Dice Tower Seal of Excellence

In celebration of National Arbor Day, Renegade Games has announced that they will be publishing a second edition of the Dice Tower Seal of Excellence Winner Arboretum by Dan Cassar (The Blood of an Englishman). Originally designed in 2015, Arboretum is a card game in which 2-4 players compete to create the most beautiful path through their garden. Players create a grid of trees, laying down one card each turn from their hand of 7. At game’s end, cards in hand determine which color trees will score for each player, and the greatest orthogonal path beginning and ending with that color determines score. The second edition will feature new artwork from Beth Sobel (Lanterns: The Harvest Festival), with a focus to make the trees distinct enough for color blind players. Arboretum Second Edition will be available at your FLGS in Fall 2018. You can read the full press release from Renegade Games here.

Grey Fox Games has a new project up on Kickstarter called Deception: Murder in Hong Kong from designer Tobey Ho. Deception is a reimplementation of a game called CS-Files by Jolly Thinkers and has 4 -12 players trying to solve a murder in a game of deduction and deception. Similar to the game Mysterium one of the players can not talk but will be giving the others clues to a murder they need to solve; a murder committed by a player at the table that  is part of the investigation!

At the start of the game role cards will be dealt to each player, they will either be the Forensic Scientist, the Murder, an Investigator, or depending on the number of players an Accomplice or Witness. The Forensic Chemist will be the only player to reveal themselves as they will be the one handing out the clues but unable to speak. The rest of the players will have cards that will have possible murder weapons as well as clues dealt face up in front of them. While everyone else closes their eyes the murder will indicate which of the weapons in front of them were used in the murder and which of the clues were left behind by them. Then the Forensic Scientist places a ’cause of death’ tile in front of them as well as other various tiles. These tiles contain random words that are used as clues that the Forensic Scientist tries to use to indicate who is the murder and what weapon they used. They do this by placing markers one on each tile next to a word that they think will help players determine the specifics of the crime. After a each player has a short time to speak their thoughts the Scientist draws a new tile, replaces one of the tiles that was previously in front of them, and places the marker next to a clue on that tile. At any time a player may make an accusation. After each player makes an accusation if no one correctly identified the murderer, weapon, and clue the murder and their team wins.

Deception appears to take the best mechanics from games like The Resistance and Mysterium and twists them into a new and different game. Both of those are great games and I would predict Deception will be right up there with them. Also it already has the Dice Tower Seal of Excellence awarded to it and the project page includes a review by Tom Vasel. This new version also has some terrific new artwork by Tommy Ng and Ari Wong and will be made with high quality components like the other games in Grey Fox Games’ lineup. So if you are a fan of deduction/deception games or haven’t tried one yet you should head over to Kickstarter and investigate Deception: Murder in Hong Kong before it’s too late

Grey Fox Games has announced they will be releasing a box full of awesomesauce…err I mean they will be releasing Champions of Midgard a Viking era worker placement game with dice driven combat and mythical Norse beasts from designer Ole Steiness.

That’s right Vikings, mythical Norse beasts, dice combat, and worker placement! It doesn’t just sound amazing it looks incredible as well. With a board illustrated by Andre Gracia and card art by Victor P. Corbella it has the visual appeal to back up the mind boggling mechanics that accompanies it.

Players will collect weapons, food, and wood to build ships, carve runes and send out warriors to battle mythical beasts and gain glory. All in the attempt to earn the title Jarl of a besieged harbor town.

Players are leaders of Viking clans, who have traveled to an embattled Viking harbor town help defend it against the threat of trolls, draugr, and other mythological Norse beasts. By defeating these epic creatures, players gain glory and the favor of the gods. When the game ends, the player who has earned the most glory earns the title of Jarl and is recognized as a Champion of Midgard!

This will be a big game with the following components in the box:

  • a 20″ by 30″ board
  • 34 custom dice
  • wooden meeples
  • cardboard tokens
  • and 121 cards

Just reading the announcement has shot this game into my ‘most interested in’ list, you can read it on Grey Fox Games’ website here. Add in the fact that it has earned the Dice Tower Seal of Excellence and it’s probably at the top of that list.

Champions of Midgard is already at the printers and set to be released later this year. Grey Fox Games is hoping to have limited quantities at GenCon 2015 but if you can’t get one there you can always grab a copy from your FLGS/OLGS when they arrive. That is if I haven’t bought them all first!