In previous articles in this column I discussed the primordial co-operative play board games, from 1987 to 2000 — starting with Arkham Horror and ending with Lord of the Rings — and I talked with Richard Launius, who helped to kick-off the co-operative game explosion for the late 1980s.
This week I’m talking with Dr. Reiner Knizia, one of the top designers of Eurogames, and possibly the best known board game designer in the world. Just like Richard Launius, he’s a foundational co-op designer, because he’s the guy that got co-ops going again over the last decade, after they’d gone moribund for almost as long.
By chance, Knizia’s Lord of the Rings has just been rereleased by publisher Fantasy Flight in a new Silver Line Edition, which means it’s smaller and cheaper.
With that said, let me offer special thanks to Dr. Knizia for chatting with me about co-op games, as he rarely grants print interviews of this sort.
This week Apple released my fourth eurogame iPhone release, Michael Schacht’s Gold!. It was a particularly exciting release for me not just because it was my first chance to work with Michael Schacht, but also because it was the first-ever (as far as I know) simultaneous release of a professional print game and an iPhone adaptation. Michael revealed abacusspiele’s edition of Gold! to fans at the Nuremberg Toy Fair on the same day that the iPhone edition became available in Apple’s iTunes stores.
To commemorate that release, and talk some more about the lessons learned in iPhone game designed, I’ve put together this article, discussing some of the more careful details that I had to consider when creating my newest game. If you’d like to see some of my other discussions of iPhone game design, I’ll point you toward Turning Reiner Knizia’s Money into an iPhone Game, Making Computers Think Like Auction Players (which I wrote for the release of Reiner Knizia’s High Society), and What Makes a Great Mobile EuroGame (which I wrote for the release of Reiner Knizia’s Kingdoms).