Blue Orange Games is no newcomer to high-quality games. With hits such as New York 1901 and this year’s Spiel des Jahres winner, Kingdomino, Blue Orange has been diving deeper into the arena of family board games. Well, this year they hit a new plateau with Photoshynthesis. Photosynthesis is a strategy game in where you plant trees and harvest them at the right time to earn points. The sun will traverse the board providing sun points to those trees that have line of site to it (without being in the shadow of another tree).
The game has outstanding components with high-durable trees and beautiful artwork.
The sun shines brightly on the canopy of the forest, and the trees use this wonderful energy to grow and develop their beautiful foliage. Sow your crops wisely and the shadows of your growing trees could slow your opponents down, but don’t forget that the sun revolves around the forest. Welcome to the world of Photosynthesis, the green strategy board game!
Come see this beauty over at booth 1811 at GenCon!
Not only did Fantasy Flight Games announce they will be releasing TI4 at GenCon this year, but the Dice Tower crew was able to get in some play time this evening. The game is expected to retail for $150.
Fantasy Flight Games is keeping up with their tradition of huge last minute GenCon announcements, and the focus this time is Sid Meier’s Civilization: A New Dawn. The latest in the award winning Civilization series, Civilization: A New Dawn is being developed by James Kniffen, a powerhouse of the Fantasy Flight machine and developer on past hits Forbidden Stars, Star Wars: Armada, and the recent New Angeles. This newest edition to the Civilization franchise looks fantastic, with great art and beautiful components. Players build up the world with large hex grid map tiles, and try to conquer using one of the 8 starting leaders. Leaders start with a certain set of focus cards, showing technologies they start with, and off of which they can further develop. Expect the deep game play and branched development Civilization always brings.
Dice Hate Me Game, in conjunction with Handelabra Games, is bringing the baseball themed board game Bottom of the Ninth to digital devices. They announced the impeding release with a Youtube video showcasing gameplay from the app. Some notable features to the game include multiplayer and cross platform multiplayer, which are always requested. The game will also feature fun animated meeples playing the game and running the bases as the dice are being rolled to see if they make it or not.
So if you want to take your baseball board game with you, look for the games launch on both Android and iPhone on August 17th.
Room 17 Games is a newly minted company in Nottingham, UK, and so they want to get off to a running start with their game Museum Rush. In Museum Rush you are some haphazard thieves trying to get the biggest score from the museum. You will have to avoid guards and cameras, as well as do a bit of code breaking in order to steal the most valuable artifacts. If you get caught then you get your loot confiscated, but manage to hold on to your stash until the last time card comes out and you will be the winner.
Playing is a simple task of picking a card to play and moving. The are various cards that will help you distract guards, cover up cameras, or mess with your fellow thieves. You will also have individual player powers giving each character it’s own feel. And with the comical art you have a game that is fun and quick. Look for this on store shelves soon.
Fantasy Flight Games has announced a new age: a new age of Twilight. Twilight Imperium, that is, in the form of a fourth edition of the epic 4x space strategy game that has been loved and celebrated in the gaming industry for many years. This new edition celebrates 20 years of this epic space opera board game of expansion, diplomacy, and war to control the galaxy, best explained in this excerpt from the official release:
For twenty years, the custom space operas created by Twilight Imperium have thrilled gamers like nothing else. Now, Twilight Imperium Fourth Edition builds on the grand space opera found in previous editions while streamlining rules and putting player interaction center stage…Twilight Imperium Fourth Edition aims to be the most complete version of the game ever printed. Seventeen playable races are included in the game, offering a wide variety of starting faction options. Twilight Imperium Fourth Edition brings a galactic space opera to your table, and no two games will ever be the same.
This new version of the game will include 350 plastic units, 51 system tiles, 561 command and control tokens, 80 action cards, 50 agenda cards, 40 objective cards, 59 planet cards, 184 technology and technology upgrade cards, 41 promissory note cards, and much more.
TI veterans will likely be asking (as I did!) what the main differences are between TI3 and TI4. Some of the main changes include a stunning new graphic design and layout, but with the same great and familiar artwork flavor. Additionally, changes will be seen in game mechanisms such as Trade, Technology, PDS Units, Space Docks, Politics, and the Imperial Strategy Card, to name a few. FFG has anticipated the question of specific changes to the game in their product description, which can be read here.
Green Couch Games has announced a stand alone expansion for the treehouse building game Best Treehouse Ever. Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun can be mixed with the original game, giving more variety as well as increasing the possible player count up to 8. But this can also be played on it’s own with 2 to 4 players and features some new mechanics not present in the first game. First is the addition of player powers, giving each person something they can do that others can’t. Another addition is that scoring happens in rounds instead of just at the end, and each round a different player will determine what scores that round. This brings some tension to the game as now you have to build into the different colors to be able to score ever round. Will these changes elevate this game? I think they could.
We will find out more when the Kickstarter launches in the Fall, and when the game hits store shelves in the second quarter of 2018. Read the press release below for more information.
(Grand Rapids, Michigan) – Green Couch Games grows a sequel with Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun!
It’s time to build another treehouse!
In the new stand alone sequel to the Golden Geek Nominated Best Treehouse Ever (Best Card Game, Best Family Game, 2015), Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun, players compete to build their best treehouse, outfitting their treehouse with cool rooms, and creating fun habitats for their favorite furry and feathered friends, while also making sure that their tree doesn’t tip over and that their rooms are more impressive than all of their friends’ rooms at the end of the game.
In addition, our treehouse builders have leveled up their experience by visiting new locations in the forest that provide special abilities to help them in their new build.
Building takes place over three weeks/rounds, and in each round, players use card drafting and spatial reasoning to add five new rooms to their treehouse. Players must pay attention to the other treehouses being built since they take turns determining which types of rooms score for everyone at the end of each round.
At the end of the third week, the winner is the player with the best treehouse ever!
But the best part? Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun can be combined with Best Treehouse Ever to play up to 8 players!
Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun will be the first “Big Box” game from Green Couch Games allowing owners of the original Best Treehouse Ever to store it all in one convenient box. The game includes 60 Room Cards with all art, 12 Animal Cards, 4 Starting Tree Cards, 6 Scoring Cards, 10 Location Cards, 4 Scoring Tokens, a folding Score Board, and 4 Balance Markers. The game will feature more great art from Claire Donaldson and Andy Jewett building on the foundation created by Adam McIver with Best Treehouse Ever.
Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun is a game for 2 to 4 players (or up to 8 when combined with Best Treehouse Ever), ages 10 and up and is designed by Scott Almes. The game is set for a Kickstarter campaign in Fall of 2017 with a Q2 2018 release.
Green Couch Games was founded by Jason Kotarski to release great little games that make great big connections. Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun will be their 10th release following Fidelitas, Best Treehouse Ever, JurassAttack!, Avalanche at Yeti Mountain, Wok on Fire, Rocky Road a la Mode, OutLawed!, Ladder 29, and Before The Earth Explodes. Jason is also a game designer and co-host of the 20 Minutes of Filler Podcast.
GenCon is only one short week away, so lets see if some of these Kickstarter campaigns can take your money before you leave.
First up is the fourth campaign for the Reaper Miniatures line called Bones 4. Reaper is known for long waits from campaign to fulfillment, exemplified by the Feb 2019 delivery date, but also for high quality minis at an amazing price. This time around your $100 will get you 85 different minis in a fantasy setting, with figures of things like dragons, goblins, wizards, knights, kobolds, and more. Plus as more stretch goals get unlocked, more minis are added to the base pledge, sending it’s value skyward. So if you can wait a couple years for your minis, check out the Kickstarter campaign.
Next is a dexterity card game where you are literally throwing weapons at your opponents, called Rise of the Exiled. In Rise of the Exiled you are playing as a character from four different guild, vying for control of the city they live in. To play the game you will select your character and place them on the table. Each round you will move your character one card length, and then throw your weapon, depicted on a clear plastic card, at your opponent. Where you are located is important because your hand can’t go past your character on the table when throwing, and where you hit your opponent determines how much life they lose. You also have the option to use your character’s special ability to tip the scales in your favor, and if you are the last one standing you win. With simple play like that and varying powers between the characters, this could be a fun, light, dexterity game. Check out the Kickstarter page for more information.
After that is a deduction style game called Visitor in Blackwood Grove. In this game one player will be playing the crash landed alien, and the rest either the local kid who found him, or the agents trying to capture him. For this game the alien will make a “pass” rule for items that will pass through his force-field, and then in order the agents, kid, and alien will begin selecting cards and finding out if they pass through or not. As more information is collected eventually someone will figure out the rule, at that point they prove it by drawing four cards and classifying them based on if they pass or not. If they are right then that team wins, if they are wrong then play continues until someone does get it right. There are more rules for the agents and kid but that is the basics of the game, keeping it a light deduction game. Plus with nice looking art and good components, this project is worth it for you to look at. Check out their Kickstarter page today.
Following that is a magazine being put out by Steve Jackson Games that is all about Ogre, called Ogrezine. The Ogrezine is going to be a collection of articles about different ways you can change and modify how you play Ogre. One example they have released is the article Dambusters, which details how to use and include a dam as well as flooding into a Ogre game. This is all to celebrate 40 years of the game, and so in addition to the magazine you can back for other stuff for Ogre included the base game itself. So if you are interested in more content for you Ogre game, check out their Kickstarter page.
Next is a fantasy fire fighting game from Red Genie Games called The Brigade. In this competitive fire fighting game you are leading a fire brigade to help put out fires in the town of Tinderbox. The cause of these fires is the pyromancer school in the center of town, and they are continually raining fireballs down upon the surrounding buildings. It will be up to you to move your water carriage and fire brigade around town, putting out fires and spreading tales of your deeds to the surrounding population. You will also have the option to upgrade your fire house, get more crew, and acquire special abilities to help you better fight fires. The game will end in one of two ways, someone gets enough loyalty to the town or quarter, or the town is evacuated because of the fire, and at that point the person with the most loyalty wins. With good art and gameplay that gives you good choices while not drawing the game, I think this one is worth a look. Head to the Kickstarter page to check it out.
Another interesting game is coming from Green Couch Games called Before the Earth Explodes. The Earth is in bad shape in this game, and it’s up to you to either find the resources to fix it, or find a new place to call home. In this 2 player card game you will simultaneously select actions, with each action having different abilities and benefits. Some of these let you draw cards, gets ships, get more resources, or damage your opponent directly. And there are multiple ways you can win from eliminating your opponent, advancing all the way on the tech tree, colonizing seven planets, or satisfying the requirements for a ship card. Any way you go you will have to try and out think your opponent, because each action card has another card that blocks it, so if you are too obvious in what you are doing next, your opponent can thwart you. Plus if you take damage, you are out for the round, allowing you opponent to move forward on checked. So if you enjoy these types of games, check out the Kickstarter page for more information.
And last, but not least, we have the expansion to the quirky themed game Feudum called The Queen’s Army. What the Queen’s Army does is simply add a new AI player to the game working against the players. With this new addition you can now play the game cooperatively against the Queen, while still have a single points winner, or if you are playing solo you now have someone to play against. There are also options in this campaign to get the base game and other expansion in case you missed the original Kickstarter. So if you are looking to get into Feudum, or just want to expand your copy even more, head over to the Kickstarter page.
Myrmidon Games has launched a Kickstarter Campaign for Cubicle Raiders, a new game of inter-departmental raid and sell for 2-4 players. Players must search employee desks for office supplies, using custom dice to see how much of the indicated supplies are in the drawers. Office supplies must be turned in at the breakroom for seniority points, but only to the proper department requesting those supplies.
Seniority points can be later spent to hire new recruits to help you on your search. Be careful, because at the end of 5 days (rounds), the player with the most seniority wins. Cubicle Raiders comes with 8 Manager cards, 36 Desk Cards, 24 Recruit Cards, and 20 Department Cards for plenty of replayability.