Welcome to the the first of many Six Shot Interviews.
These interviews will consist of six questions and will feature people from various areas of the tabletop gaming industry. Some of the future interviews you can look forward to will feature two different seasoned writers of role-playing games, the woman behind a fun cryptozoology based card game, and the guy responsible for a series of highly successful, yet tiny, epic games.
For the launch of this series I wanted to go with something that hasn’t proven itself yet. So, I reached out to Bright Light Media about their Kickstarter project which is currently underway and they responded positively. Their project is called Mixtape Massacre and it’s looks fantastic. The game is built upon the solid foundation of 80s horror and unlike current horror games it doesn’t focus on zombies. As both a Kickstarter addict and a fan of 80s horror, having grown up on a steady diet of horror, I immediately fell in love with the concept of this game and backed it on it’s launch day.
For this Six Shot Interview I had the chance to correspond with Freddie Carlini, Founder and Creative Director of Bright Light Media, about Mixtape Massacre. After the video you’ll find the interview, and at the conclusion of the interview you will find out more about our first giveaway.
I was looking around the Bright Light Media website and I didn’t see anything pertaining to board games. That said, I assume that Mixtape Massacre is the company’s entry piece into the tabletop gaming industry. So, what’s the company’s background, and how did the decision to do a board game come about?
That’s correct. This would be our first board game. We’ve been doing design for over 13 years working with different companies, developing brands, advertising materials, marketing materials, etc. We’ve also, all of us, always been big gamers and movie lovers, horror movies especially. The decision to do a board game actually came from going to a friends house one night for a board game night. I was listening to some people and their complaints about the games we were playing, and also that some of them were hard to pick up all the rules. So when I got home later, I sat there thinking, “I’ve always wanted to make a game. Why not?” I especially noticed in the board game arena, horror games like ours mostly don’t exist. In fact, the market is crawling with zombie games when it comes to horror. So I wanted to do a game that paid homage to something I love, which is the horror movies of the late 70s, 80s, early 90s. So I worked for a few months on the idea, the board layout, cards, rules, dice, etc. Then I presented it to the rest of the team. We sat down and played through a very simplified mock of the game during a lunch. After that, Matt had tons of ideas, as well as MJ. So we ran with it, and Mixtape Massacre was born.
Mixtape Massacre Demo from Bright Light Media on Vimeo.
It would seem that Bright Light Media has really pulled out a gold nugget with Mixtape Massacre. The concept is solid, the artwork is amazing, and I hear that it was a truly “killer” hit during the International Tabletop Day demo event at Third Eye Comics in Annapolis, Maryland. That brings me to the next questions, where did this idea for a board game based on 1980s horror films and pop culture come from?
Yea, we got a lot of great response from the demo that day, as well as the demos before. As stated in my last answer, the idea partially came from seeing the need for a ‘different kind of horror board game’ in the market. But also was born of a more selfish nature being, I’ve always wanted a game where you play as the killer, or in this case, killers. And also, as I stated, I’m a huge fan of horror films, as well as a lot of our friends are, so it seemed fitting if you’re going to make something you’re going to put a lot of time into, it better be something you love.
The other part of it was I’ve always wanted to do some kind of creative Kickstarter project with my best friend / business partner Matt (the artist of the game). As you said, the artwork is amazing. That’s all Matt. He can easily take ideas and concepts I pitch to him and make them a reality, and beautiful ones at that. Pure natural talent. The other part of working with him that’s so great, is we get into arguments about concept, look, etc, that lead to a lot of butting heads. But that’s always been a positive as it leads to a better product, and in this case, a killer game like Mixtape Massacre.
There are a lot of great horror movies/franchises out there – Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Puppet Master, My Bloody Valentine, Lost Boys, etc. Obviously the player characters represented in Mixtape Massacre are meant to pay homage to various iconic villains. With such a wide variety of killers to be inspired by how did you decide which evils to include in the game?
First and foremost, we wanted to make sure we wanted to represent a lot of the famous 80s characters, as the game is based in the 80s. But then we also wanted to make sure we paid homage to the most famous of horror characters, as most general audiences would remember them. We also grabbed some from the 70s and 90s and mixed them in with out characters to make hybrids. It only made sense to make hybrids combining elements of a lot of horror characters so we could have little hints and nods to all the great characters from the horror genre. Some of our secret characters, who are part of our stretch goals I think will definitely please horror fans.
Stepping back to ask a big picture sort of question I’m curious, what do you and the team see in the future for Bright Light Media concerning the company’s journey into the tabletop gaming industry? Assuming a successful funding campaign is there expansion ideas floating around, or possibly even other sorts of game ideas not related to Mixtape Massacre?
Well, if successful we definitely want to keep making games. We definitely have a lot of fun ideas for expansions (like the woods, the mansion, etc), but I also have an idea for an entirely different game/property that I think people would really love. I also know, artistically Matt would kill it, and it’d probably contain some very fun art people would go gaga for. But again, those are all dreams and high hopes until we finish this Kickstarter and make it a success.
I’ve been involved in helping kickstart various games over the past two years and for the most part I’ve had a very good experience. However, some projects seem to suffer through an extended time of labor once the campaign is finished. For the Mixtape Massacre campaign the estimated delivery date is set as October 2015. What makes that time frame attainable?
Well for starters we’re working with a company with a tried and true process. Also, as we’re a design company, we’re pretty familiar with preparing files for print, getting colors right, etc. Lastly, we’ve got everything ready to go. We just need the funding 😉 And that’s where Kickstarter comes in. Once funded, it’ll only be about a month of follow up work (a few revisions, some clean up on things, etc), and then it’s manufacturing time. So hopefully we’re a success. We are currently sitting at 60% with 20 days to go, so we’re feeling pretty confident with the right buzz and adding some additional perks to the project, we can make this a success.
To close let me bring it back to Mixtape Massacre and horror in general. I’ve got a two-parter for you – What’s your favorite character in the game and why? And for kicks, what iconic horror movie villain freaks you out the most and why?
Well design wise, I guess I would say either Nightmare, Legend, Sarah, or Smiley are my favorite. All of them are hybrids of some of my favorite characters from horror / give homage to some of my favorite movies.
But, when it comes to a character/villian from horror that truly freaks me out, I’d have to give it to Tim Curry as Pennywise in IT. Absolutely terrifying, especially the idea that he can be anything and anywhere at anytime. Besides that, I’d probably say “The Thing,” and it’s probably again because you never know who it is. It could be anyone in the movie. I think that’s kind of the most terrifying thing in the world, is not knowing who is after you and that at any moment they could surprise you… and devour you.
Thank you Freddie for taking the time to participate in the inaugural Six Shot Interviews post. The gang here at the Lodge are looking forward to the successful conclusion of the campaign so that we can get a copy, playing it, review it, and play it some more. Now… if you could only work an Elvira inspired character into the game, that would truly be killer.
Wait… who says Elvira, Mistress of the Dark has ever been ruled out?
Speaking of Elvira, and in honor of classic 80s horror, she’s the topic of our first giveaway here at the Lodge. At the bottom of this post you’ll be able to enter for a chance to win a copy of Ghoultown‘s ‘Mistress of The Dark’ DVD/CD Ultra Single set, the contest runs until midnight Saturday, April 25, 2015.
Once again, I’d like to thank Freddie Carlini of Bright Light Media for his time.
I’m super stoked about this campaign, I’ve backed it and I hope you’ll consider supporting it as well.
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