The Penny Press, A Game Changer

By Carla Charter

LEBANON, N.H.- The popularity of Penny Press, a board game based on the Penny Press newspaper era of the late 1800’s, continues to grow and Robert Dijkman Dulkes and Matthew Golac are now working on creating a second board game.

Dijkman Dulkes said the idea for Penny Press came about when the pair went out for a drink after a local board game night. “We got to talking about our aspirations to create a new game and came up with the idea of the Penny Press. It is a board game which includes 45 cards with actual historical stories from 1895-1903. The object of the game is to acquire the most readers.”

Once the pair came up with a prototype game, they had to try to get it published. The pair entered the game in a Cards against Humanity Competition. “There were 500 games submitted and the National Board Game Designers invited 20 designers to Indianapolis for a Table Top Death Match So we flew out to Indianapolis,”  said Dijkman Dulkes.

“We did not hear anything for two months then we received a call that we were winners. We shared the prize with a Discount Salmon Card Game. We put the game on Kickstarter. We have sold close to 4,000 copies in the United States and are looking at a reprint. If you sell 3,000 games it is considered a good game, we sold 1,000 on top of that,” said  Dijkman Dulkes.

“A few months ago, a company called boardgamearena.com contacted us about developing an on- line version of Penny Press. Two weeks ago we beta tested it,” he continued.

“After creating a serious game, we decided our next game would be more comical,” said Dijkman Dulkes.   “It is called West Monster Kennel Club. It is more quirky than Penny Press,” he continued.

“Board games are making a comeback,” said Dijkman Dulkes. “I am a technology guy. So to sit with friends at a table and really interact with other people is one fun thing about board games. To see the mechanics of the games, seeing tactics emerge out of simple rules, the battle of wits with peers who sit around a table and try to win.” Golac added “I find it an intellectual challenge as well as a way to connect with others, hang out with friends and have a good time.”

Among the board games said Dijkman Dulkes enjoys are Scythe, a steampunk type game and Can’t Stop, a dice game.  Golac’s favorite games include Rex, New Civilization; New Dawn, Dungeon Crawl and Descent.

Golac said his interest in gaming started as a child. “I gamed when I was a kid playing Dungeon and Dragons and Civilization. My interest fell off as I became busy with college.  Then I decided I wanted to meet some folks and with the new wave of modern games, I really started to enjoy them.”

The Penny Press Board Game can be found at asmadigames.com and at Amazon by searching for Penny Press Board Game.