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.

Restoration Games has announced they are releasing Conspiracy: The Solomon Gambit at Origins Game Fair on June 12, 2019. This modernized version of the original Conspiracy features a robust rules update by the Restoration design crew and stunning new art from the award-winning Matt Griffin.

The original Conspiracy, from 1973, was designed by Dr. Eric Solomon. It featured a unique mechanic:  Players move secret agents around the board, trying to bring the mysterious briefcase to their HQ and win the game. However, the trick is that the agents don’t belong to any of the players. Instead, players secretly pay the agents. Other players can challenge a move by revealing how much they had paid off, to decide the outcome. This mingles blind bidding with shared piece control – an intriguing combo.

The Restoration Games design team, consisting of Rob Daviau, J.R. Honeycutt and Justin D. Jacobson, kept the core concept from the original intact but made changes to accommodate the tastes of the modern gamer. Some changes include:

  • The number of agents has been decreased from 8 to 6 to increase player interaction
  • Train stations were added for easier movement
  • Each agent has a special power that activates when they are moved
  • A significant endgame change

The subtitle of the game signals the appearance of Dr. Solomon in honor of the game’s original designer who appears if no one has won after a certain number of rounds. Dr. Solomon enters the scene and at the end of each subsequent round, a die is rolled, which could immediately trigger the end of the game. If this happens, the player who has paid off the most to Dr. Solomon wins. This creates an interesting choice for players: Do I pay off the agents that can help get the briefcase to my HQ or do I pay off Dr. Solomon and play a defensive strategy?

Rob Daviau, Chief Restoration Officer for Restoration Games says: “It’s thinkier than most of our other games. You are playing cat-and-mouse the whole time. The core conceit – you aren’t sure who you are in control of – is magical.”

The announcement from Restoration Games was made in front of a packed audience at the Dice Tower Live Show on the Dice Tower Cruise somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.

Eagle-Gryphon Games has launched a new Railways of the World (ROTW) expansion – Railways of Portugal – on Kickstarter. Designed by Vital Lacerda, with cover art by Ian O’Toole, this expansion is for 2-4 players and uses the same rules as other games in the ROTW series with a few important exceptions.

What’s new and different?

Although the base rules and mechanics are the same as previous ROTW titles, a few distinct changes have been made:

• Access productive islands via Maritime Connections
• Black cities can only be added at the start of the Industrial Age and via Urbanization
• Close cities on a tight map that demands careful and tough decisions, leading to significant player interaction
• Major Lines that require intermediate connections
• New Operations cards and concepts are included
• Goal Cards replace Baron Cards

What’s in the box?

• A 375 x 617mm game board
• Goal Cards (10)
• Operations Cards (34)
• Player-aid Sheets (4)
• Rulesheet

Kickstarter backers will receive a free 3-card promo pack.

Note: The Railways of the World base game or Railways of Nippon standalone base game are required to play the Railways of Portugal expansion.

The Kickstarter campaign has already reached its funding goal and will be running until January 21, 2019, 4:00 AM CET.

Watch some Dice Tower coverage of the Railways of the World series.

Greenbrier Games is releasing a new 4X-style game, Helios Expanse, that plays in under 60 minutes. The play experience was crafted to be as satisfying for the traditional 4X gamer as it is for the casual gamer. During gameplay, players program their card actions in advance then play them out each round. In addition, the game was created with the goal of being teachable in less than five minutes.

Helios Expanse puts players in control of an interstellar civilization where they must compete for galactic supremacy. Explore the board using movement, expand empires by colonizing planets, exploit advantages by moving up the technology track and exterminate competitors by moving up the military track. The first player to colonize the most planets is the supreme ruler of the universe!

Features

• 60 min / 3-5 Players / 14+ years
• 4X gameplay experience in less than 60 minutes
• Easy to teach
• Action / Movement Programming
• Area Control / Area Influence
• Hand Management
• Variable Powers
• Scaleable Game Board

Earlier in 2018 Greenbrier Games ran a Kickstarter campaign for Helios Expanse so more information about the game is available there. The game is planned for retail release in March 2019.

Two expansions for Mike Elliott’s Thunderstone Quest are expected in spring 2019. Quest Expansion #4: At the Foundations of the World and Quest Expansion #5: Ripples in Time and Quest Expansion will bring tons more content to an already packed game.

Each new Quest Expansion consists of a selection of dungeon tiles and monster cards that create an engaging storyline. Each one also includes rules for selecting Village and Dungeon cards to create a variety of Adventures. After players have mastered each Quest they can use random setups of Quest cards to create new Dungeons and Villages.

Each box contains dungeon tiles, dividers, randomizers and 243 cards. Cards include six heroes, six monsters, 12 support items, treasures and three versions of the Guardian, each of slightly different difficulty. Each of the different Adventures within the Quest Expansions has a scaling challenge.

Thunderstone Quest was designed by Mike Elliott and published by Alderac Entertainment Group. Watch some Dice Tower coverage here.

 

Venturing out into the wilds is a dangerous mission. With the new Wildlands: The Adventuring Party, announced by Osprey Games, you can bring four classic fantasy archetypes into the Wildlands. Play as a thief, wizard, cleric and barbarian, asserting your dominance over your opponents and immortalizing your status in the realm.

A word of warning – these characters will invade your game whether someone is playing them or not, stealing your crystal shards and (throat) punching anyone in their way.

When using the adventuring party as a faction, the player controlling them does not assign map cards to their individual characters. Instead, they choose five cards to pass to the player on their right and keep the other five face down. When revealing a character, the player can choose any location they have a map card for, discarding that card. This faction also brings the heal action into the game. Thom the Cleric uses this action to remove one damage token from a character in the same or an adjacent space.

When using the adventuring party as an encounter, the party is set up on the board at the start of the game. From then on, at the end of each player’s turn, the top card of the adventuring party deck is revealed, and an action is taken by the character displayed on the card. Which action is taken depends on the character and the relative board state. As the game progresses, the troublesome band makes their way around the board, attacking characters, stealing loot and generally causing chaos.

Wildlands: The Adventuring Party includes four unique miniatures and their activation deck, along with encounter rules for using this faction as non-player characters. It is expected in March 2019.

Last weekend, during PAX Unplugged, Skybound Entertainment demoed two new titles from its Skybound Games line. The Walking Dead: Something to Fear is a new competitive card game for 2-5 players where players must form uneasy alliances and work together to survive while at the same time, competing to secure their own position in the group. The game is designed by Derek and Lizzy Funkhouser with art by Justin Chan. The Walking Dead: Something to Fear is set for a retail release in Q1 of 2019.

The other game, Valor & Villainy: Minions of Mordak is a roleplaying board game for 2-6 players. One player plays as the evil wizard Mordak, while the rest form an alliance of heroes who must stop the scheming wizard from completing his dastardly deeds. Each game of Valor & Villainy is different due to a random board, minions, and spells. James Van Niekerk is the designer and illustrator of the game, which will be heading to Kickstarter in Q1 of 2019.

WizKids is releasing Smash City, an action-packed game of Kaiju combat!

“Toss your giant monster dice at your foes to perform devastating attacks! Crush cities and spread fire, electricity, poisonous gas and radiation! Throw cars and destroy tanks! Inflict maximum carnage like a true Kaiju!”

Aim well and roll your monster dice into the city to knock down buildings and attack anything and everything in your reach. Each Kaiju has special powers and each favors a particular energy type. Use your strengths effectively to crush your foes and smash the city to pieces!

As your Kaiju destroys the city, you gain SMASH! Cards. Use these cards together with your special powers to beat your foes and win the game!

In the box:

• 4 x Large Foam Monster Dice
• 1 x City Map
• 3D buildings
• Army Tiles
• Car Tiles
• Player Boards
• Smash! Cards

Smash City is planned for release in March, 2019

Gen7: A Crossroads Game, coming soon to a store near you, is a grand narrative game with a massive branching path, where the choices players make will alter the direction of the story. Gen7 uses the Crossroads mechanic, previously seen in the Dead of Winter games, which constantly challenge players with a variety of unique situations that will force them to make difficult moral decisions.

Now Plaid Hat Games has announced an expansion to the base game – Gen7: The Breaking Point. This expansion adds components for 5-6 players as well as a new scenario.

The base game of Gen7 is available for preorder and should be arriving at retailers soon. Gen7: Breaking Point is also available for preorder and will be available early next year.

In South Florida on January 5, 2019 and have some time on your hands? Drop by Flamingocon 13, a single-day, mini-con where you can gather together with 250+ other board game aficionados to try, learn and play new or beloved games.

Attendees are welcome to bring their own but they can also borrow games to play. The game library will contain 150+ titles. A. During the con, it will also be possible to try out new or not-yet-published games from Ocean Family Games, Wendigo Publishing and others. There will be a separate room devoted to D&D/ Pathfinder/RPGs with game masters prepared to take attendees on a wild adventure. In addition, there will be vendors present and a flea market of gently used games to stock up your collection.

A “Play to Win” initiative allows attendees to play certain games during the con and enter for the chance to take home the game. This year, these games include Euphoria, Between Two Castles and My Little Scythe from Stonemaier Games.

Flamingocon 13 is happening at the South County Civic Center, located at 16700 Jog Rd, just south of Linton Blvd. in Delray Beach. Opening hours are 9 am to 10 pm, with game library checkout ending at 8 pm.

Flamingocon 13 is a fundraising event for Flamingocon, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that donates board games and time teaching them to students, library patrons, patients and others in need of fun, positive social interaction.

For more information, email flamingogamescon@gmail.com
For tickets, table reservations, t-shirt store and information go to www.flamingocon.org.

Renegade Games is releasing a historical, two-player Stefan Feld game – Revolution of 1828.

The year is 1828. It’s time for elections and you want to become the 7th President of the United States. Players take on the roles of John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson, the two candidates for the top post.

“For the first time in history, this grand campaign is also fought on the pages of newspapers and the eager public audience. This was an election that found its way into history books with its yet unseen ruthlessness and malevolence. This was America’s first smear campaign.”

It’s not easy to become the next President of the United States. To reach this lofty goal, you need to take Election tiles that suit you best and hinder your opponent’s campaign. Election tiles allow you to garner the allegiance of Electors and use the power of Smear Campaigns to skew the populace in your favor. You can also use some powerful Campaign Actions to get the press to look away from your dastardly actions. If you plan your campaign right, nothing will stand in your way to becoming President!

Box contents

• 78 Election tiles
• 6 Figures
• 49 Vote tokens
• 1 Game board
• 1 Linen Bag
• 1 Rulebook (including historical background)

Revolution of 1828 is a two-player game for wannabe presidents ages 12+. It plays in 30-60 minutes. The game is available for preorder now and should be in stores in April 2019.