77 – The Family Gamers Podcast – Isaac Shalev, Seikatsu designer

Isaac Shalev

This week, we talk to Isaac Shalev, co-designer of one of our new favorite games: Seikatsu.

Isaac co-designed Seikatsu with Matt Loomis, with art from Peter Wocken.

“All the players will score all the tiles, but they will do it differently.” Isaac and Matt played around with this mechanism for a while before settling on the 3-axes, different perspectives idea represented in Seikatsu.

All the birds and flowers in the game are native to Japan. The koi obliquely references the legend of the koi turning into a dragon.

Isaac expands on his relationship with IDW, publisher of Seikatsu and soon other games designed by Isaac and Matt.

He also tells us about Crimson Sails – an upcoming game that uses “liar’s dice” as a core mechanism.

Coming soon from Mayday Games: Flip the Table, a dexterity game.

Also coming soon, Daimyo – an action selection / role selection game. You are gathering classes to be appointed the daimyo (Japanese feudal lord). Everyone knows the cards you have used, but no one knows which cards you have kept to score points at the end of the game.

Isaac talks about his design philosophy when teaming with Matt: wide breadth of game types, but trying to provide a great experience with very elegant, stripped-down mechanisms.

Isaac also is part of a podcast: “On Board Games”. Although the podcast began nine years ago, Isaac joined about three years ago. Part of the Inverse Genius and Dice Tower networks. Find them on twitter @onboardgames.

Get Isaac directly @kindfortress and check out his blog kindfortress.com.

That’s it for this time. Don’t forget to check out our review of Seikatsu, and until next week, play games with your kids!