Daniel Solis’s website tagline pretty much says it all “Art Director by Day. Game Designer by Night.” Whether sharing insights into the graphic design & layout process on Twitch or sharing insights into the game design process on his blog, he provides a wealth of information for those looking to either get into the industry or simply learn more about what happens behind the scenes of game design. In addition, his Twitter timeline is a must-read, as Daniel freely shares advice along with frequent updates on his current projects as they develop and change.
In addition to the advice dispensed on Twitter, Daniel also offers a variety of game design resources via Patreon. Those who support him on the platform receive access to hundreds of game icons, archived Twitch streams featuring Daniel working through & explaining real-world graphic design issues as he solves them, and a variety of tips, tutorials and templates to help patrons create their own layouts with ease.
When it comes to his games, Daniel is unstoppable, and has won a variety of awards. His work includes such titles as Kodama: the Tree Spirits, Trickster, Kigi, and Belle of the Ball along with many, many others. Many of his games have been published through his own company Smart Play Games and are available through the print-on-demand service Drive Thru Cards. I myself have at least seven Daniel Solis titles on my game shelves, & I’m sure more will join them in the future. His designs tend to be shorter games filled with elegant, refined mechanisms and interesting tweaks on familiar concepts, and have experimented with modular systems such as Trickster, which allows players to combine decks to change up gameplay from session to session.
But even more important than the quality of his game design (which is super high), is the care and attention Daniel takes to ensure his games are as inclusive and diverse in their art design as he could possibly make them. When his games feature human characters, you can be sure that they will represent a variety of ages, races, genders, and body types within the art (we can forgive a lack of diversity in tree spirits given that all ages & genders of spirit may likely be identical in outward appearance). Daniel clearly strives to lead by example, & to explain with reason and empathy the ways in which creators and publishers can avoid defaulting to easy majority representation in their products.