Dice Tower Newsletter

board game

dice masters 2

Gary Ray, at Black Diamond Games, writes an excellent article where he discusses the frustrations of product availability taken from a retailer standpoint.

As a consumer, I found it to be an excellent read and it really opened my eyes to the balancing act that store owners have to go through when it comes to supply and demand.

That’s where retailers are right now. No more cookie money. The hottest games of the year are worth nothing to us if we can’t put them on the shelves. We can’t even call them hot, really, because we don’t know the depth of the demand. Being the last man standing when it comes to inventory is great, but it doesn’t build your confidence in a product line. There is a sense of a “ceiling of success” when there’s a supply ceiling that can’t satisfy demand. It’s not greed, but a perceived limit to what’s possible with hard work.

Will the next Dice Masters or X-Wing release be hot? Who knows? Some say Dice Masters is done. Some have massive pre-orders in. Not only do we not know our own depths of demand, but the lack of product overall perverts the local market, driving people to our store to suck up the last dice pack or space ship. When supply is plentiful, those people are not our customers. So without a way to plumb the depths, we’re reluctant to take chances, to dive deep, on the next release, which means pre-orders are low, and the process repeats itself. Madness.

You can read about it here.


armada destroyer

Pew! Pew!

I know many of you are excited for Star Wars: Armada by Fantasy Flight Games and it will be here, all in good time.

In the meantime however, Fantasy Flight has posted an article giving gamers a preview of the combat system, mainly focusing on ship to ship combat this time around. If you’re wanting to be the best Fleet Admiral in the Imperial or Rebel fleets then stop on by and give their article a read.



USAopoly Game Announcements

monopoly hobbit

Monopoly: The Hobbit Motion Picture Trilogy

This Monopoly version will be based on the recent film trilogy. It will feature locations from the story in their quest to regain the home of Erebor.

bang heroes

Bang!: Heroes of the Storm

This game is based on the Blizzard Entertainment’s new online team brawler. The game pits heroes and villains from World of Warcraft, Diablo and StarCraft against each other.


Supernatural Ouija

This is based on the Supernatural show… I think, I’m not sure since I’ve never seen the show but it seems to be that way. Well, either way you will use the Ouija Board to find the answers you seek by contacting otherworldly realms. You may grab and pose your questions using the planchette that is included.

thedicetower logo

Congratulations to Jeffrey B – this week’s $10 Cool Stuff Inc Gift Certificate give-away winner.  Jeffrey, thank you for being a Dice Tower News subscriber.  I just sent you instructions on how to claim your prize.

Thank you to everyone that has subscribed to Dice Tower News.  We will continue to give away a $10.00 gift certificate to Cool Stuff Inc. every week.  To be qualified to win, all you need do is subscribe via the form on the right.

Thank you, also, to Cool Stuff Inc for providing our gift certificates.  Visit Cool Stuff Inc here.  Cool Stuff – Great Prices!


Chancegamer LLC brings you Monster Mansion

monster mansion

Are you in the mood to fight vampires, Zombies, Mummies, Aliens and much, much more? Then you are in luck, Monster Mansion is here to satisfy your monster hunting needs.

In Monster Hunter you will be cooperating with 2-8 players, ages 7 and up, in “real-time”. Your team will be working together to “escape” the mansion. Everyone in your team will need to survive because if any one of the team does not make it everyone loses. If that’s not enough to intrigue you, in a game of 4 or more players, a VIP and an Assassin character role will be included. The Assassin is trying to kill the VIP and if that occurs everyone will lose.

Each room will be full of surprises ranging from monsters to traps. You will encounter this dangers with various gear or potions but ultimately your fate will be decided by a die roll, “may the odds be forever in your favor.”
Chancegamer has hit their goal already but you still have 34 days (11 Nov 2014) to back them and get your very own monster mansion.

monster mansion pic

But wait, there is more!

With your backing you will also receive:

  • 15 Dungeon room tiles
  • 150+ encounter cards
  • 50+ item cards
  • 8 agenda cards
  • 8 character cards
  • 8 character miniatures (Standing Avatars)
  • 30 gold coins
  • one digital timer
  • one turn die
  • 24 HP trackers

If you interested in learning more please visit their Kickstarter page here.

Hello Readers! AEG is going to be bursting into November with some exciting game releases so let’s get right to it!


The highly talked about game Planes, by David Short, will have players taking on the roles of passengers trying to get through a crowded airport to board their plane before it takes off and leaves them behind! As in real life, this won’t necessarily be the easiest task to complete! Players will have to put up with checking in their luggage, going through security check points, grabbing a bite to eat or visiting the gift shop all while navigating the crowded airport and still being on time! Planes plays 2-4 players in about 30 minutes.

Planes is the 2nd in AEG’s “Destination Fun” Series following Trains. AEG hints at more travel titles in the future so we’ll have to wait and see!


AEG brings us back to the city of Tempest with it’s newest game, Patronize. Designed by Hisashi Hayashi (Trains), Patronize plays 3-5 players in about 20 minutes. Described as a trick taking game (love those!) players will be the head of a house that is very influential in Tempest. You’ll be giving your patronage to sculptors, painters, composers, forgers and charlatans in order to make sure your family name is remembered for their great accomplishments of the time. They key to winning is knowing when to support the right personality card at the right time or knowing when to withholding your support and passing.

With each personality card having their own strengths and weaknesses there will be multiple avenues of victory, which will bring depth and countless replays!

doomtown new town

Listen up Pardner! New Town, New Rules here in Gomorra! The first exciting expansion to Doomtown: Reloaded makes its way into town squares everywhere in November! Several cards have been spoiled already but the Saddlebag Expansion will be bringing in cards to further strengthen all four factions. Morgan Cattle Co. known for it’s massive economy, Law Dogs for their control, Sloane Gang for their brute force and the Fourth Ring for their Spells and Hexes will all benefit from this expansion. It’s an exciting time to be playing Doomtown: Reloaded so stroll on by and pop in to the Town Square! Unless yer a yellow belly…

zogworts curse

Fantasy Flight announced their fourth War Pack for the Warlord cycle, Zogwort’s Curse.  As always, you will find cards for all factions in this War Pack as it continues the major theme of empowering your Warlord in Warhammer 40000: Conquest.

Zogwort’s Curse is expected to release first quarter 2015.

zogworts cards

mountains of madness

Fantasy Flight Games released a preview of their upcoming expansion to Eldritch Horror, Mountains of Madness.  This expansion is expected to release last quarter of this year and pre-orders are currently available.  In FFG’s preview, they look at the new locations that will be available on this Antarctic sideboard expansion, like the Miskatonic Outpost, Professor Lake’s Camp, or the Frozen Waste.

FFG states that…

…In future previews, we will take a closer look at the new investigators who may join your expedition and at the bizarre, ferocious Elder Things themselves. We will also be demoing Eldritch Horror and Mountains of Madness at Arkham Nights, a celebration of Lovecraftian games that will take place October 17-18 in Roseville, MN.

mountains of madness components


sentinel tactics

Greater Than Games has announced that Sentinel Tactics has been shipped to retailers and distributors.

Some stores will already have copies in hand and on shelves by now, whereas other are just now getting their games.

The game will be shipped with promos, as well, so go and support your FLGS and get some cool promos while you are at it.

For more on this visit Greater Than Games here.

tom jolly

Tom Jolly recently wrote a blog post concerning the use of game theory to deign games. He mentions how game theory can supposedly be used to solve any situation where given a number of strategies or decisions to make, a person can optimize their decisions in order to receive the best “payout.” Payout is defined by Roger Myerson, author of Game Theory: Analysis of Conflict, as the study of mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers.

Tom also explains a game theory matrix at its simplest form; a two strategy game for two players and goes on to show how the theory matrix will look for that specific problem followed by another with some calculations to display the best odds for each player. After some more matrix talk he explains how applying this to an actual game design would not be too difficult.

So here’s an example of a game design. You have a payout matrix (obscured by your theme, hopefully) and two players each have 3 “vote” cards to play. Some victory-point tiles are laid out to the side where the costs are in meeples, food, and gold. You’ve created them so the relative values are 5, 1, and 4, respectively for those three components. Now players select cards so that the matrix element that comes up, ideally, will give them the resources to buy the maximum number of VP cards. Ah, I see I need a meeple and a gold to buy that card, so I SHOULD play this card, but my opponent will guess that and play his card to maximize his meeple payout, so I should play THIS instead.

I’ve just shared a small portion of Tom’s blog, but there is more for you to read so please visit his blog here.

You will not be disappointed, especially those that enjoy the Ludology podcast and GameTek portions of The Dice Tower podcast… Geoff Engelstein would feel right at home reading this blog.