negotiation

Kickstarter just launched a new way to find projects they like with the ‘Kickstarter Gold’ label, so lets get to some projects that may not be gold, but are at least silver.

First up is a board game based in the popular 7th Sea RPG setting and that is War of the Cross. War of the Cross is a “dudes on a map” type game similar to Risk, but plays very differently in that negotiation and alliances are key parts of the game.  Each round has five steps to it beginning with negotiation, then orders, alliances, movement and battle, and finally spoils.  Negotiation is where everyone at the tables negotiates and discusses the moves they will make on the board, this includes forming alliances verbally for that turn.  From that phase you then place your orders secretly under your units and pick who you will ally with that round.  If you both pick each other then you ally, fighting together as well as making it impossible to attack each other for that round.  The fighting is deterministic with the army committing the most supplies being the winner.  Winning the fights get you territories, points, and more supplies to use in later fights or to bid on story cards that give you special powers.  First player to 25 points is the winner.  So if this style of game sounds interesting, head on over to the Kickstarter page.

Next we have a cooperative miniatures game called Human Interface – Be a Better Human.  This is both a stand alone game and an expansion to a previously Kickstarted game called Human Interface – Nakamura Tower.  This new game maintains the cyberpunk setting and has you trying to escape form a black site prison that you were all thrown into.  You will have to work together and fight both on the physical and the virtual fronts as you try to overcome the defenses and modified cyber soldiers blocking your way.  Through the use of adrenaline cards to perform spectacular feats, and ‘Can Do’ cards to resolve battles, Be a Better Human is shaping up to be an interesting game.  If you like this kind of cooperative style dungeon crawl game, check out the Kickstarter campaign today.  And you can even back for an additional expansion module called Blood on the Floor for more characters, monsters, and tiles.

Looking for a light-hearted 4x game that is all about rabbits, well then Rabbit Island might be what you are looking for.  The game plays out in three phases which have you exploring and laying out new tiles, building to convert camps into towns and cities, and finally scoring for what you conquered.  The exploring part of the game is typical tile laying, but the tiles are uniquely shaped which allow for easy recognition of where you can place them, as the sides of the tile have to fit together path to path.  Building has you playing cards to move and spending carrot tokens to build towns and cities.  Did you run out of carrot tokens?  Then stop by event spaces or carrot patches to refill on those all important tokens.  In the conquer phase you will earn points for the towns you built and at the end you earn bonus points for the most carrots and the biggest harvest field.  So if you are in the mood for this kind of 4x experience, head on over to the Kickstarter page.

Up next is not a game, but a book about gaming called GameTek: The Book.  Listeners of The Dice Tower will no doubt recognize that the book is named after the segment put out by friend of the Dice Tower, Geoff Engelstein.  This book compiles ten years of the GameTek segments into one single place, updating and illustrating them, creating a bit of a board game reference book on the math and science of gaming.  The book will be broken up into seven sections; Game Theory, Math, Psychology, Science, Game Mechanics, Psychology Games, and History, with essays and examples of each.  So if you want to support an exceptional member of the board gaming community, or if you can’t get enough of the math and science of board games, check out the Kickstarter today!

Last for have a project that has been certified as Kickstarter Gold, and that is Rival Realms, a two player variation on the deck building game Fantastiqa.  The art of the game carries over with very whimsical and magical depictions of things, but the game itself is now very different.  Gone is the focus on deck building and now the focus is squarely on the exploration aspect the bigger game offered.  On your turn you can use cards to either discover new areas, or to explore an area on the board already.  But exploring comes with a drawback because you have to discard cards into your opponents discard in order to do so, giving them access to cards they may not have had before.  There are also quests that you are working towards and the first person to achieve the quest gets to take the card, the second person to achieve it gets nothing.  Play keeps going until all the quests have been claimed, and then whoever has the most points is the winner.  Check out the Kickstarter page if this sounds like a good two-player game for you.

Cool Mini or Not (CMON) announces the release of a new competitive action selection game in Kingz, published by CMON and Ankama from designer Antonin Boccara.

Players enter a battle arena by simultaneously selecting and revealing action cards from their hands to have their chosen (and originally named with dry erase marker!) animals spar for the vacant seat on the jungle throne.  Anticipating, countering, and defending against other players by playing the right card is key, but players may nevertheless find themselves pinned to the ground on the precipice of defeat.  That player’s chances are not all lost, however, as the pinned player can try to strike a deal with the attacker to let them take another shot at the crown.  The most reputation points at the end of seven rounds will name a new king.  Click here for more information on Kingz from Game Trade Magazine and here for more information directly from CMON.  Kingz was released on January 20, 2017.

 

dipomacy

Diplomacy is a game known for taking a long time and destroying friendships. In Diplomacy, 7 players each play one of the Great Powers in World War I, trying to gain single control over Europe by making and breaking alliances with other people. Players can talk in private to other players, and each turn everyone submits orders simultaneously, so you won’t know if you’re getting back-stabbed.

Since Diplomacy takes so long to take in real life, many people opt to play it online on sites such as webDiplomacy. This way, you don’t have to dedicate a whole chunk of time to play the game, but the game can last months.

Recently, the longest Diplomacy game ever came to a conclusion. The game started in the 2012 webDiplomacy World Cup, taking 3 years, 7 months, and 10 days to finish. In game years, the war lasted 105 years, bringing World War I to the year 2005. For perspective, the previous longest game of Diplomacy only lasted until 1964 in game years! Unfortunately, this game ended in a 4-way draw with Italy in the lead, not a solo victory.

For more information, check out the Reddit post by /u/CaptainMeme, and his post one month ago explaining the game.

thiefs market 2

Tasty Minstrel Games announces a brand new dice game from Dave Chalker (Get Bit) called Thief’s Market.  On each turn in this fast dice game, 3-5 players will roll the dice and take turns claiming what they want from the dice pool as loot (or stealing from each other).  After all players have loot, they then are able to purchase useful cards with special abilities using any “gems” claimed.  “Yellow coin sacks” provide currency to be used later in the form of “wild gems”, and purple masks provide players with victory points.  Set in the same thematic world as Harbour and features the art of Rob Lundy.

TMG plans to begin its Kickstarter project for Thief’s Market in January of 2016.  TMG states: “Our goal is to be able to deliver the game to you via Send From China (with double-bubble protection like on Harbour) straight from China to arrive 6-8 before GenCon so that we can comfortably release the game at GenCon 2016 (and hopefully sell tons there).”

Watch for this project on Kickstarter over the next month.

Impressions Game Distribution Services has announced an April 20th distributor ship date for the following new releases!

Print

Antidote

In this cooperative card game for 2-7 players, you are one of a group of laboratory scientists working for a giant chemical research conglomerate.  In a series of experiments, your group has accidentally released a deadly toxin.  You and the other players must work together to discover the antidote before it’s too late.  When all your cards run out, everyone must drink their antidote and hope that it’s the right one…

forge war

Forge War

In Forge War, players take on the role of leader of fledgling adventurer’s guild, and the king has tasked the guilds with ridding the hordes that are taking over the lands.  Guilds will be collecting resources such as metals and precious gems, as well as developing weapons to successfully meet the king’s demands.  Forge War is a competitive game of economic management and spatial reasoning in a high fantasy theme, and features much player interaction and many meaningful decisions. The core game lasts about 1 hour, with a longer 3-stage game for a full epic experience.

Metamorphosis Alpha: Book of Handouts

This book contains 16 illustrations that can be shown to players to supplement a game of Metamorphosis Alpha, to be used at the game master’s whim.

dungeon crawl

Dungeon Crawl Classics #84 and #85: Peril on the Purple Planet, The Making of the Ghost Ring

Two new modules will be released in the Dungeon Crawl Classics line, Peril on the Purple Planet (#84) and The Making of the Ghost Ring (#85).  In #84, players will be striving to conquer the alien world known as the Purple Planet without falling to its traps.

Peril on the Purple Planet is a 32-page adventure module with gatefold map and wraparound covers, and includes the following components:

• The Purple Planet Companion, a 64-page supplement detailing a Purple Planet campaign.
• Escape from the Purple Planet, a 12-page starter adventure for 0-level characters.
• Lost Tombs of the Ancients, a 24-page collection of five more short adventures.
• A three-panel judge’s screen.
• A 16-page Player’s Guide.
• A 12-page book of handouts.

In #85, a level 4 adventure, players will be coming to the aid of a ghostly enchantress, which will lead them to a quest to create a magic ring.  A separate version of module #85 will be available, which features original sketches by the artist.

pax

Pax

Enter Rome at the time of the slave uprisings under Spartacus! The escaped rebels have managed to gain influence and power. Rome is attempting to undermine the stronger armies of the slaves in order to restore “pax”, or peace – but only for personal gain. Will the Empire collapse under the strain, or will their promises to insurgents succeed in drawing them to their side?

In PAX, players take on the role of the escaped slave underground.  Using their cards, they will attempt to undermine the Roman establishment and increase their sphere of influence.  Players will win the game by developing more strength than Rome (and any other player).  This game involves tricky tactical decisions, and a player can, through deception and intrigue, side with Rome to aid in a victory over the slave revolt.

PAX is for 1-4 players ages 10 and up, and plays in 30 minutes.

pergamemnon

Pergamemnon

They were the most powerful nations of their time: the Carthaginians, Romans, Hellenes, Egyptians and Persians. Pergamemnon assembles all of these peoples for an epic showdown.

Pergamemnon is a deck-builder in which players will become on of the most powerful nations in antiquity, and through direct conflict, will vie for victory.  Nations will also be able to conjure mythical creatures to influence the battle in their favor.

Pergamemnon is a game for 2-5 players ages 10 and up, and plays in 45 minutes.

Shadow of the Elder Gods 

Shadow of the Elder Gods is a cooperative, card-driven game set in the Lovecraft universe, specifically in the city of Arkham.  As the citizens of the Miskatonic Valley, 1-4 players will work together to wield the awful power of the Ring of Shadows to stop the dark forces threatening to end all.

space junk

Space Junk

Space Junk is a board game that depicts a futuristic reality show, in which the players contest to clean up the heavily-littered atmosphere of Earth by building the most ridiculous space ships they can out of the junk.  What’s more, contestants will be jumping into hot-seated races against one another in their contraptions, making weapons out of whatever they can find to get an edge.  Space Junk is a game for 2-6 players with many different cards to allow for a greater variety of gameplay.

All of the games listed above are scheduled to be distributed to dealers on April 20, 2015.  For more information on these releases, visit the Impressions News page here.

zman games logo

Now that September has arrived, Z-Man Games has announced several interesting tidbits of news this month along with a few game releases.

tragedy looper

Tragedy Looper, which saw a limited release at Gen Con 2014, has been slated for a September 2nd release and pits a Mastermind against one to three Protagonists in this time-loop deduction based board game.  The Protagonists’ goal seems simple enough, they want to win the game, but they don’t know how to accomplish that goal. The Mastermind has all of the information wants to create tragedies for the Protagonists to endure. Only through deduction and teamwork will the Protagonists prevail!

Fans are already asking if expansions will be reprinted in the future. Zev Shlasinger, a Consultant for Z-Man Games, replied “…if sales warrant it.”

Tragedy Looper plays 2-4 players and has a play time of about 120 minutes.

pandemic 150

Pandemic: Survival! Had it’s first ever tournament that was held at Gen Con 2014 and was a major success. Z-Man will be holding multiple tournaments throughout 2014-2015 leading all the way up to the National Finals which will take place at Gen Con in 2015. Z-Man asked to be contact if you want to suggest an event for Pandemic Survival. One confirmed tournament so far will be at BGG Con later this year.

Last but not least, Z-Man games has more upcoming releases on the horizon such as: Camel Up, Akrotiri, Clash of Cultures: Civilizations, Onirim, Pandemic: The Cure, Terra Mystica: Fire & Ice, Chimera, Pandemic: Contagion, Robinson Crusoe: Voyage of the Beagle and The Battle at Kemble’s Cascade. We’ll have more information on these upcoming releases in the future.

Thanks for reading! 

-Alejandro “xpiredsodapop” Galaviz

sons of anarchy banner Over at Gale Force Nine, they have released an unboxing video of their new negotiation and territory building game based on the hit TV show.  From the publisher: “Strategically order your club members to occupy key locations and exploit profitable opportunities.  Deal with rivals: bribe, threaten and bargain with the other clubs. When words fail, violence is inevitable. Throw down with your rivals to wreck their plans or settle a score. The law is always watching. Keep the heat off your back, keep your illicit activities quiet and keep your members out of jail.

keep cool

Due to popular demand, KEEP COOL has been re-released by publishers Spieltrieb, after several years being out of stock. The new release was made possible thanks to last year’s crowdfunding campaign on the German Startnext platform, which was initiated by KEEP COOL and Spieltrieb together with scientists of the Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. KEEP COOL gives a fun insight into international climate politics and is suitable not only to play as a game for private enjoyment but also as an educational tool.

Fun playing the game and learning about climate change – KEEP COOL gives you both. The climate change board game, which is in two languages, German and English, was developed by Klaus Eisenack and Gerhard Petschel-Held at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany. Not only is it good fun to play, it also provides a basic understanding of climate change and climate politics. Till Meyer from Spieltrieb says: “Ever since the first edition was released, it fascinates me the number of enthusiastic people KEEP COOL is reaching, not only in educational institutions but also in conventional game playing sessions.”

The developer Klaus Eisenack explains: “The high demand for KEEP COOL has motivated us, thanks to many people’s commitment, to bring out the new release. Climate change is a pressing social challenge. We are extremely happy that there continues to be great interest in making this topic known in an unconventional way.”

About the game
In a game of KEEP COOL, three to six players represent groups of countries such as Europe, OPEC, or the developing countries.  For one to two hours they can choose between “black” and “green” growth, but must also accommodate for inevitable climate impacts like droughts or floods. The strength of these increases when the world temperature rises. Additionally, lobby groups such as the oil industry or environmental groups have to be taken into account. The winner is the player who most efficiently reconciles climate protection with lobby interests. However, if some players are too ruthless, everybody loses.

Order

KEEP COOL can be ordered for 29.95 Euro from Spieltrieb. A box contains one large game board, one “world thermometer”, nearly 50 game cards and over 100 wooden counters in different colours. Address for orders: Spieltrieb GbR, Pfarrgasse 2, 65321 Niedermeilingen, Germany, www.spieltriebgbr.de, Phone +49/6772/94356kontakt@spieltriebgbr.de

Information on climate game KEEP COOL
http://www.spiel-keep-cool.de