A YORK family who developed their own board game which helps people with learning difficulties join in family activities are hoping 2014 will see the invention hit the mass market.
Together, the Sellars family, from Acomb, came up with the strategic game, which they called Quadblox.
The game was invented by Stuart Sellars, 42, with help from his parents Brian and Kath, his sister Sharon, and Sharon's two children, Kieran, 14, and Shauna, 16.
The family have always enjoyed playing board games, and as a bonus they found Quadblox helped Kieran and Shauna, who have learning difficulties.
Since the family appeared in The Press in November, they have been contacted by various groups in the city who wanted to help test the game, and that has even led to Stuart becoming a regular volunteer at a day centre in the city.
He said: “After we were in The Press we were contacted by a few places and we took the game to more groups to test it out. One of those was The Hut in Clarence Gardens. I had applied for a job there in the past and been unsuccessful, but they recognised my name and got in touch asking if I would take the game along to test there.”
Since then, Stuart said he had become a regular volunteer at the centre for adults with mental health issues and learning disabilities.
Stuart also took the game to Beyond Monopoly – a board game club that meets in the Bar Convent.
The club members are all experts in modern board games and gave the family the benefit of their experience.
Club chairman Jon Power said: “A lot of our members have a lot of experience playing games and we can see quickly if a game works or has problems. Playtesting is crucial to a good game design.”
The Sellars now hope the New Year will see them make progress on their plans to get the game into production.
On the advice of the Beyond Monopoly members they are thinking about taking the game to German manufacturers, where a bigger board games market means companies are more receptive to ideas from amateur games designers.
Stuart said he was also keen to start an online crowdsourcing fundraising drive as a way to fund production themselves.