anniversary edition

Fantasy Flight Games has announced plans to release a Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition the 3rd quarter of 2018. Tom Vasel’s favorite board game for six years in a row (2010 to 2015), could a new edition of the game cement the place on the top of Tom’s list?

The Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition will become the new standardized version of the game when it is released. The new edition of the game will be fully compatible with all existing Cosmic Encounter expansions.

In the far reaches of space, the aliens of the cosmos vie for control of the universe. Alliances are constantly forged and broken in the pursuit of power as starships journey from planet to planet, ready to build colonies and battle foreign powers, ensuring the survival of their people as they spread throughout the stars. 

Designed by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge, Bill Norton, Peter Olotka, and Kevin Wilson, the game was originally released by Eon in 1977. When a new edition of the game was released in 1992 it received the Origins Award for Best Fantasy or Science Fiction Boardgame of 1991. It was inducted into the Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design Adventure Gaming Hall of Fame in 1997

In 2008 Fantasy Flight Games reprinted the game in 2008 and subsequently released 6 expansions full of additional alien factions and mechanics.

What’s New?

The Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition includes both a revised rulebook as well as an illustrated Quick-start Guide that aims to capture all of the nostalgia of the original game while making it easier for new players to learn the game. The Quick-start Guide is styled as a 1970s comic book style. The anniversary edition also includes translucent ship pieces factions will use while spreading their colonies across the galaxy.

While traditional favorite aliens will be included in set, the game will also include the ruthless Demon aliens. Previously only available at Cosmic Con, the new aliens will be included in the anniversary edition of the game. Having been exiled from earlier editions of the base game, they now seek cosmic vengeance and will use their power to possess other players’ hands, bolstering their strength while draining the strength of others.

Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition will also introduce new Cosmic Combo cards. These cards offer a list of alien species with a brief description of their powers to help curate themed matchups and explore different types of game strategies.

Diplomacy on a Cosmic Scale

Just like previous editions of the game, players will each take on the role as leader of their own alien species with unique abilities, seeking to expand their reach across cosmos. Players will take turns launching spaceships from their fleets through a Hyperspace Gate to reach planets beyond their home system, attempting to colonize on opponents plants.

Colonizing on other planets is not as easy as launching a ship. Each planet is already controlled by another player, and other factions may not let you place those colonies without a fight. Diplomacy will be just as important as military strategy. Once both offense and defensive players launch their spaceships, they can ask the other aliens for support in their campaign.

Other players might jump in, using their Alien Powers, Artifacts, Reinforcements, or Flares to tip the odds in one side’s favor or the other. Win the encounter and you can establish a colony, but lose and your ships will be trapped in the warp.

The first players to successfully establish colonies on five foreign planet will be the winner.

Fantasy Flight Games may have just announced the conclusion of the Star Wars LCG, but the Star Wars RPG continues to go strong after 30 years.  So to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the RPG being released, FFG is going to be releasing and all-in-one edition of the core rules from when they were first released.  Not only will you find all the rules and templates you need to create characters, it also includes all the information and handy tips for being the game master as well.  So whether you are a player or the GM in the Star Wars universe, this new set is worth checking out.  You can find out more on FFG’s website, and look for this on shelves this year.

Also in the RPG world we have a new partnership, this time between Renegade Games and Hunter Books.  While you all know about Renegade Games, you may not know Hunter Books, the publishers of Kids on Bikes, Outbreak Undead, and the ABCs of RPGs.  What this new partnership means is that RPG products from Hunter Books will be distributed through Renegade Games, making their unique RPGs available to more people.  You can read more about the partnership on Renegade Games’ website, and look forward to seeing these RPG books on more store shelves soon.

super slamwich

Slamwich, designed by Monty Stambler and Ann Stambler and published in 1994 by Gamewright Games, is getting super sized just in time for its 20 year aniversery. This new edition has been renamed Super Slamwich to reflect it’s inclusion of 55 custom, over-sized cards and a new sandwich-shaped box and is available now!

Slamwich is a real-time, pattern recognition card game for 2 to 6 players where cards resemble slices of bread topped with sandwich items, sandwich thieves, and sandwich “munchers.”  The deck is dealt out as evenly as possible to all players.  One by one, each player takes the top card of her deck and flips it onto a central pile. When cards two cards representing the same ingredient are played on top of one another players race to slap the pile and the player to slap first wins all of the cards. There are various other ways to slap the pile such as forming a sandwich of similar ingredients or by playing robber or muncher cards. The player who gets all of the cards in his or her hand wins.