Arcane Wonders

psi arcane

On Monday, Arcane Wonders (publisher of Mage Wars and the Dice Tower Essentials line) announced a partnership with Publisher Services, Inc. (PSI), a game and toy supplier. PSI will be in charge of selling, warehousing, and shipping the Arcane Wonders products, and Arcane Wonders will be able to focus on the creation and manufacturing of their games.

See the full press release below:

Today, Arcane Wonders is pleased to announce a partnership regarding the launch of a sales and fulfillment program with Publisher Services, Inc. (PSI), a leading supplier of quality games, toys, books, and collectibles, . Through this partnership PSI will be the exclusive sales and operations team responsible for Arcane Wonders sales, warehousing and shipping to all North American markets and International Hobby.

Arcane Wonders product will be available from PSI effective immediately. “We are looking forward to expanding our relationship with Arcane Wonders into Domestic and International Hobby,” said Jerron Nanneman, VP Sales & Marketing, PSI. “The team at Arcane Wonders is doing a lot of innovative things that we are excited to help bring to market.”

“Arcane Wonders has been growing rapidly over the last year with the success of Sheriff of Nottingham and Mage Wars, including the recent release of Mage Wars Academy. We are very excited to be partnering with PSI, who we consider a world class leader in the industry, to continue that growth both for our games and our community.” said Scott Morris, Vice President of Business Development. “Having established a strong relationships with PSI recently, working together in the book and trade market, this move offers us the opportunity to serve all of our customers in the best ways possible. We are very much looking forward to a bright future together.”

PSI ( is a game and toy sales and operations company helping manufacturers place their products in the hobby market, specialty toy and game retail channels and mass market. PSI is headquartered in Atlanta, GA.

Arcane Wonders, LLC, ( is one of the hottest board game publishers in the industry, boasting two successful lines of games, Mage Wars and the Dice Tower Essentials. Mage Wars has players take on the role of a mage and enter either the Arena or the Academy to do combat against one another. The Dice Tower Essentials line is in partnership with noted reviewer Tom Vasel, of The Dice Tower, and are games that Tom himself feels are essential to player’s collections.

IMAG0805Day two started out fresh, having rested and recouped from an exciting day 1. The Dice Tower crew grouped up to start a very busy day. I had the pleasure of getting to visit with Chaz Marler from Pair of Dice Paradise. Many of you know Chaz from either his board game reviews or his Board Game Breakfast segment (Head in the Clouds with Chaz Marler). I’m here to tell ya, he’s a great guy, a hard worker, and just a ton of fun to hang around.



Upon entering the convention, I had the pleasure of meeting up with Patrick Nickell, owner of Crash Games. Patrick is well known in the board game community and just a great guy. He’s located at booth 2828 and is demoing several games in his line-up, including his newest release, Dead Drop. You can learn more about the successfully Kickstarted game here. I personally own a copy of Yardmaster and it’s one of the few games I can get my wife to play with me.

One of the hardest games to get your hand on over at the Asmodee booth is Mysterium. Mysterium is an English version of the Polish game Tajemnicze Domostwo. It’s a cooperative game where one player takes on the role of a Ghost trying to describe where he/she was murdered via giving out various clues while others try to deduce the location – all done via Dixit-style cards. It’s a gorgeous game and their demo booth is a must grab for anyone remotely interested in the game.


Another game that had a TON of hype around the convention was Pretzel Games’ fun dexterity game, Flick ’em Up. Pictured above is the upcoming expansion, Stallion Canyon, which features ramps, horses and about 5 new scenarios. Players will have to rope in wild horses using a lasso and then use those horses in further scenarios. Keep your eyes on this one, it’s sure to add to the fun of the base game.


A huge hit at the Arcane Wonders booth was Board Game Theatre’s Kevin and Matti in their Sheriff of Nottingham regalia. Come by Arcane Wonders’ booth at 1:30 to get a look!!


Don’t forget to come by the Dice Tower booth, located at booth 3030. You can pick up a free fortune cookie and Dice Tower badge sticker. Stop by at 10am to meet Tom, Eric, Zee, and Sam!! There’s still plenty of promos left including 3 Mage Wars, 2 Sheriff of Notthingham, Spyfall, Robinson Crusoe, Core Worlds, and Nothing personal promo packs. We have t-shirts, dice towers, various dice and the Arcadia Quest Tomrick mini If nothing else, stop by to say hi!





mage wards academy

Arcane Wonders announces a new addition to their successful Mage Wars family, Mage Wars Academy.  As a standalone game system, this new version of Mage Wars will be fully compatible with all other members of the Mage Wars game family.

Academy is designed with both new and existing players in mind.  New players will find it the perfect “jumping on point” to the rich and vibrant Mage Wars® universe.  Experienced players will be excited to find new spells that are all compatible with Mage Wars® Arena, offering them new options in their battles.  In addition, both player types will find Academy fast paced, strategic, and portable to take their duels wherever they want!

mage wars academy setup

The Academy Core Set is for 2 players ages 14 and up and plays in about 30 minutes.  Each Core set includes:

  • Two 4-Pocket Portfolio Spellbooks
  • 2 Status Trackers for life and mana tracking
  • 1 Initiative Marker
  • 2 mages (the Beastmaster and Wizard)
  • 2 Mage Ability Cards
  • 131 new Spell Cards
  • 2 Quickcast Markers
  • 6 Attack Dice
  • 1 Twelve Sided Effect Die
  • Condition Markers, Damage Counters, Guard Markers, and Tokens

Mage Wars Academy will be available in limited quantities at GenCon 2015, and plans for a full release in late September or early October.  For more information on this new set, visit the full product description here.


Arcane Wonders has announced a new line of expansions for the Mage Wars Arena game, the Battlegrounds line with the first in this line being Domination.  Battlegrounds Domination is going to focus on the board as well as create a new way to play the game with a new mode, domination, as well as adding more cards and rules for playing up to 4 players.

battlegrounds tiles

So first on the list of improvements is the board, in this expansion they will include 20 interlocking tiles for you to create your own modular board, and these aren’t all just plain tiles.  Some of the tiles have special images on them that can grant special benefits (or detriments) if you decide to play with those rules.  Plus with the modular tiles you are no longer constrained to just a square board, now you can create all sorts of shapes and the rulebook includes guidelines on how you can create your own.

The next change is the new game mode, domination.  In this game mode you can still win by straight up destroying your opponent, but now you can also achieve a points victory by collecting enough V’tar to activate the orb for that layout.  Acquiring V’tar can be done through defeating monsters or through new spells added by this expansion.  In addition to counting towards victory, V’tar can be spent to activate special abilities so choose wisely how you will use them.

The last addition is additional rules for playing with 3 to 4 players in teams or free for all.  Add in all the additional cards this expansion includes (as well as two first print run only promos if you preorder) and you have a whooper of an expansion.

Head over the the Arcane Wonders page to check out more information and preview images as well as to pre-order the expansion.  The official release will be July 2015 but they have an option for early pickup if you are planning on attending Origins.


Arcane Wonders has announced Royals a new game from designer Peter Hawes, who also designed Francis Drake and Triassic Terror, will be coming to the Dice Tower Essentials line. Games in the Dice Tower Essentials line are games that Tom Vassal believes are essential to any gamer’s collection as he has thoroughly enjoyed playing them and believes others will too.

Royals is simple to teach area control game that has players taking actions as noble houses in 17th century Europe. Game play is similar to Ticket to Ride where players will attempt to collect sets of same colored cards but instead of claiming routes they are attempting to gain influence over different nobles. At the end of each of the three rounds players will score based on their influence on the board.

In Royals, players take on the roles of great noble houses of the 17th century, fighting for supremacy in Europe.  By collecting country cards, players will influence Royal members across the Spanish, English, German and French countrysides. Influence can be contested though with the right intrigue cards and players will be in constant contest to maintain their influence in each region. The game takes place over three periods with scoring in between rounds and a final scoring period at the end, determined by who held the most influence with each Royal member.

The full article can be found here and you can find more information about Royals, including Tom’s video review, here on or here on BGG.

Royals is sure to be a hit so stay tuned for more information about this ‘essential’ game.


Mage Wars is a huge hit for Arcane Wonders and designer Bryan Pope. Released in 2012 the game helped put the company on the map and solidified its position as a premier head-to-head skirmish card game pitting magic user vs magic user. Think of it as a card driven system (like Magic: the Gathering) that is played on a tactical board adding a huge spatial component. As apposed to Magic: the Gathering there are no sets and releases to collect, only the core game and several expansions adding new magic user types, all with no redundancy of cards. The core has not changed very much between reprintings, just rulebook spiffings and a couple of card erratas, but the fourth reprint will have one huge nomenclature change. To differentiate from a new upcoming play style Mage Wars core, which is Mage Wars as we currently know it, will now be know as Mage Wars: Arena. According to the Mage Wars website preview, this reprint will include:

  • 2 New Spellbook designs
  • New Arena Board design
  • Alternate Art for Bear Strength, Dispel, Dissolve, Minor Heal and Rhino Hide
  • New Artwork for Battle Fury, Force Push, Hand of Bim Shalla, Teleport, and Temple of Light
  • Plus, 14 additional spell cards have been added to make spellbook building easier, including Dispel, Dissolve, Force Push and others.

If you already own Mage Wars and have no need for the redundant components (Action Markers, spell books, extra cards for multiple deck builds, etc) then beyond the smaller box and new board, there will not be much need for you to pick this up. If you are brand new to the game or want an easy way to pick up the extra cards and components, this new reprint is the way to go.


Why make the distinction of Arena title? Well because there will be a new way to play Mage Wars. One of the gripes of the core game is its steep learning curve and long playing times. Enter: Mage Wars: Academy. Think of this new system as a better way to get new players into the world of Mage Wars and also a way for veterans for fans of Arena to grab even more options for their combatants in the core game. As Arcane Wonders puts it, Academy:

will be a 2 player starter set that comes with 2 Mages, 2 Spellbooks and a new gameplay design that is completely “board-less” offering players more portability and faster gameplay (Games average 20-30 minutes) all for roughly half the price of the current Core Set!

Expect the Arena core reprint in April 2015 and the new Academy products around Q3 but one can hope for a Gen Con sneak peak!

For more information for both Mage Wars product lines, visit the Arcane Wonders website.

P.S. There will also be Mage Wars: Arena Battlegrounds expansion that will feature a Domination mode, but that is for a different place and different time my friend!

Arcane Wonders the makers of Mage Wars and the publishers of the “Dice Tower Essentials” line of games has announced the third title in the series “Onitama“.  This is a great little 2 player abstract title.  This title was licensed from Conception and designed by Shimpei Sato.

This game consists of a 5×5 board and is played using using 5 move choices 2 of which are available to you on any given turn.  Used actions will become one of your opponent’s options in two turns.  So there is a fair bit of strategy in what you play wanting to ensure that you get the most ideal moves but also depriving your opponent of moves they may find necessary.

We are very pleased and honored to be partnered with conception and designer Shimpei Sato for this wonderful and popular game!  We hope everyone shares our excitement as we look to bring this fun and engaging game to both the US, and the world, as part of the Dice Tower Essentials line of games. As development of the game progresses, look to both our home page, and our social media sites for the Dice Tower Essentials, to learn more about the game-play and release dates for Onitama.

You can see Tom Vasel’s announcement of this game below

Arcane Wonders has not given a firm release date but you can likely expect this game at some point in 2015.  We will keep you posted on when release dates are announced.

kevin sheriff

Well, there will be a new sheriff at BGG.CON at least.   Kevin Burkhardsmeier, of Board Game Theatre, will be the sheriff from Arcane Wonders’ popular bluffing game Sheriff of Notthingham at BGG.CON.

Kevin Burkhardsmeier, from Board Game Theater, will be joining us on Thursday, November 20th and Friday, November 21st, from 1 to 4 PM CST in the Demo Land area, in full regalia, to play the part of the dastardly Sheriff of Nottingham!  Your job?  Simple, defeat him at his own game!

For more news about the contest and how to sign up, you can visit their page here.


dice tower essentials

Yesterday evening, Scott Morris from Crits Happen announced that the Dice Tower Essentials and Sheriff of Nottingham have official internet “homes.”

The Dice Tower Essentials are a list of games from Tom Vasel and Eric Summerer for every gamer.

Sherriff of Nottingham is a re-implementation of Robin Hood (2011).  Designed by Sérgio Halaban, Bryan Pope, and André Zatz and published by Arcane Wonders, this medieval bluffing game has players scheming and negotiating to get the most points.

sheriff of nottingham

In the game, the role of Sheriff rotates around the table.  All other players secretly place goods they wish to bring into the city into their bag.  Then, going around the table, they declare what is in the bag…honest or not.  The Sheriff must decide if that player’s bag should be inspected or if it can proceed through the gates, to the player’s courtyard (later scoring points).  If the inspected bag is what the player declared, the Sheriff owes money.  If the bag is not what was declared, the goods are confiscated.

Sheriff of Nottingham is for 3 to 5 players, ages 13 and up and a play time of 60 minutes.  This is the first game from Arcane Wonders in the Dice Tower Essentials line and expected release is October 2014.