Schmovie? Galactic Sneeze Explains the Filmtastic Fun

“IN A WORLD… where people love movies and stuff that’s really really funny, one game embarks on an epic quest to create the greatest laugh of all time. SCHMOVIE. Coming soon to a game night near you.”

What is Schmovie you ask? Schmovie is a board game where you create a movie title with the sole purpose to make it as absurd and relevant as possible. For example if I were to ask for a movie title for a horror film about a discount hitman, one could say “Salvation Army of Darkness.” Pretty good right? You are now probably thinking where can I play this wonderful game? Well you are in luck. If you head to Schmovie’s Facebook page HERE  and “Like” the page, you can begin playing along right away. The Rules are simple.

SCHMOVIE RULES

  1. A new SCHMOVIE premise is posted every night at midnight EST. (There is only one SCHMOVIE over the weekend.)
  2. Submit a SCHMOVIE title by using the Comment feature.
  3. You may submit as often as you’d like!
  4. Vote for your favorite title(s) by using the Like feature. Please do not vote for your own title.
  5. The title that receives the most votes by midnight EST the next day is presented with the coveted SCHQUID Trophy!
  6. Invite your friends to vote for your title and play along! And please remind them to “Like” the SCHMOVIE page while they’re here.

 

I really must say as an avid board game player I am really impressed with this game. It has the laughs that Apples to Apples brings, the competitive edge of Monopoly, and the creative spark of Cranium. Schmovie has quickly become one of my favorite things to do every day. I love it so much I had to bring Bryan Wilson and Sara Farber, the games designers and creators in for an interview to explore the origin of Schmovie and talk more about the game.

Hello Bryan and Sara welcome to KABOOOOOM HQ! We are so glad to have you here to talk about Schmovie and other nerdy things. So lets begin with that age ole question, where did the idea of Schmovie come from?

Bryan: Schmovie is actually a film-themed spin-off of an earlier game we designed. We ended up liking it better than the original since it was more replayable and had a more universal theme… everyone likes movies!

So when you win a round of the game you get your special SCHQUID trophy, where did the idea of the mighty SCHQUID come from? What is his, her, or its story?

Sara: Figuring out a game’s reward system is one of the toughest parts of creating a game. We tested a bunch of different things – a board, additional cards, another die, currency. Ultimately, we looked to the film industry for inspiration. In the movie business, if you do something great, you get a trophy.

Bryan: Then, the challenge was to figure out what our trophy should look like. We knew it should feel formal yet fun, and it shouldn’t look anything like the famous bald guy holding a sword. It needed to be ownable, instantly recognizable, and outlandish, in keeping with the spirit of the game. We liked the idea of something that had alliteration with the word “Schmovie”. Sara suggested a “schquid”, and we both laughed. So we made it gold, gave it wings and tried to make it not look too much like a penis.

QUICK: Favorite Schmovie title you seen so far?

Bryan: That’s a tough one, as we’ve seen thousands of titles. Off the top of my head… there’s the romantic comedy about a gassy prom queen: “Please Light Sixteen Candles”, the drama about a lovestruck farmer: “The Goatbook”, and the action film about a lactose-intolerant ninja: “Exit the Dragon”.

Sara: We made Schmovie posters of a few of our other favorites: “Paranormal Activia”, “Lettuce from Iwo Jima” and “Rye Hard.” You can check them and a bunch of others out on our Facebook page, Pinterest and Schmovie.com.

Bryan: Depending on who you’re playing with, the titles can get pretty racy. One of the coolest aspects of Schmovie is that occasionally, players get to choose their own movie genre. And that’s how adult films can get worked into a game that’s still perfect for family game night.

Now Galactic Sneeze is a brain trust of a toy inventor and an advertising guru. As as a collective of creative people what is the process you guys and gals go into producing products and material?

Sara: Sometimes an idea for a toy, game or IP will just hit one of us at random. Or, we’ll be inspired by something we see. But Galactic Sneeze has a very strategic approach towards new concept development. We begin with a specific target audience and we research what’s been done already. We look at what worked, what didn’t, and why. Then we try to fill in the gaps in a unique way. Each time, our goal is to come up with something super awesome that hasn’t been done yet.

As creators, any success stories you want to share with us? Or epic fails you want are readers to learn from?

Bryan: We were excited when we realized that Schmovie could be played via social media. Through our Facebook page, we’ve been able to play test certain game mechanics and premise combinations for months, and both the gameplay and design have evolved as a result. We’re building a large, diverse following, and are incredibly grateful for our fans who take the time to play every day. We post a new Schmovie premise every night at midnight (except Saturdays… our date night), and by the time we wake up the next morning, we have 70 or so Schmovie titles to laugh at over coffee.

Sara: And when it comes to epic fails… we thankfully avoided a very big one. The original name of our game was Screen Play, until we realized it was too hard to copyright and even harder to Google productively. So, we changed the name to Film Flam, which required re-designing all of the graphics. But then, we discovered that more than half of our game testers didn’t realize it was a play on the phrase, “flim flam”, so it just seemed random and weird. When one tester said, “I love the game, but the name sucks,” we finally ditched it. Bryan suggested “Schmovie”. We tried it out. The word “Schmovie” made people smile. And, it worked well with branding, since we could talk about a Schmovie Producer, Schmovie Poster, Schmovie Star, etc. When we realized the URL, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest accounts were available, that sealed the deal.

Does Galactic Sneeze have any other projects on the horizon that you want to tease us about?

Bryan: Galactic Sneeze is a fun stuff think tank. So, we’re always thinking about fun stuff. We have a lot of cool things currently in the works. Our goal is to come up with ideas that can be expanded across multiple mediums… from toys to games to feature films.

Sara: Exactly. We strive to design products with legs. Not literally. Well, sometimes literally. What we mean is we try to build intellectual properties and brands that can continue to grow and evolve.

Before we go any final words of wisdom for our readers that you want to share?

Sara: Writers are told, “Write what you know.” And game designers are told, “Don’t design a game only you’d want to play.” Well, we think there’s a happy medium. We work best when we generate concepts that we’re passionate about, that we’d want to experience again and again, and that we think other people will want to also.

Bryan: Our words of wisdom would be to work on projects that excite you… projects you can’t stop thinking about. But also, don’t be afraid to let ideas go. If something isn’t working and you’ve tried everything… it’s time to move on. You’ll always have another, usually better, idea. Also, wear sunblock, call your mother… and come play Schmovie!

*****

Big thanks to Bryan and Sara for the taking the time to answer some questions about Schmovie and share with us the insight of a truly wonderful new board game. Make sure to keep an eye out for what Galactic Sneeze will do next because you surely do not want to miss the next new hit board game.

 

About Zack Rosenberg

Tourettian. Co-creator of the comic book ZomBot. Contributing Writer at Kabooooom & Assistant at Bottle Lightning Studios. Former Marvel Comics, Cartoon Network, & Ace/Roc books intern. Alum of PSC!

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