Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Doug Doug Goose Caboose, by JR Honeycutt (me)

Normally I avoid posting about projects I'm involved in, but Doug Doug Goose Caboose is a design that I'm incredibly proud of, and that comes from a place of love for the gaming community.

I've spent 5 years hosting Nerd Night parties in Chicago, Dallas, Fort Worth, and at Gen Con, Metatopia, and BGG.Con. Something I've seen consistently is a tendency for folks to forget the names of the people around them, and in doing so, socially disengage a bit, as it's awkward to ask somebody for their name once you've already heard it. Even though ALL of us forget names, there's still a social stigma that says "you're a bad person if you forget somebody's name after you've been introduced."

To that point, we use nametags at our Nerd Night events, but that's not always possible at game nights, or in social groups, or at church or work or in a youth group. Doug Doug Goose Caboose is a game designed to reinforce the names of the people in your group in such a way that they'll stick with you much longer than a simple introduction might provide.

If this sounds interesting, please click the widget below and check out the campaign. If you're interested in the story of how DDGC came to exist, plus muppets explaining how to play, click for more!

Two years ago, at my first Unpub in Baltimore, I was enjoying a dinner and game design event when my friend Travis (a talented designer local to Fort Worth) came up to the table and I introduced him to my friends Doug, Cody, and Brian. Through some hilarious misunderstanding, he thought they were all named Doug, and I got "Doug, Doug, Goose" stuck in my head.

The next night I was playtesting Fantasy Fantasy Baseball with Daryl Andrews (the co-designer of FFB) and Mike Fitzgerald (legendary game designer, responsible for the Mystery Rummy series, Diamonds, Baseball Highlights 2045, and many other games), and I had a flash of inspiration to make the game "Doug, Doug, Goose, Caboose". I designed the game, made up the rules in my head, and played it at the table after we finished feedback on FFB.

Shockingly, it went incredibly well and everybody wanted to play again. I ran the game that night a few times at the Unpub after party (just a bunch of designers in a hotel ballroom drinking beer and playing games) and it was so well-received that it incited a bidding war for the rights to publish the game.

To my knowledge, Doug Doug Goose Caboose is the only game to be designed and sold at the same Unpub event, something I'm pretty proud of, even if it is a little ridiculous. I'd love for you to check out the game on Kickstarter, as I believe it's worth being in your collection.

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