Source: Khairul Hamdan

Reign by Garage Games Australia is nominated for Tabletop of the Year at the Australian Games Awards (AGAs). Reign is set in the Kingdom of Kazath where the Onyx Crown remains unclaimed after the King dies without and heir. Players must raise their army and secure the backing of a noble house in their quest to claim the Onyx Crown and reign supreme. Gamers Classified spoke to Lead Designer, Khairul Hamdan, about his reaction to the nomination and the development process behind Reign.

To vote for Reign to win Tabletop of the Year at the AGAs, click here. Voting is open until December 7th 2018.

GC: What was your reaction to being nominated?

Hamdan: Mainly surprise. Reign is a game that hasn’t had a lot of publicity so I didn’t expect it to get enough votes to be nominated. I self published, so I don’t have much of a marketing budget. I am really excited that the people that have played Reign love it enough to go out and tell the world about it

Source: Khairul Hamdan

GC: How did you decide on ‘Kazath’ as the name of your kingdom? 

Hamdan: When I was a small child, I once found myself stuck in a cave in the wilderness. There the word Kazath came to me in a vision. Not really though, I randomly came up with something that sounded interesting and different to other fantasy realms

GC: What can you tell us about the development process behind this game?

Hamdan: Reign’s development process was rather long. It took about 5 years from initial concept to finished game. The idea came from playing a lot of big political intrigue games like Diplomacy, Twilight Imperium and Risk. I love those kinds of games but found that they were too long to get my friends to play regularly. I really couldn’t find a game that filled that Machiavellian-itch in under an hour of play time. So I decided I would create my own game to fill that spot.

The first iteration of Reign was surprisingly similar to how it turned out, albeit a barebones version of the game. It used a number of cards ranging from 1 to 5 in four different colours. From there it was just playtesting and refining. After about 2 years I decided to go all in and get artwork done for Reign. Shortly after I went to Kickstarter. And failed.

I didn’t fail because the game was bad, I just didn’t do enough ground work at conventions and online to get the game’s name out there. I regrouped and took some time throughout the year to go to conventions like PAX Australia and CANCON to let people know about Reign. One of the best things that I did was joining the Tabletop Game Designers of Australia ( TGDA) a not-for-profit group of designers that gave me advise and guided me on my design journey. So when I took my second shot at Kickstarter I succeeded!

Source: Khairul Hamdan

GC: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Hamdan: I currently run a company called KxH Design which focuses on graphic design for tabletop board games so for those people looking for an experienced game designer and graphic design come say hi.

Besides that I would like to thank everyone who has helped me along the way with Reign. A big thank you to Michael and Daniel Agnew who have really helped out at conventions during the past few years. Finally, a thank you to Alpha Strike, who decided to pick up distribution for Reign.

To vote for Reign to win Tabletop of the Year at the AGAs, click here. Voting is open until December 7th 2018.