commodity speculation

An old family-weight betting game is receiving a fresh modern facelift and premium treatment thanks to Calliope Games and Kickstarter. Station Master, designed by Chris Baylis and originally released in 2004 by Mayfair Games, is back with a new look and streamlined rules, and it’s seeking funding right now. In this game for 2-to-6 players, locomotives are arriving at a station awaiting passengers and train cars. Each turn players may add either cars or passengers to a train, with each car either adding positive or negative points to a line. Once a line fills up with cars and passengers, each player who has passengers on that line will multiply their passengers by the total value of the cars to receive points and the player with the most points at the end is the winner.

“We have restored this timeless train game, creating stunning all-new artwork based on classic locomotives, railcars, and railroad history.  In addition, we have refined and streamlined the rules for modern audiences, as well as adding in upgrades and new material to create the greatest possible Station Master experience!”

It’s a surprisingly simple to teach and learn, but even more impressively quick to play as each turn is just a matter of adding a card or a passenger here or there. It boils bluffing and speculation down to easy-to-follow figures and formats, with a theme that disarms it entirely so that it may not seem to some that they’re even playing a betting game at all. This kind simplicity, ease of play, and well-executed theme is ideal for any family-weight game, and Calliope is taking it a step further by making it look great and giving this 15 year old gem the love it deserves. If you’re interested in learning more about this new edition of Station Master, check out the Kickstarter campaign page now for full rules, reviews, photos, and community feedback.

Now on Kickstarter is Bites, a reimagining of Big Points with Ants on a Picnic theme and variable gameplay.  Bites is a highly interactive set collection game with commodity speculation that plays in 20 minutes. In Bites, players move ants along a trail of food picking up food as they travel towards the ant hill. Players can move ANY ant, but they can only move an ant to the next matching color food. Players can then collect either food item in front or behind the ant they moved. Players take turns moving ants and collecting food until all the ants have reached the ant hill.  The order of arrival to the ant hill will determine the value of each food item. The first ant to arrive will score players the most points for food in the same color as the ant, while the last ant to arrive will score the players nothing for food of the ant’s color. Scoring for chocolate and wine change every game based on the starting rules card selected for them.  Two other cards, a special rules card and the ant hill card, selected at the beginning of the game also changes how the game is played.

Bites plays 2-5 players, ages 12+, in about 20 minutes.  Contents include a 5-level ant hill, 5 wooden ants, 50 regular food tokens, 10 special food tokens, 19 cards, 11 special tokens, and rulebook.  Backers may add-on additional food tokens for a longer game. The Kickstarter Campaign runs through June 6 with an expected delivery in January 2020. Check out the Kickstarter Campaign to learn more.

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Looking Games is bringing you a new gateway game for 2-5 players. In Isle of Sky: From Chieftan to King, the players are chieftains of 5 famous clans in Isle of Skye, one of the most beautiful places in the world. The players are trying to build their kingdoms and score as many points as possible.

In each turn, each player places two tiles in front of him and specifies a price for other players. The other players can choose whether or not to buy the tiles – if no one buys it, then the seller must pay the price and lose money. Players must use all their wagering and speculation skills to come out on top.

But in the end, it’s not the richest player who wins, but the player with the best kingdom, scored by the scoring cards. The game comes with 16 scoring cards, but only 4 are used in each game, so each game is different.

Isle of Sky plays in around 45 minutes, and it’s a gateway game for the whole family. The game is illustrated by Klemens Franz. The game will contain:

  • 1 game board
  • 16 Scoring cards
  • 72 landscape tiles
  • 1 cloth bag
  • 5 score markers (wood)
  • 5 bag markers
  • 5 player screens
  • 1 round marker (wood)
  • 1 start player marker
  • 80 coins

If you’re looking for a new gateway game with tile-laying, betting, and commodity speculation, then keep an eye out for Isle of Skye, coming out this summer!

millennium blades ccg

Have you ever wanted to play a board game about playing a collectible card game? Millennium Blades, a game now on Kickstarter from Level 99 Games (Pixel Tactics, BattleCON), brings you just that.

There’s more to a collectible card game (CCG) than just playing a game. There’s the collecting, the speculating on the market of rare cards, the building decks, and the tournaments.

Millennium Blades is a board game about a fictional collectible card game, which is also called Millennium Blades. You begin the game on pre-release night with just your starter deck. You’ll open new packs, form collections, and sell your junk cards on the aftermarket to buy hot new cards. Trade with your friends, build up your deck, and prepare to compete at Millennium Blades Worlds for the title of World Champion!

There are two phases to the game – the Deckbuilding Phase and the Tournament Phase. In the first phase, players buy cards and construct their decks by trading, collecting sets, fusing cards, and more. In the Tournament Phase, players use their decks in a free-for-all battle to try to score the most victory points. There are many ways to score victory points: through tournaments, valuable collections, money from selling cards, and friendships you gain. All of these together simulate the experience of participating in a CCG.

If you and your friends (2-5 players) enjoy the idea of simulating collectible card games with a board game and want to learn more about Millenium Blades, see the Kickstarter here.