NZS Games—A Rebranding by Marcie Clowry

NZS Games

When I started NZS Games a couple of years ago I found myself struggling over a good name. Given that I love tabletop RPGs (mostly D&D) and tabletop board/card games alike I felt that choosing a name involving a meeple wasn’t indicative of the nature of what I’d be doing. But something that was clearly geared towards D&D would be just as limiting and, ultimately, confusing. At the time, I was reading a book by Robert Wright called Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny and the principles of Game Theory seemed perfect with what I wanted to communicate with a name. So, I chose NonZero Sum Games. The principle behind a nonzero sum game is that my gain does not necessarily mean your loss. Sure, if you win against me in a game of Onitama it clearly means I have lost. But regardless, it was time well spent. I contend that we both walk away from the table having had a rewarding experience.

That being said, the more notoriety this gained the more I understood what a mouthful NonZero Sum Games is. Couple that with the summation symbol that I used in the stylized form of it and it could get confusing. NonZero Σ Games. “Is that NonZero Games?” some would ask. I knew that I hadn’t chosen as memorable a name as I’d hoped. So I spent a lot of brainpower considering a complete name change but I kept feeling that was a bad idea. That would mean a new URL, changing my Instagram and Facebook accounts and confusing any who were already familiar with the name. That’s when I decided I could shorten it to NZS Games without a complete overhaul. But more importantly, I’d get to keep the reasons for choosing NonZero Sum in the first place!

NZS Games Rebrand

With the updated name, I needed a new look. I have a partner that is involved with NZS Games that I met when I was in the Army. Chad isn’t a social media guy whatsoever but he’s brilliant at the gaming table and one of my best friends. I consulted with him and he had an interest in adopting a dragonfly into our logo. Hmm…a dragonfly. I started researching the symbolism and learned that in Japan, the Samurai revered the dragonfly as a symbol of power, agility, and victory. I felt it befitting of our overall philosophy of gaming and went with it.

Now I can do passable design in Photoshop but I’m definitely no expert. I needed a graphic designer. Fortunately, I was able to connect with Marcie Clowry of Mackerel Sky Games.

My experience with Marcie was ineffable. She is patient and talented. But more importantly she has a tremendous capacity for interpreting several rambling emails and distilling them down to exactly what you need. She translates broad ideas and puts them into a graphical representation of what you have asked for. In short, she’s a wonderful graphic designer and I cannot overstate how much I enjoyed working with her.

Even with all the patience of a saint it isn’t much of an asset if you don’t have talent. Fortunately Marcie’s got it where it really counts and delivered a stellar logo that I am proud to display! So without further ado, here is the updated NZS Games logo!

NZS Games Logo by Marcie Clowry
NZS Games Logo by Marcie Clowry

I love it! The only “problem” is that now I need to update our website to look as slick and as professional as this logo! Looks like I’ll have my work cut out for me.

Marcie Clowry & Mackerel Sky Games

Marcie CLowry
Marcie Clowry of Mackerel Sky Games

As I’ve already stated, Marcie is the graphic designer for Mackerel Sky Games and is eager to jump on a new project. So if you have need of her skills please don’t be shy! Reach out to her at You’ll be impressed with her work! I know I was.

Mackerel Sky Games is the publisher of Doxie Dash, a wonderful card drafting game about hero dachshunds with variable powers. I’ve played it several times with my family and we love it. If you like Sushi Go, I think you’ll enjoy Doxie Dash too.

Author: Patrick

Journeyman. Melancholiac. Stoic. A rebel and a runner. I think chocolate and caffeine are over-celebrated and I believe hot sauce pairs nicely with ice cream.

2 thoughts on “NZS Games—A Rebranding by Marcie Clowry

  1. Love the logo! Looks awesome!

    Since you’re using WordPress, I’d suggest just paying a one-off for a ‘premium’ theme with all the features you need, but one that still allows easy customisation of colours, fonts, etc to match the logo style.

    I’m sure Marcie could tell you a few of the colours used, and the font in the logo in case you want to re-use it.

    That being said, I don’t have any issues with the current look.

    1. Thanks, Iain! Marcie did indeed provide us a branding guide so I have everything I need (if you don’t consider time, haha!). I have a couple of premium themes but they don’t “do it” for me. So the search continues.

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