We’re digging up the dirt on Fossil Fool, and we’re taking you with us!
By Adam Cogan
We have a lot of parents here at Dark Unicorn Games. So when we design a new product, we want to create opportunities for our kids to get involved. That’s why some of our favorite heroes in Super Powered Smash Masters began as ideas pitched by our children. It’s fun for everyone, and later in life our kids can sue us for ownership of these characters, which will be great in our neglected old age, because hey, seeing them in court is still seeing them, right?
At age 7, my daughter Stella came up with a hero called “Fossil Girl”. She could dig up fossils from the ground and make them walk around. What a fun idea! So I set about sifting through this idea to create a strong theme, unearth a pun or two, and find some gameplay that matched the concept.
The costume design presented some challenges. I knew early on that I wanted her to wear a kind of jester outfit that also incorporated a fossil or dinosaur theme. I know that sounds simple enough on paper – because you understand those ideas separately. It’s hard to appreciate how difficult it is to marry unrelated elements together in a way that looks natural, that nails the idea visually without it looking strained or confusing. It took Ben Lichius a few iterations, but his super powerful imagination ultimately prevailed.
You know something? We would love to open up the design to our players – let you and your kids contribute ideas for characters, story cards, etc. But, as I hinted at above, the legal question of ownership ties our hands. That said, we still encourage you to come up with your own characters for “house rules” games.
And for all you budding game designers out there, a great way to try out a new card (in any card game) is to put them in card sleeves. Here’s a video about that!