Hello and welcome to the Kritfayle blog! Could you begin by telling us a little bit about yourselves?
We are a self built Board Game Company in Western New York that designed and sells Ghosts of Ur the table top adventure game.
As the creators of Ghosts of Ur, how would you describe it to someone who might not be familiar with it?
We have a saying here at the warehouse that Ghosts of Ur is Chess and Risk meets Dungeons and Dragons
How did you get into board game creation?
We, and me specifically, playing a lot of Board Games and DnD back in the 70s and 80s. Many of them we did not like and could be easily broke, think Risk with Australia, and so we created GHOUR with that problem solving in mind.
What are some of your favourite board games?
Aside from Ghosts of Ur of course! Dark Tower was a big one for me personally but Axis and Allies and Third Riech were also big for me. As well as the game of 20 squares which you might know as "The Royal Game of Ur"
What first inspired Ghosts of Ur?
Learning about Summeria and the Genetic ties to North Western Europe in 3800bc, had me hooked immediately. Real History is stranger than fiction and the dawn of early man was a magical time.
Did you first have the idea for the setting and then decide it would make a good board game, or want to make a board game and later come up with the setting?
To be honest they went hand in hand almost at the same time.
What was the creation process like?
Painstakingly slow with a ton of Prototypes and play testing and experimental hours working out the math for years.
Who do you think this game appeals to most?
DnD fans that want to play a Board Game as a change of pace that is different every time to play it.
In an era where computers are used for so much, what do you think are the strengths of board gaming over computer gaming?
I play a LOT of computer games still, they have their place for sure but Board Games offer a much diffrent experience because you are gathered with freinds and family in a live setting.
What was a challenge that you didn’t expect while creating Ghosts of Ur and how did you overcome it?
Material processing and the knowledge needed to utilize everything from 3d printers to spin casting molten Pewter. It has been a labor of love but it has been work that has been long and back breaking.
What was the most enjoyable part of creating a board game?
The first day we all saw the finished box we all lit up here like school kids. Just awesome. Still is TBH
One cool feature of Ghosts of Ur is how replayable it is due to the random tile placement system, are you planning on releasing any expansions to further boost replayability?
We have many varients that we experiment with and post on the website and TBH most casual BGers will be done with Ghosts of Ur long before it is done with them. We are also working on a Dungeon Crawler utilizing the same components as GHOUR just with new tile sets and diffrent mechanics. We have been testing this part in the back ground for a bout a year now.
What, if anything, inspired the six different adventurers?
They are based on real archealogical digs from 3800bc and the real people that made the actual journey to Sumer 7000 years ago.
Your website lists interesting gameplay variants, do you have a favourite of those?
I like playing Gala Master if I can draft him, or Capture the flag if I am feeling like a little more action movie type thing if that makes sense.
You mention some of your game components are locally crafted and/or handcrafted, how important was it to work with local artists and manufacturers?
We manufacture all of the Pewter and assemble in full here in Buffalo NY (as well as all the shipping) the graphic artists were all local also, and TBH when working on such an obscure time in history I am not sure that remote communication would have worked for us. It is strange to most artists and the heavy lift of helping them understand the time period helps immensely if they are in the same city.
You do livestreams of Ghosts of Ur on Twitch, when can people check those out and what can they expect?
They can expect to see daily Tuesday through Saturday 8am est (and then rerun all day afterwards) a bunch of GHOUR players that have played each other for 1000s of times and as such there is a lot of strategy involved that I am not sure the average adventurers would be doing right out of the box first few times
What’s next? Are there any upcoming projects we should keep an eye out for?
It involves a Dungeon Crawler and Enki's son Marduk. The Pantheon of ancient Sumer is fascinating to us.