Behind the Box: Amazing Game Designers
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We have a game, we love a game, we play a game all the time.

But how much do we think about the name on the box, the person who designed the game?

Sure if it's a famous game designer we might now a bit more, that might even be the reason we bought the game.

But what stories do we know about the game inventors, the game authors, the game artists who make our favorite hobby possible.

This list is dedicated not to the amazing games, but to the amazing people who make the games.

Feel free to add any information or stories about game designers that you think are incredible.
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1. Board Game Designer: Jürgen Hermann Ott
Two things about this man amaze me.

First, he designed his game 20 years ago, but it didn't get picked up by any publishers. However, he loves the game so much that he went ahead and self published it, showing it at Essen for two years now. Giftzwerge

Second, he did all this despite his physical handicap. I find this man to be amazing and a hero.


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2. Board Game Designer: Claire Kotarski
Co-designer of a very fun game, FrogFlip



Claire is 3 years old
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3. Board Game Designer: Friedemann Friese
If Board Gaming has a superstar, a Dennis Rodman if you will, it's this man.

Yes he creates great games (Power Grid is my favorite game), but he also put his own face on a game he released.



It cracks me up.
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4. Board Game Designer: Reinhold Wittig
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I will have to add my mentor and friend Reinhold Wittig here, who has been designing games since the late 1950s (anyone in business longer than that?).
Reinhold is constantly active, be it with game design, with building puppets, art exhibits, geological expeditions to Africa (researching prehistoric earthquakes and such) and, just generally everything.

Besides all this, without him, game designers would probably never have been credited on box fronts. He also coined the term "Spieleautor" (game author) which is now used widely in Germany for game designer. The list goes on...

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5. Board Game: JamSumo [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:3467]


I first met Gavin Birnbaum, the designer of many great games, in 2013 I think. He makes fun, simple, high quality wood games that always have a unique and interesting mechanic.

He'll spend the year crafting the pieces for his new games, take it to Essen and quickly sell out. When I asked him if it makes money, he said enough to pay for the trip and table. Which is his goal, sort of like a mini paid for vacation. He's been doing it for years, and I'm sure anyone whose been to Essen has met him and played his games.

Gavin is super friendly, easy-going, and helpful. To me he is a great role model of a happy, small scale indie game designer that perfectly represents the love of the hobby.
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