HINDSIGHT IS 2020: REVISITING THE CLASSICS WITH RESTORATION GAMES

Casual Game Insider|Summer 2020

HINDSIGHT IS 2020: REVISITING THE CLASSICS WITH RESTORATION GAMES
There is mounting evidence that the board gaming industry boom is not going away. People of all ages are flocking to board gaming as a means of entertainment, fun, and connecting with others in variable settings. Conventions devoted to promoting the latest games continue to swell, with anticipation of the latest hotness working thousands into a frenzy.
Justin Spicer

As the industry grows, an older generation is emerging as historians of a time when board gaming was rudimentary and sometimes even clumsy. A host of games well past their prime fill people with wonderful feelings of nostalgia, even as newer gaming mechanics, themes, and interactions leave them agape in excitement and amazement. Yet, the path to the types of board games hitting the market now begins with those older titles.

DUNGEONS DRAGONS

Enter Restoration Games, the brainchild of lawyer-cum-publisher Justin Jacobson. “I’ve always been an avid gamer,” Jacobson begins. “I played all sorts of games when I was a kid, from the earliest editions of Dungeons & Dragons to the first wave of Euros to make it across the Atlantic.” Jacobson’s introduction to the industry side of things began with some D&D self-publishing.

However, it would be his frequent trips to Gen Con to offer legal advice to publishers and designers in question-and-answer seminars that coincidentally led to the formation of Restoration Games. “One year, a nice young woman came up to me and said that her husband was getting ready to leave Hasbro and had some questions. That was Lindsay Daviau...and that dinner ended up changing my life.”

Jacobson and Lindsay’s husband, Rob Daviau, began a relationship that began with Jacobson becoming Rob’s lawyer. From there, Jacobson saw the rise of Kickstarter as his opportunity to return to the world of publishing by reprinting Star Wars: The Queen’s Gambit (Daviau was part of the design team of the game). “That one wasn’t feasible, but we started throwing the idea back and forth [of] what older games could do with an update,” describes Jacobson. “Ultimately, it was an idea that just wouldn’t let go.”

OLD SCHOOL COOL

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Summer 2020