MemberMarch 24, 2022 at 7:56 am
Hi Roger! Outside of game design, I’d have to say being a performance artist, a competitive martial artist, a therapist, and an educator have greatly influenced my game design. How, you might ask?
Performance artist: from a young age, I’ve been on stage and expressing myself creatively. I have been adjudicated since I was 4 by masters of the art, so I’ve never experienced imposter syndrome – that’s something that a lot of creatives who do not have formal training feel regularly. I’m used to numbers and scores and being graded – it doesn’t phase me and I can take constructive criticism and improve from it.
Martial arts: I’m a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, an art that is almost chess-like in it’s strategies and movements. For me, Jiu Jitsu is a lifestyle and a mindset as much as it is a martial art. I’ve learned a lot about myself through putting myself through over a decade of training and competition and I’ve had my outlook on life changed greatly by participating in the art. There’s a famous quote from coral belt Rickson Gracie (universally recognized as one of the greatest practitioners of the art ever) where he recommends that people “flow with the go”. I use that daily in life and in game design. Whatever problems I’m faced with in the game design, I know that I can flow around whatever barriers I encounter to find a workable solution – it just takes effort, know-how, and time.
Therapist: I’m a keen observer and note taker which helps me during playtesting sessions. I actually care more about how players behave in game than I do about what they say post-game. More on psych stuff up above, though!
Educator: As a professor, I have learned a lot about how to teach people, how to give feedback, etc. and I find that helps me with rules writing, mentoring, and giving feedback during playtests.
Thanks for asking!