Each year, the members of The Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design presents the Origin Awards to companies for outstanding games in the hobby industry. Attendees at the Origins Game Fair can examine and play the nominated games in the Origins Awards Area in the Exhibit Hall, then vote for the Fan Favorite Award in each category. On Saturday, June 15th, 2019, all winners will be announced and presented at the Origins Awards Ceremony.
The award-winning murder mystery board game Mysterium has been released for the iOS platform. In this cooperative board game, one player takes on the role of the ghost of a murder victim who uses various types of cards to give clues to the other players (paranormal psychics) who will use those clues to ultimately solve the mystery of the murder.
The iOS digital version of the game features online multiplayer for up to 7 players and works cross-platform between the iOS, Android, and Steam versions. There is a solitaire and story mode as well.
The Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design has announced the nominees for the 42nd Annual Origins Awards. The Academy is a network made up of gaming professionals with the aim of promoting innovation and excellence in games.
The winner for each category will be voted on by members of the Academy. Additionally there is a fan favourite award in each category that is voted on by visitors to the Origins Games Fair. The winners will be presented at the Origins Awards Ceremony on Saturday June 18th at 7:00pm at the show.
The winners of the 10th annual Golden Geek Awards were announced this Monday, and both the winners and runners up were outstanding titles deserving of the reward. Pandemic: Legacy, the smash hit of 2015 which swiftly climbed the top games list, collectively walked away with 4 awards, including Board Game of the Year! Congratulations for Codenames and Mysterium for winning their most appropriate categories. I’m VERY surprised that 504 did not win most innovative title, but I suppose that’s a discussion best left to the BGG forums.
Hit the link to view the full list, including the RPGGeek and VideoGameGeek winners or, if you’re curious who came close to podium finish, click here to view the full list of nominees.
There’s no higher award in the board gaming industry than Germany’s Spiel des Jahres. Each year, an enigmatic “jury” of German board game scholars, reviewers, and educators select their top games in three somewhat nebulous categories:
Kennerspiel des Jahres or what we might call “gamer games”. These are the heavier titles that wouldn’t necessarily appeal to casual gamers.
Kinderspiel des Jahres are your basic family and kids games. Light rules and friendly themes.
Spiel des Jahres is the big one. These fall in the middle of the complexity spectrum, usually consisting of accessible, mainstream-friendly casual games.
Earlier this week, this year’s nominees for the three award categories were announced. Our very own Rob Searing covered the story in his May 18 article. There weren’t many surprises on the list (other than the usual lot of Germany-only titles that haven’t been distributed in the United States), but there was one odd duck: The Game. So, what the heck is The Game?
The full title of the The Game the game is “The Game…so lange du kannst!” which roughly translates to “The Game…play as long as you can!” It’s a cooperative hand-management card game published by Nürnberger Spielkarten Verlag (NSV) and designed by Steffen Benndorf, best known for Qwixx. Despite the oddly spooky artwork, it’s a simple theme-less affair in which players try to empty their hands of numbered cards by laying them in one of four discard piles, two in ascending numerical order and two descending (as noted by some out-of-place tribal arrows). As long as the card you’re discarding is greater than or less than the previous card, following that pile’s rules, the move is legal.
Image From BGG
The goal is to discard all 98 cards cooperatively, which means ascertaining which player should go first and playing strategically to ensure the gaps between ascending and descending card values are as tight as possible. The trick is that players can never reveal exactly what values are on their cards, but all other table talk is permitted. As the draw deck begins to deplete, the choices become much more difficult.
There are a few other minor rules and exceptions that are explained in the rulebook, but that’s The Game in a nutshell. Even with the bizarrely non-descript name and the ill-fitting art, The Game sounds like a lot of fun. It reminds me of Hanabi, Red 7, and many classic card games as well. I’ll be shocked if it beats out Machi Koro for the Spiel des Jahres, but if and when The Game gets local distribution, I’ll be interested in checking it out.
BoardGameGeek (BGG) has opened up nominations for the 2014 Golden Geek Awards, honoring the best in board games, roleplaying games, and video games. There are several awards within each of these categories, and like years past, it’s up to the BGG community to nominate their favorites.
Post your nominees for the best new games from 2014, and if you’re so inclined, there’s a category for Best Podcast and a whole list of Dice Tower Network shows to choose from. Nominations will be open until midnight on February 8, followed by voting through February 22.
For a complete rundown of the process and to make sure you voice is heard, check out the full announcement for more details.
All eyes have been on Donald X. Vaccarino since he captured all of our hearts and our wallets with his deck-building titan Dominion along with its eight expansions. While his last effort, Kingdom Builder (published by Queen Games), may not have impressed allcritics, this month has been especially exciting for Vaccarino fans. His mafia themed card-drafting game Greed (also published by Queen Games) has been reported to be arriving at the front doors of Kickstarter backers, which means that it should be available in stores soon as well. But is the game any good? Check out Ryan Metzler’s review to find out.
Earlier this week it was announced that Rio Grande Games will be releasing another new Vaccarino game entitled Temporum. In this hand-management card game for 2 to 5 players, you play as time travelers trying to change the past in order to improve the future for your own personal gain. While I can think of plenty of great uses of time-travel inothermediums, there aren’t enough board games that use the classic sci-fi invention. Temporum is expected to be available at Gen Con next month.
Speaking of Rio Grande Games, if you’ve watched our coverage of the Origins Game Fair, you know that the new Prince Promo Card for Dominion got a lot of screen time. To be fair, it is a really cool card. While only available for purchase at Origins, it is expected to be released to the public within the next week or two.
Tile-laying Games Unearthed
Yeah, yeah, we may have gotten the new Carcassonne Hills and Sheep expansion last week, but the sad fact remains that there just aren’t very many tile-laying games being made any more. The tried-and-true mechanic may finally be getting the revitalization that it deserves with two new games that were announced this week.
New publisher out of Canada, Roxley Games, announced Super Motherload (by Gavin Brown and Matt Tolman) based off of the 2013 Xgen Studios video game of the same name. In the Jules Verne inspired video game, you play as a miner tasked with finding rare resources under the surface of Mars. You can sell what you find underground in order to get the funding necessary to buy fuel for your drilling vehicle, as well as upgrades that allow you to dig through the harder rock layers of the red planet. The announcement of the board game adaption states that the game will utilize a unique mix of tile-laying and deck building-mechanics. Super Motherload is expected to be in stores this November.
German Publisher TF Verlag UG has kicked off a Kickstarter campaign for another tile-laying game called Canopy Walk, designed by Dennis Kirps and Gérard Pierson. You and another person play against each other as explorers looking for elusive red diamonds in the rainforest by building the largest amount of completed trails of your color. The funding period ends on Sunday, August 10 2014. If funded, the game is expected to ship in October.
What’s New with the Dice Tower?
– The wait is over, the winners of the 2013 Dice Tower awards have finally been announced! Each year the Dice Tower recognizes the games, developers, and publishers who best demonstrate how great the hobby can be. 14 awards were given out for categories such as Best Game Reprint, Most Innovative Game, and of course, Game of the Year. I won’t spoil the list of winners by posting them here, so do yourself a favor and check them out for yourselves.
– Board Game Geek user s4rc4st1c was not being sarcastic when he called out the Dice Tower for not having enough love for frequent Miami Dice and Top 10 co-host Zee Garcia. He noted that Zee has not been featured in any of the title sequences for Miami Dice and that he was not a playable character in Steve Avery and Tom Vasel’s game Nothing Personal. Zee fans rejoice! The Dice Tower has posted 5 new reviews with Tom and Zee including Imperial Settlers, Battle Sheep, and Shadowrun Crossfire. Also for anyone who is still wondering; a character based on Zee will be playable in one of the recently funded Nothing Personal expansions.
– Of course it may be a little bias to say that the Dice Tower News website leaving beta was one of the biggest stories in gaming this week, but come on. Have you seen how many articles we’ve published already? If that isn’t enough to keep you coming back, we also have a weekly giveaway; join our mailing list, and you’ll be in the running every week for $10 gift certificate for Cool Stuff Inc.