10 Questions

Each month in the Inventor Newsletter I ask 10 Questions of an established inventor or game company. The results are posted below and will be updated monthly.

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Discovery Bay Games (Mar '08), as answered by Pam Dionne
Q - What are Discovery Bay Game's greatest hits, and how would you describe your line of games overall?
A - Baffle Gab(TM), Be·Rhymed(TM) and Origin of Expressions(TM) are our top sellers in our current line.   Our games are smart, funny, easy to pick up and play, and very social.  

Q - Is there anything currently that you are looking for that is different than what you have done in the past?
A - We're not looking for anything specific just interesting concepts.   We're always looking for other inventor concepts and currently are working with several outside the company.  

Q - How many games do you or your company review in a year?
A - In 2007 I believe we reviewed something in the neighborhood of 20 to 30 actual games and saw that many conceptual documents.  

Q - How many games does your company usually release in a year?
A - We're about to release 5 new games developed by us in-house. We distribute for one game inventor currently who we will be licensing with for a new production run in 2009.   And we are negotiating on several other distribution/license deals currently.  

Q - Do you look at games by unknown inventors?  
A - All the time, but the presentation has to look professional to get very far through the process.   I'm not put off by a few glitches.   We can always fix small problems on a licensed product as we process it.  

Q - For beginning inventors, what would be the ideal way to approach and submit game ideas to you?
A - A letter of introduction with some credentials and a professionally produced prototype so we can play test the game.   Concept documents are not as immediately appealing to me as a prototype that I can mess with is.  

Q - How long does it take from the time you receive a submission to the time you say 'yes' or 'no'?
A - Sometimes it's immediate.   We took on 3 games in 2008 having never seen them before.   The presentations were really good and the concepts were brilliant.  

Q - Does it depend on the time of the year, and if 'yes', what times of the year are best to submit?
A -   It doesn't depend on the time of year although it's helpful to see concepts 8 or 9 months prior to the selling cycle.   We look for and create product all year long.   However, if you submit to us after Toy Fair be aware that until approximately May 1 st we're busy finalizing our holiday line-up.  

Q - What is the most common mistake you see from inventors?
A - Creating a great game is just like anything else in life.   If you want to do well you listen to input, are discerning about the value of the input, and realize that everything takes editing.   Inventors who can't take suggestions are just shooting themselves in the foot.  

Q - If you were to give beginning inventors one bit of advice, what would it be?
A - 1. Believe in yourself and don't give up. People will say things that could turn you from your path.   But don't turn away.   99.9% of success is sticking with something long enough to get good at it.   The other 1% is simply getting noticed BECAUSE you've been around long enough to GET recognized.  
2. Don't make the mistake of creating a big inventory right away before you find the right partner who can help you get your game to market effectively.  


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