hand management

spirit island

Dark clouds are on the horizon. Invaders spread like locusts across the unspoiled wilderness. Nature itself recoils. Can the Spirits stem the tide of settlement?

Published by Greater Than Games – makers of the popular superhero coop game Sentinels of the Multiverse – Spirit Island is a new cooperative game about nature spirits defending their island home from ravenous colonial invaders. Each player takes the role of a different Spirit with access to different powers that will help the Dahan – the local inhabitants – drive away the outsiders for good. Spread your presence around the island, choose carefully when to reclaim already used powers and when to seek out new powers, and do your best to stop the corruption and blight of the invader towns before it’s too late!

spirit island comp

The game plays 1-4 people in 90 to 120 minutes, comes with 8 different playable spirits (plus a 9th kickstarter exclusive spirit) and 2 different groups of specialized invaders for advanced play.

Check out the full campaign here.

campaign trail

Cosmic Wombat Games, a production company dedicated to realizing the tabletop visions of new board game designers, is proud to present their newest game on kickstarter. Campaign Trail is a card driven area control game of political maneuvers and electioneering for 2-6 players and plays in about 120 minutes. Each player is a candidate running for the Presidency of the United States moving around the country to gain the most votes in different states. They must choose wisely which cards to play – with each card providing a choice between 4 different actions, out of 6 possible actions in the game – carefully balance their fundraising activities with their campaign events and advertising budgets. Each candidate will also have their own unique capabilities to aid them in winning the hearts and minds of the American people. Campaign Trail is set to hit Kickstarter on September 16th!

For more information, read the full press release below and be sure to check out the kickstarter campaign here.

“Never have I played a game that offered so much different strategy and methods of play in such a simple to learn game.” ~ Levi Bushue, Living the Nerd Life



As mud-slinging political campaigns once again clamor for our attention, the new strategy board game, Campaign Trail, is launching its own campaign on Kickstarter, Sep 16 – Oct 9. After 4 years of touring the country’s gaming conventions, holding photo ops with hardworking gamers everywhere, and collecting rave reviews, Campaign Trail is asking for your campaign contributions to raise funds for its first production run. Developed by Cosmic Wombat Games, Campaign Trail is a 2-6 player strategy game in which players are candidates competing to become the next President of the United States.

Whether playing in teams with your running mate, or one-on-one, it’s up to you to sway the voting public in your favor using cards to advertise, campaign, host events, raise funds, register voters, travel, and debate the important issues facing the nation. The candidate that best manages their resources and connects with the public on key issues will win the presidency! Carefully designed to avoid creating real controversy around the table, Campaign Trail provides an entertaining experience that a wide range of play-testers have thoroughly enjoyed – political junkies or not. For only a little bit more, there are opportunities to influence game content by endorsing a card or even creating a character. Additionally, there is a backer challenge for a Kickstarter exclusive gift.The confetti is flying, the champagne is flowing, and you have just accepted your party’s nomination for President. Now it’s time to hit the Campaign Trail! How will you chart your path to victory?

Stoneblade Entertainment announces that a new card game, Bad Beets, is now available for preorder through July 27 with the free gift of a Bad Beets button.

Bad Beets is a family bluffing game in which players must eat their vegetables by working to get rid of their beets in any way they can.  This might include feeding them to the dog or sharing them with others.  Players are being required to sit down for dinner and must “eat” (or get rid of) their 8 Beet cards before they can “leave the table”.  You can bluff to your heart’s content, but you had better be holding the right card if you get called out!

The game will include:

  • 15 Role Cards
  • 50 Beet Tokens
  • 15 Ice Cream Tokens
  • 5 Action Reminder Cards
  • 1 Rulebook

Bad Beets is for 2-5 players ages 8 and up and plays very quickly.  The game is scheduled to ship to retailers on August 3, 2015.  For more information about the game and the preorder, visit the Stoneblade website here.

Coming from new startup design house Alcyon Creative, Argonauts is a cooperative game for 1-4 players that plays in about 60 minutes. Designed by Lefteris Iroglidis and Errikos Nikolaou and featuring artwork from Giota Vorgia, Argonauts is based on the ancient Greek legend of Jason and the Argonauts, allowing each player to take on the role of one of the classic heroes in their impossible quest to recover the magical Golden Fleece. Players will work together to complete the famous journey of the Argo, facing down terrible storms, pirates and titanic monsters. Take care to keep your ship well stocked and choose wisely whether to face your enemies with might or cunning.

argonauts components

Can you survive the journey? Check out the full campaign here.

A new upstart design house on Kickstarter, Secret Base Games is teaming up with Good Games – the largest hobby game distributor and game store chain in Australia – to bring you MONSTROUS, a tactical dexterity game of cunning card throwing and hand management designed by Kim Brebach. MONSTROUS is a 30 minute game for 2-5 angry gods, each trying to use their terrible monsters to drive the most people back into their long abandoned temples.

Each player takes turns choosing a monster from their hand and throwing it onto the table, trying to land the card on top of other player’s monsters or on one of the preset locations spread around the table in order to activate the special abilities of the cards. Choose carefully what monsters you play – every monster is double sided with a different power on each side – and be careful what you aim for or you might accidentally fall into one of your opponents’ traps! Once one player runs out of cards to play, all other players take 1 final turn and the player with the most faith wins. Are you ready to release the Kraken?

Check out the full campaign here.

empires at sea

Empires at Sea is an indie board game (seriously – it’s been completely built by Zach and Amy Silverzweig, a board gaming couple) currently on Kickstarter. In Empires at Sea, 2-4 nations launch fleets, capture ports, and wage war against each other to amass the largest empire over the course of three eras. Here’s a quick overview of the game from the Kickstarter:

  • Players each command a nation: America, France, Britain or Spain

  • The game is played in 15 Rounds.

  • Each Round opens with a History Card, which hurts or helps one nation or another based on the actual impact of the actual historical event.

  • A Weather Card is played, limiting or improving movement for all players for the Round (e.g., ships can only move North and East)

  • Next, all players gain resources, based on the Ports they own, plus any Resource Cards played during the game.

  • Each player than takes a turn, first by by playing a Captain’s Card (used to launch a ship, advance your military, strengthen a port, etc) and then by sailing their fleet to take command of new ports, trade, or attack their enemies.

  • The combat system is based on a roll of the dice, plus modifiers for ship size, the weather gauge, military advancements, and Captain’s Orders.

  • At the end of the round, all players may bribe the Pirate. The highest bidder gets to use this ship to attack their enemies.

empires at sea cards

The game strives to be accurate by making the movement and combat actually feel like sailing and attacking ships. Also, the map is almost perfectly to scale. There is randomness in the game setup (ports, history cards), so there is good replay value. The game should take around an hour for 2 players and 2 hours for 4 players, but you can also extend the gameplay.

So far, Empires at Sea has been built from scratch by Zach and Amy Silverzweig, and they plan on using top-tier manufacturers when the game goes into production. The components look high quality – the plastic ships will include stickers to act as realistic looking sails! The Kickstarter also includes a pledge level where you can have your face on the box cover, if you have $10K to spare.

Check out the Kickstarter for more info.




Plaid Hat Games has come out with another great article on their upcoming game Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn this time introducing us to the card types that will be found in the game. Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn is an expandable card game that will have 2-4 players battling it out with back and forth action. Featuring short player turns and the ability to react and adjust as the round progress Ashes is coming soon to an FLGS near you.


Ashes has 6 different card types that players will be able to choose from to build/draft their decks (if you choose not to use the pre-built decks) each of which offer their own unique advantages. The types available are:

  • Ready Spells – placed on your spellboard and have a constant or activated effect that can be activated multiple times per game.
  • Action Spells – played during your turn for a one time effect that trigger immediately but are discarded after use.
  • Reaction Spells – cards that are played after a specific event and can be played outside your turn for immediate action against your opponents, to defend yourself, or set yourself up for a strong combo on your next turn.
  • Alteration Spells – spells that are played onto units to alter their status or add/remove an ability. Many of these have the ability to be added back into your hand for a cost.
  • Ally Cards – units that can attack your opponents, typically more powerful than conjured units and can come straight out of your hand.
  • Conjuration Cards – similar to ally units in that they are used to attack your foes. They differ in that they are not in your draw pile and require another card to be summoned however they are also not removed from the game when they are destroyed and could potentially be summoned again.

The article contains more information on each of these types so if you are interested you should head over to Plaid Hat Games website here.

shadow counter

I have to be honest and say the more information that comes out about this game the more excited I get about it not to mention the fact that with each article comes more examples of the art found in the game by artists Fernanda Suarez and David Richards which is pretty mind blowing. It looks like designer Isaac Vega has outdone himself again with this one and I can’t wait for it to come out. The variety in card types and the way they play certainly look like it will make Ashes really exciting to play not to mention adding an incredible amount of variety to your and your opponents decks. It certainly looks like PHG has another hit on their hands with this one.


millennium blades ccg

Have you ever wanted to play a board game about playing a collectible card game? Millennium Blades, a game now on Kickstarter from Level 99 Games (Pixel Tactics, BattleCON), brings you just that.

There’s more to a collectible card game (CCG) than just playing a game. There’s the collecting, the speculating on the market of rare cards, the building decks, and the tournaments.

Millennium Blades is a board game about a fictional collectible card game, which is also called Millennium Blades. You begin the game on pre-release night with just your starter deck. You’ll open new packs, form collections, and sell your junk cards on the aftermarket to buy hot new cards. Trade with your friends, build up your deck, and prepare to compete at Millennium Blades Worlds for the title of World Champion!

There are two phases to the game – the Deckbuilding Phase and the Tournament Phase. In the first phase, players buy cards and construct their decks by trading, collecting sets, fusing cards, and more. In the Tournament Phase, players use their decks in a free-for-all battle to try to score the most victory points. There are many ways to score victory points: through tournaments, valuable collections, money from selling cards, and friendships you gain. All of these together simulate the experience of participating in a CCG.

If you and your friends (2-5 players) enjoy the idea of simulating collectible card games with a board game and want to learn more about Millenium Blades, see the Kickstarter here.

mission red planet new

As you may have heard, Fantasy Flight Games (FFG) is releasing a revised version of Mission: Red Planet, which was originally published by Asmodee in 2005.

The first edition of Mission: Red Planet was a near flop. Neither the French version or the US version sold well, but after a couple of years it was being called a classic on BoardGameGeek, the board gamers’ website.

At the 2013 Essen fair (a game trade fair held in Germany), Bruno Faidutti was talking to John Grams from Fantasy Flight games, who asked about interest in a new edition. Grams hadn’t played the game, but US resellers had asked about it, and the Brunos were excited to jump on the opportunity.

mission red planet proto

With the new Mission: Red Planet, the basic system and theme of the game stayed the same. It’s still a steampunk themed sci-fi game about colonizing Mars, with a character/action card system mechanic. The one important new feature is the addition of Phobos, the moon where paratroopers can be airdropped anywhere on Mars. During the designing process, the Brunos and Steve Kimball from FFG went over every detail of the game to make the game as good as it could be. The game now plays up to 6 instead of 3-5, and it also has a two player variant designed by Bruno Cathala.

Bruno Faidutti leaves us with his one regret – he dislikes the game’s name. He would prefer a simpler name like Red Planet or Mars, but since Mission: Red Planet is already well known by its original name, it’s too late to change it now.

To read more of Bruno Faidutti’s thoughts, check out his blog here.

sitting ducks

Playroom Entertainment has launched their latest Kickstarter project: a new edition of their classic game of avian anarchy, Sitting Ducks. Originally released in 2005, Sitting Ducks is a line manipulation game designed by Keith Meyers in which players try to shoot their opponents’ ducks out of the water. It plays in 20 minutes for 3-6 players, though the campaign currently includes stretch goals to take the game all the way up to 8 players. The deluxe version will also include brand new unique ducks and action cards illustrated by Randy Martinez and some new gameplay mechanics as well.

sittind ducks comp

Check out the campaign here.

Press Release:

Playroom Launches Sitting Ducks Deluxe Kickstarter – Funds in 24 hours!

Los Angeles, CA – (April 8, 2015) – Playroom Entertainment® launched a Kickstarter for its new Sitting Ducks Gallery™ Deluxe Edition on Monday, April 6th, and the campaign funded in 24 hours. With tons of great new images by famed illustrator, Randy Martinez, this award-winning game by renowned designer, Keith Meyers, has fans flocking to scoop it up. Sitting Ducks is a stick-it-to-your-neighbor, line manipulation game originally released to rave reviews in 2005. Various editions of both the board game, card game and even the Deluxe have been licensed out by Playroom and published all around the world. International versions include German, French, Spanish, Czech, Chinese, Russian and more. The fun game play of Sitting Ducks Gallery has garnered numerous awards, including recognition from Games Magazine Games 100, Boardgamegeek.com’s Golden Geek, Fairplay Magazine and Major Fun. Now, Playroom is thrilled to take Sitting Ducks to the next level with the Deluxe edition, which will feature additional Action cards with new mechanics, new themed ducks, upgraded components and more! With the reproduction of the Sitting Ducks Gallery Card Game and the new Deluxe version going into print, which is sure to have extras added through stretch goals, there will truly be something for everyone! Playroom recently wrapped up a successful Kickstarter campaign for its Unspeakable Words Deluxe game, which was extremely well-received and also had run a campaign for its Killer Bunnies Deluxe. So far, this is Playroom’s third successful Kickstarter campaign and all have been for specialized deluxe editions of their popular titles. Dan Rowen, President of Playroom Entertainment, said, “Playroom has always loved Sitting Ducks and the fun that everyone has while playing. Randy Martinez did a fabulous job with the illustrations and we are very excited to get this new content released. While the Sitting Ducks card game has recently been unavailable, we are so happy to have this opportunity to bring that back as well. We are very proud to have Sitting Ducks continue to be a part of our product line.” Rowen also mentioned that “since we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the games release, we wanted to thank the community who has supported us and offer something really cool to add to the game. Kickstarter has again proven to be the perfect place to do this!” Playroom Entertainment’s Kickstarter for Sitting Ducks Deluxe (MSRP $40.00) has a special Kickstarter price of $35.00. About Sitting Ducks Gallery: In Sitting Ducks, you are trying to be the last player with ducks in the pond. Reminiscent of the midway-style shooting duck galleries, players use Action cards to take out their opponents’ ducks while attempting to keep theirs from getting eliminated from the game. The social interaction encouraged while playing leads to a lot of hysteria and players find themselves making deals, forming alliances, backstabbing their neighbors and causing havoc. Feathers will fly in this light-hearted “quacky” family game. About Playroom Entertainment: Playroom Entertainment, based in Sherman Oaks, California, is a leading marketer of original board, card and dice games for all ages. The company was founded in 2000 on a commitment to produce high-quality games from the best designers in the world and bring them into homes for families to enjoy together. Led by the phenomenal success of its Killer Bunnies® and Geek Out!™ series, Playroom currently boasts an award-winning line-up of over 75 products that have been individually honored and brand recognized including Sherlock™, Catch the Match™, Slangology™, Say What You Meme™, The Hobbit® Board Game, The Lord of the Rings® Card Game, and more. Playroom’s wide range of party, fast-paced, strategy, educational and family fun games are sold at specialty toy, game, gift, educational and book retailers nationwide. For more information on Playroom Entertainment products visit www.PlayroomEnt.com.