Since 1994, I’ve been working in the computer and board-gaming industry, as writer, producer, and designer. I’ve worked for The Avalon Hill Game Company, Stanley Associates, TalonSoft, and BreakAway Games.
Avalon Hill (1994-1995)
Managing Editor, THE GENERAL. Avalon Hill’s bi-monthly/quarterly in-house magazine. I completed seven issues for them before leaving for Stanley Associates, Volume 29 – Issue #3 through Volume 30 – Issue #3. Technically speaking, I was already gone by the time 30-3 hit the shelves, but I had specked out most of its content beforehand.
Producer, 1830: Railroads and Robber-Barons. This was one of the most enjoyable projects I worked on at AH, and it’s still one of my favorites. This game reeked of production value. Simtex, the company that programmed it, was a top-notch developer at the time, and they did a marvelous job with this classic boardgame. And it was the policy of Avalon Hill to do full-color manuals for their computer games, so I was able to do a lot of innovative things with the text.
Stanley Associates (1995 – 1997)
Playtester, Writer, Semper Fi. My primary responsibilities at Stanley Associates, a government contractor in Alexandra, Virginia, was to write on-line help systems for their various Navy and Marine Corps software products. However, in the last year of my employment, I was reassigned to their small computer games division. There, I worked on Semper-Fi, a joint project with Interactive Magic.
TalonSoft (1997 – 2000)
Producer, Tech Writer, Designer, multiple projects. One thing I can say about working at TalonSoft: we were never wanting for work. We, quite literally, busted our asses getting products out the door and on the shelf. With minimal staff and very short dead-lines, over-time was a way of life. But I must say, despite the heavy work-load, we produced and published some of the finest wargames ever to hit the market. I was hired on as a producer, but I wrote all the manuals for my games and coordinated their playtesting. My projects included Tribal Rage, Battle of Britain, Bombing the Reich, Hidden & Dangerous, and H&D: Devil’s Bridge.
BreakAway Games (2000-present)
Producer, Writer, Designer, multiple projects. I’ve worked on too many projects at BAG to list them all, but I was originally hired as a producer. I served in that capacity for about a year and a half and then moved into their design department, and there I’ve remained ever since. Some of my favorite projects include, Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle, Austerlitz: Napoleon’s Greatest Victory, Strat-O-Matic Football, Civilization 3: Conquests, Emperor – Rise of the Middle Kingdom, Arabian Lords, and Mythic Palace.
Design and Development of Training Games
Published in 2014, Design and Development of Training Games is a textbook that discusses various techniques and methods for designing and developing training games, or what is often called “serious games”. I and a number of current and ex-BreakAway Games employees worked on various parts of this book, including Chapter 4 – Story for Learning and Gaming, and Chapter 18 – Development Methods: Virtual Dental Implant Trainer, wherein we discuss the development process of a game that BAG designed in partnership with the Medical College of Georgia. It’s a very well designed, well produced hardbound book that’s a must for anyone interested in getting into the Serious Games business. It’s available on Amazon.