We had the good fortune of connecting with Jason Mack and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Jason, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Caleb and I (Jason) decided to create our own board game as a creative outlet. After coming up with the basic framework we headed to Gencon, the largest tabletop convention in the USA, to pitch our game to publishers. Given the theme we were unable to find a home with any of the large companies. They seemed to only be looking for more of the familiar themes. After 2 years of pitching the game and moving it closer to a completed game we decided that we would launch a Kickstarter ourselves to make the game a reality. With the support of our backers we were able to create a company!

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Both Caleb and I have worked in the automation industry for our whole careers. We have been able to travel the world working with a variety of companies. Our goal has always been to understand our customers and try to help them find a solution to their problems. In order to get into this industry we had to find a balance between the engineering technical training we focused on in school and the interpersonal skills we developed through sports and hobbies. One of the biggest lessons I have learned is the importance of continual learning. With the world we live in, information is at everyone’s fingertips but we have to remember to give ourselves the time and patience to learn new things. If we keep expanding ourselves this way then we will be prepared when opportunities present themselves. Also, everyone has the ability to bring a new perspective to a situation. So make sure to be true to yourself and not change to the point your perspective is no longer being valued.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
First and foremost I would have to make sure we made it to GameCraft Brewing in Laguna Hills, it is a great place to have a beer and play board games. We are both at peace near the beach so time would have to be spent enjoying either the sand or the water, surfing, paddle boarding or maybe enjoying some tacos. If you want to test your luck, one interesting place is Loof’s-Lite-a-Line in Long Beach. It is a cross between skeeball and keno. If you are moving to the area, picking up a vintage video game at the Captain’s Auction Warehouse in Anaheim is a must as well, plus you can play a few pinball machines while deciding on your purchase. In between all of these we would probably need to visit a few more breweries or grab a coffee at Bear Coast Coffee in San Clemente or possibly head to Santa Anita to watch some horse races. Overall thought, no need to overplan!

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?

Our wives and kids, for helping us along the way. Playtesting, Consulting, Creating our Kickstarter or just managing home and crazy schedule while we were away at conventions!

Our friends, for helping us make the first day of the campaign a success and putting up with testing a barely playable game as we found our way!

Other publishers such as Greyfox, XYZ, and Gap Closer Games for supporting us and giving us guidance when starting our company.

Finally, the fans of our game that have made it all worth while!

Website: www.barrelagedgames.com

Instagram: @barrelagedgames

Facebook: @BarrelAgedGames

Youtube: Moonshine Empire

Image Credits
Caleb Zwar

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