Whistle Stop

Pencil First Games has announced The One Hundred Torii, a new Kickstarter project from designers Scott Caputo (Whistle Stop) and Eduardo Baraf (Herbaceous), with artist extraordinaire Vincent Dutrait (Treasure Island, New York 1901 and many, many others). The One Hundred Torii is a zen tile laying game, where 1-4 players take turns adding to an ever expanding garden, calling for help from the characters living therein, and scoring for paths between matching landmarks.

“Step into tranquility as you pass through the torii gates, traveling from fountains to flowers to shrines while meeting vendors, poets, and even samurai along the way… “

On their turn, the players take one tile from their hand of 2, and expand the garden. Every tile piece has paths and at least one of the 6 features – Lotus, Bridges, Lanterns, Water Basins, Inari Statues, or Sekimori Ishi (stone features). If a continuous path is created between two matching features, the player scores a landmark token for that feature. If multiple paths are created, the player only scores for the shortest one. If the path passes through one or more Torii gates, bonus tiles are earned; Red Torii give the player multiple matching tokens for the feature, while blue Torii earn tokens for other, different features. When a player earns 5 of the same token, they must be cashed in for a larger 5-point piece. Similarly, 5 more tokens create a 10-point piece. Fully isolated areas of the garden with 2 or more features score special Enclosure Tokens. Other achievements are earned for being the first player to earn all six 5-point tokens, or three of the 10-point tokens.

Another important aspect of the game is the ability to ask for help from one of the five characters who live in the garden. Characters cost coins, or single tokens, but never the larger 5- and 10-point pieces. The Samurai prevents players from placing a tile in a specific location. The Poet covers a single feature, preventing it from completing pathways, or possibly allowing for longer pathways. Both the Samurai and the Poet stay out until another player asks for their help. The Vendor allows players to discard a tile from their hand, and replace it with 2 new ones. The Geisha lets a player place 2 tiles into the garden, although only the second tile scores for a path. Finally, the Gardener allows a player to place a tile on top of another tile. The first and second time a player summons a character, they collect that characters’ token, earning 2 points. However only one player may collect the points for summoning a character for a third time.

At the end of the game, the 5- and 10- point tiles score their points, as well as tiles earned from working with the characters, tiles from creating enclosures, and achievements for being first to earn the larger tokens. The One Hundred Torii also comes with a single player mode, where the player battles against Onatsu, the pilgrim. Onatsu takes the player’s unused tiles, and scores her own points throughout the game.

The Kickstarter Campaign for The One Hundred Torii continues through June 10, and the game is expected to deliver in April 2020.

A new expansion is coming to the popular Whistle Stop from Scott Caputo and Bezier Games. The Rocky Mountains Expansion will bring, well, mountains, to the pick up and deliver train game, with a 3D mountain board. The Rockies hold great rewards for those that can scale them on the way west. The expansion also contains special tiles, 2 new train routes, 2 new towns, gold nugget tokens, more end tiles, 9 new upgrades and 6 new shares. You can read the full press release here, and look for the Rocky Mountains Expansion in stores this August.

Bezier Games has announced their newest game, Whistle Stop, by designer Scott Caputo (Kachina, Voluspa). In 1869, the driving of the golden spike sparked the start of the great railroad expansion in the U.S. In Whistle Stop, players build train routes west across the U.S., picking up goods and selling to small towns along the way. In exchange for goods, players gain shares in the railroads, or can hold the goods for bigger payoffs when they reach the west coast.

Players will need to optimize their actions, possibly gain new actions, block the other players and lay new tracks while managing their limited coal resources. The Game includes game board, 5 player boards, town tiles, coal, gold and whistle tokens, 60 resource cubes, 25 wooden trains, railroad shares, and upgrade cards. Whistle Stop supports 2-5 players and plays in just over hour, and will be released August 2017 at Gen Con. Pre-orders will be available at Bezier Games.