The British Isles and, in particular, Wales, is home to some of the richest railway history in the world. In the early 1800’s smaller narrow gauge railways were carved out of the rocky hills and mountains, carrying slate and workers through the Welsh countryside. Snowdonia, named after a mountainous region in northwestern Wales, was first released in 2012.
Described as a lighter but interesting worker placement game, players seek to blast, excavate and build sites and structures and lay track for railways. The first scenario, set in Wales, was included in the original game. The deluxe version will include all expansions and scenarios to date, 12 scenarios in all with different locations. The new Deluxe Master Set will also include:
- A larger deluxe board
- New, larger box
- Custom double decker insert
- One brand new scenario, along with all those that were previously released
- 365 custom wooden components
- Several promo cards featuring unique trains and other items and people
- Large full colour scoring pad
- Cloth bag
Not familiar with the game? Click here and you’ll be up to speed before you can say Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch! This deluxe version will be on Kickstarter for the next 23 days.
The Captain is Dead: Lockdown is the latest episode in the Captain is Dead co-op adventure game that finds you and up to 6 other crew mates battling aliens and scrambling to keep your star ship functioning.
Even without the help of the late Captain, the crew was able to escape the alien attack in our last episode! However, the hasty repairs to the jump core did not hold, and now the crew finds themselves locked in an alien prison! Now the crew must use all their skills to hack into the alien prison’s systems, while staying hidden and avoiding alien patrols…
Also coming from AEG is a new Smash Up set titled, Oops You Did It Again.
Smash Up has turned the asylum over to the inmates yet again! After the success of It’s Your Fault, we decided to let the fans choose the factions that would make up the latest set of Smash Up, and they went for some powerful choices! A huge field was whittled down to the top four, and here they are: Cowboys call out opposing minions for shootouts, Samurai face their noble end in battle to bring glory to their player, Ancient Egyptians bury secrets deep in the sands, while the Vikings… well they just take other people’s stuff!
It looks like the fans nailed it this time with some of the best genres from pop culture represented in one expansion box.
Keep an eye out for The Captain is Dead: Lockdown in August and Smash Up: Oops You Did It Again in early September.
Imperial Assault is not lacking content, but Star Wars is an ever-expanding property that allows for growth in equal measure among the products utilize it. Fans can soon expect Star Wars Rebels to soon join the party as a small box expansion and four ally/villain packs introduce the crew of the Ghost and their adversaries to the campaign or skirmish matches. The Tyrants of Lothal small box expansion includes new characters and enemies which bring stories from the Lothal sector to the table, while the Spectres, the mercenary Hondo, and Grand Admiral Thrawn himself are all available separately to aid in combat or participate in unique scenarios. As described on it’s product page:
“Fantasy Flight Games is proud to announce Tyrants of Lothal, a new expansion for Imperial Assault, available for pre-order now from your local retailer! Tyrants of Lothal is not releasing alone either, so be sure to also pre-order the Ezra Bridger and Kanan Jarrus Ally Pack, the Sabine Wren and Zeb Orrelios Ally Pack, the Thrawn Villain Pack, and the Hondo Ohnaka Villain Pack to upgrade your Imperial Assault experience!”
It’s very nice to see this show earn such an earnest inclusion to an already good game, and mechanically speaking there’s a lot to offer the competitive scene as well. Beyond the inclusion of powerful new characters, both allies and villains, there’s also more cards, abilities, and death troopers that will make skirmishes more interesting or the Imperial player more daunting, depending on the mode of play. Furthermore,since Rebels is canon and it has done a lot to bridge characters between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, there’s a lot of fun scenarios that could be made using other available characters, such as Darth Maul and Obi Wan for example, along with the Spectres. If you are interested in these expansions or future content for Imperial Assault, be sure to check out their product pages and the Fantasy Flight Games website for future announcements.
Star Wars: Legion hit retail just a week ago, and the buzz has been good to the newest miniatures game from Fantasy Flight. As Luke and Darth Vader hit the table in fresh skirmish combat, fans are bound to anticipate the rest of the stable of characters to join the fray. The Fantasy Flight Games machine is on top of it, having already announced that the Han Solo commander expansion and the Rebel Commandos Unit expansion are expected to arrive during the third quarter of 2018. As described on their respective product pages:
“Within the Han Solo Commander Expansion, Rebel leaders will find everything they need to add Han Solo as a commander to their Star Wars: Legion armies. A single unpainted, easily assembled miniature features Han Solo with his DL-44 heavy blaster pistol drawn and ready to fire. […] Within the Rebel Commandos Unit Expansion, you’ll find a squad of seven unpainted, easily assembled Rebel Commando miniatures. […] These two expansions let you create your own battles on Endor or any other planet from the Star Wars galaxy.”
The addition of Han Solo is no surprise really as it was just a matter of time, especially since Leia was already announced and the game wouldn’t be doing the IP justice without everyone’s favorite smuggler. That’s not the least of which to say that Fantasy Flight aren’t already the masters of tantalizing expansions and Legion is a ripe new product line for which to add a lot more content for years to come. It’s a very good thing, then, that we see a lot of cool new features being introduced in these new expansions that shake up the game’s scenarios – I’m particularly a fan of the sniper rifles the Rebel Commandos can wield! If you’re interested in reading more about these expansions, or future Star Wars: Legion content, be sure to check out Fantasy Flight’s website for these and future announcements.
Z-Man Games has announced plans to release an updated version of the The Count, King and Robber expansion for Carcassonne. Originally released in 2007, the new edition of this expansion will feature artwork compatible with the artwork that was updated in the 2014 edition of Carcassonne. The 6th Carcassonne expansion is scheduled for a May 2018 release.
New characters and starting points provide a fresh start for the classic tile-laying game. Choose to begin your adventure with the grand city itself, Carcassonne. Or wander along the edges of a new, winding river. Combine the new river tiles with those from the base game for a more complex river design.
The Count, King and Robber expand the world of Carcassonne with three new characters manipulating the game and how points are scored. The king tile will grant bonus points to whoever holds control of the largest city. Players seeking to explore distant parts of the Carcassonne kingdom will be rewarded for clan,ing bonus points for controlling the longest road with the robber.
The Count controls a new city in Carcassonne which contains for districts: the castle, market, cathedral, and blacksmith. The count will start in the castle but by adding a follower to the city players can move the count to new districts. The count’s location can free trapped followers while also blocking other followers from moving.
Heretics introduce a new mechanic to the game. Players will be able to build shrines to disrupt a monetary. If a shrine is placed next to an occupied monastery a challenge will occur. Players will need to race to complete their feature to be the one scoring points.
The River II adds twelve tiles with river features on each tile. The river tiles are placed first to create a variable starting setup to the game, after which the game continues as normal.
Previous small expansions
Before being released in 2007 as a box set, the expansions included in this collection were only available as small stand alone expansions. Both the 2007 and 2018 versions of The King, Count, and Robber include the following small expansions:
Carcassonne is a tile-placement game, designed by Klaus-Jürgen Wrede, in which players take turns drawing and placing tiles to build the French world of Carcassonne. Each basic tile can include features from a city, a road, a cloister, grassland or some combination thereof, and the tile needs to be placed adjacent to tiles that have already been played. Once a tile has been placed, the player then decides whether or not to place one of their meeples on one of the areas represented on it: on the city as a knight, on the road as a robber, on a cloister as a monk, or on the grass as a farmer. When that area the meeple is on is complete, that meeple scores points for its owner.
Carcassonne won multiple awards in 2001, including the coveted 2001 Spiel des Jahres.
Sometimes it’s the little things that make the biggest difference. Z-Man Games is making sure to get the small things right an isd releasing a series of mini-expansions available immediately.
The new Terra Mystica mini-expansion introduces four new town tiles, a new scoring tile, and a new bonus card create new goals for players to try to complete. All new special terrain tiles for each faction will give new bonuses and abilities when placed.
Carcassonne: The School
“School is in session in Carcassonne!”
The Carcassonne: The School
expansion, originally released in 2011, has each player competing to complete the various roads leading up to the school. Once the road is complete, the teacher will get paints the next time something is scored, regardless of what is scored and which player scored those points. Once each of the roads is complete, there are enough students and the teacher will stay put for the rest of the game.
Carcassonne: The Festival
In The Festival
mini expansion for Carcassonne, players have the ability to withdraw a meeple. When a player lays down the festival tile, they choose between placing a meeple normally or withdrawing a previously placed meeple from another feature.
A Feast for Odin
The Feast for Odin mini-expansion
has players traveling through two new exploration boards providing more options than before. Players will now be able to sail to the archipelago of Lofoten or travel to Tierra del Fuego. Players will find new opportunities to generate income and obtain new bonuses.
Voyages of Marco Polo: New Characters
Four new faces
are being added to The Voyages of Marco Polo. Each character will feature a new game-bending ability. This mini expansion also introduces the gifts mechanic to the game. Gifts will grant players bonus goods and occasionally allow players to take extra actions.
Beyond Baker Street
The Beyond Baker Street expansion
will introduce several new characters to the game. New character cards allow players to take on the roles of Dr. John Watson or Sherlock’s brother Mycroft. Moriarty will enter the game as a new possible suspect.
Sylvion: Below Ground
The land itself will join in the fight with the Ravage in a new mini-expansion for Sylvion
. Sixteen new terrain cards will be available to occupy battlefield spaces. While Swallowers will use up Tree and Fountain cards, Owls will allow players to draw two cards from the Defender deck.
Star Wars: Rogue One has proved to be one of the more widely-regarded Star Wars movies in a long time.
Now, Fantasy Flight Games has brought ships from that film into the Star Wars: X-Wing franchise with the announcement of Wave XIV -Saw’s Renegades and the TIE Reaper expansions.
The Saw’s Renegades pack doesn’t bring any new ships into the system, but it does have updated versions of some existing ships. It has two new ship miniatures: the U-Wing and a T-65 X-Wing, both pre-painted in Saw’s freedom fighter colours of white and black.
Instead of new ships, the expansion will contain an assortment of new ship cards with pilots who are members of Saw’s group. It even includes Saw Gerrera himself flying the U-Wing. New upgrade cards for these two ships complete the package, with new tactics and systems that can be added.
“For example, you may load one of your U-wings with the new Targeting Scrambler included in this expansion pack. In order to devote your pilot to using the Targeting Scrambler, you’ll need to give up the chance to fire this round, taking a weapons disabled token for your own ship. In exchange, however, you can choose any ship at Range 1-3 and give it the Scrambled condition. Then, when the ship that’s been Scrambled would attack your ship at Range 1, it loses any ability to modify its attack dice! If you’re using your U-wing or another ship to coordinate the battle, you may want to keep it alive for as long as possible. Scrambling the targeting systems of incoming attackers is just one way to keep your starships around for a few more turns.”
In all, the Saw’s Renegades expansion will have ten new ship cards and fifteen upgrades along with the two new miniatures.
The other expansion, the TIE Reaper, is an all new ship that Imperial forces can use to transport elite troops to their destination.
It’s more than a troop carrier, however. The Reaper packs a powerful offensive punch, rolling three attack dice when firing its primary weapon. While it does not have many defenses, only one die, its sturdy construction means that it will be able to take some hefty damage and still come through.
In addition to that, it has a rather unique power for the X-Wing system.
“This ship bears the unusual jam action that lets you jam nearby ships and prevent them from using a focus, evade, or target lock—opening a wealth of tactical opportunities when you’re building your squad or flying into battle.”
Having its main function be a troop transport, the Reaper comes with two crew upgrade slots, allowing players to transport elite Death Troopers or even the Emperor himself. If you have these troopers on your ship when flying close to a Rebel ship, the Rebel will receive a “stress” token. As stress accumulates, Rebel options become more limited and aids Imperial chances.
The Reaper expansion comes with the pre-painted Reaper miniature as well as four different ship cards, eleven upgrades, a maneuver dial and everything needed to incorporate the Reaper into your Imperial fleet.
Both Saw’s Renegades and the TIE Reaper are available for pre-order now and should come out sometime this year.
The battle of Valeria is about to get a little bigger with the Agents mini-expansion for the Valeria Card Kingdoms game. Set for release in late December 2017, this 15 card expansion introduces agents that allow you to hire townsfolk to do your bidding.
Players will shuffle the agent cards and then place them above the left-most monster stack. One agent card will then be dealt face-up above each of the four monster stacks. As an action players can hire one of the face up agents to take advantage of the power displayed. Once the action has been completed the agent gets placed face down at the bottom of the agent deck and the empty space is refilled.
The third expansion deck, this follows previous expansions King’s Guard and Undead Samurai.
Valeria Card Kingdoms
Valeria Card Kingdoms is a tableau-building game for 1-5 players focussed on a deck building mechanic. Cards bought will go to work for both the player on their turn as well as on other player’s turns.
On a players turn they will roll two dice to activate citizen cards with both the results of each individual dice as well as the sum of both dice. Other players will also activate their cards based on having cards matching the rolled dice. After activating their cards players can take two actions including slay a monster, recruit a citizen, buy a domain, or take 1 resource. Whichever player has the most victory points at the end of the game is the winner.
The award-winning deck-building civilization game Eminent Domain is about to expand again with the Eminent Domain: Oblivion expansion by original Eminent Domain designer Seth Jaffee.
Your empire has grown vast and powerful, reaching beyond every edge of the galaxy. Now you must ensure the ties that bind your planets do not falter. Assert your dominance in the political arena. Use your clout to advance your agendas. As your borders expand farther and farther, do not let the core of your empire fall into oblivion!
The Oblivion expansion focuses on the political aspect of having to run a broad space empire. The expansion adds a new politics role and a set of global agendas that will affect all the players in the game. The new expansion doesn’t affect player count or time, with the game still playing in 45-60 minutes for 2-5 players aged 14 and up. A copy of the base game is required to play this expansion.
Tasty Minstrel Games is releasing Eminent Domain: Oblivion early December 2017.
Contents of the box will include:
- Rule Booklet
- Game Board
- 42 Tokens
- 7 Tiles
- 87 Cards
- Cloth Bag
Portal Games has announced a plethora of new games and expansions for 2018. As it is apparently 2018 in Poland (I did not fact check this, it might still be 2017) many of the mini-expansions announced are available now.
First Martians: Adventures on the Red Planet
Now available in both Europe and North America, Portal Games describes First Martians as the most anticipated game in Portal Games history. Strong pre-orders make it hard to argue that fact. Based on the adventure gaming engine from Robinson Crusoe, digital apps do a lot of the heavy lifting in First Martians. Portal Games announced new content almost exclusively driven by the app for 2018:
- First Martians rules Almanac in PDF form
- 7th stand-alone Removal mission release
- Community created content delivered via app
- New app features
- Tutorial mission
Portal Games also plans to release a new Epidemia mission as well as an in-store event kit.
First Martians is getting a new mini-expansion, in this case a set of extra ROI tiles. This mini-expansion is available now.
Robinson Crusoe gets a pair (and a half) of big announcements. The first is that Robinson Crusoe is getting a companion app! The game isn’t getting any easier, but it is getting additional content as the app will add new events and new adventures to the game. Portal Games also describes the app as allowing players “to choose a theme for each scenario.”
The second big announcement is that Robinson Crusoe is getting a second big expansion. Similar in size to the Voyage of the Beagle expansion from 2013, the Lost City of Z expansion will also follow a single explorer. Players will follow Lieutenant Colonel Percy Fawcett on his expedition through the Amazon in search for the Lost City of Z. Lost City of Z will add Horror and Sanity into the game, add new characters, beast and a mystery deck. The game adds 5 new missions for an epic campaign.
To tide you over until the app and expansion come out Portal has released another mini expansion – Herb Garden and Pen cards. This expansion is available now.
It’s never too early for new content. Alien Artifacts was just released this week, and already Portal Games has accounted a forthcoming expansion. The Alien Artifacts: Discovery expansion moves the storyline of the game forward and introduces Alien Resources to the game. The small (but not mini) expansion adds a total of 50 new cards to the core game.
Imperial Settlers: We Didn’t Start the Fire is the third Empire Pack of Imperial Settlers. Empire Pack’s don’t add new factions to the game, but always add new mechanics and an expanding selection of cards to integrate into the core game. Portal describes the new expansion as adding new cards and increasing the replayability of the game.
Imperial Settlers is getting a Diplomacy mini-expansion which is available now. The new expansion adds two double-sided tiles that add new rules for player interaction through diplomatic mean. The double sided tiles are Declaration of War & Mobilization and Golden Route & Confiscation.
Neuroshima Hex will also be getting an expansion in 2018. The Iron Gang Hexpuzzle Pack is an expansion for the Neuroshima Hex! 3.o base game that will introduce puzzles on the hex board that will need to be solved. The expansion will be playable both solo and competitively with other players. The expansion will include a bonus army tile for the Iron Gang Army Pack.
Monolith Arena – A Fantasy Battleground Boardgame
Speaking of Neuroshima Hex… Portal Games is also introducing new games in 2018! Michal Oracz, creator of Neuroshima HEX, has created a fantasy battleground boardgames. Wage war against your opponents on a familiar hex board. Five factions will each have unique abilities and unites, along with literal monoliths looming large over the battlefield.
Monolith Arena has an estimated playtime of 30-45 minute for 2-4 players aged 10 and up.
Detective: A Modern Crime Boardgame
But wait! There’s more! Przemyslaw Rymer and Igancy Trzewiczek have designed a board game that tells actual stories. A modern crime boardgame, Detective will focus on stories inspired by true events. Sleuths will have a variety of modern tools at their disposal including checking the internet, investigating clues and pouring over the facts. A variety of high quality components will be introduced over 5 unique scenarios. Detective plays out over 90 minutes for 1-4 intrepid investigators aged 14 and up.
It’s shaping up to be a big 2018 for Portal Games!
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