Mike Fitzgerald

Stronghold Games is bringing out a new edition of Diamonds, the popular trick-taking game for 2-6 players designed by Mike Fitzgerald. The second edition includes redesigned player cards, redesigned player aids, as well as the Thief mini-expansion. The new player cards have eschewed the black border look in favor of a more traditional, easier to read visual design, while maintaining the splash of color in the middle of the card.

Gameplay remains the same. Each suit (hearts, diamonds, clubs, spades) has a corresponding suit action that triggers when a trick is won, when a player does not follow the suit that was led, and at the end of a round of ten tricks for the player with the most cards of each suit. Players collect diamonds (acrylic crystals, not the suit), first into their showroom and then moving them into their vault. Diamonds can be stolen from a player’s showroom, but not from their vault. At the end of the game, diamonds in showrooms are worth one point and diamonds in vaults are worth two points. The Thief mini-expansion adds a rotating thief token and changes the suit action for clubs. The new suit action allows the player triggering the action to take a diamond from the showroom of the player with the thief token in front of them.

Diamonds second edition is scheduled for a September release, however Gen Con attendees will get an early opportunity to acquire the new edition of Zee Garcia’s #1 card game (as of this Top Ten from 2016).

Mike Fitzgerald follows up his successful Baseball Highlights: 2045 game with Football Highlights 2052.  Like Baseball Highlights: 2045, each player will play cards from their hand to make plays.  In Football Highlights 2052, the game of football did not see the infusion of robots to the extent that happened in baseball.  However, the game did become fast pace with a continuously running clock which required football players to play both offense and defense.  Football Highlights 2052 easily captures the theme and strategy of managing football players who perform both offense and defense duties.  Each player will have a deck of cards representing his or her team.  Players will draw only 10 cards from the deck of available plays each half.  From their selection of cards in their hands, players will play cards to defend against their opponent’s offensive play, then turn the card around to execute that cards offensive capability to the opponent to defense against.  Players repeat this process, attempting to drive the ball to the goal line in four plays or be forced to reset back at the 45 yard line to begin the drive anew.  Halftime offers each player a chance to make adjustments to their team by drafting 5 new players and discarding down to the team size of 15 cards. After playing the second half, the team with the highest score wins.  Of course, if there is a tie, the game goes into sudden death overtime.

Each card features a team athlete who leads the offensive and defensive play.  Each team deck of play features not only a mix of run and pass plays, but also a new play style called a “Maul” consisting of aggressive person-on-person defensive coverage countered with offensive stunt, gadget, and trick plays.  Four teams are included in the game as well as a special 25 card solitaire play deck.  While the game is designed for head to head play, four player boards and two scoreboards are included so that two games can be played at the same time.

Football Highlights 2052 is on Kickstarter now and has already reached its funding goal.  If you missed Baseball Highlights: 2045 or any of its numerous expansions, you can pick those up in the Kickstarter also.

Football Highlights 2052 plays 1,2 or 4 players, ages 9+, in 45-60 minutes.  Contents include 4 15-card team decks (which includes a 5-card star player deck for each team), a 35-card play deck, 30-card action deck, 25-card solitaire deck, 4 play mats, 2 scoreboards (plus 32 team pennants), and 4 wooden markers.

The Kickstarter campaign runs through 21 September with an expected delivery in July 2019.  Go to Kickstarter campaign learn more about Football Highlights 2052.

Stronghold Games have 3 new board games open for pre-order:

pursuit of happiness

The Pursuit of Happiness, designed by David Chircop & Adrian Abela, is a worker-placement game for 1 to 4 players which plays in about 60 to 90 minutes.  Have you ever wanted to start over in life?  Well, here’s your chance to see what you can accomplish in one lifetime.  What better way to spend your free time than in The Pursuit of Happiness?   For more information, click <here>.

Kraftwagen-V6-Edition-box-top-609x1024

Kraftwagen: V6 Edition, designed by Matthias Cramer, is an economic game for 2 to 4 players set in the world of industrial Germany at the beginning of the automotive boom.  Will you become the next Benz, Porsche, or Diesel?  If you can meet production demands, keep prices reasonable, and prove your cars can out race the competition, you might just stand a chance!  And with the addition of the powerful V6 engine, the rubber is really going to meet the road!  For more information, click <here>.

city of spies

City of Spies: Estoril 1942, designed by Gil d’Orey & Antonio Sousa Lara, is a deck-building, area control game for 2 to 4 players.  Players spend their turns trying to expand their network of spies by controlling locations on the board while using their spy skills to influence the plans of others in order to recruit more spies to their network and ultimately win the game!  For more information, click <here>.

In addition to their new pre-orders, Stronghold released the 2nd and 3rd installments in their Pocket Line of games:

bear valley

Bear Valley, designed by Carl Chudyk, is a light card game of forest exploration playable by 2 to 6 players, ages 8 and up, in 15 to 30 minutes.  Using a press-your-luck play style enhanced by variable player powers, Bear Valley challenges players to find their way through a create-it-as-you-go forest full of caves, rivers, mountains, and BEARS!  The goal is to make it out of the forest alive, reaching base camp ahead of all others.  For more information, click <here>.

stellar

Stellar Conflict, a fast, fun, real-time, space combat game in the Among the Stars Universe, comes to us through Stronghold’s partnership with European based Artipia Games.  It supports 2 to 4 players ages 10 and up and plays in about 10 minutes.  Deploy your fleet of ships as fast and accurately as you can, in real-time, to try to blast your opponent(s) out of the sky!  For more information, click <here>.

thief

And if that wasn’t enough to whet your appetite, they’ve also announced a new mini-expansion for their immensely popular family game Diamonds which is expected to debut at Gen Con:

Diamonds: The Thief, designed by Mike Fitzgerald, takes the familiar clubs suit action and ties it to a new wooden thief token that will stalk a single player until successfully pilfering some diamonds.  Each time he grabs some loot, he sneaks off to his next mark and the haul that awaits!  The Thief will become mandatory for all Diamonds tournaments.  So, get ready to empty your showrooms and secure your vaults or risk losing your Diamonds to the nimble fingers of The Thief!  For more information, click <here>.

If you’d like to subscribe to the Stronghold Games newsletter, follow this <link> to their homepage.

international game award

The 2015 International Gamers Award nominees for general strategy games released between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015 have been announced. The nominees are grouped in two categories—multiplayer and two-player games.

The multiplayer nominees are:

Game Designer Publisher
Aquasphere Stefan Feld Tasty Minstrel Games/Quined Games
Deus Sebastien Dujardin Pearl Games/Asmodee
Elysium Matthew Dunstan and Brett Gilbert Space Cowboys/Rebel pl./Asmodee
Five Tribes Bruno Cathala Days of Wonder
Hyperborea Andrea Chiarvesio and Pierluca Zizzi Asmodee/Asterio Press
Kraftwagen Matthias Cramer ADC Blackfire Entertainment
La Granja Michael Keller and Andrea Odendahl PD Verlag/999 Games/Stronghold Games
Orleans Reiner Stockhausen Dlp Games/Tasty Minstrel Games
Panamax Gil d’Orey, Nuno Bizarro Sentieiro and Paulo Soledade HC Distribuzione/Stronghold Games
Quartermaster General Ian Brody Griggling Games
Roll for the Galaxy Wei-Hwa Huang and Thomas Lehmann Rio Grande Games
Voyages of Marco Polo Simone Luciani and Daniele Tascini Hans im Gluck/Z-man Games

 

The two-player nominees are:

Game Designer Publisher
Baseball Highlights 2045 Mike Fitzgerald Eagle/Gryphon Games
Fields of Arle Uwe Rosenberg Feuerland Spiele/Z-man Games
Patchwork Uwe Rosenberg Lookout Games/Mayfair Games
Star Realms Robert Dougherty and Darwin Kastle White Wizard Games
Star Wars Armada James Kniffen and Christian T. Petersen Fantasy Flight Games
Wir Sind das Volk Richard Sivel and Peer Sylvester Histogame

For more details on the nominated games, and on the nomination committee members please go to the International Gamers Awards website here.

MIke_Fitzgerald_wflkbf

Courtesy andhegames.com

Mike Fitzgerald designer of great games like Baseball Highlights 2045, Diamonds, and a whole lot more answers questions about his favorite tabletop games, what game design tools he can’t live without, and his playtesting philosophy. If you’re a fan of his game, like I am, you should check out the full article here.

escape from alcatrazGryphon and Eagle Games have posted a new Kickstarter campaign to raise $10k to fund a new Mystery Rummy game by Mike Fitzgerald and Andrew Korson.  The Mystery Rummy series has been around for some time with such titles featuring Jack the Ripper and Jeckyll & Hyde.

“Alcatraz Island is home to one of the most formidable federal prisons ever conceived. Though many men have tried, no one has ever successfully escaped from “the rock”. In this Mystery Rummy card game based on real prisoners and actual events, it is your job to foil escape attempts by gathering information on plans and capturing the ringleaders.” 

You can learn more on their Kickstarter page here.

 

 

diamonds

Stronghold Games is proud to announce another Gen Con release, “Diamonds”, by the great designer Mike Fitzgerald. 

Diamonds is a trick-taking card game in which players collect Diamonds — not cards bearing that suit – but actual “Diamond Crystals” (acrylic crystals) included in the game. What makes the game of Diamonds different from other trick-taking card games is that when you cannot follow suit you get a “Suit Action” based on what suit you do play. Suit Actions are also taken by the winner of each trick, as well as at the end of a full Round of play.

diamonds cards

Suit Actions enable players to take Diamond Crystals from the general Supply, moving them to their Showroom (where they may score 1 point) or to their Vault (where they will score 2 points). The Vault is the secure area, but the Showroom is vulnerable to theft by the other players. 

In addition to the 135 Diamond Crystals (in 2 sizes and colors), the 6 player Vaults, and the 6 Player Aid cards, Diamonds includes a deck of 60 Playing Cards, numbered 1-15 in the standard four suits. These cards are illustrated in an Art Deco style, and printed using metallic gold and silver inks on rich vibrant background colors. Diamonds is more than just another trick-taking card game for its great gameplay, gorgeous printing, and exceptional components.

The retail street date for Diamonds, the first game in the new “Pocket Line” for Stronghold Games, is late August/September 2014. The game will be officially unveiled at Gen Con in Indianapolis, IN in August. Diamonds will go on preorder on the Stronghold Games website approximately 2 months before the street date. Please watch the Stronghold Games website, Facebook page, Twitter feed, and Newsletter for updates.

“We are pleased to be publishing Diamonds”, said Stephen Buonocore, President of Stronghold Games. “Working with the great Mike Fitzgerald, designer of Wyvern, the Mystery Rummy Series, and developer of Pokemon to name just a few, has been a goal of ours for years. We are excited to be working with Mike on this project.”

“When I first discovered Stronghold Games, I was in awe of the attention to quality in both components and gameplay”, said designer Mike Fitzgerald. “I knew I wanted to do a game with them. I am very happy that I have found a home for Diamonds with such a great company.”

About Stronghold Games LLC:
Stronghold Games LLC is a publisher of high-quality board and card games in the hobby game industry. Since 2009, Stronghold Games has released many highly-regarded games, including the best-selling “Survive: Escape From Atlantis!”, the most innovative deck-building game, “Core Worlds” and its expansion “Core Worlds: Galactic Orders”, and the latest smash-hit game line “Space Cadets” and “Space Cadets: Dice Duel”. Stronghold Games publishes great game designs developed both in-house and in partnership with European publishers. Stronghold Games LLC is a Limited Liability Company formed in the State of Delaware, USA.