldt, from our own Gamescape Designer’s Guild, was a finalist with his game Nix Six.  And the winner of the 2012 Ion Award was a designer that we met at KublaCon last year, Joseph Kisenwether with his card game Rocks!  Congratulations to both of them and all the other finalists.

It was another great year at SaltCon, and it was, once again, well worth the drive.


Gamescape Designers Guild

We’ve been wanting to start a regularly scheduled game design group to cultivate a local community of playtesters and designers for a while.  And now it begins:Gamescape Designers Guild

Hosted at the amazing San Rafael based gaming store (Gamescape) the first meeting will comence on Saturday, November 19th 6-9pm.

Events will be hosted monthly at the store, where local designers can playtest game prototypes, meet-n-greet each other, and discuss any or all aspects of board game design and manufacture. Everyone is welcome, whether you have your own game prototype, an idea for a game, or just want to get a behind-the-scenes look at the different processes of design and production.

We also have a board on the Gamescape forums to facilitate discussions and answer any of your questions or concerns.

We hope to see you there!

See the full announcement here

Pizza Theory Pre-Order

It’s Official! Pre-Orders for Pizza Theory are now available via kickstarter.  It also shows the finalized box and game art that was designed by our publisher. Take a look:  http://kck.st/rOIKP5

Development Progress

Starting now I’ll be trying to keep a weekly log all our game design and development. Not only will it keep you up to date on the status of our games but it should give you a pretty good idea of the process we use to make our games. Also it will encourage us to stay on track by making at least some progress every week.

Pizza Theory
We’ve been finalizing our latest, and hopefully final, prototype. Due to problems we were having with pieces getting knocked around during game play we’ve switched over to a peg and hole system.

This week we made all the pegs by cutting a wooden dowel into 1″ segments, then Brian spray painted the pegs the player colors: red, white, and green. Each peg took several coats of paint, but now they’re looking pretty good.

While Brian worked on Pegs I worked on card design for the 6 ‘cut cards’ players use to declare their cut selection. Up until now we had just been using different suits from a deck of playing cards, but we wanted some official cards to make our prototype look more complete when submitting the game to prospective publishers. The design is ready for a home print, but we’re considering getting them professionally printed by SuperiorPOD which will require some minor reformatting.

We Play Tested Empower with a few new rule variants:

  • Removing the turn order restraints to allow a more flexible turn.
  • This seemed to hurt the game flow more than help it.

  • Try new unit set-up formations.
  • We’ve been trying to make the early game feel dynamic without being too slow or boring, still a work in progress, but we getting closer to a happy medium.

  • Change Boar Rider into a Paladin.
  • Although the boar rider was a fun unit its player activated ability didn’t really fit the style of passive combat the rest of the game has, the Paladins mechanics fit the game better, and so far don’t seem to upset the unit balance, but we still need to play-test him in a 3 & 4 player game.

That’s it for now, hopefully we will have some more updates in the coming weeks

~ Greg Powers


After some internet research for Board Game Design competitions, Greg discovered the Ion Gaming Award. A “design competition that recognizes unpublished or newly published tabletop gaming designers. ”  Sounds perfect!

We submitted the descriptions for Pizza Theory and Empower by email back in November 2010.  Pizza Theory was accepted as one of the 4 finalists in the strategy category (out of 22 games in 2 categories).  So we get to present Pizza Theory in front of the judges at SaltCON.

SaltCON is a gaming convention in Salt Lake City, Utah on February 18, 19 2011.  I’m driving out to Utah with my wife and Greg for the Con.  None of us have been to a convention out there before, so we will get to meet a lot of new people.  And my wife is looking forward to seeing some snow, I just hope there isn’t too much on the drive.