Kick The Box
July 1st, 2013 Edition
Our hobby has seen an electrifying explosion of games being successfully funded on Kickstarter. These campaigns are being initiated by a vast range of publishers and game designers, from already established companies, such as Eagle Games, to new entrepreneurs, such as Far Off Games, and everything else in between. This new means of game publication is a very exciting time for tabletop, card game, and RPG enthusiasts worldwide. Along with this new means has come a new addiction to some of us hobbyists.
Which brings me to my goal: to help spread this addiction which has befallen upon me and other game enthusiasts: The addiction of Kickstarter funded tabletop games. I want to help spread the word of games that I find interesting and can’t wait to get my hands on to play myself. All of these games are games I’ve already either backed, thinking about backing, or wish I had the funds to back.
In no particular order, every week I will be spotlighting a handful of Kickstarter tabletop, card, and RPG games and what I find exciting about the games themselves or the campaign of the founder or both. So without further ado:
Let the addiction begin!
Dawn: Rise of the Occulites
Project by: Eagle Games
This is the third game that Eagle Games has turned to Kickstarter for funding. The first two, Francis Drake and Triassic Terror! were both successfully funded and looks like they are well on their way to running another successful campaign with D:RotO.
Created by game designer Ben Boersma, D:RotO is a 32mm scale miniatures board game, which you control a small tribe of one eyed Occulites through different scenarios, either played as stand alone games, or linked together to form a full campaign.
D:RotO takes the concept of D&D characters, (making a character and playing several campaigns with it, developing him/her with experience points, thus gaining skills and items to make your character better/stronger), and applies it to an Occulite tribe.
The gameplay looks pretty simple, and the Occulites are so ugly that they are cute. I find the concept of leveling up a whole tribe of creatures instead of just one ‘hero’ or ‘character’ enticing and look forward to hopefully a play through demo video before the Kickstarter ends. For more information, click the link above that takes you to their Kickstarter page.
Dark, Darker, Darkest
Project by: Queen Games
This is Queen Games’ tenth shot at running a successful Kickstarter campaign in a row, and does this one look like a doozy! Dark, Darker and Darkest is a cooperative board game where 2-5 survivors explore a secured house of Doctor Mortimer, in hopes of stopping a zombie apocalypse.
This game’s focus is a more puzzle oriented structure of avoiding security cameras and avoiding or fighting monsters and zombies, while trying to find the lock code so you can enter the laboratory and obtain the antidote to stop the zombie apocalypse and save the world.
DDD has randomly generated room tiles and several survivors with special abilities to select from, giving it a lot of replay value.
Project by: Azurai Games
Kickstarter Link: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/azurai/dragon-caster
I’m always looking for fun, quick, two player games to play with the wife during our down time in the evenings. Dragon Caster by Azurai Games looks like it will fit that bill nicely. This is AG’s first shot at funding a game Kickstarter style and they have seen a slow but steady growth towards their funding goal of $13,000. They will have a little less than a week to go and inching towards their goal by the time this is posted.
This a simple little strategic game that pits one Elemental Dragon Summoner against another. There is a simplistic game mechanic that makes this game intriguing. You have a 3×3 square with 9 individual boxes, numbered 1-9. You roll a pair of D6’s and depending on what you roll, you can either place mana or a dragon on the board. You then place your markers on the rolled numbers on your pad.
Ex: If you roll a 3 and a 5, you can either cover up a 8, or a 7 and 1, or 4, 3, and 1, etc., as long as they equal 8. You can then either cast dragons or put mana on the board. If you roll a number that is already covered up than you have to pull the markers off the board. Your goal is to try to fill the box of numbers up so all your dragons on the board will get a free mana of their element.
This looks like a fun, light strategy game that you could take almost anywhere and play.
Project by: Sandy Peterson
Kickstarter Link: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1816687860/cthulhu-wars
Oh man! Has this one skyrocketed past its fund raising goal and for good reason! As of this writing, it has almost raised 20 times the amount of it’s $40,000 pledge with more than 3,000 backers.
This is a turn based strategy/war/horror game based on the author H.P. Lovecraft’s ‘Cthulhu Mythos’ and does it look damn exciting to play! The goal of the game is rule the ruins of the earth with your faction of choice. You summon your monsters through gates and send out your cultists and monsters to destroy your opponents forces and capture their gates.
This game is huge! It is being branded as the biggest Cthulhu game ever. It has a deluxe 40” x 20” double-sided game board which you can flip it over for four different board layouts, over 60 high quality figures, and over 10 expansions have been unlocked that you can purchase through the Kickstarter. If you’re a Lovecraft fan and a strategy fan, than this is THE game for you!
I am currently backing this at the “cultist level” pledge and every time I go to their page, I am tempted at pledging higher for the other components and at least one of the expansions.
This is a 2-4 player game, but can add a fifth player with one of the expansions.
Project by: Watchtower Games
Kickstarter Link: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/572306505/fallen-4
2 player? Check. Dungeon Crawl? Check. Exquisite artwork? Check. Choose your own adventure style story? Check.
Need I say more? Didn’t think so, but I will anyways . . .
This is another 2 player game that I am currently backing and hope to see successful. (22 Days to go and only a little more than $1k left to reach it’s funding goal of $19,000 as of this writing. Don’t think that will be a problem. =)
(Did I mention the artwork is beautiful?)
A quick (extremely quick) synopsis of a turn:
One player decides which one of the three Dungeon Lords he/she wants as their character and the other player chooses the role of one of the three heroes. The Dungeon Lord then picks one of the story cards randomly, and reads the story dialogue and the title of the two choices that is offered to the hero.The hero then chooses what he/she wants to do. The DL then reads the flavor text of the story choice and refers to the icon that shows what type of challenge the hero has to overcome, (ex. agility, strength, etc.) Dice are thrown, counted , and the victor is awarded experience points and treasure. This type of play continues through three story cards and unto the final battle card.
Now, mind you, this is a VERY quick, watered down version of the mechanics and play style of the game, but I think you get the drift. Fallen looks like the perfect game for gaming parents, college students, or anyone else who gets the itch for some story driven, RPG action, but don’t have the time or the people for a full blown RPG board game or dungeon crawl.
(Did I mention if you look up elegant in the dictionary, it reads: See Fallen’s Artwork)
There is a lot more to the game mechanics than what I described above, including shadow track cards, equipment cards, critical cards, and Hero and Dungeon Lord Power Cards just to name a few things I’m leaving out, but good news for you, Watchtower Games has a gameplay video on their YouTube channel.
The kickstarter version of the game will have at least 45 story cards double sided. There are also 4 adventure packs that you can fund for that will add three new creatures for the DL, two new items, and six new story cards per adventure pack. For those lousy at math, that makes a total of 69 story cards, with potential of more with stretch goals.
This game will be in everyone’s top 10 two-player games, and the artwork…did I happen to mention that?
Well, there you have it: A quick preview fix of five games that I’m more excited about than some kid named Ralphie on Christmas morning. Hope you enjoyed the preview and as always . . .
Spread The Addiction!