Dice Games

Wizkids is adding a trilogy of new sets to the Dungeons and Dragons: Dice Masters line of collectible dice games, this time focusing on the city of Waterdeep. Waterdeep has become a wealth of legend and lore in the Dungeons and Dragons mythos, and now Eric Lang and Mike Elliott‘s classic Dice Master is incorporating characters and monsters from this iconic city.

D&D Dice Masters: Trouble in Waterdeep is a 2 player Campaign Box containing everything needed to play a complete game, including Sidekick Dice, Action Dice, rules and dice bags. This set includes over a dozen characters, including Xanathar, Manshoon’s spies, and Volo.

The D&D Dice Masters: Adventures in Waterdeep Team Pack contains 24 cards and 16 dice for those already familiar with Dice Masters, and can be paired with any Campaign Box or Starter Set. Characters in this pack include Brawlwin Chainminer, the Black Viper, Jarlaxle, and Durnan, as well as many others making their first appearance. Similarly, D&D Dice Masters: The Zhentarim Team Pack includes Manshoon, Istrid Horn, and Ziraj, as well as many other Zhentarim in its 16 dice and 24 cards.

Look for all three Waterdeep themed Dice Master sets at your FLGS in September 2019.

Coming from Wiz Kids in June is Europa Base Alpha, a 2-4 player game with a play time of 45 minutes that combines cards and dice game play.

Players compete to build a network of bases on Jupiter’s moon Europa, with Missile Silos, Communication Towers, Global Command Centers, Personnel Bunkers and Intergalactic Transports, using cards/dice to build their own bases and mess with other players. Whoever has the most points from their moon bases will win.

The game comes with 36 dice and 92 cards, tokens and 4 player boards.

It is meant for ages 14 and up. It is from Garrett Herdter.

Everything Epic Games has just announced the first expansion for their 2018 dice driven adventure board game, Big Trouble in Little China, by designers Christopher BatarlisBoris Polonsky, and Jim Samartino. BTiLC: The Game brought the world of old Jack Burton and friends to life, as players rolled dice to work on their Chi and abilities, trying to build up enough Audacity to find and defeat the evil Lo Pan. The Legacy of Lo Pan continues the adventure, telling the story of what happened after the classic 1986 movie. This expansion increases the player count to 6, previously only available with the Deluxe Edition of the game, as well as adding a new story campaign. The 40 page mission book tells the story of Jack Burton’s travels through time, using the Tardisian Hourglass, an ancient artifact kindly supplied by Egg. Not only that, but the new expansion comes with the famed Six Demon (Dice) Bag. Look for The Legacy of Lo Pan in stores in March 2019, and for more information, check out Everything Epic Games‘ webpage here.

A second expansion is finally coming for the fantastic 2014 dice management game, Roll for the Galaxy (BGG #65), and it is a massive one. Roll for the Galaxy: Rivalry from designers Wei-Hwa Huang and Thomas Lehmann contains 3 full expansions in one box, expanding and changing multiple aspects of this already great game. Firstly, Rivalry adds pieces, and lots of them – 60+ new dice, start factions, home worlds, a new die type, and many new game tiles. In fact, Rivalry contains twice the tiles included in the 2015 expansion Ambition.

Rivalry also adds a new “Deal Game” mode, where fundamental aspects of the game are up for trade. Seven deal dice are rolled each turn to see what aspects are negotiable. You can trade surplus tiles for more space on your money track, extra tile draws for losing citizenry dice, or convert citizenry dice into developers or settlers. The possibilities to manipulate almost all restraints on game play are enormous. But these large deals take time to mature, and as the deals change turn to turn, deals can turn sour, and other players may want to take advantage or destroy what you worked hard to start.

Finally the new “Orb Game” adds an Alien Orb die type with interchangeable faces, along the lines of Rattlebones or Dice Forge. Players can buy new faces by assigning “Researcher” dice, using a progressive tech tree to constantly improve their orbs. At the end of the game, the faces are worth points, depending how advanced they are along the tree. Die faces include discounts on development dice, settler dice, and several other options.

Rivals includes brand new player screens, printed with new rules and game modes for handy reference. For more information, you can read the announcement from Rio Grande Games here.

Renegade Game Studios has just announced Proving Grounds, a solo story driven dice game by acclaimed designer Kane Klenko (FUSE, Flatline). Proving Grounds takes place in a fantasy world created by writer Monica Valentinelli (Firefly RPG), in which Maia Strongheart must prove her innocence in the death of her mother, the Sun Queen. The game comes with the novella “Only The Strongest Has The Heart Of A Wizened Queen”, setting the stage for all the events of the game. The game involves dice and card play, and true to Kane Klenko‘s portfolio, involves realtime elements. The story progresses by adding 6 modules one at a time to the game, and an introductory training module for new players. Look for Proving Grounds in stores April 2019, and read more about the project on Renegade Studio’s webpage here.

WizKids has just announced Thrown by designer Adam Porter (Pikoko), a new spin on trick taking games, substituting dice rolling for traditional card play. In Thrown, the lead player rolls 1-3 dice in one of 4 colors. The color of the dice represents the suit played, and players follow the same rules as traditional trick taking games – you must follow suit, the highest of the lead suit wins, and off-suit dice do not count. Players can try for trump if they do not have the proper color, which means rolling a 6 of any color. Thrown also includes cards for player powers, allowing re-rolls, dice flipping, automatically winning with certain rolls, etc. Thrown comes with 40 dice, gold tokens, 26 cards, 4 cubes, and rules, and is scheduled for release in February 2019. For more information, pictures, and rules, check out Wizkid’s webpage here.

Well regarded Roll and Write game Sunflower Valley (2017) by designer Wouter van Strien and originally from Hobby World, has overcome initial North American publishing delays and is releasing any day from Playroom Entertainment. In Sunflower Valley, 2-5 players take turn drawing with dry erase markers to create their own mountain valley from a shared pool of dice. Players draw houses, sheep, sunflowers, or railroads by claiming the appropriate custom die, and placing it on the correct colored spot on the playing board, using up both the die and the colored location. Once all of the color locations are claimed, the round ends and the 6 dice are passed to the next starting player. When all spaces on each players’ board are filled, the game ends, and players score for each house-sheep pair, either adjacent or connected by a rail, groups of sheep (flocks), groups of houses (settlements), and mountains surrounded by sunflowers. Houses without sheep loose points, and bonuses go to players with the most sunflowers, the most villagers (earned from houses and sunflowers), and long rail lines. Sunflower Valley comes with a game board, 6 custom dice, 5 dry erase markers, 20 double sided player sheets, a first player token and rulebook.

Z-Man Games has announced the next game in the Oniverse series of games, Aerion by designer Shadi Torbey featuring art from Élise Plessis. The Oniverse is most famous for its flagship game Onirim (2010), the popular 1-2 player card game of pattern creation, door collection and inevitable reshuffling, as well as its successors Sylvion (2015), Castellion (2015) and Nautilion (2016). Aerion continues the theme of 1-2 players trying to collect a series of goal cards, this time by building 6 airships by collecting the best blueprints, resources and crew. Resources are collected by rolling 6 dice, using specific combinations to create your materials. If your roll does not make a resource you need, you can discard cards to reroll – but like Onirim, if you run out of cards in the resource decks, you lose the game. Again following on the success of Onirim, Aerion comes with 6 mini expansions changing the challenge slightly each time. Aerion comes with 133 cards, 6 dice, 16 tokens, 1 scary wooden pawn (remniscent of Onirim), and the rulebook. For more information, you can read the press release from Z-Man Games, and look for Aerion at your FLGS in Spring 2019.

War for Chicken Island is a new dice and card driven, area control, and take-that Kickstarter project from designer Ivan Escalante (Necronomicorp) and Draco Studios. 2-4 players each take turns helping to set up Chicken Island, a land of limited space, tight resources, and too many chickens, then each receives a brave chicken leader, a hand of cards, some starting resources, and 5 custom dice. On their turn, after gaining cards and rolling dice, players can build war machines for their army, travel across the land, and wage feathered war. The dice can add actions, regain resources, recover lost chickens or gain bonuses. In battle, defense and offense are compared, cards are played to add to the numbers, and the losing side takes a humiliation token from the winner. Players who manage to humiliate the most enemies emerge victorious. War for Chicken Island comes either with standees, or with a separate box of delightful chicken miniatures, including their nightmare inducing war machines. The Kickstarter Campaign for War for Chicken Island will continue through December 28, and the game is expected to deliver in October 2019.

Eagle-Gryphon Games has started a new Kickstarter Campaign for the reprint of Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age (2014), the followup to Matt Leacock‘s Spiel nominated Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age (2008). The Bronze Age had some pretty big shoes to fill for a followup, and The Iron Age did not disappoint, being designed by heavyweight Tom Lehmann (Race for the Galaxy). Roll Through the Ages is a roll and write game, where 1-4 players roll custom dice, yahtzee style, and fill in spaces on their score pad for points. This new edition of the game comes in a more compact box, with wooden peg boards with pegs, 6 custom Empire dice, 1 Fate Die, and the previous Mediterranean expansion has been fully integrated into the score sheet. The Kickstarter Campaign also includes “personal stretch goals” – backers can receive free games, such as Dead Man’s Chest or SIXeS, depending upon how much they end up pledging to the project.

The Kickstarter Campaign for Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age continues through January 2, and the game is expected to deliver in February 2019.