I am an English game-designer, based out of Wales, UK.
I am an active member of the Playtest UK community which has introduced a number of prominent UK game designers to the industry.
I also host a YouTube channel about board games called Adam in Wales. My channel features a regular variety vlog about gaming, game-design, and the boardgame industry, along with occasional reviews.
But game design is not a full-time job! I am also a dentist, a trained actor, and I run a company teaching communication skills to healthcare workers.
How I got into game design
I have been a big fan of board games my whole life. As a child, I loved Monopoly, Cluedo and all the games of the Milton Bradley / Parker Brothers era. My favourite game was Scotland Yard - I had no idea that this game was one of the vanguard of German games which was to turn the industry on its head over coming decades. Scotland Yard was an early winner of the prestigious German game of the year award (Spiel Des Jahres) - still the highest accolade a game can receive in the 2020s.
As a teenager, I was a big fan of Games Workshop's range: Blood Bowl, Heroquest, and Talisman were favourites. I enjoyed games I could customise - I loved being able to create my own dungeons in Heroquest, or build my own teams in Blood Bowl. I even customised games where there wasn't an option to do so. My copy of Avalon Hill's Wrasslin was full of home-made cards and characters.
In my early twenties, I was more interested in party games. I was an actor, and we would often play large group interactive drama games. I am sad that I missed the renaissance in board games brought on by Settlers of Catan in the late nineties. I rediscovered games around 10 years ago, by which time the European games were coming thick and fast.
Very soon after my reintroduction to the hobby, I started having ideas - uninvited, intrusive ideas would arrive in my brain! I didn't want to just play games - I wanted to make them. I wanted to be behind the scenes making things happen.
I first pitched designs at Essen Spiel (the world's largest board game convention and trade fair) in 2014. I had my first successful pitches in 2015, and many more followed over the coming years. My first games hit the market in 2017, and there has been a consistent stream of games produced ever since.
I have been inspired by other designers in the UK and beyond. The UK has a great network of supportive designers. I am indebted to Rob Fisher (my frequent co-designer), Brett Gilbert, Matthew Dunstan, Bez Shahriari, David Mortimer, Trevor Benjamin, Rob Harris and many others for their constant advice and inspiration.