JogoEu (JE) - How do you define yourself as a games creator?
Stefan Dorra (SD) - I create games as a hobby. Most of the time is spent with my family and with my job as a speech therapist. Beside games, I’m also passionate by travelling and badminton.
JE - Are the games part of your daily life, or you just play from time to time?
SD - As a matter of fact, I occupy my daily time with games. I play with my friends almost every day or, when I´m not playing, I think about a new idea or concept for a different strategy or game.
JE - Which is the game you enjoy playing the most? Why?
SD - For several time, I play with extreme pleasure and frequency a certain game. Most of the time, I play card games. One year, during my hollidays, I remember playing daily “Mamma Mia”. Loosers had to wash the dishes as a punishment. We play recorrently “Die Sieben Siegel”, a game concebed by me. At this moment, we play Dominion frequently.
JE - Are you following with more attention the work of any particular boardgame creator?
SD - I’m specially interested on Uwe Rosenberg’s games. Games as the already mentioned “Mamma Mia”, “Bohnanza”, “Agrícola”, or the new “Le Havre”, are, in my opinion very interesting and envolving.JE - Do you often play in family? Could you tell us a little more about those moments?
SD - Yes, fortunately, my wife and children, and also my friends, enjoy playing such kind of games. In our family we play almost every day. When we have a new game, we explore it with curiosity and, for several times, we test new ideas and game variations.
JE - When did you realize that you have qualities that allow you to create games?
SD - In my youth times, I used to develop games as Risc or Stratego with my friends in which we implement our own rules. During university time, I started to develop games especially didactic to pupils with special handicaps on speech.
Some time later, it appeared “Razzia”, my truly first game. The “Razzia” was published by Ravensburger in 1992 and it was designed to the List of Choices for the Game of the Year. This was a great motivation to continue creating games.JE - Do you think that the actual economic crisis will affect negatively the games sales?
SD - I don’t believe that the economical crises will affect negatively game selling. People who avoid big expenses like a car or a trip, stays at home and probably will buy another CD, a new book or an excellent game.
JE - What do you prefer the most, create games or play them? Why?
SD - The two are linked. We cannot create a game with sure without enjoying playing games. I’m very happy with each new and exciting game and with each new and promising idea.
JE - What is your opinion about the huge rise of cooperative games style in this last year?
SD - In person, I’m not a good friend of cooperative games. I love when during the game we can take actions towards the other players. I like interactive games and games where there are negotiation or auction mechanisms.
JE - In a few words tell us what are the main characteristics and standards that identify this creators: French, English, Italian, Czechs, Polish, Americans, German.
SD - I don´t like to label people. It wouldn’t be polite to evaluate a game author by its nationality. Of course there are, for example, some games about USA’s conquest that, due to the subject and picture, hardly would be edited in Germany. But many games created by American authors, such as the ones of Alan Moon (Airlines, Capitol, Ticket to Ride), or Czechs, such as Vlaada Chvatil (Galaxy Trucker) could be conceived absolutely by German or French authors.
JE - What is the game that you still need to do?
SD - There’s a game that I would like to publish but I wasn’t able to persuade any editor to do it yet. But what it isn’t it can be in the future (an old German sentence). However, I won’t speak here about its contents.
JE - Have you went to Essen this year? What do you think about the 2008 edition?
SD - I visit Essen fair every year and, in my opinion, this fair is the high point of the game’s year. We can find there many authors and redactors and we can admire each incoming news. I assist recurrently SAZ stand in Essen (the stand of the Games’ Authors Corporation) and there I find very interesting players (male and female).
JE - From all you games, which do you like the most to create?
There’s another game in which I worked for a long time and where I noticed that the game was gradually improving as the time was going by. The “Intrigue” and “Medina” creation was, for me, very interesting and thrilling.
JE - From all you games, which do you like the most to play?
SD - I enjoy playing card games. From my own, the ones that I enjoy playing mostly are “Land Unter”, “Njet” and specially “Die Sieben Siegel”.
JE - Thank you very much for your interview.
SD - Until now, I was twice in Portugal. We went by car in both trips and we travelled through the whole country by our own. I consider Portugal a really interesting country and I’m sure that I will visit it more often. I was particularly pleased with the North region where we can find green landscapes, lonely beaches and cities very archaic and fabulous, with old buildings or narrow streets.