Christian Kudahl

#106 – Christian Kudahl

Patrick Rauland: Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Indie Board Game Designers podcast, where I sit down with a different independent game designer every single week, and we talk about their experience in game design and the lessons they've learned along the way. My name is Patrick Rauland, and today I'll be talking with Christian Kudahl, who designed a game which was recently signed by White Goblin Games called Unleash, which we're going to talk about in this episode.

It's a CCG-style duelling game where any monster can fight for anyone depending on how much you are willing to pay. I'm excited to chat about that mechanic. In addition, the game itself has a really interesting story. We're going to talk about Christian's story because he's gone from aspiring game designer to signed game designer in very little time, so we're definitely going to chat about that. Christian, welcome to the show.

Christian Kudahl: Thanks a lot, Patrick. I'm very happy to be here.


Patrick: I like to start with a lightning round to introduce you to the guests, sound good?

Christian: Sure.

Patrick: All right. Your first game prototype is about lawyers, so I have a lawyer question here. If you had to be a lawyer, like a divorce or real estate lawyer or intellectual property lawyer, etc. what type of lawyer would you be?

Christian: I used to play this video game called Ace Attorney, do you know it?

Patrick: No.

Christian: It's where you play as a lawyer who goes around finding evidence, and then you get to go into the courtroom and make cool objections and say, “No, this person couldn't have done this because so and so.” I think that's the coolest kind, the detective kind of lawyer. I'm not sure if they exist or only in fiction, but that's definitely the kind I would want to be.

Patrick: That's super cool. I hope it exists. Now, the game that you got signed is about monsters. If you could be a monster mercenary where you get paid to fight, what type of monster would you want to be?

Christian: My favorite monster was always the hydra from Hercules. I saw it in the cinema as a child, and it's this big monster, and when you chop off its head, it just gets more heads.

Patrick: Pretty intimidating, unless you have fire. Right? Is that the–?

Christian: Yeah. I forgot that he defeats it somehow, but I forgot how he does it. But it's definitely not just by chopping off the heads.

Patrick: Yeah, definitely not. Then what is a game you play with someone every single time at a convention?

Christian: Fake Artist Goes to New York. It's a drawing game where you draw a picture together, but there is one trader who doesn't know what you're drawing. I can highly recommend it.

How did you get into board games and board game design?

Patrick: I've heard good things about the game, but I haven't played it. It is high up on my “Got to play” list. First real question is, how did you get into board games and board game design?

Christian: For board games, as a child, I was interested. I loved playing Connect Four with my family. We had this game called Cogo Crazy, which is a memory game about collecting different kinds of monkeys. At some point, my brother was playing Warhammer 40,000, and it looked pretty cool. I thought with these guys fighting with the guns and everything, so I bought this big box starter set, and as a child, I saved up money and bought it.

But when I opened it, I was disappointed because there were just all these spruce and an arm here and the gun here, and I found out that you had to cut it out. Also, they were grey, and you had to glue them and paint them, and there was this thick, intimidating rulebook. So, I was really sad because I just wanted these cool guys shooting each other. What I did was to get– I sold it, and I got the Pokemon card game instead, and that spoke to me.

The guy at the store taught me to play, and I was able to play with my friends, and I like that game. For many years I didn't play much, and then when I was 20 or something, I was going around on YouTube, and I saw this video about Arkham Horror by this guy Tom Battle. I viewed this review, and this game just looked amazing. It was like this big sprawling thing, cool monsters.

So I got that, and it feels a bit weird because I like to recommend a gateway game like Settlers of Catan or something like this, but mine was Arkham Horror, which was a really heavy game to get into. It took us a whole day to read the rules and play it, but we had a really good experience. I think the theme was really interesting to us, and it was cool to see how much a board game could do.

Patrick: It seems like the theme is a big thing there. You're talking about Warhammer and how you want to have the guys who are shooting each other with cool space guns.

Christian: Yeah, and I think that was always the thing drawing me in. The gun has to do something, so there has to be some mechanism that fits it. A card that says what it does, or something.

Patrick: Right.

Christian: But I think definitely these cool guys in the cartoons fighting, that was something that appealed to me a lot and still does.

Patrick: So, where did game design come from? Because you talked about games, but how did you start making your own stuff?

Christian: I think most board gamers at some point want to try to make their own game, and I did think even probably tried making my first prototypes in 2013. Then after that, I maybe made one game a year, but it was pretty half-hearted, I would say. I got an idea, made a quick paper prototype, and then I convinced someone to play it with me. It was usually– It was always pretty bad.

Then I thought, “Oh well,” and then I didn't want to play it again. I think all designers know that the fun part is coming up with the idea, making the prototype, all these fantasies you have about the game. Then when you play it, and it's not fun, you have to put in the work to make it fun, and I didn't want to do that part.

Tell me about Unleash

Patrick: Cool. Interesting. Which I think brings us to your first signed game, which is called “Unleash.” We chatted a little bit in email before this interview, and the story is really interesting, so I'd love for you to share the story of this game.

Christian: Yeah, sure. In 2018 I had a new idea for game, which was about the corporate lawyers who– I wanted, I always liked these games like Pokemon and Magic where you have these guys fighting. But I thought, “It doesn't always have to be monsters though, it would be interesting with lawyers, so they could be fighting over companies.” Maybe you're representing some company, but I could do some takeover and push you out, and now I'm representing that company and getting money from that.

I know it sounds cool, which was also I wanted to make it, but I wasn't smart enough. The game I spent– Actually, this was the first time I tried to be a bit more serious about a game and not just toss it away after one play. So I played it a bunch of times, several of my friends had to play it again and again, and it was OK but never really became fun. It was quite a short game, but it had far too many keywords and mechanism for stuff you could do, because I wanted to– You should be able to bury the other person in paperwork, should be able to blackmail them, you should be able to headhunt their guys and hire them for your company. So you could do all this stuff, and in most of the games, many of the mechanisms never came up.

After working on it for so long, I got a bit discouraged. Like most designers, I'm a bit of a perfectionist, and there's this– I don't know what it's called, but there's this effect where if you played a lot of games, you are able to identify when something is good and when it's bad. After playing games for many years, that ability is very well-developed. You're critical of games, you know, “This sucks. This sucks. This is good.” But your ability to make games, it doesn't grow the same way when you play games. It's quite easy to see that your own game sucks. You can be very critical of your own game, so at least– I thought it was just not that great, and I didn't want to pitch it to anyone before at least I thought it was an amazing game.

One mechanism in the game was about blackmailing, so you could pick an opposing lawyer, and you could say, “OK. I want to blackmail that guy for $20. And that meant the opponent had to either pay that money to you or they would throw that guy away. Maybe that's not quite how it worked, but something like this.

Patrick: Sure.

Christian: This mechanism turned out to be interesting. It was just the one time in the game where we had the most fun. At one point, I felt like making a new game because, as we talked about, the fun part of making a game is always the beginning. You get the idea, and you make the prototype, you can imagine everything working in your head. So I made a new game which was a lot simpler.

Basically, this one mechanism off– It's basically an auction combined with this CCG-style gameplay. I made a new game around that, and the first time I played, it was so much better than the last game had ever been, even after one year of development. So it was quite easy to decide to put the lawyer game on the shelf and start working with this new game instead.

Game mechanisms & playtesting

Patrick: OK, let me jump in here for one second. You made this lawyer game, which had a ton of cool stuff, but the stuff didn't come up or didn't quite work. You worked on it for a year, but you found one cool mechanism, this blackmail mechanism, and then you made a new game with this blackmail mechanism. Is that right?

Christian: Yes, exactly. This new game became Unleash, which is the game that is finally getting published. Around that time, I was on parental leave, so I had a son. I had six months where I didn't work, and I instead spent the day with him, which included lots of long walks where he was sleeping in the stroller. I had a lot of time to think about this game, so I had lots of time for developing it in my head, but I didn't have that much opportunity to playtest it because I had to spend most of my attention on my son.

Coming up with new stuff, I had plenty of time for that. But doing it and printing out prototypes and sitting and playtesting was more tricky. I had to do that mostly during the evenings when he was sleeping, and there's even a nice playtest group in my city which I was not able to visit that often, but it was nice to do it. I would like to do it more, but it was very hard to find the time. So instead I spent most of my time in the evenings designing the cards, putting them into– I used this tool [inaudible] to compile the game, so I have a Google sheet where I can write everything and compile it to [inaudible], and then I could go to the copy shop on the next day and print it out.

But playtesting, I found out, and I was also able to do in the evening. I found some people, some people I had written with on BoardGameGeek, and I wrote to them. So, people I knew from other games similar to this, these monster fighting games. I just said, “I see you're very active in the forum for this game. I've made a game, also a duelling card game for two. Would you like to try and play it?” And I got very friendly responses, so people were– I found people who were willing to print out the game and playtest it with their friends, which is amazing that someone else would dedicate this kind of time to helping me. I also implemented the prototype on Tabletopia. That was an advice in one of the episodes from your podcast.

Patrick: Awesome.

Christian: So I followed that and implemented it, and it was quite simple. I got the prototype online and the playable format. This meant I could now play with people in the evening who were far away, and I was able to playtest with people who were experts in this field of competitive 2-player card games. Being able to playtest with not just your friends and family, but actually, people who were deep into these kinds of card games was a huge help.

What was your experience with pitching?

Patrick: Very cool. So what happened with pitching your game? How did that go?

Christian: Sure. The first time I pitched it was during the summer, so I sent it to a publisher, and I was quite confident in the game that I thought if they played it, I thought they would like it. Because I had positive experiences testing and almost everyone I tested with really liked it, also people that were strangers to me. I was quite confident. But the first publisher I sent it to it was immediately rejected because the game at that point was just 36 cards.

It was really on the borderline of being a microgame, which was not something that suited their catalog. Which is perfectly fine, I purposely kept the card count down because I thought it would be easier to publish if there were not too many cards requiring illustrations and this stuff, I thought it would be easier to get it published, but it turned out to be harder. I thought, “I would love to make some more cards,” so I extended it and made a full set of cards. Something like 52 cards, and around this time– So, in just two weeks from recording this, there's big Spiel in Essen, which is the big game fair in Europe.

Which is an interesting time for designers because you can get face to face with publishers and pitch your games, which is I think easier than doing it online. You can show them the game, you can put the prototype in their hand, and you don't have to send it by mail. I was writing to publishers, and I was very happy because a few publishers agreed to meet with me, so I sent them a Dropbox folder with a sales sheet and the rules PDF.

I also had a PDF of the cards so they could see the card effects. One publisher I sent it to was White Goblin Games, and they responded that within just a few hours of me sending it, they had already printed it and played it, and they liked it. Then a few hours later, they wrote that they wanted to sign it, which was the best news I could have. I had just hoped they would take a meeting, and I wasn't even trying to get them to play it. But of course, I was very happy with this and accepted it.

Patrick: I love that you were doing the typical advice of “Contact publishers before a convention and try to schedule a time to pitch it to them.” I love that it worked so well for you that they signed it before the convention. That is a very cool story.

Christian: Yeah, that was quite the experience. I got the news while at work, so it was very hard for me to concentrate on work for the rest of that day because I wanted to write a reply to them and keep the conversation going.

Patrick: Very cool. I love your story here because I love– I think I like the beginning, with you starting with his lawyer game. Because I think I think you're right, people love designing new games, and sometimes you find these amazing mechanisms that work. I love the idea of, “It didn't work here. Let's take it out and put it into its own smaller game, or let's move it into a different game and add this thing.” I love that story, and I want– I think I want other game designers to be more comfortable with that.

Where a friend of mine has this cool damage mechanism, where you take out certain cubes from a bag, and certain cubes go back, and certain cubes come out forever, and that's your health going away. It is the coolest mechanism, but the game he's working on is going to take him years to develop. I want him to do something and take that mechanism, put it into a smaller gamer or something like that. I think that's a cool bit, and I think it's a cool story.

Christian: Yeah. One thing in the sign, the tricky balance I found, was when to abandon a design and start a new one. Because as we said, it's fun to get ideas and fun to do the initial part, and then you have to do some work to make it fun. But from my experience in the game that finally succeeded, it was pretty fun from the first tests. I feel like when I'm deciding a new game, it's a little bit– You could say “Random” if it's fun or not, so if you do a couple of those you can take the one that is closest to being a very good game, and when you work from that you don't have to go quite as far.

Patrick: I totally agree. At some point, listeners, fun fact, I am thinking about writing a book on game design. At some point, I want to have a whole chapter on ideas, and I honestly believe– Like, make 1,000 games, and by accident, you will come up with 20-100 cool mechanisms. It's not about coming up with a perfect game, but make a ton of games. You will find cool stuff, and then feel free to mix and match them and make your perfect game after that.

Christian: Yeah. I think if you can– I think it helped me to acknowledge a little bit that I'm not smart enough to know beforehand if the game is good or not, so there's a certain randomness to it. Whenever I make a new game, it's like a lottery coupon, that maybe this game is pretty good and I can also take one which starts by being not very good, but then I will have to work a lot. It will be a long walk before I get to it being amazing.

What was some of the best advice you’ve heard on this show?

Patrick: Yeah, “The lottery ticket” actually feels appropriate, so I like that. There's something else in your story that we were chatting about ahead of time that was really interesting to me, you mentioned listening to this podcast and you mentioned that– You basically said, “Patrick, I just wanted to let you know I listen to your podcast, and I just got my first game signed.”

I think that's an amazing success story, and I want more people to either make their own game where they make it themselves and launch it on Kickstarter, or they sign it through a publisher. I sit in my chair of the podcast, I don't know what it's like to be a listener of this podcast. What was some of the best advice you heard that helped you make your game? That's what– I'd love to hear that.

Christian: Yeah, it has been an interesting experience for me. I've listened to several different podcasts, and one thing that made this show different was that when I scrolled down the list, I didn't know the names of the people. There was no Jamey Stegmaier, and there was no Eric Lang. At first, I was like, “I want to listen to the successful guys. I want to listen to these cool people that I know already,” but I happened to listen to– I think I listened to the episode with Jordan Draper, and he was someone I already knew from his game Import/Export.

I liked it, so I ended up listening to all the episodes. I had a lot of time for listening to podcasts during my parental leave, and one thing I ended up liking was that this podcast was much more relatable to me. Listening to these people that maybe just got their first idea or are running the first Kickstarter, or got their game signed or something like this, it was much closer to my own experience. Rather than– It's fun listening to someone who has a history of 20 years of game science, but it's– Somehow, that was extremely inspiring to me to listen to all these people who seemed more or less similar to me.

Patrick: Sure.

Christian: Some people got into games two years ago, and I thought, “I got into games five years ago, so maybe I could also finally make a game and get it finished.” I mentioned also something very specific was Tabletopia, and one of your guests– I'm sorry, I forgot who but I think it was someone from Finland. He mentioned using Tabletopia as a prototyping tool, which for someone in my situation who was not able to do that much face to face testing. The games need a lot of testing, so being able to use this tool and during the evenings sit and play with also strangers, it's a way for them to try your game if they are willing to do it.

It was extremely useful and concrete advice. In general. I would say listening to podcasts have helped me have realistic expectations of designing a game. My goal was to make a game, which I think is cool, but I also wanted to get it published. I knew from the start it shouldn't be too large in scope, I shouldn't make a big adventure game with 700 chapters and all these characters and all these mechanisms. So, to try and keep it pretty simple, so it was something that I could test and get done. Also, I don't know, but I imagine that it's easier to get a publisher to publish a simple card game rather than a big, huge miniatures game.

Patrick: Yes. So, the advice is to start small?

Christian: Yeah, and also to have realistic expectations of when I send this to a publisher, probably they don't want to publish it. Probably, maybe they don't even want to play it. Or maybe they don't give me a response. To have these realistic expectations, because I know that a lot of designers are writing to them and they have a lot of stuff to do, and there are many other games than my game, so I can't just expect the first publisher to publish my game. I think having these expectations also helped me not being too sad when my game was rejected.

Patrick: Great. Those are all good pieces of advice. I love that. Just for the listeners, Jordan Draper was episode 32. You can go back and listen to that one, that one's a cool episode. It's interesting, and I like hearing about the resources like Tabletopia, which was a good– If you don't have a local meetup group or a playtesting group, then Tabletopia is a nice backup.

Not a backup, but a nice second choice. I like hearing about the relatable indie game designer, so that's cool. Thank you for sharing that. People don't realize this, but podcasting is one way. I have this conversation with designers, and I rarely get the feedback, so it's nice to hear feedback of what people listen to and appreciate. So, that's good. By the way, I'm just super happy that someone listened to this and then got a game published. That is amazing.

Christian: I'm very happy, too. Thank you for making this podcast.

What is your research process like?

Patrick: Listeners, if you make a game and you get it signed, and you listen to the show, please email me on Facebook or through the website, or just something. Because I would love to chat with you even if it doesn't go on a podcast, I would love to chat. Let's talk about some of the other questions because I liked hearing these two stories, but I do want to talk about a few other things.

One of things we talked about ahead of time is research, so when you're researching this game– Let's say, let's go back to your– I'm forgetting the name. If we go back to your game Unleash, how much research do you do into the theme or into what the game should be like before you start designing?

Christian: For me, I don't design historical games or games that represent something, like “How was the economy in Cuba between 1954 and 1957?” This kind of research, I don't do. I think for me, I like to think of a cool hook for a game. For example, it would be cool to make a heist game where one person is doing the heist, and the other is playing the police. Imagining what such a game is, the promises that such a game could give, and then trying to figure out how I would be able to deliver on those promises.

For example, real-time submarine battles where you are trying to deduce the location of the opponent, and it's all done using only pen and paper. That sounds cool. That turned into Captain Sonar, which is a game that delivers on that promise. Coming up with a cool hook and then bouncing ideas around usually for a few weeks, thinking about “How could I do this stuff?” And if I like it enough, I get the energy to sit down and make a prototype, and then I play it. Then I'm usually really discouraged after the first play.

Patrick: OK, let me let me zoom in on the– You said you think about game for a couple weeks, do you, when you get the idea– Let's just go with submarines moving around and submarine battle, you get the idea for “A submarine battle would be really cool,” do you write anything down or is it just in your head?

Because I know for me, I forget things pretty quickly, so I write down everything immediately. Do you just let stuff sit in your head for a while? Do you think at all about game mechanisms, or do you think about how cool it would be for two weeks?

Christian: I usually think about how cool it would be for two weeks, but also how to achieve that coolness. How to think about “OK, you want to deduce somehow the opponent. How would that work?” Usually, if I find that I stop thinking about the game, that's when I write it down. I have a document with all ideas, but I never really– I don't think I will go back to them. I think it's just because it feels good to write something down, but I don't think any of them will become games.

Patrick: Yeah, I have at least over 100 game ideas in my Evernote. I think you're right, very few of them I will come back to. But it still feels nice to write them down just in case.

Christian: Yes, it does.

What one resource would you recommend to another indie game designer or an aspiring game designer?

Patrick: OK. Let's move into some of the ending questions, just because we're a little short on time. You shared some of the resources that worked well for you, but I'd love to know what is a resource you'd now recommend to another indie game designer?

Christian: So I told you, I love podcasts and listening to podcasts, and one podcast I mentioned is called The Nerd Lab, which is a podcast about mainly card game design. I found it interesting since I do mostly card games, it's interesting to have a podcast which focuses on this sub-thing in a sub-thing, which is it goes quite deep into card game design. They just had a three-part episode on just drafting, like “How can you use drafting and how is it done in other games?” And stuff like this, so it goes pretty deep and I enjoyed that a lot.

Patrick: I am looking that up on my– I'm adding that to my podcast feed right now. Is there anything else? Just podcasts?

Christian: Yeah. I wanted to also talk a bit about game design groups, and there are– I'm a member of lots of these Facebook design groups, which is to say it's pretty cool. You think about design every day because it pops up on your feed, but I found that they are most useful for if you have a simple question. Like, “What would be a cool title for my game?” Or, “How do you like this logo?” Something like this.

But I haven't, maybe I haven't committed enough, but I haven't gotten into deep, long conversations about game design, stuff like this, in these groups. In general, I would recommend smaller groups and get-togethers. So having just a small group with two or three other designers, I like that. To get there and someone who will care about your game, and you'll care about their game, and you'll be able to share the successes and the defeats. I would recommend if you can find it, to have a small group of game designers.

Patrick: Fantastic. This is a little off-topic– No, this relates a little bit. My definition for “Community” has always been where you know, basically, everyone and everyone knows you, and I think that's why large Facebook groups are only good for some things. I think you're right, and they're very good for “Should I use card A or card B? Should I go with logo one or logo two?” But it is very hard to get detailed feedback in some Facebook groups, just because they're too big and you don't know all the projects that everyone's working on, and it's too hard to keep track of. So, I get that.

Christian: Yeah. I don't want to be too harsh, I think maybe it's possible, but I'm a shy guy, and I don't want to go busting in there posting every day or something like that, so for me, I didn't get or find the deeper relationships there.

What was the best money you ever spent as a game designer?

Patrick: Yeah, it's really hard. So changing and going into my next question, I'm a frugal person, and I try not to spend money unless I don't have to. What's the best money that you've spent as a game designer?

Christian: So, you know now that I listened to all the episodes. You always said you are frugal, and I'm not a native speaker. Does it just mean that you are cheap?

Patrick: Yes, it is. In English, “Frugal” is like the nice way of saying cheap. Cheap is not a great thing, but when you say you're frugal, it's just the nice– It's the exact same meaning, but it's just the nice meeting.

Christian: All right. I'm sorry for outing you after nearly 100 episodes.

Patrick: No, that's great.

Christian: The best money I spent was definitely on The Game Crafter. Getting a nice prototype, I also spent a bit of money on a humble bundle. You could get this other asset which allowed me to turn my game from just being a white frame and some text into something that looked like a card game, and this was really inspiring to me and also the people I played with, to have something that looks like a game and it's printed on cards, so it feels like a game, it somehow convinces you that it actually is a game.

At least, for me. I'm a visual person, so having that– Most people will say that it doesn't matter to have a good looking prototype, and it's true, but for me, it was a cool inspiration. When I looked at my game, I was like, “Yeah. This is a real game.”

Patrick: That's great. There was another humble bundle– As far as when we're recording this, it was a couple of weeks ago. I think by the time this episode comes out, the humble bundle will, unfortunately, be over, but it was about card design again. That is actually where those Facebook groups, or just any sort of board game design community, even on Twitter or on certain Discord channels. It is so helpful to be plugged in because someone just dropped a link and said, “Other people might find this useful.” I bought that humble bundle immediately it has 50-bajillion art assets that I can use for my prototypes.

Christian: Yeah, that's a good point. I think that's also the way I found it in the first place, so such groups certainly have their values. I think they're just good for some things.

What does success in the board game world look like to you?

Patrick: Yeah, great. Then my favorite question, what does success in the board game world look like to you?

Christian: For me, it would just be to publish a single game. It would be cool if it was not self-published because it would mean that someone else also believed in it. It looks like this is happening now, but of course, it's not done until it's done. But I've got the game signed, and I don't think I will be a professional game designer. I like my job, and I like having this design business as just a hobby.

Patrick: Great. I am excited when people know they want to keep it a hobby. I think it's very easy in the world we live in to like turn your hobby into a side business, and I like that yours is basically a hobby that might accidentally make money. Which is, I think, a totally different way of looking at it. That's cool to hear.

Christian: I think for me, it would be too stressful to go all in for being a game designer, and I don't think it's the right thing for me. But it would be kind of cool, right?

Patrick: Yeah, very cool. It could be.

Christian: But I don't think I'm willing to put in the work at all hours, I think it's much more relaxing to have a nice job and make a game when you feel like it.


Patrick: I totally hear you. So let's move on to the Overrated/Underrated, which I assume you know since you've been listening to the show.

Christian: I have heard about it, yes.

Patrick: All right. I'm going to give you a word or phrase, and you have to tell me if it's overrated or underrated. The very first one, I'm going to go with detailed board game review podcasts. It has to be more than five or ten minutes, and it has to be– You have to talk about a game for longer than that. So, what do you think of those type of shows? Are they overrated or underrated?

Christian: I would say, “Underrated.” I like listening to them. I think it's very entertaining, and you can learn stuff about also games you didn't know about. I will say that it's also very interesting when board game podcasts do something other than reviews, but I certainly enjoy the reviews. There are many new, very talented people doing them.

Patrick: I love it. Then what about–? So, going back to your original game design of lawyers, there is a spit– I don't know if you know what this is, but there are a certain type of lawyer called “Patent trolls.” First of all, do you know what they are? And if so, are they overrated or underrated?

Christian: I don't know. I assume it's some kind of–? That you are sitting on a patent that you're not using and hoping to sell it to someone?

Patrick: Close. Good. So for those who don't know, patent trolls are people who buy patents from other people. They don't make them. They buy them from other people usually, and then they wait for someone to accidentally violate the patent and then they sue them. If you want to try another stab at a lawyer game, give a patent lawyer or patent troll game a go.

Christian: That would be an interesting theme.

Patrick: OK, then let's move on to the third one. So I'm going to– I said “Tabletop simulator” in my original question sheet, but I'm going to change this to “Tabletop simulator and or Tabletopia, overrated or underrated?”

Christian: I would say, “Underrated.” For me, being able to test online was not something I considered before, but it was a game-changer because you're able to do a lot of tests quite efficiently. With a bunch of people who may be experts in your type of game, you can do it efficiently and fast and get nice feedback. I can recommend them highly.

Patrick: Fantastic. I love it. The last one is Patreon, overrated, or underrated?

Christian: I would say, “Underrated.” I think it's a very nice tool to be able to support as great as you like, and it doesn't have the hype from Kickstarter. But I enjoy using it, and it's a more relaxed way. I think the creators also like it more because they don't have the huge stress of a Kickstarter. They publish something whenever they're able to, and they get this nice stream of money, which is also– They don't have to sweat every year up until the big Kickstarter day. For creators, like podcast creators or something like this, I think it's a cool tool. It's underrated because it doesn't have the hype from, say, Kickstarter.

Wrap Up

Patrick: Awesome. Christian, this has been great. I appreciate you coming on the show.

Christian: Thanks a lot. Thanks for having me.

Patrick: Where can people find you, and eventually, your game online?

Christian: You can email me at, and if you think anything I said was interesting or if you want to do a co-designed something like this, feel free to shoot me an e-mail. You can also find me on Facebook as Christian Kudahl, but I'm not really on Twitter or any of those other things.

Patrick: Awesome. This has been great. Listeners, if you like this podcast, please leave us a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. If you leave a review, Christian said he will sue you for awesomeness, which is a great thing to be sued for. You can visit the site at, you can follow me on Twitter and BoardGameGeek, I am @BFTrick on both platforms. Until next time everyone, happy designing. Bye-bye.

Christian: Bye.

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