There are three questions I am asked more than any other:
- Where do you get all your ideas from?
- How do you become a board game designer?
- Why “The Dark Imp”?
Today I’ll tackle this last question. I’ll come back to the other two in future posts.
The brand behind the name
I knew what The Dark Imp would be about before I decided on the name. The company mission is to help parents to reclaim family time through playing board games together. This mission influences all business decisions. As well as designing and publishing great family games, I knew I wanted to create great content. Content that informs and inspires parents and helps them to have wonderful family board gaming experiences.
As a parent and teacher I know that when children hit the teenage years they can become harder for their parents to reach as they fight for independence. (Read about the ‘separation spiral’.) It’s easier to initiate family time with younger children – they usually gravitate towards their parents, rather than away from them. But games are a great way to pull teenagers into family activities… if you approach it in the right way.
When I design games, I design with teenagers in mind. I knew that the brand also needed to have teenagers at its very heart.
Choosing the name
The mythological imp is known for being mischievous but not seriously threatening or dangerous. They may be antisocial or at odds with their surroundings, but at their very heart, they just want to have a bit of fun. Like many teenagers.
I wanted an imp with an edgy, slightly subversive streak – hence The Dark Imp.
The Dark Imp represents a teenager whose prickly and headstrong exterior masks a heart of gold.
The birth of The Dark Imp himself
With the mission and name decided, I got in touch with branding company Fresh Lemon – brief in hand. I wanted The Dark Imp to be a character that is appealing, recognisable and full of personality. My vision was for The Dark Imp to pop up everywhere – in games, on the website, in the book, in social media – with different facial expressions for different situations.
Fresh Lemon did a great job. The character is even hiding in the logo! The Dark Imp himself has attracted many fans – and hopefully many more to come.