Pocket Box Games, as they sound, are games designed for and packaged in small plastic boxes that are easily transported so you can bring them with you anywhere. How big are the boxes? They measure a mere 4.25 inches in one direction, 7.25 inches in the other, and only 2 inches thick. This puts it in the same size class as the Tiny Epic series of games, meaning they will be highly portable and you could easily bring several of them without much effort. But enough about the box, what about the games?
The games they are packaging in these boxes are what really bring back the 80’s as they are reprinting classic SJG titles for these boxes. The initial titles (not including stretch goals) are Illuminati, Ogre, GEV, Battlesuit, Car Wars, Truck Stop, and Crash City. Also since they are wanting to really relive the time, they are making minimal to no additions or changes to these games so they will play like they did back in the day, although with a “2019 Reproduction” stamp on components so you can tell editions apart. However, they did depart from the original in one way, and that’s the price. Each pocket box game will cost you $20 plus shipping, with discounts for buying in sets of 4. Also available are just empty pocket boxes themselves, that way if you have the original but the box is beat up and busted, you can just get the new and improved box at $10 per pair of boxes.
So if you are looking for some gold from Steve Jackson Games’ past in a brand new box, check out the Kickstarter page today!
Although Steve Jackson Games does not have any shareholders (other than Steve Jackson himself), it does have a lot of people that take part in its success. The company refers to these folks as stakeholders and their annual report is directed towards them (employees, distributors, retailers, designers, artists, volunteers, and people who play their games). The annual Stakeholders Report gives a transparent look at some of the inner workings of Steve Jackson Games.
Munchkin and Zombie Dice, the evergreen games of the Steve Jackson Games (SJG) lineup, dropped to $5.5 million (down $500,000) from last year. Even with the drop in sales of these titles, SJG anticipates a break even or slightly profitable year. Due to the decline in sales, SJG plans to try and keep the top ten Munchkin games and expansions available at all times, but everything else will see out-of-stock times with the possibility of going away for the immediate future.
SJG is making slow progress with their employee manual and acknowledges the need to finish this to have more established processes in-house. Additionally, the company is having a hard time meeting deadlines without involvement from upper management.
Those were the low points of 2017, but there were some high points, too. The Fantasy Trip, a roleplaying game, is being worked on for Kickstarter. This is Jackson’s first RPG from 1977, published by Metagaming. When Metagaming went out of business, the rights to the game were in limbo, but SJG has since secured the rights.
Munchkin still receives a lot of attention from SJG and Munchkin Shakesphere, Munchkin Spell Skool, and the Munchkin Gift Pack all did well in 2017. The Munchkin Collectible Card Game is set to go on sale on February 21, 2018, as well and is receiving a lot of attention due to the collaboration from Eric Lang and Kevin Wilson.
Steve Jackson Games also partnered with CMON and Asmodee Digital. Their partnership with CMON allows CMON to create Munchkin-themed board games. Their partnership with Asmodee Digital is aimed at bringing a Munchkin video game to fans.
In addition to all of these exciting things, the Ogre Video Game launched in October, Munchkin Valentines sold well, the forums remain active, and GURPS added on-demand printing to Amazon.
SJG saw mixed success/failure with the Ogre Miniatures Set 1 (behind on delivery), Ogre Reinforcements (slow sales), and Ghosts Love Candy (reprint was stopped). SJG changed their staffing structure to try to focus the creative team on making games, but it didn’t work out as planned and the company is exploring new ideas.
Steve Jackson Games saw failure with the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (took a lot of time from upper management and is costly, but selling well), Port Royal (cheaper European copies are outselling SJG copies), and sjgames.com (it’s an old site that requires a lot of attention).
SJG’s priorities for 2018 are to support the Munchkin CCG, complete all outstanding Kickstarter commitments, maintain support of the original Munchkin games with a new tuck box expansion set and two or three new base games, and launch a successful new edition of Car Wars on Kickstarter with a 2019 or 2020 delivery date.
There’s more covered in the Stakeholder’s report, but this gives a glimpse at 2017 for Steve Jackson Games.
Last year, Steve Jackson Games reported in their 2015 Report to the Stakeholders that they wanted Car Wars Sixth Edition in stores by Black Friday 2016. This goal required the game to be sent for printing by July 2, and this month SJGames announced they would be pushing this back until 2017.
What does this mean for those patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for the release? The base game is reported to have been able to meet the original deadline for a Christmas release, but the game would not have had support for a while after that. What SJGames is doing instead is completing the first six months of supplements and expansions before the base game releases, and already be working on the next six months. Even though this delays the base launch, it will be much better for retailers, players, and the game itself to have a steady flow of content ready for release.
Car Wars (sixth edition) will have three points of entry and has a simple creative directive: Cars. With. Guns. A Two-player Wasteland Starter set, Two Player Arenas Starter set, and Four-Player Car Wars game will be available. Combine all three and there is enough for eight players. SJGames is planning to fund Car Wars Sixth Edition in an upcoming Kickstarter project, as well as an anthology set of fiction telling a story centered on each faction, with bonus rewards for those who back both projects.
Head over to Steve Jackson Games website for more details on the upcoming game and to read the delay announcement.
Steve Jackson Games, the makers of Munchkin, have launched a kickstarter campaign for one of their labors of love Car Wars Arenas. This, like their other kickstarter campaign OGRE Collectors Edition, is a love letter to those that have been playing these games on pencil and paper since the 1980’s. Up until now these games required you to draw maps yourself.
As part of this project they are offering the classic Car Wars as well as Car Wars Arenas which is as the name suggests the printed arena tracks. As part of their campaign they are initially offering 5 maps. If this campaign hits it s first stretch goal at 75k they will instantly double the game from 5 to 10 maps and additional stretch goals add more maps, some dice, and additional counters for debris and dropped weapons.
With the OGRE campaign Steve Jackson underestimated costs on production but made good on their promises and delivered something spectacular to backers. As I mentioned before this is truly a labor of love and it is pretty clear that SJG wants to deliver something well worth any investment by backers. As with any kickstarter project there are inherent risks in backing. But those risks are more likely to be in the realm of delayed delivery in this case than them simply not delivering at all.
For full details and to back the campaign head over to the kickstarter page here.
Steve Jackson Games is bringing Car Wars to Kickstarter with Car Wars Arenas – a set of five one sided arena Maps, printed in Car Wars Classic scale (22″x34″) with a booklet detailing each arena’s special features and rules that will include popular variants such as AADA pro circuit and corporate team dueling among others. These arenas have been previously released in other Car Wars supplements, but never before in this scale.
The kickstarter launches on March 31, 2015. Find more information (including pledge levels) at:
You can read more on the publishers page here.
AUSTIN, Texas (April 23, 2014) – Rev those engines and load up the rocket launchers – Car Wars is coming back, with old hand Scott Haring in the driver’s seat. Haring, the former editor or Autoduel Quarterly magazine, the developer of Deluxe Car Wars, and the author and editor of many more titles released in the game’s heyday, will serve as Car Wars Line Editor for publisher Steve Jackson Games.
When SJ Games launched the amazing Ogre Designer’s Edition campaign on Kickstarter, one of the stretch goals was a promise to produce a Kickstarter-backed edition of Car Wars. As line editor, Haring will be working with the Kickstarter contributors in moving Car Wars into the 21st century of game design and the 22nd century of game worlds.
“I’m thrilled to be back,” Haring said. “Car Wars was the game that got me started in the industry, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth and all, so being part of the relaunch of this tabletop classic will be exciting beyond belief.”
“This has been in the works for quite a while,” said Phil Reed, Chief Operating Officer. “Steve and I knew we’d need a dedicated Car Warsperson if we were going to do the game justice, and we wanted someone we knew could handle it. Scott was the right choice.”
The first step will be a re-release of Car Wars 4th Edition and the Mini Car Wars starter pack while Haring begins working with the dedicated autoduelling fans from Kickstarter nation to bring the Car Wars experience back to prominence. Drive Offensively!
About Steve Jackson Games
Steve Jackson Games, based in Austin, Texas, has been publishing games, game books, and magazines since 1980. Its best-selling game is Munchkin, with well over 5 million copies of the games and supplements in print worldwide. Other top sellers are GURPS (the Generic Universal RolePlaying System), Zombie Dice, and Illuminati. Past hits have included Car Wars and Toon. Steve’s very first game, Ogre, originally released in 1977, drew almost a million dollars’ worth of Kickstarter support in 2012 for a super-deluxe edition, which was released in late 2013.