Animal Games

Set in another dimension filled with alien life, Darwinauts, designed by Chris Bryan (Lanterns Dice Game, Favelas, and Dragon Ball Z: Perfect Cell) and illustrated by the prolific Vincent Dutrait, puts you and up to 3 other players in the role of brave researchers tasked with venturing through a portal into this new land to discover, research, and record new species of life.

In Darwinauts, which the publisher describes as a “light-to-medium weight Euro-style game of tile-laying, worker placement, set collection, and action selection,” players take 2 actions on their turn; they can place an explorer, place a tile, replenish tiles and remove explorers, discover a species, or record a species (which then triggers one of five possible bonus actions). Gameplay will continue in this manner until The Rift Tile is revealed, after which the new world will become unstable and players will dismantle the landscape they built and race to complete their tasks and return home before the game draws to a close.

The campaign includes a Standard Explorer pledge which includes just the game and stretch goals, as well as a Decorated Explorer pledge which includes a playmat in addition to the game and stretch goals.

For more information on the game, you can find the official Kickstarter campaign page here.

“RISE UP! My fellow animals, against those that would exploit us!”

ARGH! (Animals Revolt aGainst Humans) is a brand new 2 to 4 player bluffing and set-collection card game published by Dude Games from designer Romaric Galonnier.

In ARGH! players take the role of rival animal operatives fighting to stop the evil human scientists from experimenting on any more innocent animals. Ratchet, the leader of ARGH! has charged you with destroying the lab once and for all. Unfortunately, he has also charged other animals with the same task and there is not enough glory for all! Act quickly, find allies where you can and anything you can do to hinder your rival freedom fighters couldn’t hurt either…right?

On your turn you will draw a card from one of three decks (Garden, House and Laboratory), look at it in secret and decide to keep it face up or give it to another player face down. Without knowing what the card is, that player then chooses to keep it face down or return it to you face up. Play continues in this way until one of the three decks is empty or any player has two face-up bomb cards.

A player with two bomb cards is declared the winner but if a deck runs out first, each player reveals all their face down cards. If nobody has two or more bombs, the value of their cards will determine each player’s final score. Check out the official rule book for a complete rule explanation.

“Join me and together we shall annihilate this place, the symbol of our oppression!” – Ratchet, leader of Animals Revolt aGainst Humans.

ARGH! is the latest offering from designer Romaric Galonnierc, also known for games such as Yesss! and Casting.

ARGH! plays in 5 – 15 minutes and set for release in January 2018!

Z-Man Games has announced plans to distribute Michael Schacht’s new game Smile. A card game for three to five players, Smile has players working in an environment where all sorts of critters have escaped their enclosures. Players will use lightening bugs as bait (critters love lightning bugs, obviously) to catch more lost critters than their opponents, while being careful to avoid capturing wild critters which will give players negative points.
The light is falling and time is growing short. There’s no telling what sorts of trouble your critters will get into if you don’t find them soon. Gather your lightning bugs and round up the best critters in Smile, arriving soon!
Game play unfolds over ten rounds. In each round players will unveil a number of critter cards equal to the number of players. Players then choose, in order, to stay in the round by placing a single firefly on the lowest value creature or to drop out of the round. When dropping out players take the least valuable critter still available, though gaining the many fireflies possibly now associated with that card. Deception and push your luck elements are in play as each firefly committed brings you closer to a valuable critter while at the same time depleting your store of lightning bugs. Drop out early and stock up on bugs for future rounds and make a dramatic comeback or take an early lead!
Additional rules add to the challenge. If you end up with two critters of the same color in the top-left corner you remove both from the game. This can come in handy for getting rid of negative point critters, or perhaps you can force an opponent to lose two valuable cards?
Michael Schacht is also the designer of Coloretto, Hansa, Aquaretto, Mondo, Mogul and many other games. His game Zooloretto won him the 2007 Spiel des Jahres award.

flock

Flock, a new AEG release coming this winter, is a game about growing impressive bird colonies for 2-5 players. You start with a few birds in your flock and through action selection, you expand your Ornithological Empire by feeding, hatching, and building nests. But it is not so easy as other players are vying to feed and grow their own families from the same pool of action cards. It is a tense struggle to balance how many of your birds accomplish the tasks necessary to provide for your flock, while at the same trying to maintain dominance over other bird populations.

AEG has a history of packing deep and strategic gameplay in a small package (Love Letter, Guild Hall, Istanbul) and it seems that Flock will be no different. The artwork is whimsical, the theme is fresh and interesting, and the components are cute and well-crafted. The art style is reminiscent of the great Waggle Dance, a game about building a bee colony, and I for one am excited to see another medium-weight eurogame about growing a colony of animals.

 

Originally launched in 2008 the award winning Snow Tails returns! Renegade Game Studios has obtained the rights to this fast paced sled racing game and is updating it with brand new artwork from artist Beth Sobel.

Snow Tails includes a modular track which allows for a multitude of courses to be created. As you play cards while racing along these courses you will have to take care not to lose control of your sled because for every dent you take you hand-size shrinks.

“It’s one of the best racing games we’ve ever played and are really excited to be able to make it available again,” says Renegade President Scott Gaeta.

Look for Snow Tails to be available in stores August of this year.