The day has come, the final two decks have been released for the popular living card game Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn – The Grave King and The Protector of Argaia join the ranks of the other deck archetypes. With these last two marks the end of the series as we know it, as these Phoenixborn complete the remaining combinations of dice among the six schools of magic within the game. The story has finished, the game has been rounded out, and the end of the era is here, but Plaid Hat is very proud of this long-running LCG and has a proper send-off in mind. Along with these last two decks is the announcement of a reprint of the base game and one final tournament to rule them all.
“To celebrate all that Ashes has given our studio and fans, we’ve organized to have one last no-holds-barred tournament here in Dallas, Texas. In association with Common Ground Games, we are pleased to announce that the Ashes Complete Your Collection Tournament will take place on Saturday, June 22nd from 12:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. There will be participation prizes including one limited edition neoprene playmat for each participant, as well as several all-new alt-art Phoenixborn cards. The winner will receive one playmat for each of the original seven Phoenixborn as well as an Ashes poster signed by designer Isaac Vega himself.”
To participant in this tournament, there is a survey you must complete which is a fine investment for the chance to be a part of the history of this game. Collectors of this series can finally complete their collections by buying these decks right now through Plaid Hat’s website or by waiting a few days to pick them up from their favorite retailer. It may be a bittersweet end to the series for some, but it an ideal one that Plaid Hat has prepared for knowing this is the best time to do it. If you are interested in learning more, check out the release on Plaid Hat’s website for details about these new decks, the tournament, and future related announcements.
The cult-favorite barbarian, Conan, is going to receive more tabletop-gaming love over the next year or so. Shinobi 7, a publisher who specializes in pop-culture IPs, announced that they required the rights to Conan for two upcoming games. The first of which, a miniatures game, will hit Kickstarter in early 2019 while the second, a competitive card game, will head straight to retail at an unspecified time that same year. As quoted from the press release:
“As a lifetime fan of Conan, I am honored to take part in the ongoing legacy of Robert E. Howard’s phenomenal body of work,” says Jason DeAngelis, publisher of Shinobi 7. “Our team of game industry veterans is developing a line of games that’s sure to delight and surprise fans of Conan andRobert E. Howard.“
It’s an interesting time to be a fan of Conan, especially after the well-received Monolith-produced miniatures adventure game and it’s expansion. I’m very curious how Shinobi 7 will differentiate their miniatures game from it’s already well-known predecessor. I’m also curious if the competitive card game will capture the same sort of pulp adventure that is synonymous with the brand, given that it’s described as involving characters within that world fighting for glory. Unfortunately, details beyond that are scarce, so only time will tell. If you are interested in learning more about either Conan-related releases, be sure to keep an eye on Shinobi 7’s website as they say that further details, components, and release dates will be on their way.
Crystal Clans, a successor if you will of Plaid Hats’ popular card game Summoner Wars, finally has a release date, and that date is March 29th. This will be a simultaneous international release so you will be able to go to your local game store and pick up copies in English, French, German, and Chinese. Crystal Clans is a new strategic card game where you are playing down cards as units, and then moving and attacking with those units on the board. Each unit has different stats as well as different abilities based on which clan they belong, like the “adaptable Water Clan, the peaceful Flower Clan, the relentless Skull Clan, the innumerable Blood Clan, the wise Meteor Clan or the unyielding Stone Clan“. You will fight hard in order to control the crystals on the battlefield, and with those be able to win the battle. You can find out more on Plaid Hats’ website, including links to their many preview articles for the game.
Tavern Masters is the latest card game being put out by Dann Kriss Games and involves you running your bar and bringing in the most money. There are three modes you can play, competitive to see who can make the most, cooperative to pool money and pay off a warlord to not kill you, or solo to see if you can pay off the tax collector in time and keep your tavern. Play is easy with first buying goods and hiring staff from your hand using your collected gold. From there you will play down any patrons that you want from your hand, those that find what the want/like at your bar will stick around for future rounds. At the end of the round you collect a gold for each patron you have, and any that don’t find what they like will be discarded. Play continues like this until someone reaches 20 gold, which triggers the final round and then whoever has the most at the end is the winner. Another nifty aspect of the game is that play is simultaneous, meaning no down time, and trading cards between people is allowed and highly encouraged.
The art of the game is quality and the game sounds like a fun filler to play before you head off on your DnD campaign. If you want to back for a copy then head on over to the campaign page.
From CoolNerdGames comes a new self-contained, spell-drafting combat game, Duel of the Magi. It would be very easy for me to call it a merging of Dominion and Magic: The Gathering, but I cannot call something a duck that doesn’t walk and talk like one despite what appearances and article tags would lead you to believe. CoolNerdGames have detailed what makes their product different, and their confidence oozes from each piece of finished art and guarantee to potential Kickstarter backers. Before I get to the nitty-gritty of what’s on offer, here’s the description straight from their campaign:
[…] Players take turns choosing spells to include or exclude from the game…Staged face-up, the cards are drafted one at a time from the board as each player builds their own customized deck of spells. Once deck building is complete, the game board is flipped over to the dueling ground side and players engage in a spell casting fight to determine the winner.
From that description, it can be easy to see how it’s different from it’s parts. Duel of the Magi is more of a living card game where the players get unique character powers and are allowed to choose their market or card pool, creating a different drafting atmosphere each game if so desired. This allows the game to have the drafting longevity of a Trading Card Game without the need of buying booster packs and at the same time avoiding the quickly drying card economy of a Living Card Game. Combat is designed to be informed and fast, due in part to the open draft all players take place in and an encouragement towards negotiation and alliances.
I wrote above that CoolNerdGames has a lot of confidence in their product and I wasn’t joking. In an absolutely impressive show of trust, they are offering a full money back guarantee to anyone who isn’t pleased with the game during the first month of owning it. That is not something a lot of funding campaigns are willing to promise! To entice potential backers even further, the community is allowed to choose the art for the final 30 to be added to the game. So if you’re at all curious about a game that’s been carefully brought to the table with artwork and business model that screams integrity, be sure to check out their Kickstarter page to find out more!