Mixtape allows players of the KC-made card game to “hide behind the song,” connecting without fear of vulnerability, said creator Joel Johnson. That appeal recently helped push the cross-generational, multi-genre product onto Target shelves across the country.
Players draw cards with such scenario questions as, “What song or band changed the way you think about music?” Next, each person blasts their reply from a phone or speaker, with the player who drew the card choosing the best answer, Johnson explained.
“If Walmart follows [Target], then I will have created something that got picked up by the two biggest retailers in the U.S. … You’ve made it at that point,” said the game’s founder, who also works as a design and marketing strategist at Husqvarna Construction Products.
While consumers understand Mixtape, investors haven’t quite caught onto the game and its potential impact, he said.
“It’s not financial technology, agriculture, tech, or AI. It’s not a tech-heavy thing,” said Johnson. “But most of the people who I know spend more money on social media than they do on their banking app.
Independent games like Mixtape seem to be on the rise, he said, noting the release of top-seller Cards Against Humanity most likely opened the floodgates, bringing in many creators to try to build the next clever card game.
“No one’s really done it with music yet though,” he said.
“The cool thing about Mixtape is that you’re not limited by the answers that someone else has created for you,” he added. “You can respond with anything you want to add in that regard. You [can play with] someone who’s in an older generation who’s had a ton of life experiences and [enjoys] tons of genres of music — those answers come from all over the place and it’s really cool to see it when they get played.”
Johnson — collecting scenario ideas from friends or family on top of his own — originally listed the game on Amazon himself after a 2015 Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign, he said. After making its way into Made in KC stores, Mixtape was picked up for licensing by developer Breaking Games.
Click here to read more about the beginnings of Mixtape.
Creating another deck built off scenarios submitted by supporters could be the next iteration of the game, he added, with the final goal being an app format allowing for the game to be played without the limitations of distance.
The app — currently being workshopped into a product demo — would be similar to games in texting platforms with players able to invite others to play the game through messaging, he said, though Mixtape players can participate indefinitely.
“People are always curious — especially if you blow their mind with a song that’s completely unexpected,” said Johnson. “People generally will open up and tell that that story where they were on a road trip or they climbed a mountain or they got their heart stomped on.”
Click here to learn more and buy Mixtape.