Pamela Simms-Borre

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Mild-mannered copywriter by day. Rampaging Gloomhaven resident, dungeon delver, Cthulhu cultist, by night. No really, I'm just a gaming mom. Originally from California, I have lived in Denmark for far too long. Find me on BGG via the username LuluChia.

Steve Jackson Games has announced a second expansion to Munchkin Warhammer 40,000 – Savagery and Sorcery. This 112 card expansion introduces two new antagonists – the Space Wolves and the Thousand Sons.

Space Wolves are elite Imperial soldiers, sworn to follow the ideals of Fenris and their commander, Leman Russ. The Thousand Sons have accepted the gift of sorcery from their evil god, Tzeentch, and are spreading Chaos throughout the galaxy. Although both expansions combine well together, you don’t need the first expansion – Faith and Firepower to enjoy this one.

Munchkin Warhammer 40,000: Savagery and Sorcery is designed by Andrew Hackard and features classic Munchkin art by John Kovalic. It is scheduled for release in Summer 2019.

Great stats but one big drawback characterizes the new Fire Clan while the Light Clan is based on the fortune of prayer. Both new clans are coming soon for Crystal Clans by Plaid Hat Games.

The Fire Clan

Like many fire-based entities, this clan burns bright and fast. Consume, the clan-specific ability of the Fire Clan, requires you to discard the bottom unit from any squad led by a unit that has Consume at the end of your turn. This even includes single unit squads! However, there is no requirement that a unit with Consume leads its squad, so you can avoid this penalty with some clever squad-building.

On the other hand, maybe you should lead with a unit with the Consume ability – they do have some fantastic abilities.

Meldien, one of the heroes of the clan has an ability, Intense Burn, which allows you to instantly destroy the top enemy unit (unless it has more than 8 defence) when you move into its zone.

The common unit, Ashen Assasins, is quick, and reasonably priced for their stats. They have the Ashes to Ashes ability, which allows them to lead a squad that has +3 attack for each hero unit in your discard pile.

Searing Guards don’t have Consume and don’t add much to a fighting force on their own, but their ability essentially makes their numbers infinite. Searing Guards can help you secure empty crystal zones and setup a score. These guards are also instrumental to the Searing Songstresses, who gain strength for each Searing Guards unit on the battlefield.

The Light Clan

Do you feel lucky? Who cares! If you play the Light Clan you don’t need to rely on luck you can use the power of Prayer.

You can remove a Prayer unit in your hand from the game to gain 1 initiative or to search your draw pile for a card of your choice and put it in your hand. Your prayer is answered, but there are two big drawbacks. First, you just dumped a card from your hand, so you will need to replenish sooner rather than later. Second, you’ve reduced the size of your deck, which could cause a reshuffle (and your opponent gaining a free crystal) to occur much more frequently.

Servants of the Light aren’t great fighters but they do have Prayer. Their Enter the Light ability allows you to get some use out of them first, since whenever they are destroyed you may elect to place them back on top of your draw pile. This allows you to save their Prayer for when you really need it. They also work well with the Priestesses of the Light’s Beyond ability, which allows you to reveal up to 3 units from the top of your deck and grants an extra attack. If you stack your deck just right, the Priestesses can deal a whopping 12 attack!

Shimmerstone Clerics can use their Barrier to protect the rest of their squad from receiving damage, often giving you a second chance at destroying an enemy squad. Radiant Paladins have Revive, which allows you to return a common unit from your discard pile to your draw pile every time the Radiant Paladins are activated.

You can pre-order the Fire Clan and the Light Clan now.

Learn more about Crystal Clans by watching some Dice Tower coverage.

Fantasy Flight Games has announced two new expansions to enhance your Star Wars™: Legion army – the Rebel Specialists Personnel Expansion and the Imperial Specialists Personnel Expansion.

Both expansions give you an alternative to the more well-known heroes, like Leia Organa and Darth Vader. Non-unique Rebel and Imperial officers, not as widely celebrated as other commanders, contribute to the cause nonetheless, making your armies more flexible with their ability to be deployed in two different ways.

These minis can be added to a specific unit as its leader, inspiring the troops in that unit to new heights. Alternatively, they can take on a larger role, becoming a cheap substitute for your other commanders. In this case, they can benefit your entire army by filling the role of commander, spotting targets for your other units or helping them take cover.

Each of the expansions contains everything needed to incorporate these specialists into your Star Wars: Legion units.

“Four finely sculpted specialist miniatures, including an officer, a comms specialist, a medical droid, and an astromech droid stand ready to support your units, while three new command cards give you the chance to further hone your battle plan and plot your strategies. Finally, an array of upgrade cards let you further customize your units, turning them into crack teams of soldiers.”

The Rebel Specialists Personnel Expansion and the Imperial Specialists Personnel Expansion are being released in the first quarter of 2019. Both can be pre-ordered now.

Watch some Dice Tower coverage of Star Wars: Legion.

Catan GmbH is debuting a new CATAN release at Essen, which will not only add new game elements to Klaus Teuber’s award-winning fan favorite but will donate all proceeds from the scenario to the Global Crop Diversity Trust (Crop Trust). CATAN – Crop Trust is a collaboration between Crop Trust and Catan GmbH, introducing a new semi-cooperative way to play the classic game as well as teaching players about one of the greatest challenges facing the planet today.

Players’ must balance their individual need to harvest crops against their collective goal to store and preserve seeds in the Seed Vault. Players who harvest too much endanger the seed diversity, and in doing so, threaten the land with mass extinctions and a collapse of the food supply.

“As a part of our mission to support the conservation of natural resources, Catan GmbH will donate all proceeds from the scenario to the Crop Trust. Catan Studio, the publisher for the English-speaking market, will also donate a portion of their revenue per printed copy and will offer support to organizations who want to use the scenario for educational or charitable causes.”

CATAN – Crop Trust contains educational information in addition to the board game. A specially-produced almanac which explains the history of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, Frequently Asked Questions, and examples of the importance of crop conservation are also included.

There are 100+ videos that pertain to CATAN on The Dice Tower so check some of them out.
CATAN – Crop Trust will debut at the Essen Game Fair and will be available in stores and online on November 8, 2018.

Z-Man Games has announced The Great City of Rome, designed by Matthew Dunstan and Brett J. Gilbert. The game is for 2-4 players, ages 10+ where players compete to design and build the greatest city in the world.

The game requires players to make meticulous plans, dedicate their workers and gather sturdy materials. First, travel to the Emperor’s court to gain blueprints and materials and use emissaries to earn the Emperor’s favor. However, use the emissaries wisely. The more time spent sweet-talking the Emperor, the less time there is to gather resources and materials

During each round, players reveal a set of building cards, each with their own attributes, as well as flip one of the six unique action strips. Using their emissaries, players claim spaces on the action strip, carefully choosing the placement to earn the right to claim the best building cards or maximize the number of actions they can take. After the emissaries have been placed, players draft building cards, resolve actions and construct buildings in order from closest to farthest from the golden Emperor pawn.

Now that you have your blueprints, workers and materials, it’s time to build the city! City planning requires the careful arrangement of housing, utilities and amenities to make the city’s residents happy.

After drafting a building card, you can place the building into your play area, creating a maximum of a 4×4 grid of buildings. Carefully arrange your residential areas with nearby public buildings and add in aqueducts and temples to make a civilized, balanced city and score the most points to win.

Game contents: 86 Cards, 39 Coins, 33 Influence Tokens, 18 Point Tokens, 6 Brick Tokens, 6 Action Strips, 8 Wooden Pawns, 1 Scoring Pad, 1 Rulebook, 1 Summary Sheet

You can pre-order your copy of The Great City of Rome today. It will be released in early 2019.

Belfort was originally published in 2011 and has been out of print for a long time. Tasty Minstrel Games (TMG) is bringing it back in a new updated format with brand new content and extra table appeal. In addition, Belfort: The Expansion Expansion, which is also out of print, is also being reprinted as part of the new Kickstarter campaign.

Belfort is a worker placement/area control game in which 2-5 players collect resources and use them to create buildings and maintain control over city districts. Elves, Dwarves and Gnomes must work together and in conjunction with the town guilds to build the small village of Belfort into a bustling city!

For those of you who already own everything Belfort there is to own, a NEW Expansion! – Belfort: The New Expansion – with never before seen content is in development. This new expansion will be completely compatible with any edition of Belfort that was previously published.

Jay Cormier and Sen-Foo Lim, the designing duo known as the Bamboozle Brothers, are back again to create this new expansion content. In addition, the original artist, Josh Cappel, is working on the art for the expansion as well as revisiting the original Belfort art.

“We are working hard to make sure this edition will be truly something special and will be a welcome addition to the collections of those who have played the game before and those who are brand new to the experience.”

The new expansion needs a name

TMG has not put an official name on the new expansion yet and they are looking for help from backers. On the Kickstarter campaign page, you can take a look at the rules and offer up what you think would be the perfect name for the Belfort expansion. Once the campaign ends, TMG will make a final decision on the name.

The Belfort 10th Anniversary Edition campaign doesn’t have any Stretch Goals. TMG has chosen to pre-load it with component upgrades including metal coins and painted wood.

The Kickstarter campaign is fully funded and runs until October 20th. Several pledge levels are available for those new to the Belfort world who want to go all in as well as those who only want to upgrade their components or get the expansion.

Watch some Dice Tower Coverage of Belfort as well as Belfort: The Expansion Expansion.

War for Indagar, by Happy Gorilla Game Studio, is a lightweight, fast, 4X strategy board game set in the fantasy world of Indagar. The game, currently on Kickstarter, includes four distinct factions, 12 detailed, 32 mm scale miniatures and everything else needed for 2-4 players ages 10+, along with an engaging AI. Players need to manage resources and heroes and use special abilities to exploit a randomly generated board and find a path to victory.

The game board is randomly generated, consisting of tiles placed in a specific layout depending on the number of players. This gives the game a great level of replayability.

Players select powerful heroes to represent their faction armies, choose unique strategies to tailor their gameplay, and use spells and abilities to gain control over the battlefield, make their way to the center of the land and — ultimately — control the Spirit Well.

Gameplay starts with the heroes. Each player activates one hero then turn passes to the bad guys. Monsters, which are driven by scripts, activate between each player’s turn. Once all heroes have been activated the game turn ends. During a turn, players can move to explore, build outposts, use resources to power up and fight enemy heroes or monster.

“Script driven monsters do mean things like burning outposts, attacking heroes and some even blow up the world.”

Players earn Primacy Points by killing commanders, collecting spirits, building outposts, leveling up heroes and activating strategies. The first player to 10 Primacy Points or the player with the most Primacy Points earned in 10 turns wins.

The game has funded and Happy Gorilla Games is currently working on translating the game to various languages as well as making solo rules. The Kickstarter campaign runs until October 22 and is currently moving towards a range of exciting stretch goals (including monster minis).

Soon you can take your Viceroy to the next level with the Viceroy: Times of Darkness expansion, which contains three modular game modes. In addition to the expansion content, the box contains revised law cards for the base game and new game modes for one and two players.

The game modes

In the Aristocrats module, you can gain new aristocratic characters that give no rewards on the first level but have additional special bonuses. These 12 Character Cards are shuffled into the deck and there are four new Laws that are designed to work well with them.

The Invasion module contains Enemy cards, Battle cards for each player and thematic laws. The Enemy cards stack together, forming four lines of costs and rewards, and they attack players’ domains on the 3rd, 7th and 11th turns. To defeat these invading enemies, players must pay gems and the more gems you pay, the bigger reward you receive. The new Law cards interact with Enemy cards and Battle cards. If a player doesn’t repel the invasion, they get a penalty card. This module contains 22 monster cards (of three tiers), three law cards and four combat cards.

The Underworld module lets players build their pyramid DOWNWARDS. Outlaw cards form a separate deck and on their turn, a player may draw an Outlaw card instead of gaining two gems. These cards are played in Phase 2 and should be placed under the first row of the pyramid. The cost for playing the Outlaw card is Judgement tokens, which contain different penalties such as negative VPs, negative modifiers or obligations to discard specific tokens. The unique rewards include relocating a Character card in the pyramid, gaining diamonds (wild gems) or dealing with Judgement tokens. This module contains 24 criminal cards, three law cards, 32 judgement tokens and 15 bribe tokens.

Revised solo and 2-player rules

In the 2-player variant, two new multicolor auction cards from the expansion are used in place of usual four auction cards. Multicolor auction cards can be placed with any side up but all four colors must be present. During setup and after each auction, only two character cards are revealed instead of four. During the auction, players choose between two auction cards.

When bidding, a player may select any of two colors featured on the chosen auction card. If both players have chosen the same card (even if their gemstones are of different colors), they have to return the gemstones to the reserve without gaining cards or agree upon who gets which card (if there are two cards next to the chosen auction card).

Solo uses the same setup as 2-player. There is no need for virtual opponents, just discard the corresponding gemstones and gain the chosen cards. At the end of the game, gain three power points for each sword token and two power points for each shield token. These bonus points are in addition to the usual points gained at the end of the game.

This US, EU, Australia and Canada-friendly Kickstarter campaign, runs until October 15th. Various pledge levels are available, some including the original base game. The campaign is already funded and games are expected to ship in June 2019.

Watch some Dice Tower coverage of Viceroy.

Z-man Games has announced a light, quick family game. In Party Bugs, players will attempt to control a wild cockroach disco party. Keep your party under control by shooing the big pests to your opponents’ side of the dance floor and keeping the smaller bugs close by.

Each round, players will take turns playing a card face down in front of them. Then, the cards are flipped and new bugs join the dance floor. The player with the lowest-value card will take a bug already dancing around the disco ball. Once everyone has taken a card and no more bugs are on the dance floor, the new bugs can show off their moves. Players have thirteen rounds to try and push the biggest, most annoying bugs over to their neighbors while taking the smaller, less disruptive bugs for themselves.

“Going to a costume dance party, of course, requires a costume! Costume stores for cockroaches have limited options and these party bugs grabbed the thirteen most popular for the party. Showing up to a party in the same costume is frowned upon though. If a cockroach shows up with the same costume as another, both bugs will leave the party and go home in embarrassment.”

Party Bugs is a 15-minute party game for 2-6 players ages 8+. Z-Man Games is taking pre-orders for this zany incect-palooza now. The game will be released in late 2018.

Brains! is a card game for 2-5 zombies, suitable for players 8+. Brains! is a fast-playing card game, in which players race to be the first to reach 21 points or more.

The rules are straightforward and easy to learn. Each turn you can either play a card, draw two cards, or bury the top card of the deck. Cards can be played as a treasure or as an action, while all buried cards move to the top of your graveyard. Cards in your graveyard can have ongoing effects, or trigger special abilities when they enter.

Two expansions are also available during the Kickstarter campaign. The Burial expansion offers 14 new cards, allowing you to protect your graveyard treasures, draw four cards and even draw cards from your opponents’ graveyards.

The Treasure Hunter expansion is an add-on set containing three unique expansions that work with any game in the Treasure Hunters series. They can be played individually or all at once, whether you’re playing Brains! by itself or combining it with the other games in the series.

Brains! is the third game in the Treasure Hunters series; a set of games that can all stand alone, or be shuffled together. The two previous games – Scuttle! and Ninjitsu! were both successfully funded via Kickstarter!

Quite a few pledge options are available, some offering previous Jellybean Games titles as well. All pledge levels include a special promo card – Captain Bluebeard – who allows you to swap your hand with your graveyard. 

Brains! is designed by Peter C. Hayward (Dracula’s Feast and The Lady and the Tiger), with art by Kelly Jo (Hidden Panda). A free print-and-play version of the game is available at jellybean.games

The Brains! Kickstarter campaign runs until October 18.