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.

Monster Crunch! The Breakfast Battle Game is a fast-paced game of luck and strategy, by Big G Creative, where players choose their favorite Monster Cereal character and battle to “eat” the most cereal.

Monster Crunch! is based on the wildly popular Monster Cereal characters from General Mills, including Count Chocula, Boo Berry, Franken Berry, Fruit Brute and Yummy Mummy.

Players race to collect as many Cereal Cards in their Bowls as they can and each monster has special powers that give you a unique advantage and helps you gobble up cereal. Milk Tokens can be used to combine Cereal Cards and take bigger bites. In the end, the monster that munches the most cereal wins the game!

“At Big G Creative, we build games that connect families across generations. We believe Monster Crunch! gives parents a new way to have fun with their kids,” said Rob Stevens, Founder and President of Big G Creative. “The Monster Cereal characters seem to strike a happy chord with everyone.”

Monster Crunch adds a heaping spoonful of nostalgia (for the grown-up generation – like me – who remembers eating these delightful cereals as a child) to a family-friendly, light strategy game that is suitable for a wide variety of ages. The game is aimed at players 9+; it accommodates 2-5 players and has an estimated gameplay of 20 minutes.

Monster Crunch! The Breakfast Battle Game is a Target-exclusive game and will be in Target stores on August 26th, 2018.

This updated version of The Ancient World, features new cover art, updated components new and revised titans and even expanded gameplay.

The following design features take the game to a gorgeous new deluxe level:

  • Numbered, limited-edition boxes
  • “Ryan Laukat’s “signature” printed in metallic ink
  • Larger, double-sided player boards
  • Updated game board, district and empire cards
  • Metal coins!

“In an ancient world forgotten by time, enormous titans terrorize the land. Five tribes have been fleeing from the titans for centuries, but things are about to change. Growing city-states pledge to end the reign of terror, determined to take on the titans and make the world a safer place for all. Each city-state competes to attract the tribes, eager for the strength of the combined peoples, with the hope that the titans can be defeated once and for all.”

The Ancient World mixes card drafting, set collection and worker placement mechanism as players compete to grow the largest and most influential city-states, measured by owned tribe banners. Players take turns sending citizens to take special actions or using military cards to attack titans. Banners are collected via empire cards as well as by defeating titans. Victory points are gained for sets of tribe banners and after six rounds, the player with the most VPs wins.

The Kickstarter campaign runs until September 8th. The game is expected to ship in June 2019. Backers can choose between two pledge levels. If you own the original game, you can make due with just an upgrade pack (and perhaps some sweet metal coins). Players new to the game can go all in for the entire 2nd edition pledge.

The Dice Tower reviewed the original version of The Ancient World and you can see what Sam and Tom said here.

Portal Games has announced that the special convention case – Case 6 – is being printed and released in the form of a deck of cards. The base game of Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game is needed to play the case.

“Case 6 is a great way to familiarize yourself with the rules of the game and fully prepare yourself for the demanding campaign from the box. But it is also a perfect scenario for a one-off game session. It is a bit shorter and simpler than the other missions, thus we also recommend playing it with friends who are not convinced to devote more than 15 hours to the entire campaign.”

Players were previously only able to experience this case as a demo at conventions or if they pre-ordered the game from Portal.

Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game is a challenging, story-driven game for 1-5 players. (Yes it is challenging! I have tried playing through Case 1 solo, twice, without any luck – perhaps I should try Case 6!).

This mini-expansion will be available in October/November from the Portal Online Game Shop.

The Dice Tower has a lot of coverage of Detective: A Modern Crime Boardgame. Check it out here.

“Things are far from good in Farmingdale. Some kind of virus or poison is turning ordinary people into vicious, zombie-like killers. You must lead citizens and emerging heroes to halt the Zeds’ advances by (re)killing them, attempt to coordinate the discovery of a cure, and preserve as much of the area and as many of its inhabitants as possible. There’s no time to lose…. “

Dawn of the Zeds: Third Edition is a cooperative States of Siege™ board game on Kickstarter now. Players take the role of heroes who must defend the town of Farmingdale and its five outlying villages from the invading zombies. The heroes get some much-needed help from the locals (some armed, some even heroic) they are protecting and together you must work together to prevent the Zeds (zombies) from reaching the town center or causing so much chaos in and around Farmingdale that the government abandons you completely.

Originally, this game from Victory Point Games was solitaire only but in this third edition, gameplay focus is just as much on co-op play. Now, 1-5 courageous humans can spend 90-120 minutes kicking some zombie butt and learning to come together as a group to save the awesome small town of Farmingdale.

During the Kickstarter campaign, backers can choose between three pledge levels: One for the expansion pack set, one for only the base game, and finally one with all of the content included. The reprint of Dawn of the Zeds: Third Edition includes all original gameplay stretch goals (except for No Brains Mode, which can be downloaded for free). There are no stretch goals for the expansions.

Three expansions available

In addition to the base game, three expansions are launching, each with unique, fun content that expands the game even further.

The first expansion pack – Stepping Forward – features four new characters (three heroes and one heroic civilian), who are stepping forward, ready to confront the Zeds.

The second expansion pack – New Player Blues – is more of a bummer for the plucky survivors, featuring 13 new Outbreak!, Level Event and Fate cards that expanded the story and increase the danger and excitement. Luckily, a new hero – “Bouncing” Betty Bolivar also arrives in the pack.

The third and final expansion pack – Rumors and Rails – features two new game systems. The first makes the refugees even more helpful with special rumor chits that provide heroes with useful items. The second features two trains, which allow the heroes to move in new ways and act as strategic pieces on the game board.

If you want to see an older Dice Tower review of Dawn of the Zeds (2nd edition), check this out.

Fantasy Flight Games has announced the Super Star Destroyer Expansion Pack for Star Wars: Armada. Boosting the firepower of the Galactic Empire, this new ship measures over 24 inches from tip to tip. (Which really isn’t a miniature, is it?)

This pre-painted Super Star Destroyer is a fully functional warship that you can add to your Imperial fleet. The expansion pack also contains four unique ship sheets, a variety of tokens and twenty-four upgrade cards.

This massive ship marks the introduction of a new class of ships: huge ships. It is so large that it’s supported by one ship token placed on top of two standard large ship bases.

“This new class of ship has powers that reach far beyond mere size. For instance, the Super Star Destroyer features a total of six firing arcs—supplementing the standard front, rear, left, and right firing arcs with brand-new right-auxiliary and left-auxiliary firing arcs. And as you might expect, a huge ship like the Super Star Destroyer increases its attack powers to go with its extra firing arcs. The Super Star Destroyer can make up to three attacks from different firing arcs every round of the game.”

While its sheer size makes it a visually impressive demonstration of the strength of the Dark Side, there is even more menace packed into this expansion. Powerful upgrade cards, including the debut of Emperor Palpatine himself as a commander, will help Imperial players crush the filthy rebel scum in a massive show of unmatchable power.

Star Wars Armada has a Dice Tower Seal of Excellence. Click here to learn more about what the Dice Tower crew thinks about the game.

The Super Star Destroyer Expansion Pack is coming soon to a galaxy near you. Preordering is available and delivery is planned for early 2019.

Based on character-driven fantasy novels and RPGs, Call to Adventure allows 2-4 players to compete to create the hero with the greatest destiny. Starting from humble origins, players use cards to build their characters, cast runes to overcome challenges and generally choose each step down their path of advancement, whether it be towards good or evil. The game plays out in three acts, which together will tell the story of the characters.

The Kickstarter campaign not only offers a pledge for the base game but you can make a higher pledge to include an exciting expansion – set in the world of Patrick Rothfuss’ The Name of the Wind!

“The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man’s Fear are two of the most critically-acclaimed fantasy novels ever written, and we couldn’t be more excited to bring their characters and themes to this expansion. Fans of the books will love this expansion, but anyone can enjoy it. Most of the cards feature Heroic Fantasy themes that can be brought into any fantasy world. Stay tuned to updates for more about this expansion!”

The first expansion, included in the Kickstarter project, as well as others to follow, will add new mechanics to the base game as well as new Challenges and Destinies.

Call to Adventure is created by Chris and Johnny O’Neal, designers of the hit game Boss Monster. You can pledge for it on Kickstarter until August 13, 2018. The project has already met its funding goal and is expected to ship in November 2018.

You can watch a quick rules explanation by the Rules Girl here.

Call to Adventure
Players: 2-4
Recommended ages: 9+
Time to play: 60 minutes

In collaboration with the Critical Role cast, Steamforged Games is creating a range of high-quality PVC miniatures that come pre-assembled and ready to paint right out of the box. These miniatures are perfect for roleplaying and perhaps even as some miniature bling for some of your favorite board games as well.

Critical Role is now in its second campaign, but miniatures from both the first and second campaign are included in this “one-pledge-level-only” Kickstarter campaign.

The first set of miniatures is based on a group of heroes from the first campaign called Vox Machina. This set includes 8 characters – Pike Trickfoot, the Gnome Cleric, Keyleth, the Half-Elf Druid, Percival “Percy” Fredrickstein Von Musel Klossowski de Rolo, the Human Gunslinger, Grog Strongjaw, the Goliath Barbarian, Scanlan Shorthalt the Gnome Bard, Vex’ahlia (and her animal companion, a bear named Trinket), the Half-Elf Ranger and Vax’ildan, the Half-Elf Rogue.

The second set of miniatures, based on a group of heroes from the second campaign called The Mighty Nein, consists of Yasha, the Aasimar Barbarian, Beauregard, the Human Monk, Mollymauk Tealeaf, the Tiefling Blood Hunter, Fjord, the Half-Orc Warlock, Nott the Brave, the Goblin Rogue, Jester, the Tiefling Cleric, and Caleb Widogast, the Human Wizard. Shakäste, a human cleric, has proven himself a trusted ally of the Mighty Nein.

Exclusive characters from both campaigns are also available in the pledge during the Kickstarter campaign. These include Taryon Darrington & Doty 2.0 as well as Pumat Prime & 3 Pumat Sol.

As a board gamer as well as a major fan of Critical Role, I am personally very excited about using these amazing miniatures to bling out some of my board games. Ranger, cleric, barbarian, wizard, whatever you need, these Critical Role miniatures have probably got you covered.

Critical Role is a weekly live-streamed roleplaying game created by veteran voice actor and Dungeon Master, Matthew Mercer. Each week, Matthew leads his friends (also fellow voice actors!) on epic adventures. Critical Role is a show on the Geek & Sundry online network.

Z-MAN Games announces Mesozooic, a real-time card game where you take on the role of a zoo director planning and constructing a dinosaur zoo that will surpass all others. Once built, fill your zoo with dinos and attractions that bring in the crowds.

Mesozooic takes place over three rounds. During each, you first draft the most desirable features into your hand. Choose to customize your zoo however you like. While the highlight of the zoo is, of course, the dinosaurs themselves – you can also add attractions, monorails and topiary to your layout as well.

After drafting, you will race against time, frantically sliding the cards one at a time to match up features and optimize your zoo’s layout. But watch out – things don’t always go as planned. Once you have a working zoo, you also need to keep it running smoothly. Remember, attractions need to be regularly maintained to be scored.

Finally, players will score their zoo layout to see who has created the best family attraction. The zoo with the best layout scores the most points and wins!

Perfect for parties and family game nights, Mesozooic is available for pre-order via Z-MAN Games or your local retailer!

Details
Players: 2-6
Recommended age: 8+
Game time: 20 minutes
Designer: Florian Fay
Contents: 110 Cards, 1 Sand Timer, 1 Scorepad, 1 Rulesheet

After a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2015, Trickerion: Legends of Illusion is back on Kickstarter to raise funding for its first major expansion – Trickerion: Dahlgaard’s Academy. In addition, a Kickstarter-only Collector’s Edition is available.

Trickerion: Legends of Illusion is a thematic, medium-heavy Euro-style game of rival stage illusionists. You play as a Victorian-era magician vying to gain the most fame. To accomplish this, you assign your team of apprentices and specialists to various tasks, using worker placement and simultaneous action selection.

Euro fans have generally had very positive reviews of the base game and anticipation is high for this expansion content.

Restore the academy, become the rector

In the expansion, four new magicians make their appearance, trying to crack the mysteries of Dahlgaard’s Manor. This dilapidated old manor is a key new location in the game and holds powerful secrets. Use your abilities and tenacity to renovate it to its former glory by adding classrooms and practice areas, improving your skills and teaching your students tricks. Perhaps you will find Dahlgaard’s hidden library, learning some well-kept secrets in the process.

As an extra bonus, you have added a new member to your crew – your Protégé – whom you can groom as you like using customizable abilities. Build your Protégé’s skills enough and s/he could become your most valuable crew member.

Blinged-out Collector’s Edition

Publisher Mindclash Games is offering a complete Collector’s Edition of Trickerion, which is only available during this Kickstarter campaign. For those who already own the base game, don’t feel left out! You can pledge for a Collector’s Edition Upgrade Pack.

The Collector’s Edition includes everything we’ve ever released for Trickerion: the base game with a revised rulebook, the Dahlgaard’s Gifts add-on pack, the Dahlgaard’s Academy expansion, two sets of metal coins, and more to come. The Collector’s Edition will come in a large, uniquely numbered box with alternative artwork – it will look amazing on your gaming shelf! The Collector’s Edition will not be available in retail.

Finally, for all of you soloists out there (like me), an out-of-the-box solo mode allows you to compete against Dahlgaard’s heir, a corrupted magician.

 

Interested? Head on over to the Kickstarter page to learn more.

Take a look at what the Dice Tower has to say about Trickerion: Legends of Illusion.

For all you board game collectors out there like me who don’t have time to play the games on your shelves, now you can do the next-best thing – read about them. A gorgeous hardcover book celebrating the 2018 year of board games is now looking for funding on Kickstarter.

An experienced group of gaming journalists has joined forces to create “The Board Game Book” – a 250+ page digest filled with insights and analysis as well as in-depth interviews with some of the most popular board game designers in the business. With dedicated chapters on family games, party games, strategy games, and more, this book is a valuable resource for all gamers, from experienced players to new entrants into the hobby.

The book contains more than 100 critical write-ups of 2018’s best games, supporting the stories with stunning full-color game photography. In addition, the book contains chapters dedicated to RPGs and miniature wargames, written by expert authors.

Rather than mechanical details, we’ll focus on how games feel: the decisions they throw at players, the atmosphere they foster around the table, and how their creators have melded ideas and influences to create compelling gameplay experiences.

A 20-page, work-in-progress draft of the book is available for perusal on the Kickstarter page. The final book will be available in both a digital and hardback version.

About the authors
Owen Duffy – board game journalist for The Guardian, Tabletop Gaming Magazine, Ars Technica, VICE, and IGN.

Matt Thrower – author of the Haynes Tabletop Gaming Manual and a contributor to The Guardian, IGN, PC Gamer, and Shut Up & Sit Down.

Teri Litorco – contributing editor at Geek & Sundry and author of The Civilized Guide To Tabletop Gaming.

Richard Jansen-Parkes – roleplay gaming writer for Tabletop Gaming Magazine and publisher of RPG adventures at Winghorn Press.