matthew-boyle

About Matthew Boyle


As a child, I was always surrounded by card games. My first memories of playing them would be with my mother and father. They taught me games like Go Fish, Solitaire, Crazy Eights, Concentration, and King’s Corner. My sister taught me War. My cousin taught me Rummy. As I grew older, playing poker and TCGs with family and friends was one of my favorite hobbies. While playing all these games, I was inspired by the strategy of the competing players, but also their camaraderie. When Pokemon became popular, I was around 12 years old, and that was probably the catalyst for the creation of my first game.

Seeing other people enjoy playing my homemade games was so rewarding to me. Maybe because I was involved in the process at every step? Designing, making, selling, and playing. I loved deciding how the game would work, what kind of information would be on the cards, and illustrating strange creatures. I set up a table to sell my cards to friends after school. And, in those days, I had to make every single card by hand, so it took a long time. In this period of my life, I probably manufactured dozens of games, (some of which I’ve saved until now!). In those early days, however, even I didn’t realize how badly infected I was, as the card-making bug went dormant in me for more than a decade.

By the time I finished high school, I had pretty much stopped making my own card games. Reason being, I got busy with college life, deciding a career path, becoming a teacher, and moving to China. I still played card games, though, and I always kept some cards nearby. I never knew when I might be able to play a quick game with someone, but I was prepared.

Many years later, as fate would have it, I was surfing the internet and stumbled into the zone of print-on-demand industries. At that moment, I realized, not only could you professionally produce 1 or 10,000+ of your own book, or your own hat, or your own T-shirt, or your own mug… you could produce 1 or 10,000+ of your own cards! And when that realization struck me, my old passion for card making came back with a vengeance, unleashed from some primordial part of my childhood soul. I knew I had to get back into it. The possibility of having my own card designs printed professionally for a reasonable price was too much to resist.

At about the same time, I was also teaching business english classes to Chinese students, despite the fact that my knowledge of business was extremely limited. I decided to do the best I could given the circumstances by planning and implementing my own small business idea alongside of my students, which was -you guessed it!- a card shop. My students and I wrote business plans, shared them in groups, and later, I interviewed them one-on-one about their ideas.

And so, at the age of 27, still living in China, those factors (and a few others) propelled me to create my first card game in a long, long while. It would be called Chinese Champions. It would help people to remember more interesting Chinese vocabulary than is usually found in textbooks or classes. And, it would eventually lead me to create this site, where I plan to bring the most fantastic language card games possible to life for you!

But why should you even consider using card games to help you learn a language? For that, I recommend you take a look at my article on the advantages of language card games. Or, head directly to my shop to learn more about the actual games I have to offer!