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Dave started Kill Merlin! in 2017. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: 
Q: How did you get started on Kill Merlin!?
I've been a gamer all my life. I especially enjoy games that involve player interaction, such as board games and couch co-op video games. With my two sons (currently age 15 and 9), I have enjoyed sharing this love of gaming to them.
One afternoon in October 2017, I turned to Zev (my son, 14 years old at the time), and, somewhat out of the blue, I said, “Let’s make up a board game together.” He was excited about the idea. So I opened up a Google doc and started taking notes on our conversation.
Here are a few things we came up with right away:
- We decided to make a board game, as opposed to a card game.
- We decided it would be versus, as opposed to co-op. (If you’ve ever played Kill Merlin!, then you know we really embraced the versus nature of the game.)
- We listed out some themes and goals. By the end of a short time discussing it (maybe 40 minutes), we had settled on the theme of wizards, and…
- We had already named it “Kill Merlin”.
- We decided that the wizards were trying to kill the villain of the game, Merlin, and that Merlin would also be a character in the game. He would have some way to affect the game.
- We also decided that the wizards needed to develop powers over the course of the game in order to become strong enough to kill the game’s tyrant, Merlin. And we wanted each character to have a different set of abilities that they’d need to learn in order to defeat him. And thus, the first game mechanic was born!
While I had never really invented a board game and brought it to publication before, I had dabbled in the past.
As a software engineer, I'm constantly creating and I've made a few fun apps that were video games. This project, though, has really blossomed into something more special than the others.