If you like to write, and have been on the internet for a few years, chances are you have heard of National Novel Writing Month – or NaNoWriMo for short. A couple of weeks ago, I was discussing how cool it would be to have a month dedicated to making a game. And then I saw it on twitter, NaGa DeMon.
National Game Design Month (or NaGa DeMon) was started by Nathan Russell in 2010 and appears to have grown over the last two years. What started out as a handful of participants is now a few hundred people, in two very quick years. You can find more history on NaGa DeMon here.
The idea behind NaGa DeMon is to make a game, any game, using the month of November to accomplish this feat. It can be of any size, genre, difficulty. You can make it yourself or with friends. It doesn’t matter how rough or polished the game is, or if you ever decide to attempt to publish the game or just keep it for you and your gaming group. It is a month to challenge gamers to rise above playing their favorite games, and put pen to paper and make their own.
There are really only four rules to participate in NaGa DeMon:
1. Create the game in November. You have from the 1st to the 30th. If you can make your game in 3 days great, feel free to take the entire month however.
2. Finish the game in November. Your game should be complete by the end of the month. That means all the rules figured out, game pieces created, cards printed and ready for use, etc. The key to remember here is that it doesn’t need to be a perfect, published product, just a completed one.
3. Play the game in November. Grab your normal gaming group, head up to your FLGS, ask your family to join in. It doesn’t matter who or where, just play the game and watch your creation come to life.
4. Talk about your experience. While making your game and after, talk about being a game designer. What did you most like about making a game, what did you dislike about it? Where did you succeed and where did you fail? What will you do differently for your next game, and what will stay the same?
By completing those four tasks in November, you “win” NaGa DeMon. You can smile and be happy knowing that you made a game, hopefully had fun, and managed to do something most gamers only talk about accomplishing.
Make sure to check out the NaGa DeMon website for all the official rules, updates and cool resources. Where you go from here is up to you – will you take your game to Kickstarter or IndieGoGo and try to get funding? Will you just play it at your FLGS? Will you ditch that game and start thinking of your next one? No matter what your future plans our, tell us about them, and good luck!
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