James Ernest is a game inventor and author, best known as the founder of Cheapass Games. He is a prolific game designer with more than 150 published games including board games, card games, dice games, miniatures games, and trading card games. James has won several Origins Awards for game design and graphic design, and is a member of the Origins Awards Hall of Fame. James Ernest got started in the game industry in 1993, as a freelance technical writer for Wizards of the Coast. He did some design work for Wizards and others, and in 1996 Ernest launched his own game publishing company, Cheapass Games. Cheapass was founded on the principle that low-budget games could still be good, and asked players to provide their own spare parts like dice, pawns, and play money. Early Cheapass Games included Kill Doctor Lucky, Button Men, BRAWL, Give Me the Brain, Lord of the Fries, and Unexploded Cow. In 2004 James Ernest and Mike Selinker founded the Seattle design studio Lone Shark Games. The pair created a number of popular titles including Unspeakable Words (Playroom), Lords of Vegas (Mayfair), Gloria Mundi (Rio Grande) and Pirates of the Spanish Main (Wizkids). James and Mike also co-wrote Dealer’s Choice, the Complete Handbook of Saturday Night Poker, with comic artist Phil Foglio. Recently, Cheapass Games has entered the world of crowdfunding, running several successful campaigns on Kickstarter. Their largest campaign to date was for Tak: a Beautiful Game, created with author Patrick Rothfuss. Other campaigns include new editions of older games such as Button Men and Kill Doctor Lucky, as well as new games like Pairs: A New Classic Pub Game. James Ernest’s design philosophy has always favored lightweight, simple games. His games often have minimal components, short rules, and novel mechanics that grow naturally from quirky themes. You can learn what James Ernest is up to right now by visiting Cheapass Games, at cheapass.com.