Welcome to an interview for the series Game Credits Who’s Who (#GameCreditsWW). Ever read the credits page of a game you enjoy and wonder about the various positions listed? Would you like to work in the game industry someday but are not sure how some of the positions work? This Monday series will take a personal look into those positions and introduce you to real people doing those very jobs in the game industry. This week, let me introduce you to Chevee Dodd, Portal Games US.
Tell us a little about yourself and what you do as Portal Games US.
I’m a 37-year-old father of two from West Virginia. I’ve been involved in board gaming in some capacity since 1996. I became involved with Portal Games in 2014 by volunteering at Gen Con. Ignacy needed help, and I heeded the call. I fell in love with the company almost as quickly as I fell in love with the games.
As Portal US, I manage our convention appearances, our websites, and our email servers. Basically, whatever I can do remotely, I do. I write rules, edit text, playtest, tweet, and provide customer service. I manage our partnership with the Double Exposure Envoy program and coordinate support efforts for Heralds all over the country. I write our English press releases and interface with all the various news media outlets through email and live interviews. Oh, and I warehouse extra product and our booth materials at my house.
How did you become Portal Games US?
As Portal Games expanded into doing English distribution internally, Ignacy needed an American to help. Not only with handling US business, but with English as well. At first, I did everything I could as a volunteer to take some of the pressure off of Ignacy until, eventually, he decided I was doing too much work for free and offered to hire me. We’ve formed a great partnership over the past two years, and I feel like a part of the team, even though I’ve only met a few of them personally. I chat with them daily via Slack as we use that platform to coordinate all our production and appearance efforts… and sometimes just to joke around.
Share with us some of your recent projects.
Personally, I’ve been focused on YouTube for the past six months and haven’t spent much time designing. Having multiple jobs makes it difficult to find free time, but I quite like it that way. My work for Portal and YouTube are hardly work at all, as I enjoy them so much.
We just wrapped up our Origins appearance, and that show went off without a hitch. We have finalized most print files for this year’s US releases, so I am in convention mode right now. Preparing our appearances at various shows is more than just taking days off and showing up. For instance, we had to express freight in a few pallets of Cry Havoc in order for them to be on time for the Gen Con release. I must coordinate the shipping once it reaches US soil, as customs gets involved. I am also working on a few new booth displays for Gen Con and future shows. In the midst of all this, we are re-working all the components of Robinson Crusoe for re-print… just fixing the English… as well as First Martians. It’s a busy time!
What is your greatest frustration or pet peeve as Portal Games US?
Shipping and distribution. The model that we use in the US is extremely frustrating. I have no direct interface with the store owners that are selling our products and instead, I have to trust that the distributors sales staff has our best interests in mind when pitching new products to retailers.
On top of that, dealing with weird shipping delays means that there is an extreme breakdown between our warehouse receiving products and the retailers being able to have our games on their shelves.
How can readers learn more about you or contact you?
I’m all over the internet! You can check out my website, cheveedodd.com for lots of information about my adventures in gaming as well as my various other hobbies and life. The easiest way to keep up with me is my daily YouTube show, The Daily Shed. Here’s a bunch of links, take your pick!