The Board Game Design Course

Where great games begin

Game Design

We’re all in this together (so let’s help each other out)

Let’s face it. We’re facing some difficult challenges right now.

Our lives and routines are being disrupted in many ways. Some people have lost jobs or have been temporarily laid off. Others are trying to keep their businesses afloat. Many of us are working from home, trying to manage a new landscape and even juggle watching our kids and helping them navigate a new online learning environment at the same time.

For some of us, working from home or being alone is nothing new and doesn’t bother us. But for others who are more used to all the social interaction with coworkers, getting together with friends often, and playing sports or board games, it can be difficult to be isolated at home.

I hope you’re still able to get some games to the table if that’s what brings you joy. And if you’re designing games, I hope that you’re able to find ways to playtest and play games with others, whether it be with those around you are online using a platform such as Tabletop Simulator (TTS), Tabletopia, or Board Game Arena.

However you are connecting to others, whether it be face-to-face, over video communications, or on one of these gaming platforms, make sure to check in on how others are doing right now. This small gesture may mean a lot to someone else.

Make sure others are doing ok

Mental health is important. In times like these, many people struggle with the isolation and lack of routine.

It’s important to check in with others and see how they’re doing. Ask them what their situation is, whether they have anyone else with them, and how they’re managing.

Just a simple question and showing you care can go a long way.

Listen to what they’re saying

When you’re checking in with someone else, be sure to listen to their words. Listen to how they say them.

You don’t want to be pushy, but you also don’t want to brush off something that could be a concern. Let them know if you’re experiencing any of the same worries they are and make sure to let them know they’re not alone.

Sometimes just being there to listen to someone else can help them through a tough moment.

Make sure they’ve got everything they need

Ask the question “Do you have everything you need?”

Many regions are finding shortages of different supplies, whether it be certain foods, medications, or toilet paper. There may not be a lot you can do from where you are if the other person is halfway around the world, but maybe there’s still a way you can help. Maybe you have some handy tips for how to stretch your food budget or make some great meals with limited ingredients. You never know what you might be able to do to help.

Also, if you do live in the same country and you’re aware of what types of government supports are available and how to properly navigate the sometimes uncertain procedures to access them, you could be able to make someone’s day.

What you can do right now

You might be isolated right now, but that doesn’t mean you’re alone. That goes for everyone else as well.

We are more connected today than we ever have been in the history of the world. Although we might not be able to see or touch each other physically, there are plenty of options for being able to connect with each other face-to-face, including Skype, FaceTime, Zoom, and a whole host of other options.

We can still talk on the phone.

We can still play games, either over a webcam or on a digital platform such as Tabletop Simulator, Tabletopia, or Board Games Arena.

Stay connected. Keep in touch with friends and family. Keep playing games and doing other hobbies and activities that bring you joy and keep you connected with others.

This is a time that we need to show our caring and kindness more than ever. Be good to one another and we’ll all get through this together.

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