ABOUT Memwars™ ... the History
In ancient and medieval times human civilization was what Mary Carruthers calls a "memorial culture" - one that was based on memory. The feats of memory were truly astounding. Homer, the blind poet, composing and reciting "The Iliad" and "The Odyssey" from memory. Skipping forward, St. Thomas Aquinas dictating "Catena Aurea" from memory. Hugh of St. Victor memorizing all 150 psalms.
The 18 May 2016 article: "The Empty Brain: Your brain does not process information, retrieve knowledge or store memories. In short: your brain is not a computer" by Robert Epstein in Aeon is brought to Dr. Bralick's attention.
June, 2016 Linguisticator launches the Macunx/VR KickStarter project to fund the initial stages of development of the shared virtual reality memory palace. At this same time, Dr. Bralick, searching for online French classes, comes across Linguisticator and its KickStarter. The rewards (memory & language classes) looked ... interesting.
August, 2016 - Amos contributed his memory of playing Mark Twain's Memory Game with his father. He elaborated that Mark Twain's game suffered a defect that every place on the board was indistinguishable - it resembled every other place on the board - a problem resolved by the Macunx structure that he learned from the Linguisticator training.
September and into October, 2016 - first try - executive training based on Macunx (see competitive advantage above). Paladin Logic pursued funding for the idea but was rejected twice ... once because the bank (a completely different topic for later discussion) and the other time because the lender - an SBA community lender - was not allowed to fund the R&D that was needed for course development. There were to be (and one day there will be) three memory training courses: basic, intermediate and advanced. See the vision for more details.
October, 2016 to present. Having hit the funding brick wall, we decided to swap the order and proceed with development of the game first and back fill later with the training courses. Taking our inspiration from Aaron's successful Macunx/VR KickStarter, we decided to embark on a KickStarter for MemWars.
October, 2016. Amos "McGyver's" a prototype board and memory deck (called a "factdeck" at that time - a name doomed for having a "ktd" sound in he middle rendering it nearly as difficult to pronounce as "Mnemosyne." Amos also conducted initial play testing of the game uncovering some challenges created by the initial gameplay concept. Clearly, the preparation phase - initial subject matter mastery - and play/competition phases needed to be separated.
November - December 2016. Aiming for mid-January KickStarter launch, physical board concepts begin to evolve. Logo concepts are kicked around as well creating a bit of tension as ideas evolve, re-evolve and re-re-evolve.
Still interested in the concept of executive level training and the executive/professional rank being a key market segment (did I mention a competitive advantage?), we commissioned a wooden board to be developed. Designs were discussed with the craftsman and work proceeded.
The first board produced was pretty completely wrong. We called it the alpha version and corrected the misunderstandings based on the alpha. The beta version was spot on. A total of three betas were ordered with slightly different manufacturing details explored in the construction. Two of the three boards will eventually be offered at a very high level of the KickStarter - there will only ever be three of these in existence.
January, 2017 - Completed the Macunx licensing agreement with Linguisticator (Dr. Ralby). Scholar edition concepts continue to evolve and prototype boards are designed with imagery in each quadrant and a Macunx overlaid on it.
February, 2017 - Scholar board prototypes are delivered and student edition - cloth, transportable "board" is designed and ready to be ordered. There are two purposes to the student board. First, a truly student version that can be carried anywhere. Second, as a stretch goal for the KickStarter.
March, 2017 - First KickStarter attempt ended achieving 10% of its goal. Discussion with a KickStarter expert afterwards suggested that its main weakness was the lack of a "storyline." Back to the drawing board.
January, 2019 - Present As so often happens life gets in the way of art. Slow development of the new board and branding based on "Gods & Heroes - Pantheons of Doom" proceeds resulting in the current version of the game. Volume I will easily be followed by successor volumes that can use the same board - or boards themed with different artwork. Simplified, there is one board, not three and the game is focused on specific subject: the ancient Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Norse pantheons.
March, 2019 Using the Traqtx tool pioneered by Paladin Logic, a memory self assessment tool is created to develop a mailing list of people interested in memory and memory games. This mailing list will be the primary tool for pre-marketing the MemWars KickStarter.
Remaining to do:
20190301 Launch the Traqtx-based memory self-assessment app.
20190903 Complete KickStarter pages - including video showing gameplay.
20190903 Submit KickStarter & get approved
20190910 Launch KickStarter
Run the KickStarter project
Gather bids for production in anticipation of success
As soon as it is clear that the KickStarter will succeed, prepare to deliver rewards; commission contract manufacturers to to begin production.
20191010 End KickStarter