of the North not only made resources store between rounds, but added some
very clever worker placement and action selection mechanisms to the glorious
foundation built by Imperial Settlers. The game comes with 6 very different
factions/tribes which all play in clever ways. Some tribes are best at sailing
the seas, pillaging and conquering the islands. Some are best as homebodies,
collecting resources and living off of the interest. Others just beg to work
with the other players, living off of trade.
No sooner had this gem of a game been released, than Portal announced the first expansion,
Japanese Islands, of which Ignacy himself claims “The Japanese faction connects
the world of Empires of the North and the base Imperial Settlers.” Portal
promises two new tribes for the base game, along with new islands to explore. Imperial
Settlers: Empires of the North is in limited pre-release now, with copies on
sale at GenCon, and full release is dated
for August 22. The new Japanese Islands expansion is due to be revealed at Essen Spiel 2019 this October.
Limited to only 500 copies, Portal Games has launched their very own Loot Box, now up on their website for pre-order.
The Loot Box includes promos, mini-expansions, and gadgets for the following titles: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island, Alien Artifacts, Imperial Settlers, 51st State, Neuroshima HEX! 3.0 and Cry Havoc.
51st State: Allies is the second expansion for the popular Imperial Settlers variant game 51st State (2010). In Allies, new mechanisms are introduced to ally the factions together, gaining unique bonuses and features. Additionally, this expansion adds 3 new factions to the game – The Steel Police, Uranopolis, and Sharrash! Play to unite the varied factions in the Wasteland, or take control as a lone wolf, the choice is yours.
Breakthrough is the second expansion for Alien Artifacts, the 4x card game released last year. Breakthrough includes “new threats uncovered in the famous Discovery, and new challenges for the space faring factions”. This expansion includes 20 new technology cards, 10 new ship cards, and 10 new planet cards, from the expand category. “Humanity solved the mystery behind the alien technology, and is ready to seize its powers!”
Fans of the award winning 2012 game Robinson Crusoe (#40 on BGG) may need to sit and take a deep breath. Mystery Tales, the second expansion for this thematic cooperative survival game, is coming in 2019. Mystery Tales includes a campaign game, The Lost City of Z, as well as a slew of components which can be added to the base game. This expansion includes 10 new characters, and 300 new cards, including new beasts, a new event deck, new mystery cards and new adventure decks. The game also introduces a new mechanism of SANITY, which can push any game of Robinson Crusoe into the realm of gothic horror. Also included are 5 new scenarios in the campaign, as well as 2 new general scenarios.
Stronghold: Undead is the stand-alone expansion to the acclaimed 2 player game Stronghold (2009), and just like the original, this expansion is getting the second edition treatment. Once again the Stronghold is under seige, with one player attacking and the other trying to survive the onslaught. This time though, the deadly Necromancer throws his unflinching forces against the walls, and each player has 8 turns to break through, or to repel the invaders.
L.A. Crimes is the first expansion to the new hotness, Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game. In Detective, players use a unique combination of web pages, internet searches, information cards and props to solve an intricately crafted detailed story of crime and greed. The expansion has 3 new cases taking place in sunny California, in the crime riddled Los Angeles of the 1980s. The expansion includes 2 new mechanisms – observation and stakeouts.
Finally Portal Games is prepping a magical Lootbox, with 6 unique mystery promos. Pre-orders for the Loot Box start on November 1. For more information on this, and all the announcements, check out Portal Games’ press release here.
It’s that time of year, the financial year is winding down with taxes coming due this week, so what better time than now to run a Kickstarter to raise your next year of operating costs? The folks over at the Secret Cabal Gaming podcast thought so (not really) and so right now they are running their annual fundraiser. One nice thing about the fundraiser is that once they pass their funding goal they will upgrade different aspects of their show, like their studio, personnel, and the content they offer. Of course, no good gaming fundraiser would be complete without promos and other fun items you can pledge for. The promo pack for this campaign is pretty great with promos for Near and Far, Scythe, Terraforming Mars, 51st State, and Unfair. Plus they have lots of other items like lapel pins, challenge coins, patches, and you can even become an Agent of the Cabal!
The campaign will be running until May 8th so if you are a fan, or just want that pack of promos, then check out their Kickstarter page and pledge today.
Several new game releases were announced recently, including a new expansion for the popular 51st State: Master Set from Portal Games
51st State: Scavengers adds 50 new cards to the immensely popular 51st State: Master Set, including the ability to draw from your discards, and a new strategy centered around building ruins. 51st State: Scavengers has a release date of March 2017.
Pillars of Eternity: Lords of the Eastern Reach from Zero Radius Games is a new city building card game which takes place in Obsidian Entertainment’s computer RPG Pillars of Eternity. The player uses resources to construct buildings, build defenses and hire troops to fend off monsters. In an added twist, any unused resources each turn are passed to the other players. Pillars of Eternity: The Lords of the Eastern Reach is expected March 2017.
Just as Essen was getting underway, Portal games gets the convention started by announcing four new games that will be made available in 2017. Three of these are expansions to existing games and the fourth is a new card game.
The First up is the expansion to the 51st State: Master set entitled 51st State: Scavengers from Ignacy Trzewiczek. 51st State: Scavengers is based on a previous 51st State expansion called Ruins. This re-do brings back favorite cards from Ruins in addition to introducing new locations and a brand new mechanism to the game. With Scavengers, you’ll have the ability to search the discards and retrieve those valuable cards for use within your State.
Are you willing to scavenge to have the best state?
The second up is an expansion to one of the hottest games of 2016…Cry Havoc entitled Cry Havoc: Aftermath. Cry Havoc: Aftermath expands upon the base game, adding 5 new skills and 3 new structures to each faction. In addition to the skills and structures, there is a new game mode that allows for a full 5 round game. This game mode introduces new scoring abilities when an event token is passed instead of its removal, further increasing your options for scoring victory points.
Will your faction be the one left standing in the wake of the aftermath?
The third expansion is for the all new Stronghold Second Edition entitled Stronghold: Undead by Ignacy Trzewiczek. Stronghold: Undead is a re-balancing release of the original Undead expansion to be compatible with Stronghold Second Edition. This expansion introduces new rules for terror, casting spells, and gathering mana. New buildings and abilities for the Defender to help ward off the Attacker on a new map with new routes.
Can you hold back the undead, or will your Stronghold fall?
Last but not least is a new game from Marcin Ropka and Viola Kijowska entitled Alien Artifacts. Alien Artifacts is a 4x style of card game, where you take on the role of an interplanetary corporation exploring uncharted space in hopes to gain knowledge and power. Alien Artifacts boasts a true 4x experience in under 1 hour!
Does your corporation have what it takes to explore, expand, exploit, and exterminate the other corporations?
Portal Games has stated that these new titles will follow Portal’s first release of 2017 entitled First Martians. Alien Artifacts will be released at Gen Con 2017. Price and contents will be announced at a later date as well as the details for all other titles.
For more information, you can visit Portal’s website here.
Rodney Smith, widely considered the nicest guy in board games has launched a crowdfunding campaign to support Watch It played for another year. Watch It Played is a YouTube channel that’s main focus is to teach viewers how to play games, and does it well. The channel also releases a significant number of game play videos in which viewers are asked to participate by helping make decisions for the players between episodes.
Here, Rodney explains why he’s asking for support:
“I have had the privilege of working on Watch It Played full time because of the support of my family, sponsors and viewers like yourself. The money I make from the show is how I contribute financially to my family, which allows me to keep creating videos.
If you have enjoyed some of the videos we create, please consider making a donation and claiming a perk!”
This year if the campaign is successful, extra funds will be used to:
Organize a live-streamed day of game playing
Support Pep MacDonald’s ongoing contributions to the Channel
Update the set and acquire better equipment
As with any crowdfunding campaign, Rodney is offering Perks to those who support Watch It Played. These perks include game promo’s such as a playable Rodney character for Dead of Winter by Plaid Hat Games; FLGS location card for 51st State from Portal Games; a Scythe encounter card from Jamey Stegmaier; Above and Below Building from Ryan Laukat, and a limited quantity of last year’s Promo’s. Also, as my favorite available perk, you could be listed as a Producer at the end of Watch It Played videos, and get early access to game play content.
This is Rodney’s only fundraiser for the year, so if you’re looking to offer your support, check out the IndieGoGo Campaign now.
Your goal is to build a new State in this post-apocalyptic world. Whether you command merciless Mutants or brave New Yorkers, your aim is always simple and clear – conquer new lands, incorporate new regions, and destroy everyone who is of no value. How will you achieve this? It’s pretty simple – the highest score wins the game. Pretty novel, huh?
Portal Games is currently running a preorder campaign for the revitalization of their hit card game 51st State in the form of the 51st State Master Set. 51st State is a competitive game that takes place in the unforgiving, post-apocalyptic work of Neuroshima Hex. In the game, players take control of a faction such as New York, Appalachian Federation, Mutants Union, or the Merchants Guild and, by levying the power of his faction, build a new state: a 51st state.
The core design and mechanisms of the game resemble that of Portal’s popular game Imperial Settlers, which is itself a redesign of the core mechanisms of the original 51st State card game. The new 51st State Master Set will include a complete redesign of the original version of 51st State, as well as new editions of New Era and Winter, the original expansions for the game. The boxed set includes:
February is almost over and more information is slowly starting to materialize about some of the most anticipated releases of the coming year. The latest Portal Games newsletter contains some interesting tidbits about two big names in particular:
First, the popular post-apocalyptic card game 51st State is being reborn in the form of a new 51st State: Master Set that combines cards from the original game with cards from both of the expansions, all recalibrated for optimum balance. The Master Set is already available for pre-order on Portal’s website, (here), and although it isn’t a crowdfunding campaign and the game will be published either way, it does offer a system of pre-order rewards and ‘stretch goals’, two of which have already been unlocked, ensuring each copy will come with a 51st State Transfer Book (summarizing all the changes between the original game and the master set) and an original story set in the world of Neuroshima. Portal have also promised that the new rulebook is almost finalized and will be made available soon.
From the return of an old classic to what could potentially turn out to be the hottest new release of the year, the Portal Newsletter also included a link to a recent interview with Ignacy Trzewiczek himself (originally published in Polish here.) about the upcoming title First Martians: Adventures on the Red Planet. First Martians, of course, is based on the extremely popular co-op Robinson Crusoe and is the next big thing in the recent trend of App-driven board games. Ignacy cites his experience playing X-Com as a major inspiration and motivation to move ahead with First Martians, because it showed him how useful an app could be in eliminating the boring overhead of games – “managing tokens, moving pieces and all that fiddly work which pulls us away from the essence of the game, from the fun.”
The interview also covers a variety of other topics including the game’s current development progress – the game system is finished, but Portal is working hard to create lots of great encounters, events and campaigns; how First Martians will compare to its predecessor Robinson Crusoe – despite very significant differences, including a huge new mystery mechanic that will be further explained in the coming months, Ignacy expects that players familiar with Robinson Crusoe will be able to jump right into First Martians with minimal rules explanations; and also the current state and expected features of the game app – the app is already fully operational (a necessity, since the game cannot be played without it), and completely manages the adventures, events, et. al. which occur in the game, allowing players to choose between several different game modes and difficulty levels, but some features have not yet been coded, such as the ability to save your current game progress and come back later.
Portal games announced the upcoming release of an expansion for 51st State entitled Ruins.
In every village you enter, you find inhabited ruins. You hide in them when you need shelter. You search them for food, for clothing, for equipment. You make business there and you rest.
Ruins are your whole life.
Ruins is the first card pack for 51st State/New Era – it opens a new series of small expansions for the base games. It contains 40 new cards (including new Leaders, Locations and Contact cards). Ruins expansion introduces new abilities for cards, with a possibility of recovering discarded cards. There are also new locations which allow not only to store resources, but also provide other.
Playing with Ruins, 51 State / New Era takes on a completely new character.