Game On

About Me

Welcome! I am Ethan Bardoe, a college student studying psychology, economics, and environmental science. I love playing games, creating games, and thinking about games. I design games that offer twists on well established formulas, like using traditional roleplaying rules to simulate the Great British Bakeoff, or designing a classic-style Eurogame with environmental economics. I explore ideas in the world, break them into smaller pieces, and reassemble them as games.

My goal: To expand gaming audiences by exploring interesting themes with approachable mechanics.

My gaming philosophy: Keep a message in mind and follow the fun to see what works best for players.

Favorite games include: Sentinels of the Multiverse, Azul, and Wingspan.

Recent Events: Ran game sessions at Origins 2022

Other interests: Writing plays and cooking.

Controversial gaming opinion: Monopoly isn't as bad as people think it is.

Follow me on Instagram at ethanbardoe528.

Check out my games below and let me know what you think!

Exceptional English Bake Off

A rules-light role playing game

Welcome to the Exceptional English Bake Off… A celebration of the confectionary… the pageant of pastries… the crowning achievement of any aspiring baker. You will take part in this extreme competition in the bucolic battleground of the tent to show who is the duke of desserts. Find some friends, create a character, and grab some dice. On your marks, get set, bake!

This game works best with 3-6 players and offers about 2 hours of delicious fun. I had a great time running this game at Origins Game Fair 2022.

Harpoon: A whale of a game

Project Summary

I have been working on Harpoon since 2020. Players explore the waters of the seas between 1750 and 1920, when whaling was a booming industry. You'll sail your ships around the world harvesting and processing whales into oil and whale bone to sell in port. There you can restock on crew and tools and set out again. This game is still in development as I tinker with the rate of whale repopulation and the prices of whale products. The big question is: How can we harvest environmental resources at a sustainable rate?

While Harpoon focuses on American Whalers, it also recognizes the many cultures around the world that had their own whaling traditions. Many tool and encounter cards are inspired by the many different cultures who brought light, food and tools to those around them. Aboriginal whaling as defined by the IWC (International Whaling Commission) is very different than the hunting practiced by capitalist companies and it would be unfair to make a comparison between them. A completed game would include a companion piece to better explain the world of whaling.