Corey Thompson

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A retired veterinarian and ex-cell biologist, Corey spends his time with board games, computer history, banjo music and general useless frivolity. Corey can be found as doccabet on BGG.

Moa, a successful Kickstarter Project from APE Games and Martin Wallace (A Study In Emerald, Steam, Brass), is a territory control card game in which players control tribes of New Zealand birds. Each player holds a hand of 9 cards dictating their actions, and players can play as many cards on their turn as they like, but these 9 cards must last for 7 rounds. Additionally, each round only two territories on the board can be manipulated. Players score points for area control, but can also sell their territories to the invading mammals when they lose control. Each tribe of birds has unique abilities; The Eagles are fearsome warriors, the Kiwis respected and honored by their tribe, the Moreporks are mysterious mystics, and the Pukeko can spread far and wide. The Moa, as the leader, has all these abilities and tries to hold the tribes together. Moa features gorgeous art from Vincent Joubert (Via Nebula), and plays 3-5 players at 20 minutes per player.

 

UltraPro Entertainment has three new games due for release this January.

Fightin’ Words from designer Mike Elliot (Dice Masters, Thunderstone) is a variant of Texas Hold ‘Em Poker, in which 2-6 players bet on who can make the largest word. Five face up cards are common to all players, with a secret two card hand held in reserve. Cards also have western themed “suits” which can be collected for tokens and bonus points. The first player with seven or more of one token type triggers the end of the game, and the most coins wins the game. Humorous “Wanted Posters” dictate special scoring for each round.

Shadow Blocks has players putting together three dimensional tetris like pieces, trying to create an object which matches the printed shadows as seen from two angles. Challenge cards with shadows come in three different difficulties, and the game contains enough blocks for 4 players.  Shadow Blocks comes with 20 blocks, 72 challenge cards and 4 player boards.

Zircles is an abstract game in which players put magnetic triangular pieces onto a board, trying to complete circles of their color. Complete you own circles or sabotage an opponent; the most points from completing circles wins the game. Zircles comes with both solo and two player rules.

Check out more details about these games on the UltraPro Website here.

Battle of Golems is a new crowd funded programming game recently started on Indiegogo. Aiming for a younger audience of 8+, Battle of Golems uses programming and robotics concepts to direct Golems in battle on a grid board. Cards dictate concepts such as loops, subroutines, and conditionals, while representing them in traditional flowchart form. 2-4 players do battle in 10 rounds, while adhering to the structure and unique obstacles of a chosen level from the scenario book. Battle of Golems takes concepts from popular programming games, such as Robo Rally and Robot Turtles, while making them both more accessible to children, and more applicable to the world of robotics programming.

Battle of Golems is expected to deliver in March 2018. See all the details, read the rules, and check out the Print and Play on the Indiegogo page here.

Rather Dashing Games has announced Wakening Lair, a fast, cooperative, dungeon delving card game coming in 2018 from the team of Mike Richie and Grant Wilson (Element, Hafid’s Grand Bazaar). 2-6 players will have 9 character classes to choose from, which they will take into the deeps, exploring rooms, disarming traps, fighting monsters, and of course gathering loot. Weapons have character preferences, so maximizing the best loot for your character’s abilities is paramount. One of 6 Monstrous Terrors lies at the end of the dungeon, which awakens at a randomized moment, making each game unique. Wakening Lair promises an RPG feel in an easy to play, fast card game.

Read the official press release and rules on Rather Dashing’s website here. Wakening Lair is expected on shelves in March 2018.

Nomad Games and Asmodee Digital have signed an agreement to continue development of Talisman: Digital Edition. Talisman (1983) is a popular dungeon crawl board game, unfortunately now out of print following the separation of Asmodee / Fantasy Flight from Games Workshop last year.  The digital edition of Talisman has been available since 2013, has over 10 expansions, and enjoys a dedicated following on iOS, Android, consoles and Steam. Nomad also announced a new expansion in development, the Harbinger, based on the Harbinger expansion for the board game. You can read the full press release on Nomad Games’ website here.

Grey Fox Games has announced SUPERHOT Card Game, based on the popular FPS video game SUPERHOT. SUPERHOT Card Game is a deck building game based on Agent Decker (2015), which can be played solo, cooperatively with 2, competitively 1 on 1, or 2 vs 1. As in the videogame, time moves forward when you take actions, meaning the more cards you play, the faster a line of obstacles moves towards you. Look for SUPERHOT Card Game in December 2017. You can read more about SUPERHOT Card Game on Grey Fox’s website here.

Grand Gamers Guild is bringing Pocket Ops, a 2 player competitive deduction/abstract game, to stores in December. Based on the Tic-Tac-Toe framework, players anticipate each others’ moves and stay one step ahead. Victory can be snatched or thwarted by clever use of elite agents – the sniper, assassin, pusher, grappler, or hacker. First to capture both parts of the doomsday device wins Pocket Ops. For more information and pictures of the excellent components, visit the Grand Gamers Guild website here.

Kung Fu Zoo is a new dice flicking dexterity game coming soon from Wizkids and designer Charlie Price. In Kung Fu Zoo, after all the employees have gone home, the animals escape and engage in martial arena combat! 2-4 players take turns flicking their selected animals’ dice, attempting to knock their opponents out of the arena, and back into their cages. Players choose between gorilla, elephant, zebra and cheetah dice, each with its own abilities and powers. Kung Fu Zoo comes with 16 dice, 4 animal sheets, an arena board, and a vacuum formed arena for battle. You can read more about Kung Fu Zoo on Wizkid’s website here, and expect the game on selves this February.

Masters of Disguise, the first expansion for Age of Thieves (2016) ,is coming soon from Galakta Games. Age of Thieves is a simultaneous action selection game where 2-4 players control one of the master thieves in a clockpunk universe, each with unique powers, trying to break into the emperor’s palace, steal the prized jewel, and escape without alerting the guards. Masters of Disguise adds 2 new characters and new rules and mechanisms. Players can travel through the sewers to the Undercity, and use Burglary cards to further plan their turn. There are even new scenarios included to play through with your thieves.

Wanted: Rich or Dead, also from Galakta Games, pits 3-5 players as famous cowboys in the old west. Players secretly select where on the map they want to travel, in order to steal supplies, gamble or gain abilities. However, if 2 or more cowboys end up at the same location, a shootout occurs, and players then need to pick cards specific to their characters, in order to survive the fight. The last cowboy standing with the most cash wins the game.

Both Age of Thieves: Masters of Disguise and Wanted: Rich or Dead are coming to stores in December 2017. Read more about these games on Galakta Games’ website here.

Muquo Games has started a Kickstarter campaign for Adrana Project, a social deduction game heavily dependant on smartphones, social media and the internet. Players represent agents of either the World Federation, looking to maintain order out of the chaos, or the Neoluddites, who believe technology has gone too far in taking away the world’s humanity. 4-12 players are trying to deduce who is on each team and to fulfill their agenda towards domination, all in real time with no turns and no moderator. Adrana Project comes with the Adrana Core, a small physical piece, which uses beacon technology, detecting phones which move close to the Core. Players can use this technology to steal virtual cards, which give clues or actions, or the Neoluddites can use the Core to install viruses in the Adrana Server during their mission.

Adrana Project, the new “phygital” social deduction game will continue its campaign through December 5, and the game should be available June 2018. Additionally, here are pledge options allowing immediate beta tester access.

Z-Man Games has announced an expansion to their 2015 award-winning dice placement game The Voyages of Marco Polo. Agents of Venice adds two different modules to the game, as well as the ability to insert a 5th player, more contracts, city cards, goals and 5 new characters.

The City of Venice Module adds a board representing Venice in the 13th  century. Players can build trading houses in Venice, earning benefits similar to those in the rest of the world, but must work their way up, earning one palazzo at a time. The Companions Module adds friends you meet on the road. These companions give special abilities and benefits to the player, but companions have their own agendas, and their bonuses only last for a single turn. Players will need to pick and choose the friends which give them the best ability for use at that single moment in the game.

The City of Venice Expansion should be available in early 2018. You can read more about the expansion on Z-Man’s website here.