Tasty Minstrel

Gentres, designed by Stephen Risthaus, is being Kickstarted now by Tasty Minstrel Games and will be getting the Deluxified™ treatment.

Gentres is a civilization game for 2-4 players and will last around 90 minutes.  In this game, players take the role of an ancient people who are attempting to develop their society by building monuments and colonizing or founding new cities in the Mediterranean sea.

The game lasts 6 rounds with each round consisting of two phases.  During the Heyday phase, players will carry out their actions using two precious commodities (coins and time).  The more you spread out the time tokens, the fewer actions you can perform.  However if you combine time tokens, you can carry out more actions this round but fewer next round. Once all players pass, the Decline phase begins which is where clean-up and setup for the next round takes place.

Tasty Minstrel Games has listed the following upgrades to Gentes for the Deluxified™ treatment over the retail edition:  A Foil-Stamped box, Box Sleeve, 6 Oversized Silkscreened Meeples, 24 Normal-sized Silkscreened Meeples, 89 Metal Coins, 28 Stickered Wood Action Tokens, 20 Silk Silkscreened Lock Tokens, 60 Silkscreened Wood Hourglass Tokens, 4 Dual-layered Player Boards, and 4 Custom-shaped Score Tokens.

The Gentes campaign is running until February 17, 2018 and has already met the minimum level for funding.  A pledge of $45 will get you the Standard edition while a pledge of $59 will get you the Deluxified™ English Edition.  A pledge of $60 will get you the Deluxified™ Edition in either Dutch, French, German, Italian, or Polish.  Please check out the campaign page for more details on shipping costs.


Tasty Minstrel Games (TMG) has finally released Orléans into mass market in the Americas.

Orléans, designed by Reiner Stockhausen, is a “bag building” game in which players will throw tiles into a bag and draw them out randomly to do various things. Players use worker placement elements to try and score the most victory points from a long list of available options. Many elements of the game such as Scholars, Knights and Craftsmen, must be combined in the best possible way to meet your strategy for victory.

“One thing I like is that, while the core of the game is reasonably complex, it’s not gussied up with lots of extra little bits. Each of the eighteen rounds of the game is very simple: reveal an event tile, quickly assess the farmer track, then everyone draws their tokens and plans their actions. After that players take turns performing actions, then the event is resolved. Obviously given how popular some games are that have ninety-two different phases in each round my view is in the minority, but I still think a nice clean system is a plus.” – Dan Blum, Opinionated Gamers


Orléans was first published by dlp games in 2014. It achieved immediate acclaim, getting nominated for three Golden Geek awards and the Meeple’s Choice award for 2014. After its Kennerspiel 2015 nomination, Orléans has become an incredibly sought after product. Getting the game outside Europe was difficult.

Earlier this year, TMG picked up the game for a deluxe Kickstarter version with high quality, larger components (reviewed by Tom Vasel here). TMG also gained the distribution rights to publish in the USA, Canada and Australia. Their retail version of the game has finally arrived and is in stores now. According to their most recent mailing list update, TMG has sold out of all their first print run of the game, so act fast if you want to get a copy!

“Orléans by nature is an engine-building game because you are trying to get your machine working. What workers you get is what makes your game extremely interesting. Let me start out by saying I really enjoyed this game. Wow. Yes the theme is the same old get resources, get workers, blah blah blah. I don’t care about that, I focus on this game straight up on the mechanisms because they were so clear on how they worked. …The fun I had playing this. This is amazing. It’s one of the few times where the theme wasn’t relevant to me because I had so much fun just getting my engine together and working. … High thumbs up for me, this is a game that I enjoyed quite a bit and look forward to playing many more times over the coming years.” – Tom Vasel, Dice Tower. Revew by the Dice Tower can be found here.

The edition now on sale will be the standard edition. There are a few changes to the game, most notable the bathhouse tile (which is often listed as being too powerful and has a few suggested fixes put out for it). TMG has said in the past that there are no plans to put the deluxe edition out for sale to the mass market. You can pick up Orléans here.

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.