By Michael Goldstein
By Dennis Romero
By Sarah Fenske
By Matthew Mullins
By Patrick Range McDonald
By LA Weekly
By Dennis Romero
By Simone Wilson
Checkers was designed as a play on the "checkered game of life." Each square represented Christian virtues and vices. In the 1880s, the golden age of parlor games, there was usually one light source in people's parlors and the whole family would gather around it. In the early 1900s, the stock-market games emerged, and the goal became the accumulation of money. Then in the late 1990s, two former Microsoft employees struck a deal with the devil. They sold their game Cranium at every Starbucks across the land, making it one of the most successful independent board games of all time.
A faraway look comes into Taylor's eyes as he speaks. "What is it about people that they invent these games to play?" he asks.
In this digital age, Taylor is fighting the good fight to keep board games around. He has even tried his own game out as a drinking game (it works).
For now, he has decided to market his game himself via the Internet (Google the title). He notes that he successfully avoided the classic newbie mistake — ordering boards the exact size of the box. They don't fit. (Oh, the sob stories.)
In a few weeks, his West Adams apartment will become the shipping warehouse for 500 copies of The Gentlemen of the South Sandwiche Islands. "I will be living with those games," he says. "They will be my dining table and stool."
In the meantime, his place is set up perfectly for friends to come over to play. The television tucks away, facing the corner "like a little kid who has done something bad." And the sofa and coffee table are ready to accommodate Taylor's favorite aspect of board games, "the slow sitting around, where the situation is sort of brewing."
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