The original idea Bugher came up with was for a space game, but that idea ended up taking too long to play. After a lot of tweaks, the duo came up with “ScrumBrawl.” Moyer described it as a fast-paced sports game, with fantasy creatures and an arena in which they compete, granting it certain gladiatorial aspects.
“I would say one thing that this game doesn’t do is take itself too seriously,” Moyer said. “I think that’s a big selling point for some people.”
The goal is to score the most points, with scoring coming in multiple ways. The creators said that each time one plays the game, there will be a different outcome.
“It has a very chaotic nature, there is a lot of randomness in the game,” Bugher said. “It’s never even close to the same game twice.”
There are 50 different creatures, including a cyclops, a dragon and even a chicken. Each has a specific purpose, some to help provide comedic relief.
Although the game may seem complicated at first, the guys said it is not hard to learn quickly. It is played with two to four players, and normally lasts from 45 minutes to an hour.
Moyer and Bugher used to be coworkers, which is where they discovered their mutual love for board games.
Tarek Dina, also a former coworker of the two, helped provide financial backing for the project. Another former co-worker, Jason Brodmerkel, provided the illustrations.
“He started doing some sketches for us, and we were just enthralled by the style,” Moyer said.
The game took about nine years to create, with the art probably being the lengthiest part of the process. All the contributors work full-time jobs, which made the process even more difficult. Each had a specific role, but it was a collaborative effort overall.
“I think everybody has put in a good percentage of time and resources into this,” Moyer said.
“ScrumBrawl” is not for any specific audience, but Moyer and Bugher said teenage and college-aged people are probably the most likely to enjoy playing it.
They’ve taken the game to conventions, like CincyCon in Cincinnati and the local SoonerCon, and received positive feedback at both. They had demo tables at each event, allowing people to try the game out.
“Pretty much everybody who played in the demo room bought the game,” Moyer said. “People actually, if they sit down and play it, they love it.”
The title is VicTim’s first product, but they have plans for both the expansion of this game and new games in the future.
“If we can get over the hump of the first one and we’re successful with it, we’re really hoping to launch some of the other ones,” Bugher said.
While “ScrumBrawl” has certain characteristics that are similar to other role-playing board games, the guys said it is very unique.
“Whenever you have ScrumBrawl on the table and you have four people playing it, it creates an atmosphere that you cannot duplicate,” Dina said.
Photo by Mark Hancock