As the Siege Command Kickstarter enters into the final week of crowdfunding we spoke with creator Ryan Collins about himself and the game.
Ryan, let’s start with an easy question. Tell us about yourself?
After leaving the humdrum suburbs northwest of Houston, TX to chase my dreams in Austin, TX, I spent over 10 years working in the video games industry before getting married and moving to Kansas City. Although my dreams of making video games couldn’t have been further from the truth of what it’s like to work in that industry, I wouldn’t take back a minute of it. I learned a lot about bringing big ideas to life as a team and met some really incredible people along the way; all of this helped pave the path for my creative career.
What got you started playing games? What were some of the earliest games you played, and what games stuck with you?
I used to pretend like I knew how to play Magic The Gathering back in the 3rd grade, but didn’t actually pick it up until I was in my mid-twenties. I was lucky to work in an industry of other nerds, so there were plenty of folks to play with and keep that hobby going. A friend at the time decided to switch things up and pull out Settlers of Catan, which was when I realized how great modern tabletop games had become. Since then, some of the classics that have really stuck with me and became long-time favorites include Dominion, Citadels, and Twilight Imperium.
What made you start to make your own games?
I had always toyed with switching up rules or mechanics in games, and my favorite part about Magic was constantly building new decks – even if they were a total flop. The best part of it was toying with ways to exploit different mechanics or finding unorthodox ways to combine them effectively. After a while, I started to go down a rabbit hole of trying to use existing games and mechanics to create new things, like a tabletop RPG that used Magic cards as player abilities.
How did all of that lead to your coming up with Siege Command?
Well, it all started after my friend/roommate/bandmate got me addicted to League of Legends (wiggly flashback transition)…
I had only somewhat recently started to delve into more contemporary hobby games, and became curious if I could figure out a way to create a MOBA board game (MOBA is a popular video game genre that League of Legends belongs to). Although Siege Command evolved into something that is now only MOBA-inspired, its earliest prototypes helped me prove to myself that I could actually pull it off. Not only that, but it allowed me to discover that I find immense joy in creating engaging and approachable experiences for others to enjoy.
Tell us a little about Siege Command. How does it play?
Siege Command is a two-player, lane-based strategy game that some people have referred to as a “MOBA-like” or a “tower offense” game. The game was designed to be easy to pick up and learn, and to offer as much or as little complexity as players might want to take on.
Over several rounds, players simultaneously play cards face-down in each of the lanes, then reveal them and take turns resolving cards with the intention of capturing each lane’s Turret and destroying the opponent’s wall. There’s a bit more to it than that, so folks are encouraged to check out Siege Command’s Kickstarter and social media pages for some really cool content that goes a bit deeper.
Let’s do a little salesmanship. Why should people back the Siege Command Kickstarter?
I haven’t found any other head-to-head games that combine a lane-based battlefield, area-control, and hidden strategy quite like Siege Command. In addition to unique gameplay, the quick playtime and portability make it great to bring along wherever – whether you’re going camping, want something to play between games at a Magic tournament, or just want something to kill time while waiting for folks to finish up their game at game night.
But the really cool part about Siege Command is that it’s the first installment the World of Kinterlands, a growing world that I’m constantly expanding on so that I can invite people to explore it through other forms of media like comics, books, additional games, and a brand new RPG system that I’ve got in the works.
What are your parting words for those who might still be on the fence about Siege Command?
I’d have to say that the coolest thing about Siege Command is how modular the game is. It can be as simple or as complex as you want without sacrificing any fun or balance (certain rules/components can be left out for quicker or more simplified gameplay). In addition to the first expansion that we are releasing in the Kickstarter campaign, I’ve got at least 2 more in the works that add even more optional mechanics and unique content.
The first issue of the comic book series is also being released in this campaign, so it’s a great opportunity for folks to get their hands on that as well!