A full day of proper board gaming at last, after many “Let’s postpone it till Jan sessions”, not unexpected for a busy holiday season.

The biggest difference this time was that we will be playing my creation, the very first board game that I’ve ever designed. Nothing too complicated, just pulled together a few game elements which I like, an economy-driven score track that players can control and conflict of objectives for some bit of chaos where gaining something means losing something. An abstract game where the “weather” theme doesn’t matter but more for a bit of entertainment and cohesiveness to guide the thinking process.

Play testing a game that I have designed

And it sounded interesting!

And it failed the play test quite miserably!

“But hey, you succeeded in your objectives! I do feel quite conflicted!”

“And there’s definitely a lot of chaos”

“And maybe there’s a very difficult strategy to play this game that we have not discovered yet”

The other three of my board game brothers took their turns to have a spike at the game with a tongue in their cheeks.

I didn’t know failing can be that fun! I guess I’m really walking into this without much expectation. More of a wait and see about how the game unfolds. It was quite funny seeing how the game degenerated into this vicious cycle where one player was trying to shift the score track up and the next will just destroy the score track.

Board game creation is a lot of fun for me because it made use of a wide variety of skills. Firstly, out of the box thinking is required to pull the entire game together in a coherent manner, modifying a bunch of classic game mechanics at your disposal or otherwise it will become another Monopoly. Creativity to put some theme into the game, tell a story about the game. Logical thinking to put the rules together and see if certain actions make sense at all. Empathy to understand what is the “fun factor” for different types of players. Art and crafting to build the prototype.

It is pretty much like how I used to write music. Plenty of gut feel and emotion feeling stuff to start the process and using a wide variety of technical skills to put everything together.

I wonder if it sounded to you that I belong to a bunch of versatile generalists. For one thing, that is how my boss describes me. He said that I would need to specialise in order to move upwards. However, I got to know that this seems to be a problem with the INTJ profile, a rare 2% breed of people in the world. Apparently, two of my buddies are INTJs too (How coincidental considered there’s only 2 of us in every 100 people). They faced very similar problems as I do. And it always feels a bit more comforting to know that they are in this with me.

Whatever the case, I’m terribly sure of my strengths and my skills. My greatest skill is to synergise different skills together to make new ones.

Don’t call me an Engineer as I’m not just an Engineer.

Don’t call me an Artist or a Musician as that’s a narrow view of what I do.

I’m an Artigineer. And I happen to be an educator too.