The base game is set in 1940’s Los Angeles where players take on the role of LAPD Homicide detectives as they are taken along a narrative-driven experience and attempt to solve 9 different cases. Each detective is competing to be the first to solve the case. However, one player is The Chisel who is attempting to misdirect the players! If you want a cooperative experience, there is a mode for that as well.
Detective: Smoke and Mirrors adds 4 new cases to the game (originally 3 but the stretch goal was reached). These cases are more complex and challenging than the cases from the base game with new mechanics, new types of cards, and new requirements to solve the case! Instead of just identifying the guilty suspect, the murder weapon, and the motive, players will now also have to identify each additional accomplice that was involved as well as where the next crime could take place.
For more information, check out their Kickstarter campaign here.
Modiphius Entertainment is coming out with a brand new game, Agatha Christie- Death on the Cards designed by Dr. Thomas Rawlings from Auroch Digital. This is a 2-6 player cooperative game that stays true to the classic stories written by Agatha Christie. Players will work together to solve a murder mystery, but there is a twist! One of the players is the murderer and will attempt to stay hidden, but all players have dark secrets in this thrilling card game.
Components include 80 cards consisting of 18 secret cards, 25 detective cards, 22 event cards, 4 devious cards, 10 “Not so Fast” cards, and 1 Murderer Escapes! card.
This game is set to hit retail this Christmas and you will be able to give it a try at UK GAMES EXPO, GENCON, and ESSEN SPIEL.
With the new year comes new game announcements, and AbacusSpiele isn’t holding back on theirs.
First on the list is the next game in the 3 Secrets line, this time called Crime Time. In the 3 Secrets game there is one person who is the informant and knows the truth behind the crime, and it’s up to the rest of the players to question them to get clues. Get enough clues and you can reveal the 3 secrets and solve the case! Not much has changed with this new one except for the setting, which this time has you playing time traveling cops, going back in time to solve the mysteries of the time. This game will be available in February of 2019.
Pearls is a new hand management style game where you are divers trying to dive for the most valuable pearls. But the more valuable the pearl is, the fewer there are, and when you surface you only score the cards showing the same number and color. But don’t just chuck the lower value pearls, those can be combined into necklaces for bonus points, helping you getting closer to victory. Do all this within a 10 card hand limit and you just might win the game. This game will be available in March of this year.
Next we have the latest in the Deckscape line, and that is Deckscape: Behind the Curtain. In this version of the game you are the recipient of tickets to see the final magic show the great Lance Oldman. As the show goes on you start to figure out the tricks behind his magic, but then the show takes a surprising twist! Now you have to uncover all the magician’s secrets if you want to escape. Look for this to be available in February of 2019.
Next we have a re-implementation of the game Dancing Eggs, called Crazy Eggz. This is a fun kids game where you will be grabbing and trying to hold on to a bunch of eggs, but where you have to hold them is determined by the roll of a die. Will you they be between your knees? In the crook of your elbow? Will you have to cluck or be silent? You will have to roll the dice and do what they say until you can hold 5 eggs and be crowned the winner. This is the latest release they announced so far with it coming out in May of this year.
And finally we have a trio of Sherlock games called Death on the 4th of July, Last Call, and The Curse of the Qhaqya. These are deduction games similar to 3 Secrets, but this time no one knows the truth and so you will all have to figure it out together. Everyone will have a hand of clue cards and on your turn you will decide if you want to play it out on the table, or discard it. Played out cards are clues that you have collected and can help you solve the case or, if they end up being irrelevant, lose you points at the end. You are free to talk about any of the cards you have in your hand, but while they are in your hand the information you can give out is incomplete and may not give the full picture. Solve the case and catch the killer before he gets away! Look for all three of these to be available in February of 2019.
In an alternative near future, Badass Force is the name of the most popular live show of the ultra-net. Like The Ninja Warriors before it and Big Brother before that, contestants go into a battle arena, not as themselves, but as someone else. Before the show became a household name, historical leaders were pitted against one another. All due to the holographic projects suits the contestants ware. Yes, holographic technology is here and over the course of many years, many players have gone head to head, taken on the looks and skill of Napoleon, Julius Caesar, Vlad The Impaler and even Cleopatra.
But after a large fire, all historical documents were lost and data destroyed. And the show runners had to find something else to reference. Now, our culture is now limited to the action movies of the end of 20th century / early 21st century and many of those recordings have deteriorated. And it is these distorted figured that are now used in the arena. As well as “Guns, Attitude and Bluffing.” This week you have finally been selected and it is your turn to fulfill your destiny and prove you are the most Badass in Badass Force!
This is the premise for the ultimate bluffing (or not) party game that will have you quoting and laughing at the table. Being brought to Kickstarter by a new company Funky Sheep.
The game has been in development for a number of years by it’s designer Ghislain Masson, who’s first big hit was Not Alone. It even was going to be published at the same time as Not Alone but was put on the side by one game publisher and picked up by Funky Sheep.
The game is a combat/deduction/bluffing game, where players will be disguised as a character from an action film from the 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s. Loading up weapons and using them to dastardly effect, by eliminating the other character chosen by the other players. Eliminating characters will give you point and diminish the hand of characters that your opponents have. But with all this elimination, there is no player elimination, as you can redraw your hand of cards and continue playing. This time, in Revenge Mode. This makes the characters powers more powerful. And it is these powers that are the heart of the game. As well as being thematic in the game, they also make the game very strategic.Making every decision a difficult but fun one, as telling the truth, bluffing or even calling someones bluff will lead to an action packed time at the table.
The Kickstarter is running from the 20th of November to the 13th of December and will probably feature more characters in the form of stretch goals. Follow along on Kickstarter or Facebook. And you can always check out how to play with Dan King
Eagle-Gryphon Games invites you to enjoy the nostalgia of the 1950s. No, not the Happy Days of the 1950s, but the fear and anxiety of a nuclear war! In This is Only a Test, players must prepare the family for the coming end, but they do not know how the game will end or when it will end. And how it ends determines how each family must be prepared. Players may decide to invest in their survivability. Or they may decide to invest in the stockpiles. Or they may decide to take advantage of the panic to turn a nice profit and buy some nice stuff. There simply is not enough time or resources for players to prepare for everything. Players may try to gather information to learn more about what fate awaits them or influence the timeline to an outcome that best suits their preparation. When the end does come, the player who is most prepared for the type of ending is the winner. There is a separate victory condition if this turns out to only be a test.
This is Only a Test plays 1-4 players, ages 10+ in 45-60 minutes. Contents include 4 nuclear families (meeples and player board), 3 leader cards, 12 player aids, 8 activation tokens, 1 timeline board, city hall board, 30 panic mini-cards, 24 equipment cards, 15 event cards, and 66 supply cards. To learn more, check out the Kickstarter campaign, which runs through 21 November with an expected delivery in October 2019.
Chiyo’s Secret is an upcoming game from designer J.B. Howell and published by WizKids. Checking a distributor’s page and its BGG listing have given me some reasons for excitement for Chiyo’s Secret. What peeked my interest in this hidden role game is that its BGG summation brought out feelings of recent classic games like Coup and Love Letter:
“You are a noble ally of the daimyo, perhaps with a secret agenda of your own… Chiyo’s Secret has four teams: Loyal Allies, who seek to capture Chiyo and Fusanobu and send them to be executed for their crimes; Usurpers, who seek to lure Fusanobu and the Daimyo into a trap and seize power for themselves; Betrayers, who seek to betray the Daimyo and present Chiyo and Fusanobu to the Shogun instead; and the lone Motonaka who seeks to protect his parents, hiding them until the Shogun arrives.”
If this intrigues you as well you can already learn the backstory and how to play this 5-8 player, 45-60 minute game as the final rules are already posted and show off the art and components as well.
J.B. Howell may not be a famous board game designer yet, but 2019 may change that, with two other WizKids games scheduled to release, as well as at least three from other publishers. One of which, Reavers of Midgard by Grey Fox Games, the newest game in their Champions of Midgard universe, may be cause for some series fans to check out Chiyo’s Secret to examine Howell’s design skills. I am equally interested in another 2019 release of Howell’s called Papillon, which combines butterflies and flowers in a game of set collection, tile placement, and area control/area influence into a unique looking package.
Gamers will starter to gather information and seek out others to complete their objectives in January 2019 when Chiyo’s Secret is scheduled to release.
Renegade Games and Foxtrot Games (Fox in the Forest, Lanterns: The Harvest Festival) have announced Spy Club, a cooperative deduction game coming in July 2018. In Spy Club, 2-4 players work together to collect clue cards. When 5 clues of the same aspect (Motive, Suspect, Location, Crime, Object) have been collected, that portion of the mystery is solved. The players win when all 5 aspects of the case are deduced, but be careful not to take too long as the suspect is on the move. The game can also be played in a campaign mode, where each separate game adds one aspect to the master case, and further unlocks cards from the 150+ campaign deck. Spy Club has high replayability, with 40 modules included in the box. For more information on Spy Club, check out Renegade Games’ website here.
The classic crime-scanning board game from 1979, Stop Thief!, was renewed by Restoration Games in 2017 via Kickstarter and brought into the modern era by replacing it’s electronic component with a mobile app. 2 to 4 players compete to capture thieves who invisibly wander the board, hinting at their location with little more than the sounds of their movements. The beloved gameplay of the original was polished, but the feelings it evoked were expertly preserved. During it’s Kickstarter campaign, a few stretch goals were unlocked to add modes of play that didn’t exist in the previous edition, all of which take advantage of it’s app-based integration and modern game mechanics. One of those, a cooperative mode, is available now and just requires an updateto the app to play! As announced by Justin D. Jacobson via Restoration Games’ press release:
“In this new mode, two to four players work together to take down the “Atlantic 7” before they make off with a pile of loot. Cooperative mode offers an exciting new play style that many players enjoy even more than the traditional competitive mode. The new mode uses components in the original game and requires no new components.”
I’ve already played this new mode a few times with friends and family before writing this, and I have to commend the team at Restoration Games for succeeding to implement a fresh, fun, engaging, and challenging alternate way to play. Now Stop Thief! can appeal to a wider audience, and for something that’s as simple as a free app update it adds a tremendous amount of value to an already quality product. There is actually still a few more modes on the way (a 1-vs-all mode where a player controls the thief and a solo mode), and if they are anywhere near as good as what we’ve seen thus far then that bodes well for this finely-adapted title. If you are interested in Stop Thief! and Restoration Games future releases, including it’s upcoming crowdfunding campaign for Fireball Island, be sure to check out their website for more information.
Deep Water Games is a new company debuting on Kickstarter, and they are making a splash by announcing their partnership with EmperorS4, as well as funding their latest game, Herbalism. Herbalism is a deduction game where you are trying to figure out what ingredients are needed in order to cure the pandemic ravaging the area. At the start of the game you will remove two of the 14 ingredients games from the game, and then deal out the remaining cards to the other players. From there it is now up to you to use the various actions on the table to gather information to figure out the cure. You can trade cards where you give one color and receive another in return, give someone a color to find out how many of another color they have, and ask for different combinations of cards. Although you will be getting most of the information, other players will be getting some as because color choice is picked openly on the board, so don’t give away too much info. When you think you know the cure you can make your guess, if others believe you know the cure they can follow to score points as well. If you are correct you get 3 points and the round ends, but if you are wrong you are out for the round and play continues until eithr everyone is wrong, or someone gets it right. You will keep playing until someone reaches 7 points as there are other ways to gain and lose points throughout the game. In total a game should take between 15 to 30 minutes so this would be a good addition in any game night.
A base pledge of only $19 will get you this filler game, but if you go all in with $59, you will not only get this game, but also Shadows in Kyoto, Crows Overkill, and Hanzi. So if you are a fan of EmperorS4 games, or looking for a light deduction game to fill some time, check out this Kickstarter today.
Things are returning to normal in the land of crowd funding, so here are some more campaigns for you to check out. First one the list is the latest expansion set for the Red Dragon Inn, and that’s the Red Dragon Inn 7. This new set finally brings the tavern workers into the mix, so now you will be able to see if the servers can keep up with their patrons. Red Dragon Inn is a game all about drinking, brawling, and gambling, with the person who is the last one standing, while stilling having some gold, will be the winner. Each round you will be playing cards to get people to drink, gamble their hard earned money, or just try to beat the tar out of each other. But be careful, if your fortitude ever meets your drunkenness, you pass out and are out of the game, or if you run out of gold then the bartender tosses you out. The expansion will come with everything you need in order to play the game, plus promos or metal coins depending on the pledge level you go for. A copy will run you $40, but if you have Red Dragon Inn 5, you can opt for an ECO option and they will send just the contents to you without the box for $5 cheaper. You can check out the Kickstarter campaign now to pledge for your copy.
Next up is a new worker placement and deck building game all about launching your new cafe in the diverse city of Berlin, called Seize the Bean. In this game you are trying to hit a certain level of good reviews, but to do that you need to be able to consistently serve your customers. You will first have to build up your cafe through worker placement, getting ingredients, attracting customers, and upgrading you cafe to make your actions more powerful. At the end of the round you will shuffle up your customers and draw some, then using your collected supplies you will try to satisfy their orders in order to get their good reviews. Components for this game are excellent, art for the game is also good, and the written reviews on the tokens are funny as well. So if you have a passion for coffee or the unique city that is Berlin, check out the Kickstarter campaign, a base pledge costs you only 39 euro.
Next is a simple and strategic card game called Home on Lagrange, where you are trying to build the best space station among the other players. You will be doing this through multi-use cards, which can be played for effects, used as currency, or used as resources in the modules. Modules are what you will be going after because once someone finishes an entire station with the four different modules, the game will end. Each of these modules by themselves will score a certain amount, but if you can stack one, two, or three resources on them you can increase it’s score. Plus the action cards give you special actions to help you get a leg up on the competition. So be careful with your building, if you don’t pay attention to the scores you may end up triggering the end game without having the winning hand so to speak. You can check out the Kickstarter campaign here, and a copy of the game will run you £25.
And finally, we have a family friendly deduction game called Noises at Night. In this game each of the players will be a different character like the boogeyman, a rat, dad, mom, ghost, and so forth, trying to score the most points. You will score points in three different ways, one is by having your icons scoring on the cards being played, second by playing cards to your secret location, and finally by guessing who everyone else is. Play is simple in that on your turn you will play cards out onto the board, trying to maximize your points without giving away who and where you are. After everyone has played out cards you will go into a guessing phase where you can guess who other people are. Get it right and you get some bonus points, get it wrong and they get the points instead. After ten rounds the player with the most points is the winner. So if you are a fan of deduction games, and this family weight one seems your speed, then head on over to the campaign page to check it out. A pledge of only $19 will get you the base game and any stretch goals they unlock.