An intense title seemed like the only good way to introduce this post … another wonderful interview!
I had the pleasure of speaking with Marlon Fussell from MEGA MINT Games about his SATANIMALS, now on Kickstarter. A game with a crazy unique theme, some very cool art, and only a 2-person team behind it, it’s definitely impressive! So let’s check out a little more about the process behind what made this card game happen.
Everyone say “Hello Marlon!” (I’ll wait).
A lover of games, he wanted to create a smooth board game that could be enjoyed by all types of gamers, yet still be quick and simple with a hidden depth of strategy. “I was in the middle of designing a fairly
unique game,” Marlon said, “when my girlfriend showed me a quick sketch she did of her dog but ‘satanified.’ Once I saw that sketch, it clicked. This would make a badass game.“
How big was the team that worked on the game & what was the process like to find every role?
Marlon explained that it was only a team of two who worked on SATANIMALS, which is quite a big task for such a small team!
“My girlfriend, Missy, did the artwork for the game,” he said, “while I undertook the rest. The process to find each role wasn’t too strenuous because I tried to reduce costs by taking on every role.” – He was clearly very dedicated to the project since he was willing to put in so much personal time and energy into making it a reality!
Marlon said that the hardest role to fill, by far, was the play testers. “In the end we found many people willing to try out SATANIMALS and give us their feedback thanks to PlaytestNW, as well as putting fliers up and around our city.”
What type of game is SATANIMALS & who would you recommend it to?
“SATANIMALS is a light-hearted, strategic, set collection game meant to intrigue those who are looking for something a little bit different compared to your average game,” Marlon said.
He further explained that the game is designed for everyone to be able to play together, no matter skill level or hobby level; it is simple to understand but does have a layer of interesting decision making.
What makes SATANIMALS unique?
If you haven’t already figured it out, the answer is … the theme of course!
“I don’t recall the last time I saw a card game about starting your own demonic petting zoo,” Marlon said. And I would have to agree!
Although the theme is usually the draw in for the game, once players get started playing, they realize that some of the mechanics are on par with the theme itself. Marlon also says the most unique mechanic in SATANIMALS is ultimately the drawing system. “Players draw from a 3×3 grid of decks which allows for less aggravating randomness and more strategic decision making.”
Are you happy with how the game turned out? Will you continue to design/create games in the future?
This is Marlon’s first game, and he said that not only is he happy with how it turned out, but he will also definitely continue to create more in the future.
SATANIMALS met his goals because he “wanted to create a quick game that all types of gamers could play together and enjoy. [The game] does an excellent job at including non-hardcore gamers as well as giving much more active gamers the depth required to make interesting decisions.”
In looking toward future game projects, he wants to continue because of the great impact this one has had for him. “It’s a great experience designing a game from the ground up and watching it slowly evolve into something completely different from what you originally intended,” Marlon mentioned. “I have notebooks on notebooks with game ideas that I want to get to the table and those games will never come to fruition unless I bring them to life.” I know I’m wishing him the best of luck with all those soon to be creations!
What has your journey been like, and what has the process taught you?
Having designed games throughout his life, Marlon was no stranger to that process, but he had never produced a game before, which was another level for him, and an eye-opening experience. “It’s no longer about making a game that just works and plays well,” he said, “you now have to figure out manufacturing, marketing, artwork, fulfillment, graphic design and Kickstarter (in this case).” – And even with all of those, that’s just scratching the surface! Though the journey was a tough one, Marlon found it phenomenally rewarding to watch his game really come to life.
Thanks to this experience, Marlon says, “I now view games in a much different light.” He more frequently finds himself trying to figure out what the processes were like behind other games, or why certain choices were made for some games. “It’s also taught me,” he continued, “that designing games is not easy in the slightest. In fact, it’s very difficult and requires a great amount of perseverance to overcome the many hidden hurdles that you will inevitably face.”
What are some of your favorite games?
Marlon said that for board games he is partial to Killer Bunnies, Santorini and the original Fireball Island – some great picks! He also mentioned some of his favorite video games, those being Hotline Miami 2, Zelda Botw and Lord of the Rings Conquest.
You can check out more information about the game, previews, and reviews on the Kickstarter (And of course you can get your own copy too!)
Designer: Marlon Fussell
Publisher: MEGA MINT Games
*This was a monetarily compensated promotion*
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