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  • Writer's pictureygeroge

Updated: Dec 7, 2021

For this blog post, we’ll continue with some interviews of our Dev Team Members. Be advised, we have an unusual number of folks named Alex in the company—myself included.



Coming in hot from the Art Department is Maddi, welcome!

Awesome to be here everyone.


Alright, first off, when did you come onto the Eternal Kingdoms project?

That would have to be early 2019.


What is your official position in the company?

I am currently on the Dev Team, but I also manage our artwork and accounting.



What made you initially interested in the project?

The ability to customize the game and the challenge of figuring out how to make the best game with what we had. I was outed as a nerd, hahaha.


Where are you from?

Originally from Lorain, Ohio. But currently living in Florida.


What other games do you like?

Pretty much any board game I can get my hands on. From classics like Parcheesi and Risk, to more recent games like Photosynthesis.


Is this your first time working on making a board game?

It is. I have worked on a few art projects, and of course, some school projects on educational board games—but nothing to this extent. It has been a wonderful learning process.


What has been your favorite aspect of working on the game thus far?

The creativity and challenge to solve any problems that come up.


What do you think players will enjoy the most when playing the game?

Being able to customize their kingdoms and building the world map.


Can you tell us more about how the Art has come together in Eternal Kingdoms?

Art is always a process. First, we start off with just an idea of “what does this world look like, what makes sense, and what do we as a team want the players to envision?” Then we work in some concept art to further establish that vision. Finally, we try to find the best artist who can bring our ideas into reality. Eternal Kingdoms has gradually blossomed into the game it is now…from new concepts, ideas, and changes in the world of Eternal Kingdoms, we have striven to perfect the way our game looks. Art covers so many different areas of the game: the look of the maps, the units, the cards, and their layouts. It’s crucial that all those aspects work well together.


How addicted to caffeine are you after working on Eternal Kingdoms?

Smhh…my blood is pretty much Red Bull at this point.


Cats or dogs?

Dogs, except for the cutest babies! Shout out to Al's kitties, Leo and Lil Shit (aka Willy).


Any parting words for our readers?

We hope you love the game as much as we do and look forward to having you as a player.


Thanks for giving us an insight into the Art side of Eternal Kingdoms.

Of course, I hope to speak with you all again soon!



Alright, up next, we have the most straightforward member of our team, Rob. Pleasure to have you here with us.

Pleasure to be here.


I’ll start off by asking when you came on to the project, and what is your job here at Siege Engine?

I’ve been on the project since the beginning of 2018, and I’m a member of the Dev team. I’m also the Playtest Coordinator.

What made you initially interested in the project?

I got roped into it, somehow. Probably just because I like games and thought it was fun.


What has been your favorite aspect of working on the game thus far?

Creating a game that I enjoy a ton and that the public will get to enjoy when its released. And I’m particularly excited for the upcoming expansions.


What do you think players will enjoy the most when playing the game?

The entire game! Especially Places of Power, so they can mess with everybody. And the Dudes….duh! Oh, I almost forgot PB the Jester, he’s awesome!

*Dudes are an internal term for militia units, places of power are....well, you'll see in the future!


Any parting words for our readers?

In regard to Eternal Kingdoms: always use Dudes, always look for PB the Jester, always get even with other players, and always win while having fun.


Thanks for taking some time to talk with us Rob!

No problem.


Alright up next is one of our newest members, Alex Jasko. Thanks for talking with us Alex.

Stoked to be here.


What made you initially interested in the project?

I have always been interested in board games like Eternal Kingdoms. I am an avid player of Risk and Settlers of Catan, as well as many other games. I also love playing games like the Sid Meier’s Civilization series.

When did you start working at Siege Engine Games?

I joined the team in August of 2020, so I am kind of like the new kid on the block. It has been a blast working for Siege Engine Games over the past year, and I am really excited about this company’s future.


What is your position?

While I started out as a play-tester, I am now one of the developers on the team. I work mainly with gameplay balancing and rulebook wording. Before everything was as balanced as it is now, I was very good at breaking the game and forcing changes to make the game run more smoothly!


What has been your favorite aspect of working on the game thus far?

First of all, the group is so much fun to work with. Meetings are a great time and they honestly don’t even feel like work. I also love being able to tell my friends that I am helping create a board game.


Can you tell us more about what kind of brainstorming is necessary when making a board game?

A lot of game development involves coming up with new ideas. This may seem obvious, but there is actually a lot to it. Coming up with novel game mechanics to enhance player experience is as hard as it is rewarding. Whenever I or another member of the team comes up with something interesting to add to the game, we must first determine how we want it to fit in with the other game mechanics. This can sometimes be very challenging. Even when we think we found the perfect way to implement a new mechanic, we as a development team must then continue brainstorming ways to break or use the mechanic in unintended ways. This allows us to balance and adjust the game as necessary to make it both fair, and fun for all players.


Any parting words for our readers?

Don’t be afraid to follow your dreams. It sounds cliche, but if I didn’t follow my passion and join the Siege Engine team, I wouldn’t be working on a game that I love so much today.


Well, thank you very much Alex.

Oh of course. I hope everyone has fun playing Eternal Kingdoms!


Well, I guess that brings us to the end of our interviews with the team. However, I bet that at least some of you are wondering: AL, our intrepid interviewer, what about you?


I’ll just go ahead and answer some of the basics:


My name is Alex Davis.


I was a playtester turned Dev member, starting at Siege Engine back in 2018.


I’ve lived in Ohio my whole life—more specifically, in Avon Lake.


I’m a giant Military Sci-Fi nerd. Anything Halo is my bread and butter. I’m also a true Veteran of the 2007 COD4 pregame lobbies. If it’s Star[Wars][Trek][Gate]: I’ve watched and read about as much as I can get my hands on each.

Currently, not only am I on the Dev team, but I also have my fingers in managing our social media…which allows me to pontificate to you lovely people!


Initially, what got me involved was my latent interest in working on some sort of game. Not really having any access in northern Ohio to do that, I knew I couldn’t pass on the opportunity.

I think the best part of Eternal Kingdoms is just the sheer randomness of it. Every time we play, there’s a different outcome plus all the different ways you can tailor the experience.

There have definitely been many challenges when developing the game; namely believing that a problem or mechanic is solved only to get feedback back that it needs to be worked on some more. Luckily at this point, we’ve got this process down to a science.

My parting words for the readers are that we at Siege Engine really hope you love our game. A lot of time, sweat, pizza, and internet tabs on Brett’s computer, went into making Eternal Kingdoms the game it is today.

Oh, and please don’t forget to join us for playtesting by contacting us through our email: info@siegeenginegames.com

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  • Writer's pictureygeroge

Updated: Dec 7, 2021

To begin our second blog post, I think it might be good to get to know the talented people on our team a little better. So please, pull up a chair, get you favorite mood music on, and let’s get into it!


For our first interview, we will be with one of our founding members and CEO of Siege Engine Games, Bretton Hibler.



Hello Brett, and welcome to the blog.

Thank you, it’s a pleasure to be here!



I’ll start off with some company and personal history. When did you first hatch the idea for Siege Engine and Eternal Kingdoms?

The game’s ancestor was a class project that my cofounder spearheaded way back in 2016, during our fall semester. I just thought it was a cool idea and we ran with it. I had no idea of the journey that would follow.


As for the company, it came about in early 2018 in preparation of our entry into the IdeaLabs business competition.



Where are you from?

Born and raised a Clevelander and an Ohioan.


What other games do you like?

I’m big into strategy games—for board games, I mostly play Axis and Allies with my friends, but I’m certainly not opposed to playing other games or genres. For video games, I’m big into empire-building. We’re talking Total War, Civ, Age of Empires, etc.

Let’s move on to some questions about your role as a cofounder. Is this your first time working on making a board game?

Board games, yes. But I’ve worked on a number of modest video game projects that helped me understand the fundamentals of game design, plus those in my college courses. Video games are a different medium for sure, but a lot of the questions and the development process are similar enough.


What has been your favorite aspect of working on Eternal Kingdoms thus far?

Just being able to make something that didn’t exist before…like starting with only an idea then making it into reality.


Has anything been challenging during the making of Eternal Kingdoms?

Honestly, very little about the game hasn’t been challenging. The reality is that Eternal Kingdoms is a very complex game to boil down, and to make the mechanics intuitive and as easy as possible. You’ve literally got two-games-in-one between the Campaign and Battles, and there’s so much that has to be balanced and interact well together. I think the team has done a fantastic job making that happen, and couldn’t be happier with how Eternal Kingdoms has turned out.

What was your experience in leading a project like this?

It’s hard leading a team with such diverse personalities. Everyone has their pro and cons— certainly myself included—and you have to balance all that out. You’ll make decisions that someone in the group won’t agree with, but you’ve got to approach it in a way that keeps them engaged and not afraid to keep contributing. Managing all that takes up a lot of mental bandwidth, however, when done successfully it keeps the team chugging along nicely.


What do you think players will enjoy most when playing the game?

I think it’s the re-playability—every game is going to be different. It’s not just the ever-changing map layout or who you bring to the table—but rather that every player continues to evolve as they play. They go home afterwards and wonder, “What could have I done differently?” So when they sit down again, there’s a whole new strategy being tested.


What’s the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

Well now, that depends. Is it African or European?


Alright, thank you for your time, Brett and we will definitely be having you on the blog again in the future for updates on the game!

Anytime, it’s been a pleasure chatting with you all.


Next up, we will be chatting with another cofounder of Siege Engine Games, Alexander Mace. Glad to have you here Alex.

Glad to be here Al!


Well, let’s hop right in, shall we? When did you first jump into the adventure that is Siege Engine Games?

Well, I was in the same game design class as Brett, so that would be sometime before 2017.


Where are you from?

I’m from Strongsville, Ohio.


What other games do you like?

I like to play ARPGs, MMORPGs, Simulation and Builder games.


What made you initially interested in the project?

I created the earliest prototypes for Eternal Kingdoms. Our development team then took what Brett and I came up with, and turned it into the game we know today.


What has been your favorite aspect of working on the game thus far?

My favorite part has been watching the transformation from where it started in 2017 to where it is now. Who knows where it will go from here!


Can you tell us more about using Kickstarter to help with our first project?

We’re a startup business and Eternal Kingdoms is our first release. While we raised some initial funds to continue development of the game, Kickstarter will help us raise the necessary funds for manufacturing, shipping, etc.

What’s your favorite food?

Pizza.


Cats or dogs?

Cats, definitely.


Any parting words for our readers?

We hope that you take the time to enjoy our first release of Eternal Kingdoms, and that there will be many more to come!


Thanks again Alex, for taking some time to talk to all of us.

Anytime! See you all at the Kickstarter.


Well, that wraps us up for this session. Please be sure to join us in the next few days for interviews with the rest of the team!

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  • Writer's pictureygeroge

Updated: Dec 7, 2021

Hello all you interested readers out there, and welcome to our first blog post! My name is Al and I’ll be your guide through the ins, outs, ups and downs here at SEG. We may even help Brett close some of 50 tabs open on his computer (more on that later).


For those of you who have been following Eternal Kingdoms over the past few years, you know we’ve been hard at work crafting a unique 3X strategy experience for the tabletop gamer. But for those of you new to our project, let me catch you up on some of the cliff’s notes.


Eternal Kingdoms began life five years ago as the brainchild of a couple of LCCC (Lorain County Community College) students, Brett Hibler and Alex Mace, in their Intro to Game Design course.


The game gradually evolved from a chess-based battle system to our current campaign map and battle board mechanics—almost functioning as two-games-in-one.

Some key design goals were to allow players to build armies with a variety of units, to be able to upgrade those units, and then command them on the field of battle. We sought to maximize re-playability with a modular campaign map so that no two games would be the same and added multiple layers of customizations to give players ultimate control over the fate of their empires. Lastly, an open diplomacy mechanic provided a dash of political intrigue to bring it all together.

In future posts, we’ll dive deeper into the development of Eternal Kingdoms, plus we’ll meet the team that made the game a reality. So, until we meet again…


Cheers!

Al


Please be sure to follow us on:

Facebook: Siege Engine Games, LLC

Instagram: @siegeenginegames

Twitter: @SiegeEngineGam1

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