Cosa Bolle in Pentola #7 - Carlo A. Rossi

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Ciao a tutti

cedendo alle richieste di tanti ho deciso di riportare anche qua sulla tana la mia fortunata serie di interviste dal titolo Cosa Bolle in Pentola che pubblico ormai da due mesi con regolartia' su BoardGame News

Purtroppo non ho tempo di fare una traduzione completa delle interviste gia' fatte (originariamente in inglese) ma per le nuove, quando possibile, cerchero' di fare uscire la versione in Italiano in contemporanea qua sulla Tana al venerdi'. Al mercoledi' invece, fino ad esaurimento, ripercorrero' all'indietro le interviste gia' uscite in modo da pubblicarle tutte. Inizio dunque con l'intervista a Carlo A. Rossi di venerdi' scorso.
Di cosa si parla ...

In questa intervista Carlo mi racconta la sua fortunata carriera di autore (tanti premi vinti ma, ahime', nessun gioco pubblicato), mi preannuncia l'uscita del suo primo gioco, Graverobbers, della Jolly Rogers Games ma sopratutto mi racconta del nenonato Cogito Studio, uno studio di ideazione e sviluppo giochi fondato da Carlo assime all'amico Alessandro Zucchini e Alfredo Berni. Ma ecco qua l'intervista completa ...

Andrea "Liga" Ligabue: Cosa Bolle in Pentola ? #7 - Carlo A. Rossi

Hi Gamers

today I'm going to interview Carlo A. Rossi, in my opinion one of the most promising new german style designers we have in Italy. Carlo is from my town (Modena) and I use to play with him sometimes (usually playtesting his games!). We shared the amazing experience of the first time in Essen and also many game conventions in Italy.

[Liga] Hi Carlo. It's probably the first time we meet not on the opposite side of some game board ... that's strange! I know you very well anyway, please, give us a short introduction about yourself!

[Carlo] Hi Liga, it's strange for me too. I’m 37 years old and actually I’m the Marketing Communication Manager in a Company working in the telecommunication field. Of course I’ve always been passionate of boardgames since I was a child and I always had in mind to become a designer, but for several years I only filled tons of paper with ideas, never making a prototype.

I made my very first prototype only 4 years ago; everything started thanks to a contest organized by Acquicomics (a fair in the north of Italy) and a company that manufactures sugar envelopes; the task was to invent a game with 24 sugar envelopes, the award being the honour to have the game published (in real sugar envelopes!). The winner has been Silvano Sorrentino (one of the authors of daVinci games) but my game took a special mention; as a result both games (mine and Silvano’s) were published; this unexpected result gave me the input to attend, the same year, to the Premio Archimede contest which is a contest for unpublished game organized by Studiogiochi and Leo Colovini; I won with Magma and since then I never stopped to design games; a year later I also won the contest organized by Lucca Comics&Games (the biggest fair in Italy) by placing the two games I presented at the first and second place and this year I was among the three finalists.

So, to summarize my career of designer, too many contests won, too few games published (Actually none :-) )

[Liga] And now, Cosa bolle in pentola ?

[Carlo] If everything goes well, Jolly Roger Games will publish my very first game in the first quarter of 2006; its final title should be “Graverobbers”. This is a quite interesting and (I guess) not so common mix: the mechanic itself is typically German-Style (in fact I feel to belonging much more to the German school rather than the Italian one); but the theme is absolutely American (I can’t imagine a game with such a theme presented by a German publisher at fairs like Essen or similar). Anyway, name apart, families shouldn’t be scared, as there is nothing truculent, bloody, or rude in the game.

Of course, being the author, I cannot judge my own mechanism hence I cannot tell you if the game is good or not; but I can assure you that the artwork, by Melissa Erwin, is absolutely outstanding. So, if after trying it you think the game sucks you can at least admire the cards.

Finally, I have another game under contract with daVinci games and it should be published within 2007; It’s an unusual betting game; but I’ll tell you more when it will be close to the publication.

[Liga] That's sound good. I have playtested "Graverobbers" in its primitive form (and theme) and It's a game I really like ... I'm curious to see the graphics and how this new theme will work for the game. And your projects for thefuture ?

[Carlo] Many projects; on July/2005 I founded, with other two friends (Alessandro Zucchini, author of Lucca Città and Palatinus and Alfredo Berni), Cogito Studio, a game design and development studio; we did it for many reasons; at first to enhance the quality of the development of our games, and then, to present ourselves to publishers in a more professional way. We presented 12 games at Essen 2005 (some of them created by our friends as we are acting also as agents) and we left the fair with an unexpected huge amount of requested prototypes; so, we can say we have sowed a lot, and we have to wait some months to see if we can get some real results.

Actually my group is cooperating also with Leo Colovini and his Studiogiochi on a couple of projects; our intention for the future is to cooperate with them more and more: they can teach us a lot, thank to their more than 20-years experience in the game development and we can provide them fresh ideas and a lot of enthusiasm; I think it could be a good deal for both.

[Liga] Good luck so for your new activity. I hope Cogito Studio could go well and could be a good possibility for you and other young Italian developers. Finally, telle me the 10 games you like to play most

[Carlo] Well, it is very hard to say as I’m really omnivore; my tastes range from children and dexterity games (my favourites being those of Haba and Zoch) down to meatier games (like the ones of Alea and Hans im Gluck)

Actually I’m a huge fan of Days of Wonder games as I’m very sensitive to big box, gorgeous bits and outstanding artworks; as author my dream is to publish something with them; unfortunately the 99% of publishers follow the opposite trend by publishing small or small-medium size boxes so I have to concentrate all my efforts to this kind of games.

Anyway, my favourites games, actually, are Memoir 44 (the only war game that people hating war games, like me, can play having fun), Shadows over Camelot (every game has been different from the others, and the fact that there may me a traitor or not is absolutely genial as you start in tension from the very beginning of the game), Pirates Cove (pure fun) and Gallopping Pigs (a game I wish I had invented; I’m always envy on games built on one, genial, rule only). Other games that I never get tired to play: Carolus Magnus (the masterpiece of Colovini), Ursuppe (the idea that at the beginning you are an Amoeba able to do nothing more than being swallowed by the flowing is irresistible), Mare Nostrum, Serenissima, Manila (I adore betting games), and Amun Re.

[Liga] Thank you very much Carlo for your time. Good luck to you and Alessandro (Zucchini) for Cogito Studio ... I hope to have soon the possibility to playtest some of your new games. Good play!

Next week Mario Sacchi and Matteo Panara