Capstone Games

Capstone Games has announced it is partnering with Frosted Games to publish Watergate, a 2-player game from designer Matthias Cramer (Lancaster, Glen More). Featuring artwork from Klemens Franz, Watergate is a historically themed card-driven game whereby one player is a journalist trying to connect informants to the President, while the other player is the Nixon administration trying to cover up evidence and make it to the end of the presidential term. Each player will have a unique set of cards for game play.

Capstone’s announcement indicated that the game will include historical notes and context for all of the game’s cards. The game is listed for ages 12 and up, and plays in 30-60 minutes. Watergate will be available starting at Gen Con.

Splotter Spellen is a publishing house known for some of the most deep, strategic board games loved by the community, such as Roads and Boats, Food Chain Magnate and Indonesia. Unfortunately, the company is also known for small print runs, and several of their older games have become very difficult to obtain. Well one of those classics is coming back, as Capstone Games has just announced that they will be reprinting a 20th anniversary edition of Bus (1999) by Jeroen Doumen and Joris Wiersinga, one of Splotter‘s earliest games. In Bus, 3-5 players build routes with buses, trying to deliver as many people as possible to their destinations. Players can achieve this goal by expanding their routes, buying more buses, or even expanding the city to include more destinations. No official date was given, but keep an eye out for this classic.

Capstone Games is partnering with Winsome Games on a new line of games they are calling the Iron Rails series.

“The Iron Rail series from Capstone Games features games centered around investing in and building railroad networks with a focus on a specific geographic region in the world. Player interaction, route building, and stock investments are key features of the Iron Rail series.”

The first release in the Iron Rails series will be Winsome’s 2014 game, Irish Gauge. The Capstone release of Irish Gauge will maintain the original game play, but with a completely updated look featuring the artwork and graphic design of Ian O’Toole.

Irish Gauge supports 3 to 5 players, with a play time of about 60 minutes. Irish Gauge is expected to be released in the third quarter of this year. You can learn more about the game on its BGG page.

In Pipeline, players start an oil company business and focus on building an efficient pipeline network for their refineries. It’s designed by Ryan Courtney, with artwork by the incredible Ian O’Toole (known for Nemo’s War, and Vinhos). Pipeline is published by Capstone Games, and is intended for 2-4 players, aged 12+, and plays in about 120 mins.

“The refinement of oil has long been part of the government-controlled energy sector. Amassed with an incredibly complex and inefficient system of refineries, the government has felt the severe pressures of worldwide demand and the ever-increasing global standards for refinement. Unable to keep up with demand, the government has only one option: privatizing the oil industry.” [source]

While constructing their pipeline, players focus on hiring experts that provide valuable benefits over their competitors. They also manage the logistics of purchasing and selling refined oil in various markets. A carefully crafted, interweaving pipeline network is the key to end game victory.

Expect Pipeline to release in August of 2019.

Capstone Games is ready to ring in the new year with two new games coming in January.

Magnastorm is a 2-4 player tactical board game that uses a sci-fi theme and resource management to help players on their way to victory by creating suitable mining areas on the planet. Players perform actions, buy influence, manage their resources and keep an eye on their opponents to time their moves perfectly to achieve victory. At the end of the game, players receive a card that can be beneficial in future games, changing up the replayability. It is for ages 12 and up and has a 70-100 minute play time.

Fuji is a cooperative dice game in which players roll simultaneously and secretly behind screens, much like in Roll for the Galaxy. Players must use their dice and terrain cards to move to a safe village and escape the lava of Fuji. But you can only move if you match the requirement on the terrain card better than your opponent. It is a 30-60 minute play time for ages 10 and up.

You can find out more about both games here.

Capstone Games is bringing the second edition of Alexander Huemer’s 2015 Euro game Lignum to North America this summer. In Lignum, 2-4 players compete to run a 19th century lumber mill as efficiently as possible. Players need to secure the best land, hire contract workers and continually update and maintain equipment. The second edition also includes the “Joinery and Buildings” expansion, including a double sided board.

Lignum is due for release in July 2017.

Successful Kickstarter zombie microgame Bitten is coming to retail soon from PlayGrim Games. In this fast social deduction game, 2-4 players have 5 minutes to gather enough supplies to leave camp, or they need to discover which among them has been bitten. If time runs out, the bitten player gets to eat the group. Bitten comes with 21 Action cards, 7 Item cards, a Soundtrack card and the rulebook. Bitten is due for release June 21, 2017.

It’s that time of year again, the Dice Tower has announced their nominees for the best games of 2016.  These are the best of the best according to the panel of judges on games released in English in 2016.  You can see previous winners along with this year’s nominees and their pictures on the Dice Tower Awards website, and look forward to the winners being announced at Dice Tower Con later this year.  And now, your nominees:

Best Game from a New Designer  (The game has to be the designer’s first or second published game to qualify for this award)

Best Artwork

  • Arkham Horror: The Card Game – illustrated by Christopher Hosch, Ignacio Bazán Lazcano, Henning Ludvigsen, Mercedes Opheim, Zoe Robinson, and Evan Simonet; published by Fantasy Flight Games
  • Inis – illustrated by Dimitri Bielak & Jim Fitzpatrick; published by Matagot
  • Islebound – illustrated by Ryan Laukat; published by Red Raven Games
  • Kanagawa – illustrated by Jade Mosch; published by Iello
  • Scythe – illustrated by Jakub Rozalski; published by Stonemaier Games

Best Theming

  • Black Orchestra – designed by Philip duBarry; published by Game Salute
  • Captain Sonar – designed by Roberto Fraga & Yohan Lemonnier; published by Matagot
  • Roll Player – designed by Keith Matejka; published by Thunderworks Games
  • SeaFall – designed by Rob Daviau; published by Plaid Hat Games
  • Terraforming Mars – designed by Jacob Fryxelius; published by Stronghold Games & FryxGames

Best Two-Player Game

Best Reprint

Best Expansion

Best Party Game

  • Codenames: Pictures– designed by Vlaada Chvátil; published by Czech Games Edition
  • Captain Sonar – designed by Roberto Fraga & Yohan Lemonnier; published by Matagot
  • Happy Salmon – designed by Ken Gruhl & Quentin Weir; published by North Star Games
  • Junk Art – designed by Jay Cormier & Sen-Foong Lim; published by Pretzel Games
  • Secret Hitler – designed by Mike Boxleiter, Tommy Maranges, & Max Temkin; published by Goat Wolf & Cabbage

Best Cooperative Game

Best Family Game

  • Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle – designed by Forrest-Pruzan Creative, Kami Mandell, & Andrew Wolf; published by USAopoly
  • Ice Cool – designed by Brian Gomez; published by Brain Games
  • Junk Art – designed by Jay Cormier & Sen-Foong Lim; published by Pretzel Games
  • Karuba – designed by Rüdiger Dorn; published by HABA
  • Sushi Go Party! – designed by Phil Walker-Harding; published by Gamewright

Best Strategy Game

  • A Feast for Odin – designed by Uwe Rosenberg; published by Z-Man Games
  • Great Western Trail – designed by Alexander Pfister; published by Stronghold Games & eggertspiele
  • Scythe – designed by Jamey Stegmaier; published by Stonemaier Games
  • Star Wars: Rebellion – designed by Corey Konieczka; published by Fantasy Flight Games
  • Terraforming Mars – designed by Jacob Fryxelius; published by Stronghold Games & FryxGames

Best Board Game Production

  • Conan – designed by Frédéric Henry, Antoine Bauza, Pascal Bernard, Bruno Cathala, Croc, Ludovic Maublanc, & Laurent Pouchain; published by Monolith
  • The Others – designed by Eric M. Lang; published by Cool Mini or Not
  • Mechs vs. Minions – designed by Chris Cantrell, Rick Ernst, Stone Librande, Prashant Saraswat, & Nathan Tiras; published by Riot Games
  • Scythe – designed by Jamey Stegmaier; published by Stonemaier Games
  • Star Wars: Rebellion – designed by Corey Konieczka; published by Fantasy Flight Games

Most Innovative Game

Best Game from a Small Publisher  (The published must have published five or fewer games at the beginning of 2015)

  • Arkwright – designed by Stefan Risthaus; published by Capstone Games
  • Cottage Garden– designed by Uwe Rosenberg; published by Edition Spielwiese
  • Not Alone – designed by Ghislain Masson; published by Geek Attitude Games
  • Roll Player – designed by Keith Matejka; published by Thunderworks Games
  • Vast: The Crystal Caverns – designed by David Somerville; published by Leder Games

Game of the Year

  • Adrenaline – designed by Filip Neduk; published by Czech Games Edition
  • Captain Sonar – designed by Roberto Fraga & Yohan Lemonnier; published by Matagot
  • Cry Havoc– designed by Grant Rodiek, Michał Oracz, & Michał Walczak; published by Portal Games
  • A Feast for Odin – designed by Uwe Rosenberg; published by Z-Man Games
  • Great Western Trail – designed by Alexander Pfister; published by Stronghold Games & eggertspiele
  • Inis – designed by Christian Martinez; published by Matagot
  • Mechs vs. Minions – designed by Chris Cantrell, Rick Ernst, Stone Librande, Prashant Saraswat, & Nathan Tiras; published by Riot Games
  • Scythe – designed by Jamey Stegmaier; published by Stonemaier Games
  • Star Wars: Rebellion – designed by Corey Konieczka; published by Fantasy Flight Games
  • Terraforming Mars – designed by Jacob Fryxelius; published by Stronghold Games & FryxGames

Lots of games to go through so lets get right to it, first on the list is a new creation from Seth Jaffe and Tasty Minstrel Games called Crusaders.  The object of the game is to spread the influence of your Order far and wide before the king begins to fear your power, and disbands them all, ending the game.  You will accomplish different actions through your own personal rondel of different actions and action cubes you move using a mancala mechanic.  Throughout the game you will be upgrading the spaces on your board, building buildings, and doing all you can to spread your influence.  Be the greatest order of them all before their collapse, and you will be the winner.  Look for this game in September of this year.

Next from TMG is an import in the form of Okey Dokey from famed designer Hisashi Hayashi.  This is a cooperative game of animals trying to put on a show, a music show.  Each player will have a hand of cards and they need to play these cards down in a 5×10 grid.  The difficulty comes from the placement restrictions and the fact your can’t tell anyone what you have, but you can drop hints.  Look for this small game on store shelves in September.

Next is the reprint of the train stock market game, American Rails.  In American Rails you are a wealthy capitalist managing a portfolio of stocks and bonds in six different in game rail companies.  You will be negotiating, trading, and expanding these companies in order to gain the most money.  Whoever is richest at the end will be the winner.  This reprint should be hitting stores in May of this year.

Also coming in May from Capstone Games is the latest edition of Xanadu, a highly interactive card game.  Like a lot of games the object is to gain the most money, but to do that you need to sell buildings.  But to build those buildings you need to send workers to other buildings to gain resources, which you can do on your own cards or your opponents.  You can even sabotage your opponents, making this a rather cutthroat game.

From Z-Man Games we have a new game announced called Valletta that will be coming out in July.  In the game you are building a town in the baroque era, utilizing a deck building mechanic to get you resources and perform actions.  In this game you don’t buy new cards, you build new buildings and you will get new cards that strengthen your deck, pushing you closer to victory.  But like all good deck building type games, at some point you have to turn from resource generating to turning the resources into the points needed to win.  Check out the preview on Z-man’s site to find out more about this new game.

Next is a game coming out very soon, and that is Oktoberfest from Rio Grande Games.  This is a card game all about serving beer to thirsty patrons during Oktoberfest.  There are twelve tents in the game and you will be playing down patrons in those tents trying to buy up the right beer out of the 6 available.  When a tent closes the most recent beer bought there will score, giving the most points to the majority holder of that beer.  All twelve tents will never be closed so you have to time things right to reap the most points and emerge the winner.

Coming soon from Pandasaurus Games we have the latest social deduction game called Red Scare.  This is all about the FBI exposing the communists out to bring down our way of life.  You will have to investigate and accuse those you know and expose their darkest secrets, and maybe you have some secrets of your own!  Look for this game to come out in September of this year.

Finally, also from Pandasaurus Games, is the trick-taking style card game called King’s Life.  In this game the king has a hard life, and so to keep himself from going nuts he alternates his days of royal duties with days of completely goofing off.  It’s your job as part of his court to make sure he is able to both fulfill his duties, and party hard.  Not much else has been said about this game, so we will have to wait for more info as the September release date approaches.