Author: Michael Heron

My name is Michael James Heron, and I'm a lecturer at Robert Gordon University. This page serves as a container for all the various things with which I'm involved. My research interests are accessibility, games, and especially accessibility in games. As an academic with a strong interest in the Scottish Independence Referendum, I was also part of the team who developed RGU's twitter analysis tool. It may have been a 'no' in the end, but the fight goes on. I have taught for a decade in both further and higher education, and some of my teaching materials can be found at my wiki. I am also the owner, admin and lead developer of Epitaph: a text-based MMO set in the grim darkness of the zombie apocalypse. I am also the editor for Meeple Like Us, a board game blog with a strong focus on the accessibility of tabletop games. If you have any questions on that topic, feel free to ask them at my ask.fm page.. I occasionally blog too over on Gamasutra.
Perudo review

Perudo (1800)

I’m going to do something a little unusual today.   I’m going to review a game you can probably make for yourself right now if you have a few spare dice laying around.  If you’re reading this review I’m willing to bet you’re exactly the kind of cheeky scamp that certainly…

Tigris and Euphrates review

Tigris and Euphrates (1997)

One of the difficulties a game must address is that of abstraction.  All games are abstractions in the end – some imprecise mapping of reality to representation.   The fidelity of that representation is important – it has to be at the level people are expecting for the experience they are…

Secrets (2017)

Secrets makes a good first impression, on several levels.   For one thing, the box art is very striking – bright, bold colours with an effective, cartoonish graphic style that evokes some of the light-hearted Cold War paranoia of 80s television shows.   For another, it’s a game by Bruno Faidutti and…

The Disrespectfulness of reporting play counts

Misleading with Play Counts

One of the topics that often bubbles up in the rotating ‘issue of the day’ conveyor belt of online discussion is that of reviewers and play counts – specifically, the question of whether reviewers should include these as part of their review content so as to let people decide how…

Scythe (2016)

’ll say this about Scythe – it doesn’t shy away from making a flamboyant entrance into your life. While there is nothing ostentatious or brash about the box, it has what is perhaps the most enticing cover art I’ve seen in any game. Anachronistic and yet coherent. Ambitious yet grounded….

Assembly review

Assembly (2018)

I’ve said before that one of the things I like most in a game is when its packaging is appropriately scaled for its contents, and Assembly is a dream in that respect.   It’s odd, but it always puts me in a positive frame of mind to know the majority of…

Samurai review

Samurai (1998)

There’s a sparseness to the design of Samurai that is typical of Reiner Knizia games – a mathematically inspired elegance in a game that wears its theme as lightly as an easily discarded cloak.  It purports to be a game of feudal conquest – of bringing a recalcitrant Japan to…