Board Game News -The Gateway Gazette – 01/07/2016

As most of you would have noticed, the last two weeks have been somewhat subdued here at CBQ. Some of us went on holiday, some of us got married and some of us are dealing with auditors, so it’s clearly a toss up as to who’s gotten the short end of the stick (it’s me, the answer is me). The good news is that things are finally back to normal, so it’s full steam ahead and you can expect a bumper week of content next week.

Thankfully, we had Daniel stepping into the breach with his insights on Kingdom Death: Monster, which as a reader so aptly suggested probably should have been called Kingdom Death: Jealousy. I can’t say I’d ever play it, but man does it seem like a heck of a game.

For those of you with a finger on the boardgaming pulse, you’ll have been drowning in the deluge of Origins news, because man alive has there been a lot of it. Far too much for us to even consider doing an impressions feature, so we’ll just be mentioning some of the more interesting titles in today’s news.

It also seems a little pointless in attempting to group items by category this week, as many Kickstarter campaigns had playable demos at Origins and trying to puzzle out new releases from new announcements is a minefield I’m not keen on walking through, so we’re taking the spray and pray approach. Buckle up or duck for cover!

White Wizard Games won us over with Star Realms, a title we’ve feature a number of times and one we all thoroughly enjoy playing. Some of us (Stuart) viewed Epic as a major letdown, so we tempered our expectations when Hero Realms was announced, yet remained hopeful that the Star Realms mechanics would transfer to a fantasy theme in an engaging manner.  And now, there’s a plethora of details to sink our teeth into, and if the final product is as tasty as the hor’s d’ouvers, WWG might have another hit on their hands. And that estimate October 2016 delivery date is just the cherry on top.

The Tiny Epic series continues to Gamelyn Games subtle bid for world domination with the announcement of Tiny Epic Quest. Using the nostalgia of the Nintendo RPG greatness of games like The Legend of Zelda and Final Fantasy as a jumping off point, TEQ will offer a sandbox-style adventure with unique Day & Night phases and two distinct paths to victory.

We haven’t played Sebastien Dujardin’s Deus just yet, but the title has been well received with a number of glowing reviews, and in October fans can expect the release of Deus: Egypt, the first expansion which will add 96 building  cards.

Fans of Castle Panic and Dead Panic might be surprised to hear that the next iteration is set in the Star Trek universe. And yes, they’re promising to boldly go where no Panic game has gone before. Star Trek Panic is beaming up to international stores this month.

Of far greater personal relevance, is Plaid Hat Games announcement of the next Ashes Phoenixborn characters, in the form of ready-to-play decks. Leo Sunshadow and his Roaring Rose deck aims to force opponents to choose between losing life, cards or dice using spells like Dispel, Anguish and Remorse. Or you can play as Victoria Glassfire, whose Duchess of Deception deck is focused on manipulating your dice and allowing you to reuse spent dice. Her arsenal of spells includes Body Inversion, Flash Archer and Summon Shadow Hound. Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn is fantastic card game and I’m glad to see the team at PHG are continuing to support it.

Stronghold Games have opened pre-orders for three new titles, including The Pursuit of Happiness which is a worker placement game about fostering your unique character from birth to adulthood, and City of Spies: Estoril 1942 which is a deckbuilder about controlling and expanding your network of spies. And just to sweeten things, they’ll also be debuting their expansion for the tremendously popular Diamonds, namely Diamonds: The Thief.

If you enjoy Paperback as much as we do, you” be thrilled to see Tim Fowers’ new KS campaign for Fugitive, a deduction style game with the same charming artstyle that plays two in around 10 minutes. A follow up of sorts to his other title Burgle Bros, plays will experience the opposite sides of the law. And there’s a print and play available.

Some video overviews for Gamelyn Games’ Heroes of Land, Air & Sea as well as another look at the runaway KS hit Dark Souls: The Board Game? Sure! Here and here!

We’ve seen a resurgence in popularity of dexterity games with the 2nd edition of Catacombs (which has a new title coming with Catacombs & Castles) and the smash hit Flick ’em Up, but how about a dice flicking game? Or even better, a dice flicking game between crocodiles and zebras! It’s Kung Fu Zoo!

Boardgame design alumni Richard Launius was present at Origins in a big way, mainly due to this much anticipated take on the post-apocalyptic genre with Defenders of the Last Stand ( a spiritual sequel of sorts to Defenders of the Realm), but he also had Fate of the Elder Gods on show, which you might have missed in the weeks leading up. Co-designed with Christopher Kirkman and Darrell Louder, 2 – 4 players take on the role of cults trying to summon ancient evil, beat away investigators and using the Gifts of your Elder God to thwart the attempts of your opponents.

The Engelstein clan behind the Space Cadets series are punting their new title, The Dragon & Flagon. The synopsis? A bar-room brawl with a fantasy flavor, think smashing chairs, throwing mugs and casting spells in a 3D tavern environment. I don’t know about anyone else, but that sounds amazing. Here’s a explanation of how the game works.

App News

DIGIDICED are bringing Agricola: All Creatures Big & Small to mobile, and if it’s anything as good as their digital version of Patchwork we’re all going to be spending far too much time glued to our phones. The equally popular Baseball Highlights: 2045 has also been updated and made far more robust with the inclusion of AI.

Tokaido’s digital equivalent hasn’t shown us much detail up until now, but Passport Game Studios demoed the game at Origins and it’s looking impressively gorgeous. And lastly, Coup is coming to Android! Concerned about how a game chiefly concerned with bluffing will translate to the digital world? Apparently, rather well is the answer.

In closing…

It’s tempting to keep our heads fully submerged into the world of boardgaming – it’s a wonderful, happy place where only good things happen. But alas, sometimes the real world pulls back the curtains and the harsh light of reality comes pouring in. No matter you opinion on Brexit itself, the consequences of the vote will be far reaching, and the team over at Bell of Lost Souls have a fantastic article on the implications of Brexit for the tabletop community.

This weekend we’ll be tackling the latest Time Stories expansion, Under the Mask. It’s a difficult series to review given the spoiler-filled nature of the game, but we just might do a retrospective assessing how the expansions have performed and whether or not Space Cowboys have managed to maintain the level of excellence of the first game.

Quantum Gaming in Cape Town will be hosting the Netrunner Regionals, and for those upcountry be sure to diarise July 9th for the next Timeless Board Game Party. The Big Box Cafe is running their monthly All-Nighter (we’ll attend one of these at some point, but we’re old and function poorly without sleep) and lastly, preregistration is open for the MTG Eldritch Moon Prerelease at Outer Limits in Pretoria on the 16th and 17th of July, hit the link if you want to participate.

Happy gaming all!