A talk with Eugene Fasano
First of all, how did you come up with the game Blade and Brush?
The idea for Blade and Brush came primarily from two places.
Mechanically, I knew people enjoyed the Apples-to-Apples style of game-play, seen in games such as Cards Against Humanity. I personally, never really enjoyed this kind of game, as the idea of filling in prewritten prompts with prewritten answers did not resonate with my creative desires. Blade an Brush follows a similar prompt-response structure but unlike other similar games, your response is not a rewritten card, but rather a haiku that you yourself write on the spot.
Thematically and artisitcally, the game is strongly influenced by Avatar: The Last Airbender. Under its simple structure there are soft role-playing playing elements which can be as pronounced as the players desire, linking the individual dilemma cards in the game to create a narrative, centered the players’ inspirational character cards.
Who would you recommend it to?
I would recommend Blade and Brush to creative individuals who enjoy or are curious about story telling or role playing games. Its lose structure and player influenced flow allows it to be played as anything from a family game to a party game.
What is your favourite game?
A tough question. I appreciate games in all mediums. Role-playing games, like Dungeons and Dragons have always been a huge part of my life. I also enjoy video games, from RPG’s like Skyrim or the Witcher series to competitive Esports, like Heroes of the Storm. My favorite tabletop game is Magic the Gathering.
Do you have a favourite game designer? If so why?
Though obviously not an individual designer, Wizards of the Coast is my a favorite game design company. Their products have had a strong influence on my life as an artist and a game designer.
How did you get into playing board games?
The first board game I ever bought for myself was a copy of Hero Quest at a garage sale for seven dollars. I was a young kid at the time and I was thoroughly enchanted by the content of that box, the miniatures, the spell cards, the modular dungeon.
It was magic.
Whats the best way to get into making them?
The best way to get into making game is twofold. Firstly, play games. Play as many games in as many genres as possible. Figure out what you like and don’t like, figure out what is fun and what isn’t and formulate the type of experience you want to encapsulate. Then make games, test your ideas — making games is often about iterative design. The faster you fail, the sooner you can make something excellent.
If you were trying to ease someone into the boardgame world, what game would you start them off with?
I’d recommend Codenames and Loveletter as entry games. They are both excellent games with simple mechanics and fast play.
What are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on several projects, all Role Playing Game related. I’m working with a group of other writers and game designers to publish an anthology horror scenarios for my game GRIN. I’m also working to get my roleplaying game, Blood and Bone, into print. Its been an enormous project and has constituted almost two years of work — I’m very excited. There are two more projects on the horizon, but for the time being, they’re under wraps!
Hankering for more? This Nerd has you covered.