Ignacy Trewiczek

Stronghold Undead 2nd Edition from Portal Games and Stronghold Games, designed by Ignacy Trzewiczek, is a stand-alone game based on the expansion that came out in 2010, but now has new artwork, new components, and a new streamlined rulebook!

This 2-player game has 1 side playing as the Undead army lead by Necromancer attempting to siege a Stronghold played by the opposing side protecting a powerful artifact. If the Undead army manages to break through and enter the Stronghold within 8 turns, that player wins the game! However, if the Stronghold can withstand the Undead army’s wrath, then the power of Necromancer fades away leaving nothing but dust.

Stronghold Undead will hit Kickstarter November 14 and will be available for retail in 2020. For more information, check out Portal Games’ website here.

Portal Games recently hosted PortalCon 11 in Gliwice, Poland, where they celebrated 20 years of the Board Games that tell stories. At the celebration, owner and Portal head honcho Ignacy Trzewiczek announced several new games and expansions coming from this amazing company in 2019. There are a ton of new announcements, all of which can be read in the press release from Portal, or seen live in the Keynote Address given at PortalCon.

Several new games set in the Imperial Settlers (BGG #145) universe were announced. First on the list is Empires of the North, a standalone card game designed by Ignacy, featuring Scotsman, Inuit and Vikings. Each faction comes with 2 unique card decks allowing a variety of game play styles. 2-4 players can each try to lead their faction to victory by dominating the opposition, developing their economy or defending their land. Also from the big man is Imperial Settlers Roll and Write. Just as the name implies, this new roll and write game takes place in the empire building world of Imperial Settlers, and focuses heavily on engine building, with each big move giving bonuses towards the next. The game includes two modes, one a traditional 2-4 player competitive point scoring challenge, while the second is a new adventure mode. This single player game comes with a pad of 48 unique challenge sheets to complete, each with its own starting points and goals. And just to round out the Imperial Settlers fervor, Portal Games has announced the Imperial Settlers Big Box, a 5 year anniversary of this award winning game, complete with all of the factions and expansions. The Big Box will be exclusively available direct from Portal Games, and includes a plastic insert to hold everything, new commemorative anniversary cards, as well as oft requested single piece faction boards for the Amazons, Aztecs and Atlanteans.

Also coming from the President of Polish Play is a reprint of Prêt-à-Porter, the 2-4 player surprisingly brutal fashion industry board game. Players take turns hiring new employees, gaining managers, designers and models, all in an effort to destroy the competition. This third edition is coming to Kickstarter in 2019, and features new art from acclaimed illustrator Kwanchai Moriya (Dinosaur Island, Catacombs).

Portal also announced new armies for their arena combat board games Neuroshima Hex and Monolith Arena, both from designer Michał Oracz. The Sand Runners are the latest army to dominate the world of Neuroshima Hex, and are a “specialized army of veteran warriors who clashed with the Moloch in the early days of the war”. The Sand Runners feature a double sided HQ tile for versatility, and come with a new Sand Storm tile type. The new army for Monolith Arena are the Academics, focusing on runes, upgrades, and the ability to dramatically weaken their enemy – in fact, their banner directly slows enemy tiles. The Academics armies are few in number, but devastating in ability.

One of the biggest hits Portal and Ignacy had in the past year was the web-integrated Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game, and the first campaign expansion, Detective: L.A. Crimes, is coming soon. Detective is one of the most engrossing, slowly enfolding, experiential crime story games made, and L.A. Crimes promises to bring more real life sleuthing, this time in the drug infused world of 1980’s Los Angeles. L.A. Crimes is due to be in stores March 2019, with the new mechanics of Stakeouts and Observation, 5 new characters, and 3 new cases. Also announced was Detective: Alexa Edition, wherein players can complete the 6th case in Detective, all narrated and run by the Amazon Alexa. Portal games has stated the Alexa edition is “part of an effort to bring board games to new players”, making the experience akin to an interactive radio drama. Finally, the world of Detective will be expanded even further by the Detective Signature Series. Portal Games has invited celebrated designers to use the framework of the Detective board game to create their own narratives. The first two master designers picked to frolic in the gritty world of suburban crime are Rob Daviau (Pandemic: Legacy, Betrayal at House on the Hill) and Mike Selinker (Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Lords of Vegas, Betrayal at House on the Hill), both masters of story telling in their own rights.

Limited to only 500 copies, Portal Games has launched their very own Loot Box, now up on their website for pre-order.

The Loot Box includes promos, mini-expansions, and gadgets for the following titles: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island, Alien Artifacts, Imperial Settlers, 51st State, Neuroshima HEX! 3.0 and Cry Havoc.

Some of the highlights include:

• A brand new, 14th scenario for Robinson Crusoe

• A new set of crystals for Cry Havoc

• A play mat for 51st State

Coming in at over $70 in value, all items will be available to purchase separately through varying times in 2019 but you can get them all first when you pre-order the Portal Games Loot Box.

GrandCon is the annual board gaming event held in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It’s a community event which raises money for local charities while everyone has fun doing so.

Portal GamesIgnacy Trzewiczek has been announced as a guest this year. As a designer he’s created great games including Imperial Settlers, Stronghold, Pret-A-Porter, Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island, and 51st State. As head of publishing he’s overseen the release of Alien Artifacts, Cry Havoc, and Tides of Madness. He’s also released a book, “Boardgames that tell Stories”.

The “golden voice” of the Dice Tower, Eric Summerer, has also been confirmed as a guest. Eric has been the co-host of the Dice Tower podcast since 2009 and has served as a voiceover artist, announcer, and part-time singer for many other Dice Tower related videos and podcasts. He can also be heard on a number of Audible books across many genres.

Other great guests include Isaac Childres (Gloomhaven designer), Jon Gilmore (Dead of Winter co-designer), Albin Johnson (Founder of 501st Legion), Chris Kirkman (founder of Dice Hate Me Games), Richard Launius (Arkham Horror designer), and many, many others. See the full list of guests on the GrandCon website.

GrandCon will be from 14 – 16 September, 2018. Badges are currently available for sale.

Portal Games was one of the stars of the show at GenCon 2016 with the highly asymmetrical area control game Cry Havoc. Players took completely different strategies playing as either the inventive Human Military Complex, the destruction-oriented Machines, the mystical almost euro-stylings of the Pilgrims, or the native omnipresent Trog. Now with the recent release of the first expansion, Aftermath, Portal Games has been filling the inter-sphere with goodies showing off its new addition. First, Portal has put up a beautiful gallery of images from Cry Havoc: Aftermath, showcasing its gorgeous art and elegant, functional graphic design.

Secondly, Portal Games has always been very close with the fans, and Portal Games founder and number one cheerleader Ignacy Trzewiczek has been known to keep dialogs going online, getting new ideas from the people who play the games the most. Ignacy has recently posted a blog describing some of the best moments where game design came directly from we, the public, the fans. For an interesting read, the original BGG threads that led to the Blog are referenced here.

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Fans of the original adventure and survival game Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island will be interested to know what specific changes will be present in Portal’s new release of the game under the Portal banner.  According to Portal’s latest news release, the major notable changes will include:

  • a “typical” square game box, as opposed to the original’s coffin box
  • a fancier 1st Player Token
  • an additional 7th Scenario
  • Character Sheets on thick cardboard, as opposed to the thin sheets in the original
  • shaped wooden resource components, as opposed to the cubes in the original
  • redesigned Discovery Tokens with thematic names on them
  • character stickers for the wooden player pawns
  • a freshly-reworked rulebook (I like how Portal points out that the original “explains nothing” and the new one “explains everything”)

Preorders are currently being accepted, and this new release is scheduled for release in November of 2016.  For more information, visit Portal’s new release here.

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Stephen Buonocore of Stronghold Games has released a newsletter full of news for 2016, beginning with the announcement that he plans to leave his regular full-time job to give 100% of his attention to Stronghold Games.  He hopes to make this move before the end of the year.

Following this is the announcement that Stronghold Games’ Pocket Line (including Diamonds) will be expanding to include Bear Valley (Carl Chudyk) and Stellar Conflict, a fast-paced space combat game with real-time elements set in the Among the Stars Universe.

Stronghold also announces further summer 2016 releases to include their first pirate-themed game, PiratoonsCity of Spies: Estoril 1942, and The Pursuit of Happiness.  Additionally, Stronghold discusses their podcast, Board Games Insider, co-hosted by Stephen Buonocore and Ignacy Trzewiczek, and the progress made in 23 episodes so far.

For more details on this year’s upcoming titles, visit the Stronghold Games website here.

 

Ignacy Trewiczek owner of Portal Games and the designer of many popular games has released his latest Vlog post where he taiks about his recent trips and some of the great games he was able to pick up while at Essen.  In addition he shows off some very nifty components that one of his fans from BGG sent to him.

In addition to those things he also talks about the fact that Portal is intending to release an expansion to one of this years biggest games “Imperial Settlers” called “Why Can’t We Be Friends”  including 55 cards with cards for all 4 factions and it also allows for a solo variant as well.  He indicates that the game should be available in December in Europe and likely January for US release.  He also notes that he will have some copies of the game available at BGG.CON.