Soccer, South Africa, and Sixth Grade Girls

Fatima Docrat, a sixth grader in South Africa, has designed a soccer game in anticipation of the 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa.

She used Microsoft Word to design the game. SuperSport, a sports media outlet in South Africa, is interested in the game.


Missionary Conquest: Conquer the World by Martyring Yourself

Missionary Conquest is a game that poses as a spiritual version of Risk, but is more of a money management, light-hearted game of collecting points by visiting different countries as a Christian missionary.

The interesting feature is that you can visit a “hostile” country and martyr yourself, thus taking you out of the game, but possibly handing you the victory anyway, as it gains you a lot of points.

It’s sold by Christian, who also sells 400 other games with Christian themes or suitable for Christians (many are Chess boards and books).

One which amused me was the book titled Dangerous Weapons: The French. It’s a Chess book about the “French Defense” strategy.

Licenses Keep Hasbro Floating

Hasbro continues to do well, buoyed by its lucrative licenses, such as Iron Man, Star Wars, and Indiana Jones.

Many see toys and games as the hot ticket during recessions, as they are cheaper than alternatives such as expensive video game systems, movies, or travel.

Hasbro’s shares are off 25% for the last two months, but still up from the beginning of the year.


Gearing Up for the Chicago Toy and Game Fair

Chitag is Nov 20 to 23, and they’re packing in the activities this year.

Nov 20 to 21 (or maybe 23) is the Toy and Game Inventors Expo. Meet the big guys from the industry, learn inside tips, and maybe hit it big.

Nov 21 is a new Toy and Game Inventor award presentation.

Nov 22 to 23 is the fair, with renaissance chess, a young inventor challenge, and tons of toy and game exhibitors.

Cogno Space Games

Cogno produces a line of educational games about space, science, and engineering.

They’re roll-move-and-trivia, but you get to choose your direction, there are different difficulty levels in the questions, and you may fall into a black hole.

Zombies!!! – the Video Game

Is it me or is the video game industry running out of ideas? Anywho…that undying board game Zombies!!! is coming to a console near you. Big Rooster, the studio who seems to be getting all of these gigs, is doing the work bringing the popular board game to the X-Box 360 (probably Arcade), Playstation 3 (probably Playstation Network) and the PC (via the Steam network) with a possible future release for the Nintendo DS and Wii.  No word on a release date at this point  (sometime next year per the announcement).  For those who aren’t familiar with the game (and how can you have missed it), Zombies is a tile laying game where players are attempting to avoid hordes of little plastic zombies.

The Hartford Courant on Game Designer Hank Atkins

The Hartford Courant has a puff piece on game designer Hank Atkins, famous for the 1981 game Razzle from Parker Bros, as well as dozens of other games from some of the big companies such as Milton Bradley, Fischer Price, Hasbro, and Educational Insights.

It’s a 40 plus hour workweek for a $100k a year salary, making 10 to 12 new games each year. And you have to get used to rejection.