The BIG news this week is that the 2013 nominees for the German Spiel des Jahres prize have been announced. This is hot business, as the winner will go on to sell some 300,000 to 500,000 copies. Absorb that figure. Now, here's another one- many of the board games we look at will never break five figures.
These nominees are... well, I mean, you've probably noticed they're sat at the top of the post. Spoiler!
But let's speak of something EXCITING! Eight-Minute Empire, pictured above, looks wicked. It's a racecar-fast area control game where players simply take turns to select a card, develop their control of a board, and expel a winner from their midst. It was Kickstarted earlier this year, and is currently sat in the middle of a tiny hype-tornado.
Now, check this out! The standalone sequel, Eight-Minute Empire: Legends, is on Kickstarter already! It's already broken its goal with the series' characteristic speed, so that's a very reasonable place for your money to go this week.
Above you'll see the forthcoming Wave Three ships for the X-Wing Miniatures game. According to my tome of Star Wars apocrapha, they're... hang on, the pages are stuck together. Paul must be on the milkshakes again. OK we've got the deadly B-Wing and Kyle Katarn's own HWK-290 for the Rebels, and a TIE Bomber and Lamba-class shuttle for the Imperials. Oh, I guess I could have just read the press release. Hmm.
Above you'll see a photo of incredible team game Space Cadets, which Brendan and I took a look at back on our old site. Basically, you all control a different station, whether it's engineering, weapons, the helm and so on, and then a farce commences at lightspeed with everyone blaming everybody else.
This week saw the announcement of standalone game Space Cadets: Dice Duel. All the fun of crashing into asteroids in space, but in a team combat game! Oh, baby! But that's just to kick us off. We've also got the game of a Neil Gaiman short story, and the week's most exciting Kickstarters. Ensign, take us forward.
News, though! Up above you'll see Heroes of Normandie an absolutely gorgeous-looking tactics game that's got just 5 days left on the Kickstarter, with 270% of its desired funding. Want to drive a cardboard tank through a bush? This could be your boy. And there's more of a grounding that'll it'll be a good game than most Kickstartlets, since it's based on the company's 2007 release of Frontiers, which The Dice Tower called pretty fun.
But that's not the most exciting news this week. Oh, no. A new expansion for Battlestar Galactica's been announced, AND a new game in the world of The Resistance. Oh, baby!
Her and I aren't talking anymore, obviously, which is annoying because this week's news features NOTHING but games with approachable themes. Not so much as ONE grimy alien or breastplate in sight.
Impossible, you say? Hard to believe? See for yourself.
Mage Wars came out last year. I heard it was stunning, but seeing its box in my local game shop, with its non-standard dimensions and underwhelming logo, I was warded away like a vampire. Hsss!
If you're going to ask me to be a wizard, at least give me the style of Summoner Wars. The global scale of Mage Knight. The sense of humour of Wiz-War. Don't ask me to summon unicorns unironically.
But the praise didn't stop. This year I heard it was the Dice Tower's 4th favourite game of all time. Rab, of RPS's wonderful Cardboard Children column, assured me it was "the real deal." And oh, yes. Oh, baby. This game's just wonderful.
We start with Plaid Hat Games, who've just let slip a wad of information on their upcoming BioShock Infinite board game, The Siege of Columbia, AND have begun accepting pre-orders for $25 off the retail price. But will it be good, or not-good?! We just don't know. The designer, Isaac Vega, has two games coming this year from Plaid Hat, this and the dramatic-looking (and sounding) City of Remnants, but has yet to ship anything. We'll have to wait and see.
Enter Antoine Bauza’s Rampage, which should be landing this year. Bauza’s one of our favourite designers here at SU&SD, having crafted 7 Wonders and Ghost Stories, both of which are capable of collapsing your face into deep thought like a strong man might fold a deck chair.
With Rampage, 2-4 players will be dropping their wooden kaiju monsters to crush buildings, blowing on civilians to claim their pathetic lives and even flicking themselves at one another in foul, animal anger. Doesn’t that sound perfect?
"This will be a great time," you announce to your cactus or spouse. “I have been convinced by this game’s art and premise that I will enjoy myself."
Your coat’s still on. You pick up the phone. “Barry?" You say. “It’s me. Would you like to come over and have a great time?"
I was convinced Robinson Crusoe was the game for me. Guess what!