We ask tabletop game designer Sen-Foong Lim of Belfort, Junk Art, D&D Rock Paper Wizards, five questions about being a game designer. Here’s what he had to say.
Sen-Foong Lim
London, ON, Canada
Years Designing
11 years professionally
Best known for
Belfort, Junk Art, D&D Rock Paper Wizards

What was the moment you knew you were a game designer?

I knew I was a game designer when all I wanted to do was change the rules of the games I was playing as a kid because mine made more sense than the published rules.  Also when I added dice and cards to everything I did (like playing with Lego or Star Wars action figures).

Where have your best ideas come from?

My best ideas come from looking at life in a playful way and then taking lots of showers to allow me to drown out the world and focus on those thoughts.

Describe your design/development process?

Mechanisms inform themes, themes inform mechanisms, and playtesting rules them all.  I tend to design from a bottom-up approach (mechanisms first) with the goal of curated gaming experience in mind – I ask myself what feelings and emotions do I want this particular game to elicit.

What are your favorite tools for making game prototypes?

I really enjoy papercrafting.  I use a lot of different stocks of paper and board which I cut with a lot of different knives, blades, and trimmers and then I stick it all together with adhesives or tabs / slots to make fun things.

If you could go back to the beginning and teach yourself one thing about game design what would it be?

Get it on the table and in the hands of others as soon as humanly possible – make the minimal viable prototype (MVP) and go from there rather than trying to make the whole thing. Keepin’ it ugly since 2006!

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