Rising Sun

It’s that time of year again – the time for the Dice Tower and it’s contributors to vote for the games worthy of an award among a variety of categories, not the least of which is the best game of year. These are the best of the best according to the panel of judges on games released in English in 2018.  You can see previous winners, along with this year’s nominees, on the Dice Tower Awards website, and look forward to the winners being announced at Dice Tower Con later this year.

Best Family Game of the year

Fireball Island
Gizmos
Reef
Space Base
My Little Scythe

Best Artwork

Everdell
Root
Grimm Forest
Cerebria
Rising Sun

Most Innovative

Chronicles of Crime
Nyctophobia
Detective: A Modern Crime Boardgame
KeyForge
The Mind

Best Reprint

Fireball Island
Brass Lancashire
Endeavor: Age of Sail
High Society
The Estates

Best Strategy

Root
Teotihuacan
Brass Birmingham
Coimbra
Underwater Cities

Best Production

Rising Sun
Fireball Island
Everdell
Brass Birmingham
Grimm Forest

Best Expansion

Scythe: Rise of Fenris
Terraforming Mars: Prelude
Roll Player: Monsters and Minions
Great Western Trail: Rails to the North
Root: The Riverfolk

Best Game from a Small Publisher

Root – Leder Games
Chronicle of Crime – Lucky Duck Games
Underwater Cities – Delicious Games
Vindication – Orange Nebula LLC
Obsession – Kayenta Game

Best Cooperative Game of the year

Chronicles of Crime
Just One
The Mind
Detective: A Modern Crime Boardgame
Stuffed Fables

Best Two-Player

KeyForge
War Chest
Duelosaur Island
Haven
Mythic Battles: Pantheon

Best New Designer

Wolfgang Warsch (Quacks of Quedlinberg, The Mind, & Ganz Schon Clever)
David Cicurel (Chronicles of Crime)
Catherine Stippell (Nyctophobia)
Ivan Lashin (Smartphone Inc.)
Tim Eisner (Grimm Forest)

Best Party Game

Just One
Decrypto
The Mind
Drop it
Trapwords

Best Theming

Western Legends
Root
Detective: A Modern Crime Boardgame
Stuffed Fables
Chronicles of Crime

Game of the Year

Root
Teotihuacan
Chronicles of Crime
Underwater Cities
Brass Birmingham
Western Legends
Rising Sun
Architects of the West Kingdoms
Everdell
The Mind

Picture from popularmechanics.com

Popular Mechanics, a longtime publication about popular science and technology, has often covered features that would interest the intellectual and creative minds of its readers, so it should be no surprise that the magazine has published a list of 50 best new board games for the past three years. While their list is not as comprehensive as the Dice Tower’s Top 100 Games or the numerous lists of Top Ten GamesPopular Mechanics has been a champion of the boardgame hobby to the uninitiated.  Popular Mechanics’ latest list comes just in time for the holidays and includes a wide variety of games to appeal to every type of gamer.  While only a handful of popular games from 2018 make the list, such as Rising Sun , Everdell, and Root, the majority of the list is comprised of great games from the past several years.  Gloomhaven, Pandemic Legacy: Season 1, Terraforming Mars, Star Wars: Rebellion, Scythe, Gaia Project, and Great Western Trail all make the list. Check out their list to see Popular Mechanics 50 Best New Board Games.

UK Games Expo is the premier event in the UK where all aspects of the gaming hobby are represented under one roof. It will run on Friday, 1st June to Sunday 3rd June 2018. The UK Games Expo Awards were developed and introduced in 2007 to recognize the achievements of manufacturers and publishers of eligible games in a variety of game genres.

This is a shortlist of the games nominated in no particular order.

Best Abstract Game

Best Children’s Game

  • BrainBox People at Work (The Green Board Game Company)
  • Don’t be a Donkey (John Adams Leisure Ltd)
  • Rhino Hero: Super Battle (Habermaass GmbH aka HABA)

Best Family Game

Best Miniature Range

Best Miniature Rules

Best New Accessory

  • Big Book of Battle Mats (Loke Battle Mats)
  • DMB Games Resin Dungeon Tile Core Set (DMB Games)
  • Blood Red Skies – Aces Accessory sets (Warlord Games)

Best New Boardgame (American-Style)

Best New Boardgame (Euro-Style)

Best New Boardgame (Strategic Style)

Best New Card or Dice Game

Best New Expansion

Best Party Game

Best Role-playing Adventure

Best Role-playing Expansion

Best Role-playing Game

Rising Sun has already shipped out to backers and is closing in on it’s retail release. The game has done very well among it’s backers and play-testers, currently sitting at #83 on BoardGameGeek’s top 100 – within a stretch of it’s older brother Blood Rage. Not unlike said sibling and other high-quality, high-strategy miniatures based games, CMON has expansions in mind and one is already slotted for retail release on March 30th. Dynasty Invasion adds several more options to Rising Sun and new way to shake up the strategy after it’s initial clans and monsters have made their mark. As described by CMON’s press release:

 “The Rising Sun: Dynasty Invasion expansion includes two new complete Clans to join in the war for the fate of Japan, seven Lucky Gods, and 15 Season cards. […] With new Clans, new Gods, and new Season cards, the Dynasty Invasion expansion offers a completely different challenge for Rising Sun. Players will have to adjust their strategies and learn the ways of these invaders if they hope to win the favor of the Kami and choose the future of Japan.”

The new clans add more variety and replayability to the game, featuring the inscrutable Moon clan who starts with low honor and twice the force, or their opposite – the noble Sun clan – who have high honor and use it as a weapon to take coins and victory points. Interestingly, neither clan can use the monsters available to the other factions in the base box and instead can only take on the new Lucky Gods which strategically contrast to the existing denizens of ancient Japan. With new seasons cards to bring about these new gods and new strategies, along with many new and excellent figures from CMON as we’ve come to expect, this is an excellent expansion for those with the retail release of the base game or for backers who may have passed on it during the funding campaign. If you are interested in learning more about Rising Sun, it’s expansion, or any future content from CMON, but sure to check out their website for current and future announcements.

The hype train that’s been loudly chugging along since the game’s announcement at Gen Con 2016 only continues to gain momentum as CMON launches the Rising Sun Kickstarter! Referred to as the spiritual successor of Blood Rage, the vaunted duo of Eric M. Lang (designer) and Adrian Smith (artist) reunite in this hotly anticipated game of politics, strength, and honor.

Rising Sun is a board game for 3 to 5 players set in legendary feudal Japan. As the Kami descend from the heavens to reshape the land in their image, it is up to each player to lead their clan to victory. Use politics to further your cause, negotiate to seek the most profitable alliances, worship the Kami to gain their favor, recruit monsters out of legend to bolster your forces, and use your resources wisely to be victorious in battle.

In Rising Sun, you’ll utilize asymmetrical clan powers, form and break alliances, bluff, and defeat your opponents in war during all seasons of a year to become the victorious new Emperor! The miniatures are extremely detailed , thanks to the direction of Mike McVey, and there are already many unlocked stretch goals, including a sacred warrior panda.

You don’t want to miss out on this game! For more information or to back this game, visit the Rising Sun Kickstarter page.

cool mini or not banner

CMON has just announced that they are now a publicly traded company on the Hong Kong stock exchange, this means you can now buy shares in the company.  This has just been another step in their rapid growth in the board gaming industry, and with the additional money coming in from the shares, they will be able to grow even faster.  They made sure to note that control and decision making within the company will remain unchanged, but the additional funds will help them to acquire licensing for other games, expand into other geographic markets and much more.  You can read more about the move one CMON’s website, and look forward to even better games in the future, like Rising Sun.