Lone Shark’s doing a Reddit AMA today. I was asked if I wanted to participate. I politely declined. Being public is not how my life works these days. However, since it’s possible people will ask about me, I’m dropping a few notes here about my work over the last 15 months.
I’ve been on leave since the end of 2021. The reasons for that are complex and personal, and you can hear my thoughts on that over here. In that gap year, I’ve written two books and gotten pretty far along on a third. (I don’t know if you’ll see any of them. I’m still unsure about that.) I’ve helped out some local companies with some light consultation. My wife and I started a company for our own future projects. I’ve been busy. But also, I’ve been taking time to work on myself. It’s been important to make that a priority.
I’ve been asked if I want to return to my job at Lone Shark. I’m not sure where I am on that yet. It’s a great team of supportive people, and I hope I do rejoin them eventually. But today I’m still in my own space, for my own health.
I have helped Lone Shark when they’ve asked. Predominantly, that has been as a sounding board for business decisions and as a playtester for their games. Giving feedback and not being responsible for implementation has been good for me, and I think for the company as well. For the most part, design and development has proceeded without me. And let me tell you, what they’ve produced has been great. The Lords of Vegas expansions Americana and Con Jobs were barely in infancy when I left. They’re amazing now. The games are way better than they would have been if I’d been running the show, I think. The same applies to the upcoming Calliope game Monster Academy and an upcoming game that’s not yet announced.
I especially stayed pretty far away from their last Kickstarter. I didn’t think they needed me, and I also wasn’t in the headspace to help. Then Lone Shark made a big decision to pull back their successful but challenging Kickstarter for Americana, and we started talking about it more. For the new one, they asked me to temporarily help out to get the backers what they needed.
So I helped a bit, mostly in two ways. The first was to dive into production issues, sourcing components and getting the prices down. They’ve been doing great without me, but production is a highly specialized problem, and I have some knowledge there. I think things are better now, but the backers will be the judges of that. The second was to give the campaign some more personality. I took an editing pass over the text and videos and lifted it up where I thought it needed help. Again, folks can decide whether that was useful. I didn’t charge for this, and now that it’s done, I’ll be separating from it again. I really hope they succeed, and I hope you’ll take a look at their new campaign when they launch tomorrow morning.
That’s about where I am. Thanks for listening.