Timofey Bokaryov, an interesting Russian game designer

    This is another post only for those who are interested in game dev. I will continue to immerse you in the world of strange phenomena. A long time ago I want to tell you about Timofey Bokaryov, our old friend. You may know him as the person who conducted the first survey of the Runet audience. Now he lives in Germany and is no longer doing what brings him money, but what he likes. And it also brings him money.

    He started a mechanic in the service station a long time ago. Then he did a lot of things, and now Timofey suddenly stumbled on Alex (this is the voice assistant of Amazon) and began to develop voice games, in particular, for her.

    But let's start from the beginning. There will be a little tales and a good look at the gaming market from a person to whose opinion we always listen. Because he just fumbles.

    We met Timofey at a very old forum of board game lovers. Placed thread that produce and sell desktop. Timofey became interested, met, then began to regularly play with him in various games that have not reached our country yet. He brought a lot of unusual things, because he loved this business very much. And still loves.

    He made his first board game according to Mitgard (Viking world). Like all novice authors nastol, he collected something loved, but at the same time unspeakably awful, complex and hopeless. If you show live players outside their company. The idea was in the adaptation of the favorite computer game Master of Magic (it is something like both Civilization 1 and Heroes of sword and magic 1, which was launched under DOS).

    He had the courage to look at the already finished game, on a bunch of illustrations made by professional artists to her, on a registered domain ... and say that all this should be put on the table. For a long time. Better forever.

    Perhaps it is these solutions that distinguish those people who use rational thinking for the intended purpose.

    On the eve of 2007 the pig, Timofey decided to make a New Year present for the clients of the Next Media group of companies - a card game based on the folk game Czech Fool (~ Uno). Svintus Timofey released together with the company "World of Fantasy" (now the World of Hobby). Considered that you can print a little more, it will turn out economically rational. Made, distributed gifts - and began to sell the game at retail. We took the two largest packages, they say, like, we know a little. A week later, they came and took the rest. Two years Svintus something did not go, and then how burst. This was exactly the year when we entered the market and by the end of the year became No. 1 in terms of sales nastolok in retail in Russia.

    Now Svintus (as a line of games) is one of the best-selling in the country.

    In general, here it is necessary to stop a little and say that Timofey was particularly angry with some kind of open source, only for the culture of board games. He was looking for ways to help the development of culture in Russia, and at first made the Lyudologiya website, from Ludo - a game (from Latin). This science is about the game. He wrote there about various aspects of games. By the way, he reads Zimmerman's Rules of Play most of all . Here is an essay-extract from the very essence of it.

    The second project was Printfan, this Timofey collected the rules of various board games and wanted to make the price to get them at home equal to 5 milligrams of black toner. And a few sheets of paper. Let me remind you that it was the economic crisis before last, then the purchasing power was not very good, and the desktop market was just developing as such.

    And then he made Tesser . Tesera is an encyclopedia of board games and the largest Russian-language board game community, such a mini-Hubr for table players.

    Around this time, Timothy every Thursday organized a game of gatherings with the leaders of various companies. He dragged games to Russia, they were tried and broadened their horizons. And at the same time met. Dating those years were useful later. But there were common interests that were immediately. For example, we opened the second store of Mosigra on Friendly Lane in a room that was shared with a startup Timofey, again. Called Wipley. It was a project for the exchange of game discs from different consoles. Something like a rental of videotapes, just a little more complicated. The history of this project ended with the fact that we somehow came in the morning to the store (there was also an office nearby), and the door was broken. The room was surrounded: almost everything was taken from the police officers, and we had money, a camera, a laptop and a set for poker. Nastolkov left.

    Then Timofey very clearly understood that you need to make media games. It was he who introduced us to Sergey Melimuk, who made Crocodile on MUZ-TV. They offered him to do in the form of a box, agreed on a license, and made a game. It was amazing, but the product just took off and became a bestseller. I did not hear anything more strange then: it turns out that an incredible number of people in the country did not want to invent words, but wanted to play according to the ready. To open the box - and there all at once for the party. And that is still beautiful, it was possible to give. And the tv-flyer from the ads around. Even then, they began to call us casual wear at the market, but it was just a super-megagreasonal product.

    Then we released the first box of danek, black set. Hardcore hardcore, each danetka for 40 minutes. Did half a year, arguing in a cafe, tested incredibly. And Timofey looked, said that it was necessary to make a game with a human face, and proposed another option more vivid and simple. 6 issues bubbled up immediately, now there are 21 of them. A year later, Danetki became the best-selling game of the year in Russia (according to our data, in the number of pieces, according to the totality of issues).

    By 2018, Timothy released a total of 45 games. Most in Russia, the most successful project - Svintus , then - our joint with him Koshmarium (mechanics Selezneva), a game about how to collect monsters from nightmares on the table. It turned out very beautiful, simple and playable.

    I wanted to repeat, I wanted to play in the company, and something suddenly put in my parents. It turns out that the real psychological fact is that in order for a child to stop being afraid of ghosts, you need to watch cartoons about them. And in order to stop being afraid of any monsters, you need to play with them. Here also protect children from information, aha. True, this does not work everywhere: so that the child does not grow up as an alcoholic, he does not need to give him beer.

    To the West, Timothy brings to the publication of heavier things. There are many of them: for example, the Cult was published in two languages, the Master of the Galaxy was published in two languages. And the good old Danetki and Koshmarium, which started in Russian, are already being released in 5 languages.

    Do you think he filled the portfolio and continued to look for interesting games? Fuck it. New idea. He sat down to write a board game for the computer. Universal, so that you can simply show the software, what are the components in the game, and then play through the virtual world. At first it was supposed that there would be dofig of fans of different games who could not communicate, but it seems there still played a paradox that computer games revive board games. Because people want to immediately and lively reaction, and, more importantly, live communication. But Timofey quickly brewed and found an awesome niche: a simulator for tests for major publishers. And you know what? Earned! The simulator is called Tabletop , and there (now after years) there is an active party of players, and publishers, and almost 700 games in the catalog.

    The “Cult” game on tabletop

    In general, Timothy likes to run strange things. After he worked in the service station, the next job was to manage the vessel - a hefty bulk carrier with a capacity of 26,000 tons. Without leaving the office, they moved a large cargo ship around the map. With all that it implies. Literally. Then the company sold this cargo ship, and Timofey went to get acquainted with Internet users. The first dive into IT was interesting: he made the Tim Production website, which wrote fake news on the topic of the day. Then nobody knew the word "fake", but the fact that the news was excellent, and they were often mistaken for real, was very pleasing. But more often it was used for its intended purpose, approximately as an anecdote.ru.

    “I met with all the Internet users - the party was quite small. He made the first commercial banners, launched the first flash banner in Russia, and conducted the first survey of the Runet audience. Promo Interactive (later sold by Ogilvy) became one of the leading digital agencies ... But interest was constantly switching - there was also mobile advertising with games, interactive projects on TV and much more ... But only for the desktops was the interest for some 15 years now. Now the games - one of the main sources of income. From a hobby, it turned into a tangible business. The level of products is increasing every year. I also finance many undertakings like Tesera and Theabletopia from the sales of games ... ”

    About serious business - this is about Igrology . The line of games is profitable. Only grows not in breadth, but qualitatively. To stand out now, you need to make brand new games. All new games should be not just another good thing, but really outstanding.

    “Desktop business is very competitive because the entry threshold is low. And another high fan factor, people invest their soul and last money often to create their own game. ”

    This is especially noticeable on the German market. The market is large, but overheated, the average game circulation is noticeably smaller than ours. There is a strong influence of fashion:

    “This year and last is the fashion of detectives and communication games. That year was about escaping from the rooms. Legacy before it was. Decbildings were once. But every year the level of implementation in all respects grows. Production at all has become better. The budget for a good desktop is almost like a computer already. The bar for a potential blockbuster is rising. More and more companies are appearing and they are collapsing.

    I had the illusion that if published in Germany it is much more interesting than in Russia. But the market is oversaturated, there are a lot of companies. It is very difficult here. The largest market is American, and it is the most interesting. German is much smaller, and its dynamics are similar to stagnation, although on the whole the world continues to grow - the so-called renaissance nastol. That is indicative, on Kickstarter most of all money is collected just desktop.

    By the way, “For Five Seals” was published in Russia by the German author. In Gottingham in the summer of the meeting of the authors, we met there. I understand this is the first precedent when the game of the western author first made her debut in Russia, and only then came out in France and in the USA. ”

    Now the trend is that major players like film franchise owners first make announcements of their games as separate objects, then put them on Kickstarter, then they assemble a huge campaign (Kickstarter is used here as media and not as a means of collecting money, although not without the latter), and then the game just comes out. Not as a game, but rather as a media facility in the omnichanal of a franchise.

    Of course, he continues to play in everything new and interesting:

    “I have planted a colossal number of people in Russia and Germany, and I am proud of it. And I know how to do it. Different target groups need different games. Here is an elderly German neighbor lured by Blokus. Mum with friends, better went Rummikub. Very much depends on the audience, I beat Dixit and I do not want to - but this is one of the win-win options to acquaint the youth company with nastolki. For different situations have their own games. "

    At the exhibition in Essen, he managed to show a new game “Klumbu” for a couple of days (a joint project with the former Comrade Major from the Research Institute Fedor Korzhenkov, also a very bright personality ) and distribute 30 samples to different publishers around the world. And inspect everything in search of something completely-quite turning the world of the table upside down.

    Tests "flower beds" on our table in Germany

    Well, here are a couple of links:

    In the last episodes about strange people, the Elephant was a flitk from Eve ; Hast with Theo with a commercial project for tabletop role-playing games, John Yanni , creator of the game "The Hive".

    And finally, why Timothy is still doing a desktop:
    - This is the creation of a small world with its own laws of the universe, with its own history. Vigilance is a special thrill. Unlike computer games, the creation cycle is shorter. For the year you can create a good game. Pretty much variety. The price of a mistake is not high - you lose money and a year, and then continue.

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