Two new products are slated to arrive soon from Stronghold Games – Friedmann Friese’s Futuropia and the Piece of Cake expansion for Kitchen Rush. The former new game from prolific designer of F-named games, Futuropia is described as a “luck-free” economic game where players compete to build an ideal civilization – one where citizens no longer need to work but instead have enough food and energy to live in leisure for the rest of their natural lives. It’s a fun theme with some serious science fiction roots not entirely divorced from it’s predecessor, Power Grid, which is certainly reason enough to have a piqued interest. Futuropia allows for 1 to 4 players and takes roughly 90 minutes to play.
“To ensure you always encounter new challenges, we offer multiple game set-up variations, which create a variety of gameplay situations, ensuring new experiences and replayability. The solo game offers you an option to learn the mechanisms and processes of Futuropia before you play it with other players. See our hopeful future in…Futuropia!”
Kitchen Rush: Piece of Cake is, on the other hand, simply an expansion to the frantic real-time cooperative game slash restaurant simulator. It adds plenty more new options to the game, including board extensions, desserts, mini-orders, and a new hourglass for use as a specialist worker. Kitchen Rush is excellent and challenging on it’s own, but if perhaps you find it a bit stale or would like to broaden the types of actions in the game, Piece of Cake is there for you. Both products are scheduled to release to retail in January of 2019, so if you’re interested in either of these items be sure to check out your favorite store to pick up a copy.
Stronghold Games has begun taking pre-orders on more than a handful of games due out in the next couple of months.
Two of the new games available for pre-order now, AuZtralia and Terraforming Mars: Colonies, were reported in Dice Tower News recently. Bryan Drake also sat down with AuZtralia’s designer, Martin Wallace, to learn more about the game. Stronghold Games has proudly added AuZtralia to its Great Designer Series. Terraforming Mars: Colonies is the fourth expansion to the hugely popular, Terraforming Mars. Only 500 copies of Terraforming Mars: Colonies will be available for pre-order, so act fast.
Also available for pre-order are two Friedmann Friese games, Fortune and Fool!
Fool! is a card-shedding and trick-taking game where player attempt to get rid of their cards without playing the lowest card. The player who plays the lowest card has to sit out the next trick, losing the opportunity to get rid of a card. Players score negative points for cards left in their hand, and positive points if they got rid of all the cards in their hand, unless they play the lowest card in the last hand which earns them nothing. Fool! plays 4-8 players, ages 8+, in about 15 minutes.
Fortune is the forth game in the Fast Forward Series and uses the Fable Game system. These games do not require an understanding of the rules beforehand. Instead, the cards are pre-sorted and the rules of the game are explained on the cards as they are played. In Fortune, the player with the highest score wins the game, but gaining the highest numbers may not be enough. The trick is to get the right bonuses for the big payoff. Fortune plays 3-5 players, ages 10+, in about 15 minutes.
Calimala was originally published last year Blackfire Entertainment in both German and English editions, but it may have been difficult to find here in North America. Stronghold is republishing the English only edition this year. In Calimala, players are members of the guild of cloth finishers and merchants in Republic of Florence during the Late Middle Ages. Players assign their employees to produce and trade cloth and gain prestige by delivering their good, contributing to the construction of buildings, and sponsoring artwork. The player with the most prestige at the end of the game wins. Calimala plays 3-5 players in 45-75 minutes.
Lastly, Stronghold Games is republished Kanban: Automotive Revolution as a Limited Edition Kanban: Driver’s Edition. Stronghold has also included Kanban, designed by renowned designer Vital Lacerda of Vinhos, The Gallerist, and Lisboa fame, in their Great Designer Series. In Kanban, players are managers in an automotive factory seeking to impress the factory manager by establishing the most efficient assembly line. With each promotions come more capabilities to be more efficient. The players with the higher productivity points, demonstrating the most effective use of workhours, at the end of the game is the winner. Kanban plays 2-4 players, ages 12+, in 90-120 minutes. Stronghold does not plan to reprint this game again in the future!
Friedemann Friese is taking the new Fabled games model into the Power Grid universe with a new expansion Power Grid: Fabled Expansion. The expansion will be released by 2F-Spiele, 999 Games, Giochi Uniti, and Rio Grande Games.
This latest expansion works for both Power Grid and Power Grid Deluxe base games. The expansion includes two presorted Fable Decks which will introduce new mechanisms to the games as players work through campaigns using the maps of USA, Germany, Europe, or North America.
Each fabled campaign will have players playing three consecutive games on the same map. When playing with two players, players will use the “Against the Trust” rules. In each game players will reveal cards in order as the conditions for those cards are met, which those cards adding twists to the game.
Examples of actions that trigger the reveal of new rules include:
- Reveal in Phase 3: Buying Resources… When a player buys coal for 7 Elektro or More
- Reveal at the end of a game… when the players have already revealed card 6
- Reveal in Step 1 or Step 2… when the players have already revealed card 4, and there is a difference of 10 or more between the numbers of 2 adjacent power plants in the current market.
Power Grid: Fabled Expansion includes 30 Fabled cards and 6 rules cards. The expansion does not change player count or length of game, with the game still playing over 120 minutes with 2-6 players aged 13 and up. The game requires a copy of Power Grid or Power Grid Deluxe to play and is scheduled to release in November 2017.
A Fabled History
The first game in the Fabled line, Fabled Fruit, introduced the fable deck of cards which introduce new and developing gameplayover time. The game starts in a simple state, but as you play through the game new rules emerge and deeper mechanisms develop. The Fabled game system is fully resettable, unlike most legacy games. Fabled Fruit ended up making the 2017 Spiel des Jahres Recommended list.
This year Friese is also releasing other titles based on the Fabled system including Flee, Fear, Fortress as well as The Lime Expansion to the original Fabled Fruit title.
Power Grid has it’s own storied history. Power Grid was the updated release of the Friedemann Friese crayon game Funkenschlag. The objective of Power Grid is to supply the most cities with power when someone’s network gains a particular size. Players mark claim the rights to to power a city and then develop pre-existing routes between cities for additional connection, bid against each to purchase the power plants through an always changing power plant market that they use to power the cities in their network, and finally buy resources to power those plants.
When released in 2004, Power Grid began a multi-year award winning streak. Awards won include:
Power Grid is an amazing game that combines area control with financial mechanics such as auctioning and supply and demand. However, it can take quite a while to play which can keep it from hitting the table as often as players who love the game would like it to. Well, Rio Grande Games will release a new version that will allow gamers to enjoy the Power Grid theme in a quicker, easier format.
Legendary board game designer Friedmann Friese has created Power Grid: The Card Game, which will include the auction and resource mechanics of Power Grid and Power Grid Deluxe, just without the maps. The game can be played by 2-6 players in under 60 minutes, intensifying the tension of it’s predecessors.
I for one am excited about this because shorter game play equals more games of Power Grid! For more on Power Grid: The Card Game, click here.