Dice Tower Newsletter

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Embark on an adventure in a land where dinosaurs and humans live together, guide lost dinos safely to their farm, and create a remarkable story to tell.

Jason Heath, Game on 23rd founder and the author of Unstable, has launched a Kickstarter campaign for Mr. Fossil’s Dino Farm. Inside the box, you will find four educational games full of cute dinosaurs that, while aiming to improve memory and develop imagination, expose children to the world of prehistoric creatures.

Apart from a memory game that asks brave adventurers to find all the different dinos, the package includes Dino Match during which players pair dinos together, two puzzles that invite children to explore Dino Farm and its surroundings, and, finally, a storytelling game inviting everyone to be creative (or just plain silly) in order to illustrate what happens to the dinos.

Mr. Fossil’s Dino Farm is scheduled to arrive to backers in July. The basic pledge includes 9 board tiles, 9 story cards, 4 character cards, and 24 dino cards. Among the additional pledge rewards is also an expansion package that contains more dinos and story cards. If you are interested, you can find more information on the Kickstarter campaign by clicking here.

 

New releases continue to be announced, and this time around we have a game that everyone is looking forward to.  That game is the latest in the legacy style games, Charterstone, from Stonemaier Games and set for release in September of this year.  Charterstone aims to take the legacy system and use it as a way to fashion a truly unique game that once you are done can be played over and over.  Another interesting aspect to this game is that there is no rulebook, you just start playing the game and it will teach you the rules as you go along.  I am very much looking forward to this game, although with tempered enthusiasm after Seafall failed to live up to expectations.

Next is the reprint and update to 5th edition of Alien Frontiers, the dice worker placement game that put Kickstarter on the board game map.  Not much was said about what has changed, but I imagine little errors and updates were made to create this new edition.  Also being released will be the Factions expansion as well as all 7 of the mini expansions for the game.  Look for all of these on store shelves at the end of the year in December.

Another new release to retail is the notoriously difficult video game become board game, Dark Souls.  Currently it’s only the base game getting a release date right now but if you missed the Kickstarter, you will be able to start your Dark Souls collection in April.  I have no doubt that as time goes on, all the expansions sets and such that were unlocked in the Kickstarter will hit retail so we will have to be patient for those.

Next is a much needed reprint, and that is the second edition of Amun-Re, a classic game from well known board game designer, Reiner Knizia.  Tasty Minstrel Games will be publishing this edition and will feature updated art and tweaks/revisions to rules and board from the first edition.  Look for this game to hit store shelves in March, so brush up on those pyramid building skills in the mean time.

Then we have another Kickstarter game hitting retail and that is the wonderfully blue (color not mood) game called Lisboa.  In Lisboa you are the nobles of the city trying to rebuild after getting hit by multiple disasters at once, effectively leveling the city.  You will be building buildings, restarting commerce, and influencing others to re-open the new Lisboa.  Look for this game from Eagle – Gryphon Games on store shelves later this year in June.

After that we have a new expansion for the Tasty Minstrel game Flip City, called Flip City: Wildness.  This expansion takes you out of the city into the great outdoors, where you can further develop your city and offer your residents a way to get away from it all.  This expansion come with 78 new cards, enough that you can play with this expansion by itself, or combine it with the standard game for even more variety.  Look for this on store shelves in March of this year.

And finally, we have a new entry from IDW in the 8-bit inspired Random Encounter series of games called Random Encounter: Seas of the Sea Chicken.  The game is billed as “part poker, part tactical combat” and features all new cards and even some new mechanics compared to the previous game.  However, even with these new changes, the game is still fully compatible with the first game so you will be able to play with one or both of them at the same time.  Look for this game on store shelves in May.

 

[UPDATE: Lisboa was listed as releasing this month when actual date is in June]

Zen Bins has made a name for itself as an inexpensive and yet effective storage solution for collectible dice games like Dice Masters and the newly released Destiny.  Both have a need to be able to not only store some cards, but also a good number of dice to field with those cards. In Destiny’s case, tokens as well.  So Zen Bins is Kickstarting an update to their previous system with spots for tokens to be stored along with the cards and dice.  An interesting add-on that they have to offer this time around is the blinder, this allows you to keep your dice hidden so that they aren’t visible to your opponent until the game starts.

Having used their previous model to store my Dice Masters I can say that they are very good quality for the money and do exactly what they set out to do.  So Destiny players should check out their Kickstarter page and pledge for a set.

The Creativity Hub, the folks behind the popular Rory’s Story Cubes line, have plans for the new year that include new games and some new people.  The new people being brought on board are Patrick Nickell, founder of Crash Games, and Michael Fox from the Little Metal Dog Show podcast.  Both of them have many years of experience in the gaming industry and the Creativity Hub hopes to leverage that experience as they oversee the game development process.  And we will get to see if the change bears fruit as two new game releases are slated for this year that will be overseen by them.  Nothing is known about them as of yet but they will be showcased at the New York Toy Fair and other game fairs as the year goes on, ending with their release at Essen.  So keep an eye out for more information as it becomes available, and wish both Patrick and Michael the best of luck in their new positions.  You can read the full press release from The Creativity Hub below.

PRESS RELEASE: MONDAY, FEBRUARY 13th, 2017.

The Creativity Hub has built a reputation these past few years for designing intelligent, playful games that are full of heart. Rory’s Story Cubes® is connecting millions around the world through the power of storytelling, while The Extraordinaires® Design Studio is helping children develop the empathy and creative thinking skills they need to navigate an increasingly complex and divided world.

It’s easy to become complacent, but the world is ever changing. With that in mind, we have set ourselves a design challenge for 2017, to build upon what we’ve done in the past and push our mission further. We plan to develop game titles that bring people together, challenge assumptions and encourage players to view themselves and the world around them in new ways.

And we’re really, REALLY excited.

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“We never set out to become game designers; we just wanted to share Rory’s Story Cubes® with the world. However, its runaway success has taught us many lessons about game design, manufacturing and what it takes to create a successful play experience.” – Rory O’Connor, co-founder of The Creativity Hub

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With that in mind, we are proud to announce that Patrick Nickell (Founder of Crash Games) and Michael Fox (Little Metal Dog Show) will be joining us, bringing with them their years of game industry experience to this brand new direction for the company.

Patrick and Michael will be responsible for overseeing the game development pipeline, starting with two brand new releases at this year’s Essen Spiel in Germany.  We’ll be previewing these new games to a select few at shows and conventions in Europe and the United States, beginning with the New York Toy Fair later this week. If you’d like to check them out, you can contact us to organise interviews.

We will also be drawing on their experience to further develop retail and distribution channels in North America for The Extraordinaires® and StoryWorlds™ product lines.

Once again, we’re really excited. We’re planning to explore new concepts and create new things that are rarely seen in the world of tabletop gaming, and that is what drives us. We can’t wait to show you what we’re working on, and hope you’ll join us for this incredible journey.

The Dutch East Indies is a new Kickstarter Campaign from Martin Looij (Scuba) and Keep Exploring Games, wherein 2-4 players move their trading ships around islands on the board to trade in spice. Players can trade spices with wild islands, battle their opponents and upgrade their ships, while avoiding the two pirates on the board. Players win by delivering 8 spices back home on their two ships, either through legitimate means, or perhaps otherwise.

The Dutch East Indies comes with a custom navigation 8-sided die, cardboard ships, spice cubes, coins, markers and tokens. A deluxe version of the game is available with large plastic ship models, metal coins and wooden spice tokens. The game is designed to be fast (45-90 minutes) and simple, yet strategic.

The Kickstarter for The Dutch East Indies will continue through March 17, and is scheduled to deliver to backers October 2017. For more information or to back The Dutch East Indies, click here.

Soaring Rhino has started a Kickstarter Campaign for Shifting Realms, a 2-4 player competitive tile and card game by Jeff Van Ness and Craig Van Ness, the lead designer of Heroscape. In Shifting Realms, the players create a mixed game world with structure tiles, story and task cards, and a board from 3 different realms.

The players then play as one of 4 unique factions, sending out scouts and soldiers, building structures and completing world specific tasks. When 2 of the 3 worlds’ end game conditions are met, the game ends and the player with the most victory points wins. Shifting Realms comes with boards, tiles and cards for 5 worlds, plastic cubes and meeples for the 4 factions, over 100 plastic resource pieces, and a scoring track.

The Kickstarter will continue until March 12, and is due to deliver to backers July 2017. For more information or to back the campaign, click here.

Congratulations to Conor M, this week’s winner of a $10.00 gift certificate to Cool Stuff Inc. Just prior to posting this announcement, Conor was emailed instructions on how to claim his certificate.

Thank you to everyone that’s subscribed to our news! We hope that you’re enjoying the content provided and that it’s been informative.

We’d also like to express our gratitude towards Cool Stuff Inc for providing the gift certificates! We’ve given away hundreds of dollars so far! You can visit Cool Stuff’s web site here.

HABA Games continues to move further into the family game market, this time with an expansion to the 2015 game Adventure Land. The expansion has players returning to the land of King Agamis with Adventure Land: King and Princess:

King Agamis and the inhabitants of the land are in an uproar as the fog creatures have kidnapped the princess! She is being held somewhere in Adventure Land and is being closely guarded by the powerful giant. Who will be the first to collect all the keys, find out where the princess is being held, and then have enough combat strength to defeat the terrifying giant?

Three new challenges will await adventurers, adding to the original three included in the base game. Players will now be able to tackle the following adventures:

  • “Kidnap of the princess”
  • “Uprising of the Fog Creatures”
  • “Rescuing the King.”

In the original Adventure Land game players moved their adventurers tactically to collect resources, gather treasure and bravely fight fog creatures to win the favor of the king. Now characters will use those same mechanics to kelp King Agamis rescue his daughter.

The expansion has been created by award winning game designers Wolfgang Kramer and Michael Riesling who were the designers of the original Adventure Land game.

Traditionally known for wooden baby and children’s toys as well as children’s games, in 2015 Haba Games released a trio of family weight games; Spookies, Karuba and Adventure Land. Karuba was subsequently nominated for a 2016 Spiel des Jahres award.

Mayday Games and Lifestyle Boardgames have started a Kickstarter Campaign for Macroscope, a2-6 player image deduction game. Macroscope features a unique cardboard apparatus which allows the players to see small pieces of an image card. The players try to be first to guess the image, and players who guess with fewer windows gain greater rewards. Macroscope comes with 400 image cards, giving great replayability, and the Kickstarter Campaign will be open until February 27, 2017.

Macroscope is expected to deliver to backers in September 2017. You can see the Kickstarter Campaign for Macroscope here.