Glenn Drover

Railroad and resource barons are not strange themes for board gaming, but making an elegant and clean introductory economic engine dominated by anthropomorphic animal businesspersons is one way to make it all more appealing. Raccoon Tycoon, from Forbidden Games, is just that and it’s up for funding right now on Kickstarter. Anywhere from 2 to 5 players try to speculate the value of commodities and luxury goods, auction off railroad shares, and purchase buildings in an effort to be Top Dog.  The game has adequate depth for seasoned gamers while being streamlined enough to be a good introductory title to the genre, and it plays in about 90 minutes.

“In Raccoon Tycoon, players try to produce the most valuable commodities in an ever changing marketplace. They then use those commodities to build towns, or sell them at the best price to secure great profits that can be used to win auctions for the all-important railroads. The profits may also be used to buy powerful buildings that give the players power-ups or bonuses in production. Owning the best towns and railroads determines victory.”

Beyond being a game from veteran designer Glenn Drover, the artwork by Annie Stegg Gerard is downright adorable and hallmarks a solid and satisfying package. The campaign also includes some wonderful stretch-goals to shoot for, including premium currency-quality bills and bigger, better everything. The Dice Tower’s own Mark Streed recorded a Paid Preview of the game for those that want a quick view of how it plays. If you are interested in learning more about Raccoon Tycoon, check out the Kickstarter campaign page for a draft of the rules, more preview videos, play-throughs, community feedback, and updates.

Forbidden Games has started a Kickstarter Campaign for its first game, the tile laying train stock game, Railroad Rivals. In Railroad Rivals, by Glenn Drover, 1-5 players bid with their own points in order to win one stock tile and one city tile each round. City tiles are connected edge to edge, and if the train companies on connecting edges match, the player can place one of their train meeples, and the stock for that company rises in value.

New cities collect goods cubes, which can be delivered city to city for points. Extra points are earned if you are the first to deliver a certain good, and opposing players earn points if their trains are used for the delivery. The game ends when all the tiles are laid out, and each players’ stock tiles earn them points according to the stock value.

The Kickstarter for Railroad Rivals continues through April 10, and is expected to deliver in August 2018.

Glenn Drover is a name known to most board game enthusiasts. He founded Eagle Games, designed many games, including Railroad Tycoon (AKA Railways of the World), Conquest of the Empire, and Age of Empires III.

The name Jason Kapalka may be less well-known in our circles, but his accomplishments are not. He is the co-founder and chief game designer at PopCap who make the insanely popular video games Bejeweled, Peggle, and Plants Vs. Zombies.

Those two luminaries are coming together to found Forbidden Games, and they are bringing their unique design aesthetic with them. PopCap Games turned casual gaming on its ear, investing as much into the lighter end of games as most companies did only with their premium games, and making their games visually and aurally superior to others in the same market in the process. Eagle Games made a similar mark, producing mid-weight board games with large, lovely boards, miniatures and attention to detail in components.

Forbidden Games promises to continue this trend, with a mission statement that reads, “We believe a great board game is something you should treasure and play for years to come.” For their first game, Railroad Rivals, which will launch on Kickstarter later this month, they have hired veteran Disney animator Brian Kesinger, who has worked on movies like Tarzan and Moana.

Mr. B Games and L4 Studios are currently running the Kickstarter for the 5th Player expansion for Glenn Drover’s WarQuest, a high-strategy, fantasy adventure game in which players are competing to recruit an army from the various races of Myrathia and become the ruler of the land.  This 5th player expansion introduces experienced units and the warlord faction’s elite guard to the WarQuest experience.

The 5th player expansion includes the following:

  • 1 Warlord
  • 2 Lieutenants
  • 30 experienced units:
    • 4 Satyr Infantry
    • 2 Satyr Archer
    • 4 Dwarf Infantry
    • 2 Dwarf Crossbowman
    • 4 Elf Infantry
    • 2 Elf Archer
    • 4 Goblin Infantry
    • 2 Goblin Archer
    • 4 Orc Infantry
    • 2 Orc Archer
  • 5 Experience Dice
  • 5 Faction Dice
  • Setup Guide
  • Companion Rules

This project is set to fund on February 10, 2017.  For more information, visit the project’s Kickstarter page.

From the Publisher

Eagle-Gryphon Games is proud to announce Glenn Drover’s Empires: Galactic Rebellion, the sequel to the hit Empires: Age of Discovery, coming to Kickstarter Saturday, December 12.

In the game, players will take on the role of leader one a rebel faction.  Players will recruit and train specialists, scientists to help you develop technologies, smugglers to build trade networks, diplomats to sway Senate decisions, Heroes to conduct covert missions, and Troopers to fight your battles across the galaxy.

Empires: Galactic Rebellion contains over 400 highly-detailed miniatures including 8 Capital Ship Fleet sculpts, 100 coins, and more.

When looking at the idea of a sequel to Age of Discovery, I wanted to create a game that would be familiar to fans of the original game, but was a unique game experience. The theme allowed for a new starting point and suggested many new mechanics that could make the game very different and interesting. The galactic senate, the imperial military (planet-side troops and fleets), covert missions, and lots more conflict (as you would expect in a Space Opera-Galactic Rebellion type game) make for a new experience that’s also tremendous fun,” says Glenn Drover, designer of Empires: Galactic Rebellion.

Watch for the release of the Kickstarter on December 12, 2015.

warquest

WarQuest by award winning game designer Glenn Drover brings together the design, development, and production team that brought us great games like Railroad Tycoon (aka Railways of the World), Railways of Europe, Conquest of the Empire, and Age of Empires III. It promises to bring an epic game that has a giant 36” by 42” board and will play 45 minutes to an hour per player. 2-4 players (2-5 in the Kickstarter version) will play warlords attempting to reunite the kingdoms of the mythical land of Myrathia using armies of various fantasy races.

WarQuest is a high fantasy/grand strategy game that immerses players in the world of Myrathia where each takes the role of a warlord, seeking to reunite the fractured land under his/her banner. During the game, players will recruit different races (wood elves, dwarves, goblins, orcs and satyrs) to fill their armies, travel across the world of Myrathia, complete demanding quests, engage in ferocious battles, conquer and control strategic regions, and if successful, make themselves ruler of all Myrathia. The game is for 2-5 players and takes 45 minutes to an hour per player. WarQuest is firmly rooted in the theme-driven, dice rolling, engaging fun of big box “Ameritrash” map and miniatures games combined with the advantages of newer gameplay mechanics and concepts that facilitate faster, more balanced and more dynamic gameplay.

warquest map

During the game players will attempt to complete quests and conquest cards they hold in their hand. These cards will have each players armies moving across the map resulting in battles with other players so action will be frequent (no turtling). Games will take a pre-determined number of turns allowing the game length to be adjusted as players wish. On their turn each player will be able to take 3 actions. Their choices are:

  • Move an army and resolve any battles if necessary.
  • Buy a power card from one of the 5 available at all times.
  • Take control of a region occupied by your troops.
  • Tax a city under your control.
  • Recruit new troops of a race that lives in a region where one of your leaders is present.
  • Recruit a Lieutenant.
  • Complete a quest.

At the end of each turn an event is played that will affect the game in some way. You can be sure these events will keep players on their toes.

Battles are fought with armies that have two lines of troops and reserves and typical take 1-3 minutes. There will be two ranks of troops (5 each in front and back) with the rest of the available troops in reserves to replace the fallen. Each type of troop will have different attack/defense ratings and each race will have different strengths and weaknesses.

The Kickstarter version of the game will differ slightly than the retail version as it will add an extra player bringing the total number up to 5. However there are also pledge levels that will add on up to 6 expansions including one that will not be available at retail. Two of these expansions stand out one due to the gameplay and one because it will not be available at retail.

The Wraith King expansion adds on some very interesting gameplay and what I think is a great idea for a catch up mechanic. On the 13th turn the player in last place will stop playing as a warlord and instead take control of the Wraith King and an undead army. Their only goal to win the game will now be to destroy every city in Myrathia.

The Wizards expansion will not be available at retail and is only included in the top tier pledge. This will add 4 different types of powerful wizards each of which only the player that obtains their power card/item will be able to recruit.

WarQuest looks to be a truly epic game that will lead to hours of enjoyment. The team behind it has an enormous amount of experience and has brought some amazing games to market. However this will not be a small quick game. The map alone is huge and will take a whole lot of table space to support it; also the suggested game time is 45 minutes to one hour per player. With a full 5 players that could take over 5 hours to play. For me, I don’t have anything like this in my collection yet and it looks like it will be a great game to add. I’ve been looking for a long epic game to get my hands on and this will certainly fit the bill. I love the idea of commanding armies, fighting battles, conquests and completing quests. Add in the Events deck, highly detailed mini’s, and the Wraith King expansion for a catch up mechanic and I’m in. I am backing this project and if any of this interests you I would highly suggest checking out the Kickstarter.