Interview With Dan Butchko of Playcrafting

A few weeks ago, the Gameosity team visited the Playcrafting NYC Spring Expo. It was an evening where indie game creators could show off their newest designs. While the main focus was on video games, there were several board game designers presenting their games. It was a great event and we had a lot of fun checking out indie board games like Complicated Board Game the Card Game, Super Hazard Quest, Plot Twist, and Sumer.

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I had a chance to speak with the CEO & Co-Founder of Playcrafting, Dan Butchko and he was kind enough to tell us a little about the Playcrafting Program.

danDan: Playcrafting provides education and events to help gamers and enthusiasts become developers and developers hone their craft to build successful businesses. We started in NYC in 2014 and are also in San Francisco and Boston, with Seattle and Los Angeles coming later this year. On the education side, we offer 10-15 classes and 2-3 big events (2-800 people and up to 115 games) per month. The core of a Playcrafting education is our multi-week courses which lower the barrier for entry for aspiring developers to start making games. We want as many people making games as possible. Even more so, we help game makers succeed financially by providing education on the business side of game making and offering a platform for networking and exposure.

jessasmJess: How did you create the program? What inspired you?

danDan: I’d been to a number of events at academic institutions focused on games and it always felt like newcomers were at such a disadvantage. So much of education around game making is focused solely on the “art” of game making, with instructors just giving lectures and the financial and time requirements for entry remaining extremely high. We had already created a big community of developers by 2014, so I wanted to build a service-providing company for developers and those that want to become developers. Playcrafting represents a realistic and affordable option for making games and networking with pros. Making great games can take time and being financially successful at it is a real challenge. We help you get started and help level up your skills, reputation and revenue.

jessasmJess: I know that the program focuses a lot on video games. What does it offer for board game designers?

danDan: While most of our educational and event offerings are focused on digital games, we do offer a variety of one-night classes for tabletop game developers (board game and card game alike). Our quarterly Expos feature up to 115 games and 700 attendees. These events are agnostic of platform and include many board games right next to the digital ones!

jessasmJess: Where do you see Playcrafting going? What can we look forward to in the future?

danDan: We’ll be expanding to Seattle and LA later this year! Excited for that. Otherwise, we’ve built a real core curriculum with our Learn Unity in 8 Weeks and Building VR Games courses in the past year. Over 100 people have taken Playcrafting multiweek courses in the first year. We’re going to be building on these courses in the coming year to continue fleshing out an all-encompassing curriculum. On top of that, look for more and bigger events, our booth at industry events like PAX East, a brand new website this summer and more.

jessasmJess: How can gamers get involved in Playcrafting?

danDan: Come to our Summer Expo! July 28th at Microsoft (11 Times Square).
jessasmJess:  Thanks Dan! This all sounds really exciting. It makes me want to create games instead of just write about them! 🙂

If you are curious and want to learn more about Playcrafting and the education courses they offer, check out their website at: https://www.playcrafting.com

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