wallet kickers of the week

Another week, another round of Kickstarters as things start to ramp up for PAX Unplugged this weekend.  First on the list is the second game from Mathew Sisson and company, makers of the card game Spaceteam, this time all about surviving on an uncharted island instead of a falling apart spaceship.  The game is called Ravine, and in the game you will crash land on an island, with each person starting out at different levels of being hurt, and from there it’s up to you to survive.  You will risk your health to forage for food and supplies, then use those supplies to build helpful items like spears, shelter, baskets, or fires in order to survive.  Come night time you will flip over a card that will try to hurt you in some way, but comes with a way to avoid it if you have the right cards.  If you and all your companions are able to survive through all the night cards, you will be rescued and win the game!  If you like this kind of cooperative survival game, and found the Spaceteam card game enjoyable, check out the Kickstarter today.

Next is the latest in the line of Wallet Games from Button Shy Games, and that is HeroTec, In Vino Morte, and Kintsugi.  To start this trio we have the drafting game HeroTec, where you want to outfit your hero with the best gear possible to impress everyone.  You will do this by drafting cards into your stockpile, and then from your stockpile you will use them as resources in order to build the gadgets for you hero.  Once you have fully outfitted your hero you will compare with everyone else and the most stars will be the winner.  Kintsugi is a tile laying game where you will be taking cards and overlaying them, keeping in mind placement rules, in order to score the lowest score.  You and your opponent will be alternating placing cards on the board, trying to make your secret color dominant, but without letting your opponent know which one it is.  If you get figured out the your opponent gets to reduce their score, if you are able to keep it hidden, then their score will go up, lowest score is the winner.  And finally, In Vino Morte is a very light social deduction game where you are trying to be the last one standing at the party.  Each round a new bartender will be chosen and they will pass out the drinks, with at least one of them being poisoned.  On your turn you can either drink what is in front of you or trade, after everyone has a turn and it gets back to the bartender then everyone else drinks.  People who are poisoned are out and the rest stay in for another round.  So if any of these games sound interesting to you, head on over to the Kickstarter page to back for one, some, or all of these games.

Next up is a game called Mountaineers, which takes the 3D aspect to a whole other level.  In this game your goal is to complete climbing routes in a ticket to ride type fashion by hiking around the ground and climbing the massive mountain in front of you.  And when I say mountain, I mean a three sided spire of a mountain that you will be placing your pawn on as you climb up it.  Each round different events will be happening that give you supplies, the main currency of the game, and alter the game conditions in either good or bad ways.  Then each player will get the chance to use the supplies they have to buy upgrades, move around the board, or mess with their fellow players in a bid to gain the most climbing points.  Rounds will continue and players will keep climbing until they have run out the event deck, at that point routes are scored and whoever has the most points is the winner.  Thus if you like mountain games, or are just a fan of 3D games with an impressive table presence, check out the Kickstarter page.

After that we have a new cooperative deck building game called Direwild, a first design by Vas Obeyesekere.  In this game you Animists, mages who summon animals to aid them, and are trying to stop the evil Karn, a member of your own order that turned evil.  During the game, which is a mix of dungeon crawl and deck building, the minions of Karn will move around the board, trying to take you out and keep you from stopping him.  On your turn you will do typical deck building actions of drawing cards, playing cards, and buying upgraded cards.  After that then you use the cards you just played to summon an animal to move around the board and fight the evil monsters.  Cards will often have a basic animal on them for you to choose from, but they also have text that is upside down, and so if you rotate the card, it then becomes an add-on to an already summoned animal.  This way you can turn a smaller animal into something formidable to fight along side you.  If you and your friends are able to defeat the minions, find and defeat Karn, you will be the winner of Direwild.  To find out more about this game check out the Kickstarter page.

Finally we have the freshest Kickstarter on the list, and that is the second Kickstarter for Ogre miniatures from Steve Jackson Games.  This campaign offers a whole new set of miniatures for the latest edition of Ogre, and all the models being offered are not the same as the ones in the first set.  Backing this set means you will be able to upgrade a good variety of units in the game from cardboard chits, to full blown minis.  Included in this set are: 1 Paneuropean Fencer with extra Fencer-B turret, 6 Superheavy Tanks, 4 Mobile Howitzers, 6 GEV-PCs with 3 infantry each (infantry are compatible with those from Set 1), 12 Light Tanks, and 12 Light GEVs.  So if you want more minis for this classic game, check out the Kickstarter now.

Things got super busy in my neck of the woods and so last week got lost in the shuffle, but luckily for us most KS campaigns last a month, so I can pick up right where I left off and show you all some quality Kickstarters to check out.  First up is is a new game in a previously established universe, and that is Chronicles of Frost from NSKN Games, a deck building game set in the Mistfall universe.  In this adventure each hero player will have an exploration quest and a search quest that they will have to accomplish in order to win the game.  Playing the game is similar to other deck builders with some differences, mainly the exertion system that NSKN has come up with.  What this does is that every card available has a normal ability and an exertion add on, meaning that if you perform the action and then spend the skills or health to exert yourself, you increase the effectiveness of that card quite a bit.  But there is a limit to how much you can exert yourself, so you have to use it carefully as you go along.  When you use cards they will give you better equipment, movement/exploration points to explore the board, attack power, and resolve, the currency in the game.  Build up your hero and take on the monsters roaming the land to complete your quests and win.  For more info you can check out the Kickstarter campaign to be able to back for your own copy.

Up next is a campaign aimed mostly at the ladies in the gaming world, and that is board game jewelry called Tabletop Talismans.  This campaign is offering people the opportunity to get necklaces, bracelets, key chains, and even earrings featuring the quintessential board game piece, the meeple.  This meeple is a shiny aluminum version so that it is durable, light weight, and shines nicely in the light, and is being offered in several different colors.  So if you want to get some meeple themed jewelry, check out their Kickstarter page.

Next on the list is a sequel/expansion to the game Best Treehouse Ever, and that is Best Treehouse Ever: Forest of Fun.  This expansion takes the original games and brings it into the forest, and with it some new mechanisms to help spice up the gameplay.  At it’s heart this is a drafting game where you are drafting different rooms to place in your treehouse to score the most points each round.  With the game being moved to the forest you now have additional bits like unique player powers based on where you are in the forest, animal cards that score based on room placement, and brand new room cards for a fresh game.  Of course this can be mixed with the original game, and there are even included rules to play the game with 8 people, so if you enjoyed the first game, this will just give you more of what you love.  To get this game you will have to hurry, the campaign ends on the 9th so check it out!

 

After that we have the digital game of the article, and that is One Deck Dungeon Digital from Handelabra Games.  This campaign was originally a stretch goal from the One Deck Dungeon Forest of Shadows Kickstarter, but they didn’t make it during that campaign so the digital adaptation was put on hold.  However, with Asmadi partnering with Handelabra Games, the possibility of a digital version of the game has been revived and launched on Kickstarter.  So in this campaign you will be getting the game One Deck Dungeon in digital format through steam.  This means that now where ever you have a computer with steam on it, you can pull out this highly rated solo game and delve through the dungeon.  The game includes everything from the base game, an excellent layout with all needed information easily accessible, a campaign mode, and animations and graphics to elevate the game from it’s physical counterpart.  So if you are looking for a nice digital version of the game, check out this Kickstarter today.

Next up is a game from Ankama Games, makers of the highly regarded Krosmaster Arena, where you are trying to scare students out of their wits.  Monster Slaughter is a game where you take command of different groups of monsters like vampires, werewolves, zombies,  or golem to scare some students.  On your turn you will take actions by rolling dice, and based on the number of successes you get will determine if the action succeeds, how much damage you do, or how many cards you can draw.  This is a competitive game where each player has a specific order in which they want to eliminate the students in, and so you will be playing cards to help yourself, but also help the students if they are getting picked on too soon for you.  Everything about the game is quick and light and in the end, whoever matched the elimination order the best will be the winner.  So if this monster movie type game is your speed, check out the Kickstarter page.

And finally we have the reprint of the list, and that’s the Folklore: The Affliction second printing.  Folklore: The Affliction is the horror themed RPG board game which aimed to turn a typical pencil and paper RPG into a self contained game.  In this game you are fighting the evil that has come upon the land, wolves, ghosts, vampires, and the undead.  Like an RPG you will be traveling around the world using a map of the land, and as you reach places in the world you will be able to zoom down onto adventure maps which are a couple tiles in size to explore that area.  You will play over a series of chapters to make up an entire campaign, and each of those chapters are playable within about an hour, allowing you to still play and progress the story even if you don’t have a lot of time.  So if you missed out on the first campaign, or if you heard great things and want to get into it now, check out the Kickstarter page today.

We have some interesting Kickstarters this week on the eve of Essen, so lets get down to it.  First on the list is along the same lines as the White Box Kickstarter in that it is more for board game design as opposed to an actual board game.  It is simply called the Board Game Creative Kit, and is specifically designed to allow for you to create a high quality prototype of your game.  Included in the box is first, the box, and to be more specific, a blank white box in the standard square size, allowing you to design your box cover art on it.  Inside the box you will find punch board after punch board of tokens in every shape, dice in multiple colors, player pawns in multiple colors, wooden tokens, and even several different sized boards and player screens.  Basically anything your could possibly need is most likely inside this box.  There are also stretch goals that add more players in the form of additional tokens, and even additional player colors can be added like pink.  So if you need some supplies to prototype your next game, check out this Kickstarter.

Next we have a quick and quirky little card game called The Mennonite Game Card Game.  The Mennonite game is a game about connections, more specifically how can you connect one person to another?  An example example is finding out that someone was your ” brother’s roommate’s sister’s ex-boyfriend’s high school teacher“.  So in this card game you will be doing the same thing by playing out cards to create various character connections to you in your bid to create a tree of 10 different connections before anyone else.  In the game you will be drawing connection cards and event cards, with the connection cards being the currency you use to purchase the character cards to add to your character tree.  Event cards are cards that give you one time use special abilities allowing you to break the rules here and there to give you an edge.  You will draw 4 cards and play as many as you want to build out your tree, first person to be connected to 10 characters is the winner.  The fun in this game will definitely lay in the people you play with as the connections you form on the table will be crazy and weird, to find out more information check out the Kickstarter page.

Up next is the 236th version of Munchkin, and that is Munchkin Starfinder, based on the fast selling new RPG of the same name.  If you have played Munchkin before then there is nothing new here other than the theme.  For those not in the know, Munchkin is a game where you are racing to get to level 10 first, but there any many, many ways for your opponents to mess with you so expect heavy resistance in levels 8 and 9.  This card game is the epitome of take that and so if you don’t enjoy inflicting pain, or are able to take it, then you might want to look elsewhere.  For those who can handle it, or just want to expand their Munchkin collection, check out the Kickstarter page.

Following that is a new cooperative, bag building game called Tabula Rasa from Kid Loves Tiger Games.  In Tabula Rasa you are champions fighting back the malevolent forces of the world and trying to complete quests and increase your power and reputation to be able to eliminate the evil.  As was previously mentioned, this is a pool building game where you are going to be drawing crystals from a bag, and it’s those crystals you will use to perform actions.  You will use these actions to move around the board, collect treasure and power-ups, fighting the minions of the boss, and synthesizing new crystals to be able to more effectively use your powers.  And it’s those powers that bring in some asymmetry, each player has a power associated with each gem, and having those different powers means each character will play slightly differently.  Once enough quests are completed or the threat becomes too high, the final showdown begins, if you are able to defeat the final boss then you win.  So if a cooperative bag building game sounds your speed, check out the Kickstarter page.

And last but not least, we have the dice, worker placement game Monster Lands.  In this worker placement game you are trying to gain the most glory in order to be crowned the new king, but to do that you are going to have to defeat monsters and re-conquer the land.  You will have to build up your clan to be fighting fit, by recruiting warriors, equipping them with weapons and items, and sending them off to do battle.  Your dice pool is going to be determined by your clan strength as well as the mercenaries that you have hired, and it’s these dice you will roll and use to acquire everything you need.  Place on the main board to get items items or more mercenaries, get some more gold to pay those mercenaries, or send a mercenary fully loaded out to battle.  As you defeat monsters you will gain more glory and your clan will become stronger, be the strongest after 6 rounds to be the winner.  You can find out more about this game on the Kickstarter page.

Here we are with another week of Kickstarters of a wide array from an election game, to a detective game, to a war game, so lets get started.  Up first, we have a card game based on an app called Cahoots, and being published by Mayday Games.  The game Cahoots is a normal trick taking game, but with a bit of a twist in that there are no follow rules and you score is based on which suit won the trick, not who won the trick.  But the question is, which suits will score for you?  That is determined by a card you receive at the start of the game and will have three of the six suits on them, and it’s these suits that will score for you.  However, you won’t be the only one scoring with those suits, so over the game you will be partnering with different people in order to score the suits on your card.  So each round you will play out a total of two cards, and whatever suit had the highest total value will be the winner and be scored that round.  After that you will choose some cards to keep, and some cards to remove from the game, shrinking the available card pool.  Once all the cards are out of the game, whoever has the most points is the winner.  So if this new take on trick taking sounds interesting to you, or you are a fan of the app, check out the Kickstarter page.

Next is our war game entry, coming straight to you from the prolific war game creator DVG, this time as an air dog-fighting card game called Down in Flames: Locked On.  In this game you will be flying one, two, or three of dozens of different aircraft of the recent age like the F-15C Eagle or the Sea Harrier FRS1.  You will be taking these into battle trying to shoot down the opposing player’s planes through clever use of your missiles.  At the heart of this game are the action cards, each with multiple uses from special abilities, to maneuvering, to attacking, and even countering your enemy’s attack.  When you attack you will play your card, if your opponent counters with a card you then have the opportunity to counter that card, continuing like this until the final card is played.  If you managed to play the final card your attack succeeds, if your opponent, then the attack is canceled.  When an attack is successful you will then draw cards based on what you fired to then carry out another attack sequence with those cards.  If you succeed there, you have destroyed the enemy craft, and if they are all destroyed you win the game!  So if a fast playing, dog-fighting style card game with a healthy dose of real life accuracy is your kind of thing, then check out this Kickstarter today.

Next we have a new detective game from Van Ryder Games called Detective: City of Angels.  This game I think is best described as Clue on steroids, with the main difference is that this game is more complex and is done as a one versus all style game.  One person is The Chisel, whose sole job is to lead the detectives astray and keep the case from ever being solved.  The detectives will be moving around the board, investigating locations and questioning suspects.  But here is where it gets tricky, The Chisel will be choosing the responses that he gives from those being question, and he can even outright lie to you.  However, if you challenge him on his bluff you can get the truth, revealing much needed information to solve your case, but challenge on a truth and he gets leverage over you to use against you later.  You can also bribe a snitch to be able to listen in on this info so even if you aren’t there, you can get some critical info to help you solve your case.  Strong arm some suspects, get to the truth, and solve the case before the trail goes cold and you can win the game.  You can find out more on the Kickstarter page.

After that is the unusual game of the article, and that is Electioneer, the Hong Kong election board game from Nightdreamer.  This game aims to do with the Hong Kong election system what Die Macher did for the German election system, and that is create a great game out of it.  This is an area control and resource management type game where you will be going around the various towns and cities trying to secure the most votes.  One way to get votes is through strategy cards, which show a number of territories that have some connection to them, like hitting the 12 different districts that are home to higher education institutions to get the college vote.  You will also get votes for holding the most influence in different zones on the board, as well as for holding the second most influence.  Basically there are a lot of ways to get votes, and this game shows it’s designer’s researching ability because all of these ways to get votes are methods used in actual Hong Kong elections.  Will you be able to manage your money well and get enough votes to be elected?  Check out the Kickstarter page for more information.

And last but not least, we have a reprint and revamp of a previously Kickstarted game, and that is Endure the Stars from Grimlord Games.  This 1.5 version will not only allow new players to be able to acquire this game and it’s many extras, but also improve the game for those who already own it.  Endure the Stars itself is a survival horror type game where you are passengers on a colonization ship a year into it’s long journey.  However, unauthorized experiments have been conducted to try and engineer a new life-form to explore new planets, but those experiments were discovered and the lifeforms got out, killing everyone in their path.  Now people are living in small groups scavenging to survive, and it’s up to your group to try and root out these creatures before they kill you all.  Fight back with all sorts of different weapons and ammo, and try to maintain your sanity as you play through the campaign to defeat this evil.  So if a sci-fi dungeon crawl game sounds interesting, or if you own the first edition, check out the Kickstarter page today.

While the 7th Continent Kickstarter is the big thing right now, hauling in multiple millions of dollars, there are still others that are worth consideration.  First up is the second printing of a excellent cooperative minis game, and that is Fireteam Zero.  Fireteam Zero is a cooperative game where you are a squad of military fighters, heading out to combat the occult as they try to overrun the world.  On your turn you can perform two actions from the choices of move and attack.  Moving is simply in that everyone has a speed of two, attacking is where you have to start playing cards.  And it’s these cards that are one of the neat aspects of this game because each card has two uses, a reaction or tactic effect, and an attack.  Tactic effects are game altering, but also leave you at a disadvantage so you have to use them wisely, reaction effects allow you to bolster allies or yourself when certain things happen.  However, the main use for the cards are attacks, and you can play cards in sets to be able to roll move dice when in melee, shooting, or lobbing grenades.  You will roll custom dice with different numbers of each symbol in order to see how much damage you inflict.  Fight off the monsters and accomplish your objective to be able to move on, and hopefully take out the boss.  So if you are looking for an excellent cooperative “dungeon” crawl type game, check out the Kickstarter today.

I have to be honest, what caught my eye on this Kickstarter was the cheese minis that they are offering, they just look awesome!  Ratland is an interesting game where you are trying to grow your pack or rats to be the largest, but be careful, that is a lot of mouths to feed.  On your turn you will be allocating all your rates to different spots to either game more cheese, attack other players to take their cheese, or to spawn more rats.  Each area you can gather from will have different amounts of cheese based on the card drawn at the start of the round.  Also it will be the person who sent the fewest rats that will draw first, but you only draw as much cheese as rats you sent, so there a bit of a balancing game there.  At the end of every round though you will have to feed your rats, and any rats that can’t eat will starve and count as negative points against you at the end.  Most rats at the end is the winner.  So if cheese minis, or this game sound interesting, check out the Kickstarter.

Next is an interesting card game called End of the Trail, where it’s all about trying to stake your claim on the biggest pile of gold.  In this game the cards are used in three different ways, first as money for the bidding round.  In this round sets of cards will be available to be bid on, and the money you have to use for that is on the cards in your hand, discarding the amount that you pay for the auction.  Next they are used for the prospecting phase where depending on which card you play will determine what tiles you can look at to see what value they are.  You can claim that tile, or, waiting and see if you can find something better, but be careful, if you find something worse you bust and have to claim that lower valued tile.  And finally, the cards are also used to form a poker hand at the end of the game.  In each round of the game you will be setting aside cards to form this final hand, and if you have the best hand then you get to make one more claim before final scoring begins.  Have the highest value of gold in your clutches and you win.  So if you like games with multi-use cards and don’t mind a little memory to go with it, check out this Kickstarter.

After that we have the latest in a growing line of movie to board game conversions, and that is T2029: Terminator 2 the Board Game.  This is an officially licensed game so it has the same look as the classic action movie with the tanks, attack ships, and of course, the T-800s and T-1000.  In this game you are protecting John Connor as he makes his way to Skynet to hack in and shut it down for good.  Along the way you will have to fight back against oncoming robots attacks, protect John Connor, and keep the T-1000 from infiltrating your ranks.  On your turn you will be rolling dice and assigning those dice onto your board to perform actions like getting more soldiers, attacking bots on the board, and manipulating the cards controlling the game.  These card decks are going to be your main headache as they will dictate where Skynet focuses it’s attention as well as show you what John Connor is up against.  If you are able to keep him alive, get him to Skynet, roll and the right hacking combination, AND reprogram the T-800, then you will finally claim victory.  But it is also just as easy to lose to the robotic onslaught, so work together and roll well.  For more information and to back the gamine, check out the Kickstarter.

Last and certainly not least, we have the campaign for the 2nd Edition of Tiny Epic Defenders along with an expansion, The Dark War.  The second edition of the Tiny Epic Defenders does little to change the rules, but what it does do is upgrade the components.  After the success and great popularity for the IteMeeples that were created for Tiny Epic Quest, they are bringing them into this game.  So now when you get your artifact card, you will be able to take the corresponding artifact piece and attach it to your meeple, on the front or the back.  So now you will see the epic items on the board instead of just sitting in front of you on the card.  But this upgrade is not all that is new, there is an expansion being offered called The Dark War.  This expansion adds more of what you want in the form of new heroes, artifacts, epic foes, and dire enemies.  In addition to that extra content, the expansion will add new features in the form of a campaign mode with enemy generals, skills that the heroes can learn, and even advanced regions and caravans.  So if you want to expand and upgrade you Tiny Epic Defenders game, check out the Kickstarter today!

Another week, another batch of Kickstarters worth a second look.

First up is a game designed specifically for the visually impaired in mind, and that is Megateh.  This Japanese designed game is essentially a tactile version of the classic game Quarto, where you need to get 4 in a row of all the same shape, all the same height, or in a descending height.  Players are blindfolded when playing the game so you will have to feel for the pieces, which consist of solid disks and discs with a hole in the middle, in order to place them.  But you also have to feel for where to place them, figuring out where the other pieces have been placed already and trying to set yourself up to win, while not setting up your opponent to win.  First person to get four in a row as described above wins!  There are several pledge levels to get different versions of the game that range from a mini ceramic $18 model, up to a fully customized $88 wood model.  So if this kind of game interests you, or want to support games designed for visually impaired players, then check out the Kickstarter page.

Next is the latest game from the Nickelodeon and IDW Games partnership, and that is Legend of Korra: Pro Bending Arena.  This is a two player arena game where each player controls a pro bending team like the Fire Ferrets, White Falls Wolfbats, or the Red Sands Rabaroos.  Each team has their own unique set of minis, team ability, and technique cards that will be used in the game.  But before you start the game you have the option of creating your custom strategy deck, which is the deck of technique cards you will be pulling from during the game to play against your opponents.  However, the deck doesn’t have to be static, as during the game you will have the ability to purchase more technique cards from your supply with chi that you have built up.  Your players also will come equipped with trick card that give them powerful special abilities, but some of which cause you to roll the referee die, risking the possibility of your team member being ejected from the game.  In the end it’s last man standing as you fight to knock the opposing team out of the ring, whoever is left is the winner.  So if this sounds like an interesting game to you, check out the Kickstarter page.

After that is another arena combat game called Zero Gravity, that utilizes a unique gimmick in it’s gameplay.  On it’s surface, Zero Gravity looks to be your normal arena battle game with each player controlling a team of combatants.  You are racing to get thirty points which is done through taking out your opponents troops, capturing objectives, or completing achievements.  First person to 30 points will be the winner.  Now as for what makes this game unique, that comes in the board that you play on, a 3D board which has playing surfaces on every interior surface.  Also each miniature comes equipped with a magnet, allowing them to stick to the walls and ceiling, bringing a typically 2D game into the 3rd dimension.  This mean that sight and range lines are no longer just drawn on the board, now you will be drawing them in the area to see if your troop on the floor can hit the troop on the wall.  Overall it looks to be an interesting game, and if you find it interesting to then head on over to the Kickstarter page.

For this project we have the ubiquitous Cards Against Humanity clone, but this time done by well known game company Steve Jackson Games.  Conspiracy Theory is you typical draw a black card to get your prompt, and play white cards to complete the phrase in the most hilarious way possible.  One major difference is that this game is all about conspiracy theories, like the title suggests, and so the cards being played are well withing the PG-13 realm.  So if you are looking for a party, card game that isn’t so offensive, and has the typical Steve Jackson flair, check out it’s Kickstarter page.

Next is another party game called News@11, where you try to come up with the best news segment that you can.  During the game you will have a producer, a lead anchor, and news anchors.  The lead anchor will be the one who hands out the segment cards, telling you what kind of news report you will be giving.  The different options include things like sports, weather, health & beauty, traffic and more.  Each news anchor will have three of these segment cards for their morning, afternoon, and evening news segments.  To populate these segments you will draw cue cards that have you fill in a word mad lib style, and you will use one cue for your morning segment, then add a second for afternoon, and finally a third for the evening.  It’s these crazy combinations of words and segments that will generate a lot of the laughter in the game, and the best news caster will be selected as the winner.  As for the producer, they will be handing out producer cards that keep things moving, but can also cause some chaos.  So if you are looking for a new party game with a news feel to it, check out the Kickstarter page.

Following that we have another board game based on a television IP, and that is Warehouse 13 the Board Game.  In Warehouse 13 the game you are playing as agents to either help or hurt the warehouse and to collect the artifacts that have been scattered around the world.  In there game you will have several agents and one traitor, with the agents working to capture three artifacts, and the traitor working to have three artifacts lost, and then win the finale.  Gameplay is a mix of dice and card play with dice being rolled to set the difficulty of retrieving the artifact, or used to pass attribute tests that have been placed on different locations.  The cards are what you will be playing to acquire clues and eventually acquire the artifact.  However, the traitor has many ways to affect these endeavors, and if any of several conditions are met, then the artifact is lost to the Adversary and they move one step closer to winning.  Each game is called an episode and if the villains get three artifacts, the finale happens where has the agents trying to foil his final plan before he wins.  Each character is pulled straight from the show and each has their own special abilities that can be used once an episode or season, or is always available.  So if you enjoy these puzzle type games with a traitor, or are looking for a Warehouse 13 themed game, check out this Kickstarter.

And finally we have the latest from Mindclash Games, makers of Anachrony and Trickerion, a new area control style game called Cerebria.  In Cerebria you are playing the role of either Bliss or Gloom, trying to spread your influence to all the denizens of the town.  You will does this through various area control aspects such as allies in different locations, a scoring tower in the middle of the board, and your allies presence.  After you pick a side you will play the game by carrying out actions on your spirit board.  You have many actions to choose from and you will be playing cards from your hand as well to move around the board, affect emotions on the board, put out new emotions, and other actions.  As you do these things you will begin to use up resources from different spheres on the board, when one is empty there is a scoring round where you check to see if you achieved varying aspirations.  Achieving these aspirations gets you pieces of a tower placed in the center, of which their height and facing affect different actions on the board.  At the end, whoever has more of their color in the tower at the end is the winner of the game.  This is just a brief overview and there is much more to the game, so if you want to find out more then head on over to the Kickstarter page.

Fear not gentle readers, after taking a week off for GenCant I am back to give you another full blast of Kickstarter goodness, so lets see what’s been happening.

First up is a board game accessory in the form of the Omnitray.  This aims to bring the organization prowess of trays like seen in Zombicide Black Plague, and adapt them to fit multiple different games.  This is achieved by having a base layout with openings to add in modules for circular tokens, cards, or 2mm or 3mm thick tokens.  These different modules make the tray compatible with over a dozen games including Descent, Doom, and Elder Sign.  So if you need help keeping yourself organized, check out their Kickstarter page.

Next is the latest campaign from Mayday Games to get you a nice Crokinole board for a decent price.  While there are some additions that you can add such as a carrying bag or a clock face, for the most part this campaign is all about getting you the board, discs, and disc container.  Having backed the 2017 version of this I can say the board is excellent and plays great, even if there were some hiccups during production and some slight damage on the outside.  But for a large solid wood game like this, $99 plus shipping is a hard price to beat for a fun game that most any age can play.  Crokinole for those who don’t know is a dexterity game where you are attempting you flick your discs into the center hole, or at least get close.  There are rules for where you disc has to stop or if it has to hit another player’s disc, but that is the gist of the rules, flick a disc and score as high as you can.  Check out the Kickstarter page for more information on the game and the board.

Next is an expansion to a highly popular party game, Vegas Wits and Wagers.  This is an expansion to the Wits and Wagers Party game and includes some new features that make the game even more fun.  Key to that is a bigger mat for bets to be placed on, with the inclusion of safe bets for guessing if the answer is higher or lower, long shots by betting on people, and a place to store extra chips for each round.  Also included are mats that can be used to close off slots of the board for various player counts, and additional question cards with more up to date questions.  All of this makes this expansion an essential item for fans of the game.  You can pledge for just the expansion, or the expansion and the full game as you will not be able to play the game with just Vegas Wits and Wagers.  Head on over to the Kickstarter page to see it in all it’s glory. (including the swaddling of a medium sized dog in the new mat)

After this is the obligatory dice project, and that is HEX, the magically minimal die.  What’s interesting about the HEX die is that while it’s sitting on the table, it just looks like a useless cube.  Pick up and roll it however and the pips will light up, showing the result of your roll.  Special attention was paid to long shelf life, giving the initial batteries a shelf life of several years, and a usage life of up to a year.  So if you are looking for your next piece of gaming gadgetry, check out this Kickstarter.

Then we have a game that’s all about a dog’s life, simply called, A Dog’s Life.  This is a family weight game where each player plays a different kind of dog, trying to bury three bones at their homestead before anydog else.  On your turn you have lots of options from piddling on lamp posts, drinking from the fountain, delivering newspapers, fighting the other dogs, rummaging in the trash and more.  The results of each action are going to be determined by the cards you play, with each one having different aspects like higher fighting strength, or giving you a bone for delivering a newspaper, to finding more food in a trashcan.  You will have to keep your stomach full, bladder empty, and keep moving to avoid the dog catcher and collect your bones.  First dog to bury their third bone will be top dog.  You can check out the Kickstarter page for more info on this adorable game, and it even has an option to have the dog minis hand painted.

Up next is a new skirmish game being called Avertigos that features steam punk style Chinese boats as airships, fighting it out in the sky or on land with troops.  This game can be played as a skirmish game where each play outfits a couple ships and comes out fighting.  Each player can pick a ship type, with different health and action point allowances, and then take turns drafting upgrade cards.  These upgrades have miniatures of them that you attach directly to your ship, making it look like it’s ready for battle.  Movement is done with cards and combat is resolved through dice rolling, and or course, whoever survives will be the winner.  There is also a strategy game mode where you will be fighting over trade routes on the board in an area control style game.  But taking over the different islands is not so easy because there are natives populating these places, and they don’t take kindly to your trying to take over.  So if this game has peaked your interest, check out their Kickstarter page.

And finally, we have another Kickstarter for gaming tables, this time in the portable variety.  Game Anywhere Tables are folding tables with the typical gamer add-ons like card holders, cup holders, trays for tokens, cards, and even player shields and rulebook holders.  Also typical of gaming tables, these are not cheap, having a price tag of $299 for early bird on just the basic 4′ x 4′ table with no extra frills.  As you add more customized options the price goes up, but with the option for a foldable table that is 6′ x 4′ and includes all these extras, it may just be worth the cost.  You can check out the tables and all the different options on their Kickstarter page, and then start saving up to make the payments on them.

GenCon is only one short week away, so lets see if some of these Kickstarter campaigns can take your money before you leave.

First up is the fourth campaign for the Reaper Miniatures line called Bones 4.  Reaper is known for long waits from campaign to fulfillment, exemplified by the Feb 2019 delivery date, but also for high quality minis at an amazing price.  This time around your $100 will get you 85 different minis in a fantasy setting, with figures of things like dragons, goblins, wizards, knights, kobolds, and more.  Plus as more stretch goals get unlocked, more minis are added to the base pledge, sending it’s value skyward.  So if you can wait a couple years for your minis, check out the Kickstarter campaign.

Next is a dexterity card game where you are literally throwing weapons at your opponents, called Rise of the Exiled.  In Rise of the Exiled you are playing as a character from four different guild, vying for control of the city they live in.  To play the game you will select your character and place them on the table.  Each round you will move your character one card length, and then throw your weapon, depicted on a clear plastic card, at your opponent.  Where you are located is important because your hand can’t go past your character on the table when throwing, and where you hit your opponent determines how much life they lose.  You also have the option to use your character’s special ability to tip the scales in your favor, and if you are the last one standing you win.  With simple play like that and varying powers between the characters, this could be a fun, light, dexterity game.  Check out the Kickstarter page for more information.

After that is a deduction style game called Visitor in Blackwood Grove.  In this game one player will be playing the crash landed alien, and the rest either the local kid who found him, or the agents trying to capture him.  For this game the alien will make a “pass” rule for items that will pass through his force-field, and then in order the agents, kid, and alien will begin selecting cards and finding out if they pass through or not.  As more information is collected eventually someone will figure out the rule, at that point they prove it by drawing four cards and classifying them based on if they pass or not.  If they are right then that team wins, if they are wrong then play continues until someone does get it right.  There are more rules for the agents and kid but that is the basics of the game, keeping it a light deduction game.  Plus with nice looking art and good components, this project is worth it for you to look at.  Check out their Kickstarter page today.

Following that is a magazine being put out by Steve Jackson Games that is all about Ogre, called Ogrezine.  The Ogrezine is going to be a collection of articles about different ways you can change and modify how you play Ogre.  One example they have released is the article Dambusters, which details how to use and include a dam as well as flooding into a Ogre game.  This is all to celebrate 40 years of the game, and so in addition to the magazine you can back for other stuff for Ogre included the base game itself.  So if you are interested in more content for you Ogre game, check out their Kickstarter page.

Next is a fantasy fire fighting game from Red Genie Games called The Brigade.  In this competitive fire fighting game you are leading a fire brigade to help put out fires in the town of Tinderbox.  The cause of these fires is the pyromancer school in the center of town, and they are continually raining fireballs down upon the surrounding buildings.  It will be up to you to move your water carriage and fire brigade around town, putting out fires and spreading tales of your deeds to the surrounding population.  You will also have the option to upgrade your fire house, get more crew, and acquire special abilities to help you better fight fires.  The game will end in one of two ways, someone gets enough loyalty to the town or quarter, or the town is evacuated because of the fire, and at that point the person with the most loyalty wins.  With good art and gameplay that gives you good choices while not drawing the game, I think this one is worth a look.  Head to the Kickstarter page to check it out.

Another interesting game is coming from Green Couch Games called Before the Earth Explodes.  The Earth is in bad shape in this game, and it’s up to you to either find the resources to fix it, or find a new place to call home.  In this 2 player card game you will simultaneously select actions, with each action having different abilities and benefits.  Some of these let you draw cards, gets ships, get more resources, or damage your opponent directly.  And there are multiple ways you can win from eliminating your opponent, advancing all the way on the tech tree, colonizing seven planets, or satisfying the requirements for a ship card.  Any way you go you will have to try and out think your opponent, because each action card has another card that blocks it, so if you are too obvious in what you are doing next, your opponent can thwart you.  Plus if you take damage, you are out for the round, allowing you opponent to move forward on checked.  So if you enjoy these types of games, check out the Kickstarter page for more information.

And last, but not least, we have the expansion to the quirky themed game Feudum called The Queen’s Army.  What the Queen’s Army does is simply add a new AI player to the game working against the players.  With this new addition you can now play the game cooperatively against the Queen, while still have a single points winner, or if you are playing solo you now have someone to play against.  There are also options in this campaign to get the base game and other expansion in case you missed the original Kickstarter.  So if you are looking to get into Feudum, or just want to expand your copy even more, head over to the Kickstarter page.

Here we go, the ramp up to GenCon is beginning and we are seeing some bigger Kickstarters start to launch, here are some of the notable ones.

First is the 10th anniversary edition of the game Container, now in jumbo size.  Container is an interesting game in that you are playing all aspects of the production, delivery, and acquisition of products on a small island.  Each round you will decide which goods to produce, then which goods of your opponents you will ship.  When you pick goods you will have to pay for them, and the price will be set by that opponent.  After the goods make it out to the island you then bid for ships to be able to collect the goods, and then turn those goods into points at the end of the game.  This new edition will feature the same gameplay, with the addition of the Investment Bank, but with upsized, deluxe components.  The most notable being the large 7″ long plastic ships with containers that fit onto them like actual container ships.  So if you enjoy the game, but want something bigger and nicer, check out the Kickstarter page today.

Next up we have a meta game, something you play while playing other games, simply called Gameception.  What this card game does is add another layer to your game night with an additional game you play across the entire night.  Everyone starts with two cards and each card has some action you might find happening at a game night; like a pet interferes with the game, someone tells another player what to do, or someone is on their device.  If the action on your card happens, reveal it, score that card, and then draw a new one.  At the end of the night, the winner is the one who scored the most cards.  If this games sounds familiar then you are right, a similar type of game can be found called Pretense, but the larger variety of cards and fun stick figure artwork makes this game worthy of a look.  Check out the Kickstarter page for more info.

After that is the final expansion to the Heroes Wanted game called Elements of Danger.  As you think from the name of the expansion, this one adds Heroes with element based powers to the game.  This expansion also adds just lots of new content to the game in new action cards, epic actions, new heroes, and new villains.  Overall it adds just more of what you want in this game giving it more variety and increases the amazing number of hero combinations even higher.  So if you want to get this last expansion, or to jump in and get the complete game and all expansion, check out the Kickstarter page.

Next, from A-Games is Sakura, a beautiful looking trick taking card game with some twists.  On a turn you will be playing two cards, one to each pile in the middle of the table.  You will either play a card of a different value but same color, direction the values must go is determined by the yin-yang symbol, or the same value of a different color.  This sounds simple but sometimes not always possible, that is where you will use the coins you have to hire workers to manipulate the cards values or position to allow for you to play your cards.  If you can’t play on a stack you take those cards and get coins equal to the number of coin cards, but gain points equal to the number of shuriken.  Least number of points will be the winner.  Check out the Kickstarter page to pledge for your copy.

Last we have another expansion for the Flash Point Fire Rescue game and that is Tragic Events.  This is a simple expansion that adds three new characters, Strategist, Suppression Specialist, and Fire Prevention Specialist, and two deck of cards.  These decks, Fire and Event, are the crux of the expansion as they take the place of the hot spot aspect in the advanced game, giving you a more unique experience when playing that way.  The Fire deck creates more chaos as the fire spreads in random ways, and the Event deck ramps of the difficulty by changing the state of the board, forcing you to adapt.  There are also stretch goals being achieved that add in the hard to come by additional POI tokens, as well as event cards to utilize them in new ways.  So if you want to expand your Flash Point collection even more, head on over to the Kickstarter page today.

Another week, and another round of Kickstarters to deliver a pounding to your wallet.

First up is an expansion to an award winning game, and that is Beasts of Balance Battles.  Beasts of Balance is a hybrid game where you stack geometrically shaped animals on a platform, and those animals then appear in an app you run to play the game.  Throughout the game you will moving, combining, and stacking animals in an effort to have the highest score in the app by the end of the game.  This is because while you may just stack animals in real life, in the app each action has differing effects, making this dexterity game much more interesting.  What Battles adds to the game is cards that have effects that attack and remove your opponents animals.  There are also a volcano to contend with now and divine guardians that give you special abilities during the game.  So if you want to expand your Beast of Balance game, or jump into the game now, check out the Kickstarter.

Next up is a new tile placement and area control type game called Overworld.  This game aims to capitalize on the nostalgia of Super Nintendo era RPG games, evident in their choice of box design and the similarity of game pieces to quintessential RPG characters.  In this game you are slowing building out the map, and whenever you completely surround an empty square, that becomes a dungeon.  Who controls the dungeon is determined by who holds a majority in all orthogonal directions.  At the end of the game you will trace a route through all your dungeons and however many spaces it takes will be your final score, and most points is the winner.  One other things to mention about this project is the puzzle lock system they came up with for the tiles, essentially making it so that if the pieces fit together, it’s a legal placement of the tile, a nice innovation to help simplify the game.  So if you are interested, head on over to the Kickstarter page to check out this 16-bit themed game.

After that we have a family weight game called Pepper and Carrot, the Potion Contest.  Pepper and Carrot is a tile manipulation game in that each turn you will be using action cards on the table or in your hand to manipulate tiles on your board.  What you are trying to do with those tiles is get the right ingredients connected together to form one of the three recipes on the main board.  Be the first to complete all three recipes and you are the winner.  There are also additional game modes including solo mode and Chaosah mode, where one player plays as an old witch needing only to complete one recipe, but they are at a disadvantage to the other players.  Art is excellent and very light, making this a great looking game.  Check out the Kickstarter today.

Next we have the latest game from Victory Point Games, a deck builder with a board type game called Renegade.  This is a cooperative game where you are playing hackers, fighting against the tyranny of the SMCs (super massive computers) that have brought the world to the brink.  You will use cards to generate resources on the board, and with those resources you can perform various actions to combat the SMCs.  As you generate resources, if you have three of the same kind in a spot you can convert it into an installation, allowing you access to more and stronger abilities.  As with other deck builders there will be a hackers deck that allows you to buy upgraded cards with better resources and abilities.  Can you stop the machines?  Check out the Kickstarter page for more information and to pledge.

Now we get to the smallest of the Kickstarter offerings I will be talking about, and that is Twin Stars by Button Shy Games, part of their Wallet Series of game.  These are a pack of solo game scenarios featuring the same game system, which utilizes four dice, some tokens, and three cards.  The path to victory in each game is very different, but the core of the game is dice rolling to get combinations of symbols to activate abilities.  The choices in the game come from deciding which dice to re-roll, can you accept a bad symbol combination resulting in a penalty, and how will you assign the dice to get the best effect possible.  Some of the scenarios have been released in other Kickstarters like the Rule the World and Escape the Brig, but here you will be able to get everything in one spot, including some unreleased scenarios.  Add in potential stretch goals and you could have lots of solo gaming for not much money.  Check out the Kickstarter page, and you can pledge for just the cards, supplying your own tokens and dice, or go deluxe and get everything you need to play in one package.

Finally we come to the last project I will mention, and that is an expansion to Explorers of the North Sea called Rocks of Ruin.  Explorers of the North Sea is a viking exploration game where you are sailing around in your longships, raiding towns, picking up livestock, deliver the livestock, and building outposts.  There are lots of ways to score points in the game and it came with 48 tiles giving it a play time of about an hour.  Rocks of Ruin adds new things to the game in the form of a 5th player, 24 more tiles that increase the map size by 50%, more buildings, fortresses, and shipwrecks that you can salvage.  So if you like Explorers of the North Sea, this expansion will just give you more of what you love, with the option of adding another friend to the game.  Also being included in this Kickstarter is a mini expansion for Runesaga, adding a fifth player to that along with three runestones and three inscription tiles.  So if you are interested in these expansions, head on over to he Kickstarter page.