Punchboard Media: In Focus - Interview with Tricia Victor
'In Focus: Women of Board Gaming' is an exclusive series from Punchboard Media that spotlights women in all facets of the board gaming industry. Our guest this week is Tricia Victor, the Director of Client Experience at Indie Boards and Cards. The interview was conducted over email by Eric Buscemi.
Hi Tricia! Let's start by finding out how you got into the hobby. Did you play a lot of games with your family? What were some of your favorites growing up?
My mom instituted a family game night once a week that was mandatory. My sister and I were not allowed to make other plans, we had to be present. I grew up in my grandparents house, so my grandma would often join in for a game or two. I wouldn't trade anything in the world for the quality time I spent with everyone and all of the memories that I carry with me. Some of my favorite games growing up were Rummikub, Scrabble, Backgammon, Fireball Island, and IQ 2000.
How about now -- What are your favorite types of games? Favorite designers? Any favorite new-to-you games?
Fast forward to present day and it has been incredible to see the explosion of games in the marketplace. I love any game that lets you take away a good experience with friends. I love strategy games, hand management, worker placement, tile placement, and nothing beats a good Euro game. My favorite designers are Stefan Feld, Ryan Laukat, and Ignacy Trzewiczek. My favorite new-to-me games are Concordia and Macao.
As the Director of Client Experience at Indie Boards and Cards, what exactly does your job entail?
As Director of Client Experience my job encompasses several hats. My day-to-day includes a lot of administrative work, such as answering all of our customer emails and responding to people on social media channels. I'm also in charge of building our Kickstarter pages (the graphics and info are a team effort), writing updates, and monitoring them throughout the campaigns, handling the logistics for all of the conventions and trade shows we attend, writing articles for GTM, and many one off tasks.
Do you get to playtest games that are in development at Indie Boards and Cards? How about games they are considering signing?
Our development team is located in Indianapolis about 2,000 miles away from me. If I'm in the right place at the time, I can jump in for a play through of a game before we sign it, but often I play them after we've signed them. At least once during the year, our entire team will get together so I can play through the lineup of our games. When it comes to playtesting, we prefer blind data, but sometimes I'll bring prototypes to game meetups we host for feedback.
Before Indie Boards and Cards acquired Action Phase Games in June of 2016, you worked as Action Phase's social media manager. From an insider's point-of-view, how have things changed for the two companies since they merged?
Merging together has allowed our company to grow larger in the industry by creating a powerful team. I think whenever you combine resources, it allows people to focus on their strengths, which in turn helps us produce bigger and better games.
You've also done work for Greater Games Industry Reference Magazine and Texicon. Tell us a bit about the magazine and the convention, and what you did for them.
Greater Games Industry Reference Magazine is a reference for retailers, publishers, buyers and distributors that is mailed to over 4,000 retailers quarterly. It is a comprehensive guide of information on game publishers and manufacturers. I began writing game reviews and managing their social media account in 2013, which helped get my foot in the door for the gaming industry. In 2014, I took over Texicon's social media accounts to help drum up attendees and highlight the featured publishers and events.
On February 13, Indie Boards and Cards launched Aeon's End: Legacy. Who designed it and how does it play? How do the legacy elements work? Will it be able to be reset? Does it integrate with the previous Aeon's End games?
Aeon's End: Legacy was designed by Kevin Riley and Nick Little. AE: Legacy is a co-op deckbuilder, which means there is no board or map. While I don't want to give away too much as to not spoil the game or storyline, what I can tell everyone is that 80% of the content will be useable at the end with Aeon's End and War Eternal. During the Kickstarter campaign, we are offering a Reset Pack as an add-on for those that want to replay the campaign over again.
According to your Twitter feed, you are a #bookworm. Any good book recommendations for us?
I have always been an avid reader and love the app Goodreads. My grandma used to keep stacks of notebooks with all of the things she read. I love that I can pull up my reading list while at the library, so I don't grab a book I've already read. I really enjoyed Life and Other Near-Death Experiences by Camille Pagán, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, The Nazi Officer's Wife by Edith Hahn Beer, and The Girl from Krakow by Alex Rosenberg. I'm always adding books to the list, so don't hesitate to ask for more recommendations!
Anything else you'd like to share about yourself? Any other passions or interests?
I'm a Midwest girl that has transplanted herself in California. We host several gaming meetups, so if anyone is ever looking for an event, please send me a message. I'd be happy to help you locate something close to you. Outside of gaming, I love history, learning, museums, and I've created the best memories hiking off the beaten path while geocaching. There is never a dull moment when searching for a hidden object using GPS coordinates.