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An Interview with Joe Mares, ‘Astrologer AF’ Game Designer

I’ve posted Kathy Rose’s ‘New Moon in Scorpio’ in the sidebar.***
I’ve recently discovered a unique way to learn astrology and have fun while doing so.  With all the disturbing news constantly inundating us of late, I feel we need to also find ways to keep enjoying life, and Joe Mares is launching something new and fresh to go with Jupiter in Scorpio; an adult astrology game. It’s definitely hip and racey for young and old moderns.  Here is the conversation I recently had with him:
How did you first get into astrology? I first got into astrology in 2010. I was on a date and my date talked about my sign and said the only reason I was dating her was because she was a Taurus. I dismissed it, but when I got home and looked at my dating history, I discovered that ALL the girls I went after were Taurus. From then on I knew that there was definitely something to this.
You are a game designer by trade; what motivated you to go into this field? I’ve always liked making “fun” things. Although I love different types of entertainment, games can be be about anything and can have any context, so I love experimenting with different genres and mechanics. I love that games combine story telling, music, mechanics, interactivity, character development, all in one platform. Games are kind of the uber platform for entertainment.
What are some of the games you have already produced? I think the most famous game I helped develop is League of Legends.  You can just google that one lol.
So how did your latest astrology game come into being?  What was your motivation for creating it? I looked online for astrology party games and there wasn’t a whole lot there. I’m always looking for an excuse to talk about astrology. I’ve been working on a card game for a few years and realized that it would work perfectly with an astrology theme on it. So that was pretty much it; I had a unique card game mechanic I’ve been working on for years, and I really wanted an astrology card party game out there in the universe so I can play with my friends.
How does this game work? This game is called Astrologer AF. All players get 12 cards (one for every sign of the zodiac). Then a player flips over a Subject card, this might say “Sign most likely to…”. Then they flip over a Description card, which might say “…be your sidekick.” Then all the players pick which sign that would be. Once everyone is ready they reveal their answers at once by placing their chosen sign card on the table. Players who match get 1 point each. First player to reach 12 points wins!
What part of this game is your favorite? I’m always surprised how people answer questions when I am 100% certain it’s one way, and they answer with a totally different card. The fun part is having them explain it afterwards haha.
What age group is this game designed for? It is designed for ages 18+ because there is some rather adult material in there. 
Will you be adding new elements to it as time goes on, like new celebrities, athletes, quotes etc.?  Yeah, I wanted to start off basic with this version so that everyone can get on board. After this my plan is to start getting into more nuanced aspects of astrology. I want to add some “Mercury sign most likely to..”, type questions. In addition to that, I can’t really use any copyright stuff in my game right now, but I would eventually love to use intellectual property like Warner Brothers or Disney characters. I think a question like “Sign most likely to be Batman” would be fun!
Where can people go to find out more about it? It is $25 a deck and you guys can check it out on Kickstarter  
Where else do you see yourself going with your love for gaming and your interest in astrology?  Do you see other types of ‘games’; for instance, it appears you are only dealing with Sun Signs in this game. You’ve already mentioned the desire to add Mercury. What about Moon signs, or Venus/Mars signs?  It seems there are endless possibilities. Yeah, astrology is a big part of my life, and I would absolutely love to design more games and experiences based on astrology, in addition to future expansions of Astrologer AF. But I do want to stress that I absolutely can not do any of this without your support guys. Let’s build this together!
I notice you have Jupiter in Scorpio rising in your birth horoscope:  how would you describe this quality in yourself? How does it color your own persona? It’s funny, I grew up in a really rough neighborhood in East Los Angeles, California. Lot’s of gang activity, crime, etc. but I NEVER got picked on and was NEVER a victim of anything. I think my Rising/Jupiter had a lot to do with that; people would look at me on the street but then keep moving. I always felt lucky in that way. It still remains true to this day.
I also see that your Jupiter Rising aspects your Midheaven in Leo strongly, noting that Leo has rulership over all sorts of ‘games and gaming’.  Have you been aware of this quality emerging over time in your own life? Yeah, I started to notice this about 10 years ago, that all the stuff I did for a career was considered “fun”. I started out as a pro wrestler, then I did game design, then I did stunts, then I dabbled in improvisational comedy. It’s all stuff I wanted to do in a professional way or that I knew would help my professional career, and it was all stuff that was actually really fun to do. Also most of them involved being on stage with a spotlight on you, Leo AF.
You also have a strong Mars/Uranus in Sagittarius conjunction that equally connects with your Leo Midheaven.  I find this fascinating because Mars has so much to do with action, sexuality, and ‘adult’ themes, while Uranus is considered the main ruler of astrology.  How do you see this configuration as significant in your own life? I’m very adventurous that’s for sure!  I like to take risks and be innovative as well (that’s also why I’m on Kickstarter!). So I think the things I’ve done before; not only do they serve my Leo Midheaven, but they’re also unique and very risky to do, and this Astrology Party Game is a good example of that. There is no market data suggesting this is a good idea, or that the market is there, but I think it’s fun.  I think people into astrology will like it, and that’s all I needed to know in order to develop it. I’ve always considered myself shy, so I used to think it was weird that I was interested and eventually did stuff like train to be a pro wrestler, or go out and do stunts for music videos and movies. But I did it anyway, and now it makes sense haha.
Thank you so much for the interview, this was fun! And everyone reading this, I absolutely can not do this without you. I want to build more expansions and create more fun experiences for this community, but I can not do it without your support even if it means just sharing with your friends and family. Thank you.
It was a pleasure Joe!  And he is willing to give out THREE games to the first three readers on my blog who send me an e-mail request c/o BlueLightLady.  (This is, of course, dependent on his successful Kickstarter drive.)


October 17, 2017  4 Comments
Categories: Astrology, Interesting People | Tags: , ,


1 Karuna { 10.17.17 at 2:41 pm }

How cool to see new and fun ideas coming forward relating to astrology. I love Joe’s game concept and really hope it takes off. Sticking to the basics out the gate is a good idea on lots of levels, particularly since so many young people don’t really have much of a grasp of astrology beyond basic sun signs, if that. This is a terrific way of introducing people to astrology and there is certainly a lot of potential for growth into more games with deeper astrological insights if this first one takes off. Good luck! I’d love to have a deck to play with.

2 Genevieve Vierling { 10.17.17 at 4:45 pm }

Thanks for commenting Karuna!! And you’re now first in line for a free deck from Joe—provided he makes that Kickstarter goal!!

3 Julie { 10.21.17 at 4:13 am }

Great interview Joe and Genevieve. The Astrology game cards are a fun way to learn about Astrology. Joe has Jupiter in Scorpio and Transiting Jupiter is now in Scorpio, should be a lovely year. Thanks for a great newsletter/blog

4 Genevieve Vierling { 10.21.17 at 11:55 am }

Thank you Julie! Yes, Joe is about to have his Jupiter Return in his first house. Off he goes! Good time to launch a new project all right. I appreciate your readership.

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