fantasy

Terra Mystica is easily one of the biggest and highest rated Eurogames of all time, having inspired a space-themed spin-off in Gaia Project. Yet it has not stopped growing as this Fall we’ll be seeing another expansion for this 2-to-5 player territory terraformin’ game. Merchants of the Seas brings shipyards, Markets, and new maps to the multitude of factions vying for control – even the ones introduced in previous expansions! You’ll be able to send out ships to take special shipping actions, or perhaps play one of the few races that prefers to not get their feet wet and instead try to manipulate trade with other structures. All this can be played independently or combined with previous expansion content, meaning you’ll be able to make the as complex and intricate as your table can handle.

Merchants of the Seas expands on the hit terraforming gameplay of Terra Mystica. Develop your faction’s nautical strategy, stake a claim on distant lands, or focus on the benefits of trade. Plus, a double-sided board and over 30 tiles add countless new avenues to victory.”

There are two main goals with this expansion that should not be overlooked by the promise of added rules – strategic flexibility and balancing. Ships and trading allow for a wide variety of action potential that is, for the most part, independent on your current standing in a game – have water, will travel. Both ships and trading have ways to give you access to distant or action efficient terraforming and building options, making it harder to be built into a corner and opening new tactical decisions to boot. The new maps offer tons of replay potential and include new starting scores for each faction for all the maps that exist, balancing the game no matter how the landscape falls. If you’re interested in Terra Mystica or Merchants of the Seas, check out Z-Man’s website for more rules, images, and preorder information through them or your favorite local retailer.

Blacklist Games has launched the Kickstarter campaign for the newest design by Adam and Brady Sadler, Altar Quest. Altar Quest promises to be a cooperative fantasy adventure playable solo or with up to 4 players.

Altar Quest features the same modular deck system that the Sadler brothers introduced into their previous games Street Fighter and Brook City. According to the game’s description, the players each choose a unique hero who comes with their own cards and equipment decks. Then the players choose a quest, villain, and threat deck with which to play. There are no decks that the players need assemble – each of these decks is fixed – but the players may choose to mix and match.

For more information on the game’s Kickstarter campaign and all the goodies that come along with it, check here.

For those of you anxiously awaiting the second printing of Jonathan Ying’s Bargain Quest, you can now also look forward to a brand new expansion, too! This fun little game of adventure and capitalism will offer even more must have items for heroes to choose from.

In Bargain Quest, players take on the role of shopkeeper trying to attract adventuring heroes to their shop over their opponents.  Each player will secretly draft from a deck of items to place in their shop windows and then help equip their heroes for an upcoming ad  kkiventure. Players earn money to upgrade their shop and hire employees based on how their hero fares in battle.

The Black Market expansion will offer players more heroes, employees, and play modes.  A new shipment of items will also be available to entice heroes to battle the new monsters.

Gather up to eight of your friends to see who can run the most successful shop with the most gold and prestige.  Renegade Games will be releasing the Black Market expansion in May 2019. Don’t worry if you missed out on the Kickstarter for the base game. It will be available through Renegade Games once the Kickstarter fulfillment is completed.

 

Queen Games has three new games coming to market this November.

First up, set in the Luxor universe is a new Rüdiger Dorn game titled Expedition Luxor. In this area control and tile placement game,

Two to four players deploy their adventurers to claim the locations they discover. However, they must be careful, because the adventurer that is placed last will be the one that claims the discovery and earns vital points at the game‘s climax.

Next up, by designer Christophe Behre is the bidding game, Bastille.

The player who uses his influence most clever in the bastille, the catacombs and fulfilling his mission cards will win the game based around the French revolution.

While the first two game releases have strong historical settings, the tile laying game, Skylands, is pure fantasy where the world has already been destroyed and it’s up to the remaining inhabitants to unite the remaining flying islands.

The players control the fate of the inhabitants and create their own island world. The player who utilizes the four actions of the game to their best advantage and closely watches their fellow players will win the game.

Look for these exciting new games in November along with Kingdom Builder: Family Box and the Arthur expansion to Merlin.

Within days of launching the Kickstarter, Broken Mill achieved funding for Heroes of Tenefyr, a cooperative deck-building game for 1-4 players. In Heroes of Tenefyr, players are one of four adventurers (bard, barbarian, thief, or cleric) armed with a set of basic action cards and their special class skill card.  Faced with ten dungeons surrounding the Village of Tenefyr, the players attempt to clear out the dungeons, defeating monsters and taking their loot which players can add to their player decks and strengthen their chances against more difficult monsters in more challenging dungeons.  The more monsters they defeat, the stronger their character and their decks become.  Players need to manage their decks carefully because running out of cards means exhaustion, which requires rest to restore the deck with spent cards.  However, resting draws the enemy Boss closer. Defeating the dungeon (clearing out all the monsters) not only earns the players loot from defeated monsters but also earns a reward for each of the players.  The end of the game is triggered when the enemy Boss attacks. Unlike the other dungeons, the players cannot leave until they have defeated the Boss and all the cards in its deck. Defeat the Boss and win.

Heroes of Tenefyr plays 1-4 players, ages 14+ in about an hour. Contents include 4 Hero Cards, 4 Skill Cards, 48 basic Cards, 70 Dungeon Cards, 16 Boss Cards, 15 Reward Cards, Boss Token, Boss Track, a Starting Player Token, and a Current Dungeon Token.  The Kickstarter campaign runs through 24 October with an expected delivery of May 2019.  Go to the Kickstarter campaign to learn more about Heroes of Tenefyr.

Txarli Factory, a miniatures and game company based in Pamplano, Spain, has launched a new game on Kickstarter called Rising for the Throne. The card and dice game is fantasy-based with dragons, gryphons, and knights depicted, to name just a few. There is an overall Norse mythology-vibe to the cards and they have a watercolor look to them while also coming off as gritty and grounded.

Most of the information about gameplay can be found in the link to the manual while the video gives some insight into the theme and story.

In this land, the six great clans are relentlessly recruiting new warriors for their battles—Choose your clan, collect resources, recruit new troops, and get the victory. Only one clan can win and sit on the great throne of the kingdom.

The collector’s edition comes with chunky, nicely sculpted figureheads for each of the six clans. Check out the video and images of Rising for the Throne over on Kickstarter.

 

Fans of deck-building and dungeon-delving will be delighted to hear that Alderac Entertainment Group will be launching the second Kickstarter for their celebrated game, Thunderstone Quest, on July 17th at 9:00 am PST.  Pursuing their goal of transitioning to traditional brick and mortar stores,  TQ will also be making its way into retail outlets in the fourth quarter of 2018.

New to this Kickstarter will be:

  • Both solo and co-op rules (which will also be available on print-and-play)
  • A 6th quest
  • An add-on for more than 4 players
  • A new (second) storage solution, as the old Champion box, massive as it was, “is effectively full if you sleeve and have Epic”.

Backers can purchase everything offered the first time around.  The base game or the Champion level rewards (identical to the 1st Kickstarter) will both be available,  or they can back for the new content only. Those who backed the Adventurer level the first time can get an add-on pack, giving them the content from the Champion level. The Champion level will feature the same 5 quests as before and Kickstarter will be the only place that someone can obtain the 2nd quest, Total Eclipse of the Sun.  The retail version will not contain this quest.

The solo and co-op rules system will be bundled together with the 6th quest, What Lies Beneath, as a single add-on.  Solo and c0-op will both use the same set of cards as the base game.  The new solo and co-op rules will also be available in print-and-play, so it will be interesting to see what extras this add-on will have.

Regarding the new solo and co-op system, AEG stated,

The Thunderstone community also strongly communicated that they wanted a Solo & Co-Op experience for the game. Our design team has been working on a game experience that is way beyond just a simple set of rules and represents an entirely new way to experience Thunderstone. We think it is AWESOME!

Delivery for all backer levels is scheduled for “no later than April 2019“.

Timelines for retail releases:

Q4 2018:

  • Core starter set, which, along with basic components, will contain Quest 1, Mirror in the Dark and Quest 3, Rise From the Mire
  • Quest 4, At the Foundations of the World

Early 2019:

  • Quest 5, Ripples in Time

Second Half of 2019:

  • Quest 6, What Lies Beneath

Lastly, retailers joining the Kick It Here program can back the Champion Reward and the Solo/Co-op system with Quest 6 and have it before the regular retail release.

To see reviews and a playthrough of TQ, click here.  For more TQ information and updates prior to the Kickstarter, click here.

 

 

FFG has announced an upcoming release to Legend of the Five Rings:  The Card Game.  Whispers of Shadow and Steel is a novella set in the fictional land of Rokugan.  This is the second installment of Legends of the Five Rings Fiction, but the first to include 2 new upgraded art cards that can be used in L5R:TCG.  This novella is approximately 100 pages long and features the Scorpion Clan, and specifically, Bayushi Yojiro, one of this clan’s characters.

There will be three copies of each card, for a total of 6 cards, which will be tucked inside the book.  The first card is an extended art version of Bayushi from the Imperial Cycle:

As a MagistrateBayushi Yojiro alters the rules of conflicts—in his case, ignoring the effects of status tokens on participating characters. This can enhance the dishonorable Scorpions around him, and erase the bonus of your opponent’s honorable characters.

The second card is from the upcoming Elemental Cycle for this game, and features an ability unique to the Scorpion Clan:  Infiltrator:

Infiltrator is an attachment that allows you, as an action, to reveal the top card of your opponent’s conflict deck and either play it as if it were in your hand or discard it.

As an attachment, you can repeat this process every turn, as long as your infiltrator is in play, and as long as your bid remains higher than your opponent’s. This allows you to infiltrate your opponent’s conflict deck and turn their very best weapons against them—a tactic well befitting a Scorpion.

From FFG:

They’re already existing cards (or soon to be existing cards) with full art. They’ll look different than what will be in the standard LCG packs, but will function the same in-game (same stats, abilities, etc.). From a pure gameplay perspective, these promotional cards won’t be exclusive to people who purchase the book, but if you’re looking for the fantastic alt-art cards to make your deck ‘pop’, these are for you.

There is yet no release date set for Whispers of Shadow and Steel, but it is available for preorder from both local retailers and FFG.

For a review of Legends of the Five Rings, click here and for more information on this expansion, click here 

Zombicide: Green Horde: No Rest for the Wicked is an expansion to Zombicide: Green Horde that supports 1-6 players and puts you up against new otherworldly enemies.  Zombicide: Green Horde was kickstarted in June 2017 and had a highly successful campaign raising over five million dollars.  During this campaign as an optional buy you could pick up the full expansion.  It now has a retail release planned for those who missed out of the kickstarter.

The zombie plague is not limited to just humans and orcs. All manner of creatures are succumbing to the vile disease and launching an assault against the living. The rats that form into undead swarms are bad enough. Then there’s the ghostly Spectral Walkers that are only damaged by magic. But when there’s a zombie dragon to deal with, that’s a whole other category of terror! To take that out, the survivors are gonna need a bigger crossbow.

The expansion comes with over thirty-five miniatures including a huge dragon figure and is sure to add even more excitement to your game.  Zombicide: Green Horde: No Rest for the Wicked, published by Cool Mini or Not, is slated to hit retail during the third quarter of 2018.

 

 

Fantasy Flight Games has announced plans to release a Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition the 3rd quarter of 2018. Tom Vasel’s favorite board game for six years in a row (2010 to 2015), could a new edition of the game cement the place on the top of Tom’s list?

The Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition will become the new standardized version of the game when it is released. The new edition of the game will be fully compatible with all existing Cosmic Encounter expansions.

In the far reaches of space, the aliens of the cosmos vie for control of the universe. Alliances are constantly forged and broken in the pursuit of power as starships journey from planet to planet, ready to build colonies and battle foreign powers, ensuring the survival of their people as they spread throughout the stars. 

Designed by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge, Bill Norton, Peter Olotka, and Kevin Wilson, the game was originally released by Eon in 1977. When a new edition of the game was released in 1992 it received the Origins Award for Best Fantasy or Science Fiction Boardgame of 1991. It was inducted into the Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design Adventure Gaming Hall of Fame in 1997

In 2008 Fantasy Flight Games reprinted the game in 2008 and subsequently released 6 expansions full of additional alien factions and mechanics.

What’s New?

The Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition includes both a revised rulebook as well as an illustrated Quick-start Guide that aims to capture all of the nostalgia of the original game while making it easier for new players to learn the game. The Quick-start Guide is styled as a 1970s comic book style. The anniversary edition also includes translucent ship pieces factions will use while spreading their colonies across the galaxy.

While traditional favorite aliens will be included in set, the game will also include the ruthless Demon aliens. Previously only available at Cosmic Con, the new aliens will be included in the anniversary edition of the game. Having been exiled from earlier editions of the base game, they now seek cosmic vengeance and will use their power to possess other players’ hands, bolstering their strength while draining the strength of others.

Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition will also introduce new Cosmic Combo cards. These cards offer a list of alien species with a brief description of their powers to help curate themed matchups and explore different types of game strategies.

Diplomacy on a Cosmic Scale

Just like previous editions of the game, players will each take on the role as leader of their own alien species with unique abilities, seeking to expand their reach across cosmos. Players will take turns launching spaceships from their fleets through a Hyperspace Gate to reach planets beyond their home system, attempting to colonize on opponents plants.

Colonizing on other planets is not as easy as launching a ship. Each planet is already controlled by another player, and other factions may not let you place those colonies without a fight. Diplomacy will be just as important as military strategy. Once both offense and defensive players launch their spaceships, they can ask the other aliens for support in their campaign.

Other players might jump in, using their Alien Powers, Artifacts, Reinforcements, or Flares to tip the odds in one side’s favor or the other. Win the encounter and you can establish a colony, but lose and your ships will be trapped in the warp.

The first players to successfully establish colonies on five foreign planet will be the winner.