Jerry Hawthorne


I had the pleasure of discussing Tail Feathers, at Gen Con, with designer Jerry Hawthorne. Now it’s no hidden secret that my family and I are very thrilled about the Mice & Mystics line as it’s definitely my #1 rated game. Mice & Mystics is a wonderful dungeon crawl that is story-driven and appeals to children and adults alike. You can learn more about Mice & Mystics here. Tail Feathers is best described by the publisher, Plaid Hat Games, as:

Tail Feathers is a head-to-head skirmish/battle game that takes place in the Mice and Mystics universe. Players battle against other players, and since the mechanisms of the two games cross over to some degree, you can play the characters/figures from Mice and Mystics in Tail Feathers. That said, the games plays completely differently.

I shot some video that demonstrates a very unique mechanism used in the game. Each miniature stand utilizes a tract ball of sorts to pivot the bird in various directions. The direction that the bird will be set at will indicate such things as direction of flight as well as altitude (ie climbing, descending). Each bird allows for a character mini to be placed upon it to add skills and benefits. I spoke to Jerry and the game is currently being produced with a hopeful release date at Essen 2015.



So the Dice Tower kicked Day 1 off with a bang. For those not familiar with the early mornings of the convention, the doors open to exhibitors at 8am followed, on day 1, to the VIPs at 9am. 10 o’clock welcomes the masses. Mysterium, from Asmodee, seemed to be the big hit- having sold out before 9:20.

IMAG0776One of the big hits was the display of upcoming Mice & Mystics product line games – Tail Feathers. Jerry Hawthorne, designer, was demoing the unique tilt mechanism used for the flying birds. In this sky and land battle game the birds will actually have removable “flyer” minis. Tail Feathers will hopefully be released sometime around, if not at, Essen.


One of my favorite parts of the day was getting to meet the folks over at NSKN. I got to meet with Agnieszka Kopera and Andrei Novac (Designer and Artist along with founders of NSKN) to get a look at the HUGE BOX expansion to Exodus entitled Edge of Extinction. It’s a GORGEOUS expansion to an already wonderful game. You can watch Tom’s review of the revised edition of the base game here. And if that wasn’t already exciting enough, I got a sneak peak at only 1 of 2 copies of Mistfall – a cooperative adventure game hopefully due out at Essen. It’s got some top-notch components and features some beautiful artwork – tons of cards!!


Portal Games Ignacy Trzewiczek & DTN Editor-in-Chief Rob Searing

Portal Games Ignacy Trzewiczek & DTN Editor-in-Chief Rob Searing


Portal Games had quite a few releases this year including Rattle, Battle, & Loot – a fun, light-hearted pirate-themed game. Also available was the drafting game Tides of Time and the Imperial Settlers expansion Atlanteans.

IMAG0788Sure to be a hit, from Pretzel Games, is Flick ’em Up. In this scenario-driven game, you use dexterity to flick (shoot) opponents and move around the board. An expansion has already been announced that will add ramps and horses. You can watch Tom Vasel’s review here.



Another fun stop was to the Chip Theory Games booth where they had, on display, their Hoplomachus line of products. I got to tell you, the chips are of a VERY high quality and the game play is quite fun. They had their, recently successful Kickstarter project, Origins on display.


If you’re at the convention, don’t forget to visit the Dice Tower booth. Although located at the very back of the hall, it’s definitely been flooded with traffic. You can meet and greet the entire gang first thing in the morning(s). Stop by and pick up any of the various promos on display along with dice towers, t-shirts, play-mats, and tons of other memorabilia.






Plaid Hat Games (publisher of Summoner Wars, Dead of Winter, Mice and Mystics, and many others) has been hinting around at a new game in the world of Mice and Mystics for awhile, and we are starting to see new information. @JayAhre tweeted a photo of what appears to be the box cover art revealing Tail Feathers as the title, Jerry Hawthorne (Mice and Mystics) as the designer, and the setting in the world of Mice and Mystics.

Although not much else is known at this time, Chad Hoverter (@DMGMiniFactory) tweeted several photos of some of the minis that will be found in the new release. You can check them out in the media section of his twitter page by clicking here.

If you are looking for more information about the world of Mice and Mystics, watch the review of the base game from The Dice Tower founder Tom Vasel and his daughter Melody.

downwood tales

Although designer Jerry Hawthorne’s Mice & Mystics: Downwood Tales expansion sold out quickly at Gen Con last week, Plaid Hat Games have opened pre-orders for the people who were not lucky enough to snag a copy.  A couple of promo cards are also available and PHG is selling extra sets of their custom dice for the game as well.

downwood tales tile

This expansion comes with a new storybook, new miniatures, heroes, villains, location tiles, and search deck items.  The adventures in this story take the valiant mice outdoors where they will encounter a pretty wicked snake.

Robert Searing has some coverage on the game here and be sure to check out the Jakobe preview and Molox preview.

angry molox

In 2012, Jerry Hawthorne’s Mice and Mystics landed on game tables with a mix of dice rolling, role playing, and adventure. The Heart of Glorm expansion released in 2013 and in between, downloadable chapters called Lost Chapters have been made available to expand the story.  With an expected release of later this year, Downwood Tales continues the story of the castle inhabitants turned mice and as we get closer to release, Plaid Hat Games provides preview #2 of a new, “enraged” bad guy, Molox.

If you missed the first preview of hero, Jakobe, be sure to check out this gecko who will do more than help save on your insurance.

jakobe playtest

Later this year, Plaid Hat Games will be releasing a new expansion for Mice and Mystics, Downwood Tales.  They have release a preview of one of the new characters, Jakobe, a quick-footed ranged attacker with very flavourful starting equipment: a returning boomerang, capable of hitting a target after missing on the first attack roll; and a leaf vest, which camouflages its wearer when on leafy trees and branches, thus increasing its armour bonus against ranged attackers.

Mice and Mystics: Downwood Tales is a box chock full of adventure and whimsy. New storybook, a pile of new miniatures, new heroes, new villains, new location tiles, new search deck items. Downwood Tales takes the adventure outdoors. Meet frogs, turtles, rabbits, the wise sages – the three blind mice, ride leaves like parachutes out of the trees and much, much, much more.

Downwood Tales gives you multiple playable characters, new villains, new minions, tiles, a ton of new mechanics, equipment, new story arcs and more! New to this big box expansion is the gecko named Jakobe and he’s not your run-of-the-mill gecko, he’s a smooth operator, a ranger of the forest, a lizard for hire who is leading our heroes through some of the greatest dangers they will ever face! With more fun elements then you can shake your tail at, Downwood Tales is the next exciting installment in the Mice & Mystics world!