Designer Spotlight: Dávid Turczi

Dávid Turczi is one of the most diverse designers out there. He keeps on making completely different games with different themes and mechanism. That in itself makes him a very interesting designer of board games, but not only does he make very different games, he also makes great games. Let’s see what he has to say.


Dávid TurcziCan you tell me a little bit about yourself?

I’m David, I’m from Hungary, I live in London, UK, and I’m a board game addict. My first game design started out as helping a friend realise his idea, that turned into [redacted], and now 7 years later here I am being a full time game designer/developer, working on my dream career every day.

What’s your favourite game?

Vlaada Chvatil’s Mage Knight, closely followed by Vlaada Chvatil’s Tash Kalar. 🙂 After that the designer selection opens up a bit: Roll for the Galaxy, Glory to Rome, Trickerion, and a few other games all have a spot very near the top.

What game would you use to introduce new people to the hobby?

One-on-one training is clearly: a game of Coin Age, followed by 2 rounds of Tides of Time / Tides of Madness, then switch to 7 Wonders Duel, and when it clicks, sky is the limit.
If i’m trying to woo a bigger crowd (not expecting serious games out of them anytime soon) then Codenames leading into Between Two Cities is in order.

What’s your best game experience?

Does meeting my fiancee during a game of Ankh Morpork count? I like the game, but it wasn’t that game that made it memorable though 🙂

What is the most important aspect of playing games for you?

Choices. I want to think “oo i could do that, or actually….” And i wanna feel whether i’m winning or losing, that I worked for it.

Why do you design games?

Because I can’t not design them. I’d be talking about board games 24-7 anyways, so I might as well make some use of it.

Kitchen RushWhat are you most proud of?

I am proud of every single game for different reason. Anachrony: a perfect storm of mechanisms and theme; Days of Ire, and especially its sequel Nights of Fire for doing something truly unique – no matter how many people will play it because of the obscure theme; Kitchen Rush for finding fun (no idea how that happened, can’t do it on purpose…) And I could go on.

What is the most import part of making a game for you?

Is it keeping me interested? Am i doing something i haven’t done before? Can I do it slightly better than that other games that I tried to fill this hole with? Will anyone care and see why i think this is good? How can i make them see, what do i need to improve most?

Dice SettlersDo you usually like to start from the theme or mechanics?

Most of my good ones had a theme “one-liner”, and then working on finding mechanisms to fit the theme, then finally adjust the theme to fit the best available mechanisms. The only game of mine that was completely mechanism first yet that I made was Dice Settlers, which was “deckbuilder with dice”, and then the western settlers theme just settled on it.

Where do you find your inspiration for new game themes and mechanics?

Luckily these days mostly from the publishers that approach me and ask me to make a game for them to slot their product. But every now and then I find something I’m inspired about, but it’s rare. Anachrony was always a “build a time machine and use it before you build it” game, but the setting, the interconnectedness was all either done with or inspired by the publisher. Kitchen Rush started from “i want a real time worker placement game” and i looked for a theme that was frantic enough for it. Petrichor‘s theme came from the lead designer Dave Chircop, and he brought mechanisms too, my job was just to tighten the screws. Days of Ire was requested by a friend of mine, so the mechanisms had to fit history, Dice Settlers was inspired by how much I hated Quarriors – and wanted a good deckbuilder dice game. All my other (ongoing) projects are either commissioned, or a sequel to an existing stuff (mine or somebody else’s), so the inspiration was almost built-in. 🙂
Sorry, no grand wisdom here. 🙂


Follow Peter H. Møller:

Tabletop Together and dachshund owner, sci-fi geek, trekkie and whovian. Lover of medium length, thematic, silly (in the good way), worker placement style games. A sucker for beautiful art. Generally just a big lovable teddy bear.

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