It’s the last Friday in July, which means Gen Con is less than a week away! Also, it’s time for the Blitz!
Cosmic Balance (Brian Tinsman/Alexandra Tinsman) is a game about that eternal struggle of good versus evil. From the Kickstarter description:
Cosmic Balance is a hybrid board/card game of battling gods, angels, and demons for 2-5 players. It takes under an hour to play. Your cards become the fighting units that conquer and control territories. Since you’re a god you decide whether to send defeated cards to the Heaven discard pile or the Hell discard pile! The discard piles sit on a scale that measures how many defeated enemies have been sent to Heaven or Hell. Tip the scales and open the gates of Hell or Heaven. You get Victory Points from each territory you control at the end of your turn plus bonus points from Angel and Demon cards. The player with the most Victory Points at the end wins!
The game actually has a scale with it that holds the discard piles, and the side that is down determines bonus points. That in itself is a very cool idea, so I think this one is worth a look (especially now that it’s funded).
- End Date: July 30, 2016 @ 9:58 AM CDT
- Goal: $30,000 (not funded)
- Estimated Delivery: March 2017
- How Much? $49
Martians: A Story of Civilization (Grzegorz Okliński/Krzyszlof Wolicki, RedImp Games) is another in what seems like a string of Mars-themed games that are coming soon (along with Terraforming Mars and First Martians). From the BGG description:
First expedition to Mars which ended up with a heroic fight of astronauts for survival initiated the first mission aiming at colonizing the planet and was financed by four corporations. Human colony on Mars, managed by leaders of the corporations, will have to explore the planet in search of necessary resources, build new constructions and develop technologies adjusted to planet conditions. Such effort is necessary not only to survive, but also to create better living standards for future generations raised by colonists.
The designers are Polish, and while that description is fairly poor in its translation, it does give an idea of what the game is about. It looks pretty good, and is pretty well funded, so it’s one to take a look at.
- End Date: August 1, 2016 @ 10:00 AM CDT
- Goal: $30,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: February 2017
- How Much? $49
Superhero Solitaire (Robert A. Kouba/Jason Maxwell, 8th Summit) is a take on solitaire games with a superhero theme. From the BGG description:
Superhero Solitaire integrates super powers into a mix-and-match multi-deck twist on the classic game of Klondike/Patience. Take on the role of a superhero and choose which villain you will face. Shuffle your deck of 52 cards together and you are ready to play! Power cards showing your hero give you positive abilities while power cards showing the villain hamper your game play. Win by playing all cards from your deck (HQ) and tableau (City). A single deck provides hours of single player enjoyment. However, multiple decks allow players to mix-and-match characters as well as unlocking the ability to play a two-player variant. One hero can make a difference!
Regular Klondike solitaire is a very popular game, so kudos to 8th Summit for trying to add some extra flair to it. The core set has four different decks of 52 cards so you can mix and match heroes and villains. Since they use standard suits, I wonder if there are plans to release rules for other classic card games – Poker, Crazy Eights, and so on.
- End Date: August 1, 2016 @ 10:59 PM CDT
- Goal: $5,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: January 2017
- How Much? $15 starter, $40 core
Darkness Sabotage (Desmond Oku) is a minatures-based cooperative game that pits space pirates against demons. From the Kickstarter description:
A fearless crew of space pirates stumble upon the legendary warship, “The Darkness”. Breaching is the only option to board the vessel, but once aboard they realize the ship is a fly trap. Evil plans to break their spirit, make them minions and drop ’em off in Hell. But this crew will have none of it. They decide to sabotage the ship and end this diabolical scheme, even if it means they go down with it. Darkness Sabotage is a sci/fantasy-thriller -space crawl for 1-4 players. Featuring co-op play, pre-designed and randomly generated dungeon maps, dice driven action, turn based combat, puzzle solving, weapon upgrades, weapon bolt-ons, unique character attacks/defenses/abilities, glory rewards and ruthless waves of heinous monstrosities.
It’s got a cool theme, it looks great, and there are miniatures, which is the most important thing in funding on Kickstarter. The game sounds interesting to me too.
- End Date: August 4, 2016 @ 11:15 PM CDT
- Goal: $75,000 CAD (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: July 2017
- How Much? $127 CAD
Deus Ex Machina (Harry Haralampidis/Lefteris Iroglidis/Errikos Nikolau, Alcon Creative) is a game all about being a hero in ancient times. From the Kickstarter description:
Deus ex Machina is a competitive game for 2 to 4 players with an innovative hero placement mechanism in which each player takes the role of an Olympian god trying to achieve supremacy over the other gods via manipulation of heroes and behind the scenes planning. Their ultimate goal is to accumulate the most Glory Points by having heroes complete quests. The winner of the game is the player who has completed his secret objective. The ancient Greek world was ruled by the Olympian gods, 12 beings of immense power, but also victims to their own feelings, passions and vices. They vied for supremacy very often even amongst themselves, sometimes through brute force like hurling bolts of lightning, but they also conspired against each other through guile and intricate machinations. This is the game the gods were playing when they tried to consolidate their power by working in the shadows, manipulating mortals to do their bidding, either showering them with promises of immortality and other divine gifts, or bending them to their will with dreadful threats and curses. The gods would compete against each other in a contest of wits and tactics, having the heroes of ancient Greece face mythical creatures and threats and gain glory in their name.
I grew up loving ancient Greek mythology, so this appeals to me in that sense. Plus it looks good and sounds like an interesting game.
- End Date: August 5, 2016 @ 3:00 PM CDT
- Goal: $8,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: November 2016
- How Much? $29
Rollet (David Harvey, Et Games) is a wooden dexterity game about firing balls to try and score goals. From the BGG description:
Rollet is a four player fast rolling ricochet game. The aim of the game is to roll steel balls down your chute so as to knock the wooden ball into your opponents’ goal. Rollet demands a good eye, timing, and teamwork. It penalises both fumbling and trigger-happy play. Hilarity is guaranteed for ages 7 to 107.
The game has been around for a couple of years, and this Kickstarter campaign is to help fund a nicer quality version of it. Et Games was kind enough to send me a review copy, which I’ll be covering after I get back from Gen Con. But do go check it out for now.
- End Date: August 9, 2016 @ 5:19 AM CDT
- Goal: £9,000 (not funded)
- Estimated Delivery: November-December 2016
- How Much? £48 basic, £79 luxury
Coldwater Crown (Brian Suhre, Bellwether Games) is a strategic fishing game. From the Kickstarter description:
In Coldwater Crown you’ll launch a plan to catch the perfect variety of fish from the Shore, River, and Lake. To catch fish, you’ll place different types of bait in four fishing zones. Using a brilliant worker placement mechanic that lets you take actions both when you place AND when you pick-up Angler tokens, you’ll begin clearing your zones, taking care to remove only bait that will help you catch the fish you need next. Whenever you clear the last piece of bait in a zone, you catch a fish corresponding to the color of the last piece of bait you cleared. You’ll also earn synergy points by clearing unique combinations of colors to catch fish in the special Master Angler Challenge. If you can catch the right fish at the right times, your trophy count will begin to stack-up, bringing victory within reach. Every trophy you haul-in earns you victory points, and the most climactic moment occurs at the very end when players submit fish from each species to win the Shore, River and Lake contests. The player with the most points after all the contests are decided is declared the winner of the Coldwater Crown!
Fishing is NOT an exciting sport. But this game looks like it does a good job of introducing strategy in a really creative way. The casting mechanism looks really cool as you place a disc to take an action, then remove one that has been placed elsewhere in order to take a different action. This one looks super cool, and I’m naming it my PICK OF THE MONTH.
- End Date: August 9, 2016 @ 8:00 PM CDT
- Goal: $12,500 (not funded)
- Estimated Delivery: May 2017
- How Much? $44
Giga-Robo (Alex Cheng) is a game about battling robots. From the Kickstarter description:
Giga-Robo is the card-driven miniatures game of anime giant robot combat! Fight to the finish using custom-built hands of cards, combining powerful attacks, clever tactics, and epic finishing moves. Take command of one of four unique robots, pair it with your favorite pilot, and smash your opponents across a fully destructible city.
It’s giant robots fighting in a 3D city. You can customize your robots, roll lots of dice, and cause lots of destruction. That description alone should tell you if you’re going to be interested.
- End Date: August 9, 2016 @ 11:59 PM CDT
- Goal: $45,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: August 2017
- How Much? $70
Galactic Debate (Jeff Chin/Andrew Nerger, Road to Infamy) is a sci-fi party game about making stuff up. From the Kickstarter description:
In Galactic Debate players argue over randomized sci-fi themed topics by making up facts and pandering to the other alien races to win votes and become the next President of the Galaxy. There is no wrong way to debate because anything you say in this game is automatically true. If a player states that the galaxy is at war with evil space oysters, then that is the case for the rest of the game. As the debates go on, the players establish the galaxy and how it works, creating a unique experience every time you play. With over 1,500 combinations of cards and an infinite number of ways to argue the issues, the game is extremely replayable and you’ll never have the same debate twice.
I don’t look at a lot of party games on Kickstarter because I’m generally not a fan. This one looks interesting because there’s opportunities for some roleplaying on top of the debates. Players get to vote for who won, which makes it marginally less subjective than Apples to Apples, but I think it would still be a good activity for a drama class or for some people who need to work on their response time.
- End Date: August 10, 2016 @ 4:00 PM CDT
- Goal: $6,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: March 2017
- How Much? $12
Near and Far (Ryan Laukat, Red Raven Games) is a follow-up to Laukat’s highly successful Above and Below. From the BGG description:
Four wanderers search for the Last Ruin, a city that legends say contains an artifact that will grant the greatest desires of the heart. A lost love, redemption, acceptance, a family rejoined– these are the fires that fuel the wanderers’ journeys, but can they overcome their own greed and inner demons on the way? In Near and Far, you and up to three friends explore many different maps in a search for the Last Ruin, recruiting adventurers, hunting for treasure, and competing to be the most storied traveler. You must collect food and equipment at town for long journeys to mysterious locales, making sure not to forget enough weapons to fight off bandits, living statues, and rusty robots! Sometimes in your travels you’ll run into something unique and one of your friends will read what happens to you from a book of stories, giving you a choice of how to react, creating a new and memorable tale each time you play.
Ryan Laukat is one of the hottest indie designers out there right now. He’s doing his own thing, and his games really seem to resonate with people. Like Above and Below, this game has a book of adventures (reminiscent of Tales of the Arabian Nights), but appears to successfully be its own game rather than just a reworking of its predecessor. Looks very cool.
- End Date: August 11, 2016 @ 9:30 PM CDT
- Goal: $25,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: May 2017
- How Much? $50
Barnyard Roundup (James Hudson, Druid City Games) is a bluffing game for all ages (as long as you’re older than six). From the Kickstarter description:
The goal of the game is to collect the most valuable farm animals for Farmer Brown to sell on Market Day. You do this by playing cards face-down from your hand and declaring what they are, then giving one other player a choice to decide if you are bluffing or telling the truth. If they choose correctly, THEY get the Farm Animal card(s) you played, but if they guess wrong, YOU get the card instead. Whoever wins Farm Animal cards adds them to their collection. But you may also get Crows, pests that irritate Farmer Brown and count against you in the scoring. If you are a terrible fibber, then we have the solution for you! You are allowed to make the animal noise of the animal you are “claiming,” we have found that gets everyone laughing.
- End Date: August 15, 2016 @ 4:00 PM CDT
- Goal: $7,500 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: January 2017
- How Much? $20
Fate of the Elder Gods (Christopher Kirkman/Richard Launius/Darrell Louder, Greater Than Games (Fabled Nexus)) is a Lovecraftian game about TRYING to summon the ancient evil. From the Kickstarter description:
The time has come. All signs and portents point to this momentous night, and you and your siblings of shadow stand ready. Your cult has sacrificed much – and many – to prepare the ceremony to awaken the dread god whose name twists your tongue and whose dark purpose twists your mind. But this night is one of great power, and your lodge is not the only one who seeks to harness that power. Other cultists prepare similar yet horribly different ceremonies, and investigators roam the streets and locales of Arkham, seeking to stop the inevitable annihilation. You must strike now, before a cult of a different old one ushers in their own maddening end times. In your hands lies the Fate of the Elder Gods!
It’s got a nice look to it. GTG is a company that is really trying to reach beyond their Sentinels of the Multiverse line, and they look like they’ve got a good one here.
- End Date: August 19, 2016 @ 10:59 PM CDT
- Goal: $60,000 (funded)
- Estimated Delivery: May 2017
- How Much? $59
The Prophet (Pica Entertainment) is a one-versus-all game where one player is trying to drive everyone else mad. From the Kickstarter description.
In a time of crisis, will you choose to remain calm or succumb to the madness? The Prophet is a game about a doomsday prophecy. Each player’s goal is to become the Prophet and brainwash everyone into believing that the world is ending. Our game features a handful of controversial historical figures that had made a significant impact through the course of our world history, whether good or bad. Players will be able to choose from this cast of different historical figures, using their unique abilities to fight against the Prophet – or seize the power of the Prophet themselves. Now, stay sane…and spread the madness.
This game has player elimination as The Prophet is eliminated once defeated, and replaced by the player who took him out. So you probably don’t want to be the first Prophet. I don’t know how it will all work, but it looks like an interesting twist on one-vs-all games.
- End Date: August 20, 2016 @ 2:07 AM CDT
- Goal: $35,000 (not funded)
- Estimated Delivery: December 2016
- How Much? $35
That will do it for this edition of the Blitz. Some of these games will have demos at Gen Con, so maybe I’ll get to try them out there. Thanks for reading!