How we started up & the birth of Mercenaries

It’s time for a little bit more about us, and how our first project Mercenaries came to be.

Ryan and Colin every weekend tried to squeeze in a game to play.  We realized while there are deck building games that emulate tabletop RPGs, there was no true deck building tabletop strategy game. After several weeks (and several gaming sessions and lots of writing), we had put a concept together for the game.

The Concept

  • We wanted a game that followed what we felt were staples of the deck building genre (acquiring cards, shuffling the discard pile to make a new deck). As we were designing a fantasy battle game, we decided that the deck building element would be acquiring cards based on what actions you took in combat. Some after you have attacked or protected yourself, some after you kill a monster. We felt having the player’s deck improve like this reflected the skills of a character improving; becoming stronger and learning new abilities.
  • We also wanted the strategy of movement in combat. This was achieved after many variations of board sizes. We now have a movement system that can be restricted by other players and monsters (and in the future, features) on the board. This simulates how a warrior would position themselves to be able to fight, but also how to obstruct other player’s from their goals. This lead to the idea that the four players were rival mercenaries all trying to get the goal for themselves. This allowed us to develop the game with competitive (“Get out my way! I want that kill!”) and co-operative modes (“Get out of my way! I need to kill that for the group!”).
  • We also wanted to remove the luck element as much as possible (i.e. dice) to improve the skill element (i.e. what your deck is made of). If you get trounced by monster most of the time, it might be due to a poorly balanced deck. Players who have made poor choices could “get away with it” with a lucky dice roll. A few bad rolls could also ruin a strategy for a whole game and dishearten skilled players. Playing with cards gives the players more control over their strategy and makes them less reliant on luck. However, there is still a chance for a bad draw, so it’s not completely without surprises! The variety of the cards allows for multiple strategies, allowing players to play to their strengths.

If anyone would like more information on what we are doing, please email us at



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