Nika is an award-winning board game that I designed and Eagle Games published. It’s an abstract game about ancient Greek warfare in which opposing alliances of city-states battle to break through enemy lines and reach their teammate’s camp. Its simple, elegant rules create tremendous depth while still being easy to learn.
The game came to me in a dream while I was studying abroad in Athens in the spring of 2011. I worked on it for the next two years before submitting it to SaltCON’s Ion Award contest. It ended up winning the Best Strategy Game category, and I signed a contract with Eagle soon afterward. We ran a successful Kickstarter in February 2014, raising more than $14,000 from over 500 backers, and the game shipped that summer. It’s now available for purchase via the Eagle Games website.
Studio Mercato, a company I co-founded, also has a free version of the game available for mobile devices. As part of the team, I did design for the AI, tutorial, rules, menu structure, user interface, and more, as well as filling project management and audio design roles.
Nika was a labor of love, combining my undergraduate studies in classical history with my passion for strategy games. It taught me so much, from playtesting best practices to instruction manual writing to how to design digital ports of analog games.
Huge thanks are owed to Chris Hernandez, the game’s brilliant artist; Rick Soued, head of Eagle Games, who ensured high production quality in the game’s every detail; and the NYC Playtest group, a constellation of design luminaries who provided invaluable feedback over many months. I’m so grateful you all helped me bring Nika into the world.