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Project Owner & Manager:

- Systems Design

- Content Design

- Writing Rules

- Testing Management

- Working with Licences


Project Description:

Travel across the United States with the rock band KISS! Drive the open road, earn money, and play concerts in all 8 major cities to win!


In 2021, I was brought on to join NMR Aquarius as their specialized board game designer. Being a company that primarily focused on licensed products, my first task was to create a board game on the band KISS.

In addition to the theme, I was also given a number of features that they wanted to be included:

  • Include a board with branching pathways

  • Have players draw event cards when they land on certain spaces

  • Players need to play concerts to win

  • Design it so it can be reskinned with other music bands

 Since my primary specialty at this point was “Card Games”, this was a new experience for me. So, I researched a plethora of other games that matched the vibe my new employers wanted: Monopoly, Life, etc. I then took what I liked from those games, and added some “Quality of Life” improvements so it would be more appealing to all ages.

Making the Game:

I settled early on having players needing to reach specific city spaces to collect different Guitar Picks to win. From this key point, I added other mechanics to expand on this. 

I made it so players need to pay money to draw a Concert Card. That card would then reward the player with the Guitar Pick and/or an additional effect. This way the game became more than the luckiest roll wins. I then scattered the cities and varied their prices so players would place a bit more thought into which paths to take.

Gameplay Board.png
Concert B.png

From there, it was mainly adding other features to liven up gameplay between cities, and improve “Quality of Life”.

  • I made it so that returning to a city you’ve already got the Guitar Pick from, rewards you with money. This way, the board doesn’t become increasingly dead space as the game progresses.

  • I added airport spaces so players could pay money to instantly visit cities instead of constantly missing their destination with dice rolls.

  • I added Pit Stops to the board so players can earn money outside of chance cards.

  • I included “Hold Cards” to the chance cards, so players have more elements of choice on their turn.

The Release & Future:

KISS Tour launched in 2022,

and you can now buy it in various retail stores and online!


On Reflection:

With KISS Tour being my first ever published board game, I learned a ton of details that college just never could.

- Always be ready to redo a ton of elements due to unknowable changes

- A professional proof-reader and writer is always worth the investment

- Design the game with multiple licenses as early as possible

The Team:

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Me: Jared Ciano
Game Designer
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Mike Fromstein
Art & Component Design
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Aquarius & NMR
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