Nintendo Switch

Acram Digital, maker of fine digital board game conversions, has announced their next A2D project and it’s a doozy. The worker placement legacy game Charterstone, from Stonemaier Games and designer Jamey Stegmaier, will be inserting its electrons on Steam, Apple iOS, Android and Nintendo Switch next year much to the joy of its many fans. In Charterstone, players build up from a simple worker placement game to a monumental resource manipulation, multiple worker type, adorable civilization in a multigame epic. Acram Digital is known for making high quality digital versions of board games, with the impressive translations Istanbul, Steam: Rails to Richesand Eight Minute Empire already under their belt. Expect Charterstone to hit the system near you in early 2020, and for more details check out Acram’s website on Charterstone here.

The Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions Trading Card Game has been added to a new digital platform, the Nintendo Switch. The game was already available on Steam, the Apple App Store, and the Google Play Store. One of the unique aspects of the game is that it can be bought as physical products in the form of starter decks, and booster packs, then scanned into the digital platform to be added to a player’s collection. If players primarily enjoy online play, digital cards can be purchased directly in the game.

Players can create decks from one of the four Grand Alliances (Order, Chaos, Death, and Destruction) who are each composed of factions such as Stormcast Eternals, Skaven, and Bonesplitterz, to name but a few. The release onto the Nintendo Switch allows players to play on the go, with a joy-con and touch screen support, or at home. A brand-new, single-player adventure, Realm Trials, is also launching with the Nintendo Switch version, which contains dozens of hours of content. A new mode, Arena of Echoes, has also been added which allows players to draft from 2 given alliances using a random selection of cards. Using this deck, players battle through a series of League rounds until they gain entry to the prize Gauntlet.

For more information, or to download the digital version of the game, visit the Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions website. The game is developed by PlayFusion Ltd. and Games Workshop Ltd.

Catan, one of the pillars of the board game hobby, made the jump to digital form some time ago, and has been available on most platforms. The notable exception has been the Nintendo Switch, but given the Switch’s immense popularity, it was only a matter of time. Asmodee Digital has announced that Catan will be available on the Nintendo Switch on June 20, 2019.

Asmodee Digital’s announcement did not contain many details on this version of the game, only that “The game will be showcased with all the benefits of the Nintendo Switch system…” A page for Catan is up on Ninentdo’s website, but it doesn’t provide any additional information at this time.

The hybrid nature of the Switch seems like a natural fit for the digital version of Catan.

Nintendo Switch is not currently a haven for playing modern board games, with available options topping out with titles like Othello and Monopoly. Yet, the hybridization of being able to play both at home and on the go with a Nintendo Switch could be a game changer with the right titles…

Enter Carcassonne – Asmodee Digital announced that it will be bring the fan-favorite Klaus-Jürgen Wrede game Carcassonne to the Switch platform during the winter quarter of this year, and while Carcassonne is already available digitally, the Switch platform has advantages that many gamers will find appealing over a phone app or Steam-based computer game. For one thing, the Switch screen is much bigger than an average cell phone, and physical Switch physical games are easy to trade or share. Also, players on the whole are more likely to play local couch co-op on a TV screen via a console, rather than on PC.

For those unfamiliar with the game from 2000 that started all of this excitement, check out its BGG page, but here is the quickest summation: Carcassonne is an easy to play, hard to master tile-laying game for 2-5  players in which over the course of 30 minutes or so you will be making decisions on to best control and influence the outcomes of different areas of tiles. Placing on the road as a robber, or cloistered away as a monk are two of the roles players can assign their people (called meeples) to in order to score the most points across the southern France landscape and claim victory!

But the Nintendo Switch and designer board game pairing likely does not start and end with Carcassonne…

quoting Pierre Ortolan, CEO of Asmodee Digital,

“Carcassonne is the first Asmodee Digital title of many to follow on Nintendo’s platforms.” 

Thus leading one to believe that Asmodee Digital would likely bring over the other titles that have already been crafted digitally on other platforms, such as: fellow gateway game Ticket to Ride, award-winning Terraforming Mars, and recent mega-hit Scythe. With these titles stemming from a single developer, it would already be a solid foothold for modern board games on a current generation video game console, and it would be easy to envision makers of other digital board game implementations also porting over their creations, such as: Alhambra, Kingdom Builder, Splendor, or Small World.

As a fan of digital board gaming, watching the video on Paste Magazine’s article got my meeple heart beating hard to lay down some farmers for the win.