Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Attacktix Interview - Jeff Grubb

Jeff Grubb is a Civil Engineer, Game Designer and Author. You can read more about Jeff at his own blog, Grubb Street. He is also a member of the Alliterates. The Alliterates is a fellowship of writers, modeled after the Inklings, the social club of Tolkien, Lewis, and other Oxford dons. The group consists of fantasy writers, and other game designers, who secretly control the world from basements and bars across the US.

Q: You are designing an Alliterate card for a new expansion edition of Magic. What does the description read?

A: Alliterate Quorum (Artifact) 4
Tap, 2; Search you library for an Alliterate and put it into play,
tapped. You may only do this if there are fewer than five Alliterates
currently in play.
When of your Alliterates is tapped, all of your Alliterates are tapped.
"Everyone should believe in something. I believe I'll have another
beer." - Big Book of Alliterate Wisdom.

Q: Would it be fair to say the same handful of guys have designed, pretty much, all the mainstream Collectible Card Games and Miniature Games out there (and ones we don't know about)?

A: I think there are a number of "usual suspects", but, like RPGs, there are a lot of newcomers to the field as well. Often these are guys with experience in related game design who break into the new field. Three years ago I would hardly consider myself a Miniatures Game Designer, despite some work in the ancient BattleSystem from TSR, but since then I've done HeroClix, Star Wars Miniatures and now Attacktix.

Q: Which character, figure, team, etc., did you have the most fun designing (spanning all your credits, Hasbro, WotC, WizKids)?

A: Big figure? Galactus from HeroClix. No doubt about it.
Regular-sized figure - C3PO from the Star Wars miniature game. We gave
him a mechanic that made him function like his role in the movies, made
players want to use him, and infuriated the opposition (his power was
that, if you COULD shoot at C3PO, you had to save or attack him INSTEAD
of your normal target. And he had a high defense, so you wouldn't
usually hit him.)

Q: I used to play Spellfire, and I know a few of those Vampires were actually creators names backwards and sideways. Is there any game I can find a Grubb, or Bbrug, character?

A: Hmm, I think there was a "Mother Grubb" in the old Bloodstone Pass
modules, and a Hardy Boys book where there was a game designer named Jeff
King (named after me and fellow Allit Rob King). And my smiling (well,
screaming) face showed up on the cover of Temple, Tower, and Tomb, (art
by Paul Jacquays). Oh, and I invented the Internet in the original
Cyberpunk game. But I don't have any Fejburgs floating around.

Q: Since this site is about Attacktix, do you have any tips? Any 10, 20 point steals? Loopholes?

A: Attacktix? Nay, its perfectly balanced! Oh, all right - Mace Windu is undercosted - he was a favorite in playtest.

Q: How does someone become a Game Designer? Any resources you recommend if you want to start your own game?

A: My advice to any would-be Game Designer is "Flee! Flee while you can!" My own background is Civil Engineering, and I find that a lot of my training in that area ( schedules, deadlines, math skills) is very useful in the various types of game design. The other reccommendation is design what you like to play - if you're enjoying it, there is a good chance others will as well.

Q: So you snuck a Jeff Grubb figure into the Attacktix Universe. What's your team/class and more importantly if your base is white what's your special power?

Star Wars Class: Jedi

Attacktix Class: Specialist
Special Power: Innovate: If White, put another mechanic from a
completely different game into play. Then stand back and watch the fireworks.
-Jeff G.


musicmark said...

Really enjoyable interview. If you have a line of communication to Jeff, I'd be curious to know what his ongoing involvement in Attacktix is...whether the Star Wars Series 2 is already done, or still in progress; and whether any non-Star Wars series are underway yet.

Nice tip that Mace is "broken"--I'm off to see why for myself :)

JoeAttacktix said...

You know, Jeff was a really nice guy who answered my email quickly. If you have any questions for him, head to his blog and email him!

Post his reply here, I'd be curious to hear it. As September gets closer, I will try to talk to him again!

Anonymous said...

who invented or created the attacktix game