Hai-Lo

I’m never asked by anyone where my inspiration comes from. No one really cares. I attribute this to the fact that my inspiration hasn’t made me a deca-millionaire … yet. But when it does, I will recount the story of how I came up with a silly little card game on a beautiful summer day. I was visiting friends down in Salt Lake City two summers ago, laying by a pool, super relaxed, and grabbing some sun for my pasty white Seattle body. I started to dose off lightly, unable to go to sleep with the hot sun on my face but just sleepy enough to get into that dreamy, imaginative space.

All of a sudden, I had a tremendous flash. An entire card game came into my head all at once. I saw the hands being held by the four players, the tossing of cards into the middle for each trick, the scoring of the game after each hand, the puzzled looks on the faces of the players as they tried to master the strategy of this fairly nuanced trick-taking card game.

I knew this was a good idea, because I was pissed off that the idea required me to get up, go back to conscious state, and write the vision all down. I immediately shot up (scared the hell out of my other friends at the pool laying next to me), picked up my iPhone, and furiously wrote the 0.1 version rule set for a game I codenamed Hai-Lo.

Thank god the iPhone Notes app was there to take it all downMuch like many of my other game and design ideas, the first version was unnecessarily complex and filled with goofiness. But after years of playtesting with friends and family, adapting the cards and the rules and the long hard slog of simplification and refinement, I believe I’m to a point where I can release this game to the world.

My husband and I are still paying down debt pretty heavily. But once I get some free cash and a spine, I’m going to get several hundred decks printed and start selling this thing. If you’re interested in playing and you’re in the Seattle area, give me a buzz. I would love your opinions.

So that’s where my ideas come from – divine intervention I guess. Plumbing the depths of my brain in semi-meditative states, perhaps. Regardless, they come in a flash and they need work to polish. I’m fortunate to have such an active muse. Hopefully she can make me $10 million one of these days.

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