A Distant Plain

A Distant Plain

The latest volume in Volko Ruhnke’s COIN Series takes 1 to 4 players into the Afghan conflict of today’s headlines, this time in a unique collaboration between two top designers of boardgames on modern irregular warfare. A Distant Plain teams Volko Ruhnke, the award-winning designer of Labyrinth: The War on Terror, with Brian Train, a designer with 20 years’ experience creating influential simulations such as Algeria, Somalia Interventions, Shining Path: The Struggle for Peru, and many others.

A Distant Plain features the same accessible game system as GMT’s recent Andean Abyss and upcoming Cuba Libre but with new factions, capabilities, events, and objectives. For the first time in the Series, two counterinsurgent (COIN) factions must reconcile competing visions for Afghanistan in order to coordinate a campaign against a dangerous twin insurgency.

A Distant Plain adapts familiar Andean Abyss mechanics to the conditions of Afghanistan without adding rules complexity. A snap for GMT COIN Series players to learn, A Distant Plain will transport them to a different place and time. New features include:

Coalition-Government joint operations.
Volatile Pakistani posture toward the conflict.
Evolution of both COIN and insurgent tactics and technology.
Government graft and desertion.
Coalition casualties.
Returning Afghan refugees.
Pashtun ethnic terrain.
Multiple scenarios.
A deck of 72 fresh events.

… and more.

As with each COIN Series volume, players of A Distant Plain will face difficult strategic decisions with each card. The innovative game system smoothly integrates political, cultural, and economic affairs with military and other violent and non-violent operations and capabilities. Flow charts are at hand to run the three Afghan factions, so that any number of players—from solitaire to 4—can experience the internecine brawl that is today’s Afghanistan.

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Suburbia Inc.

Your borough has decided that it’s time to incorporate. What does that mean for you, as its city planner? Well, lots more paperwork, that’s for sure – but it also gives you great new possibilities for your little town. In Suburbia Inc, an expansion for the award-winning Suburbia strategy game, you get to develop your … Read more

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Suburbia

Suburbia

Plan, build, and develop a small town into a major metropolis. Use hex-shaped building tiles to add residential, commercial, civic, and industrial areas, as well as special points of interest that provide benefits and take advantage of the resources of nearby towns. Your goal is to have your borough thrive and end up with a greater population than any of your opponents.

Suburbia is a tile-laying game in which each player tries to build up an economic engine and infrastructure that will be initially self-sufficient, and eventually become both profitable and encourage population growth. As your town grows, you’ll modify both your income and your reputation. As your income increases, you’ll have more cash on hand to purchase better and more valuable buildings, such as an international airport or a high rise office building. As your reputation increases, you’ll gain more and more population (and the winner at the end of the game is the player with the largest population).

During each game, players compete for several unique goals that offer an additional population boost – and the buildings available in each game vary, so you’ll never play the same game twice!

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K2

K2

K2 is a board game in which each player controls a team of two mountaineers. Their objective, to reach to the summit of K2 and return before anyone else… and without the mountain killing them. Every player uses an identical deck of cards to move their climbers or to acclimatize them to the cold. It’s a deadly mountain and staying alive is not going to be easy.

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Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords Base Set

The Pathfinder Adventure Card Game is an expandable game, with the first set containing nearly 500 cards. The Rise of the Runelords – Base Set supports 1 to 4 players; a 110-card Character Add-On Deck expands the possible number of players to 5 or 6 and adds more character options for any number of players. The game will be expanded with bimonthly 110-card adventure decks.

Launch a campaign to strike back against the evils plaguing Varisia with this Base Set. This complete cooperative strategy card game pits 1 to 4 heroes against the traps, monsters, deadly magic, and despicable foes of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game’s award-winning Rise of the Runelords Adventure Path. In this game players take the part of a fantasy character such as a rogue or wizard, each with varying skills and proficiencies that are represented by the cards in their deck. The classic ability scores (Strength, Dexterity, etc.) are assigned with different sized dice. Players can acquire allies, spells, weapons, and other items. The goal is to find and defeat a villain before a certain number of turns pass, with the villain being represented by its own deck of cards complete with challenges and foes that must be overcome. Characters grow stronger after each game, adding unique gear and awesome magic to their decks, and gaining incredible powers, all of which they’ll need to challenge greater threats in a complete Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Adventure Path.

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Agents of SMERSH

Agents of SMERSH

A STORYTELLING BOARD GAME SET IN THE 1970s COLD WAR ERA.

SMERSH is a portmanteau of two Russian words that translates to “Death to Spies.” It operated as a counter-intelligence agency by the Red Army during the 1940s. Despite having had a large number of paid employees, little was known about the agency until recently when Russia opened their archives.

Agents of SMERSH is a cooperative Storytelling game that pits players as UN Secret Service Spies set in an alternate 1970s timeline against a newly formed and independent SMERSH. The game will be able to accommodate play with either The Encounter Book that contains over 1500 written encounters with a similar reaction matrix to Tales of the Arabian Nights – or played more simply with only encounter cards with shorter encounters and no matrix. Agents of SMERSH includes custom dice to determine success or failure of encounters, and more strategic play from what is typically expected of a Storytelling board game. There are plenty of James Bond gadgets, guns, cars, pop references and detailed artwork – not to mention a touch of humor. The game features the artwork of George Patsouras (The Resistance & Flash Point).

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Freedom: The Underground Railroad

Freedom: The Underground Railroad

Early in the history of the United States, slavery was an institution that seemed unmovable but with efforts of men and women across the country, it was toppled. In Freedom: The Underground Railroad, players are working to build up the strength of the Abolitionist movement through the use of notable figures and pivotal events. By raising support for the cause and moving slaves to freedom in Canada, the minds of Americans can be changed and the institution of slavery can be brought down.

Freedom is a card-driven, cooperative game for one to four players in which the group is working for the abolitionist movement to help bring an end to slavery in the United States. The players use a combination of cards, which feature figures and events spanning from Early Independence until the Civil War, along with action tokens and the benefits of their role to impact the game.

Players need to strike the right balance between freeing slaves from plantations in the south and raising funds which are desperately needed to allow the group to continue their abolitionist activities as well as strengthen the cause.

The goal is not easy and in addition to people and events that can have a negative impact on the group’s progress, there are also slave catchers roaming the board, reacting to the movements of the slaves on the board and hoping to catch the runaway slaves and send them back to the plantations.

Through careful planning and working together, the group might see an end to slavery in their time.

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Darkest Night

Darkest Night

Darkest Night, by designer Jeremy Lennert, is a fully-cooperative board game for one to four players (up to six with variants), set in a kingdom broken under a necromancer’s shadow. Each player takes on the role of one of the kingdom’s last heroes (nine playable characters), each with a unique set of special abilities, just as they hatch a plan to save the realm.

Searching the kingdom provides new powers and equipment to strengthen you and your party, as well as the keys that can unlock the holy relics and defeat the necromancer. You can acquire many powerful abilities—unique to each hero—that can help to fight the undead, elude the necromancer’s forces, accelerate your searches for items and artifacts, and more. The knight is a brave and powerful warrior; the prince can rally and inspire the people; the scholar excels at locating and restoring the treasures of the past.

But ravenous undead roam the realm, and as the necromancer continues to build his power base, he blights the land and his army steadily grows. As the game wears on, the necromancer becomes more and more powerful, creating blights more quickly and effectively. If an area becomes too blighted, it gets overrun—and the monastery receives the spillover. And if the monastery is ever overrun, the necromancer wins and the kingdom is swallowed in darkness!

Before the monastery falls, it’s up to you and your party to defeat the necromancer in one of two ways: If you can gather three holy relics and bring them all back to the monastery, you can perform a powerful ritual to break the necromancer’s power and scour the land of the undead. Alternatively, you can try to defeat the necromancer in direct combat—but be warned, he will readily sacrifice his minions to save himself.

Can you save the kingdom from darkness? Do you have the courage, the cunning and the will to withstand the necromancer and his forces? Strategize, plan and bring out the best of your abilities to end our Darkest Night!

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Renaissance Man

Renaissance Man

In Renaissance Man, each player is an example of the title character – skilled as a scholar, a merchant, a knight, and a baker – and throughout the game will hire, recruit and train others with the goal of producing a Master of one of these four areas of study. Each round consists of players creating actions by combining a worker in play with a card from hand:

Merchants hire new workers.
Knights compete to recruit workers from the common pool.
Bakers offer their goods in exchange for workers’ actions.
Scholars train others in the ways of the Renaissance Man.

Instead of providing these actions for a player, a worker in play can be assigned to support higher-level workers. Two workers are required for support, and they are laid out as such in a pyramid-fashion. Five workers create a player’s foundation, and the first player to complete a pyramid structure of fifteen workers creates a single Master of study, thus winning the game. A little luck will help along the way, but the day will surely go to the player who finds the most clever ways out of the trickiest situations in Renaissance Man!

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Escape: The Curse of the Temple

Escape: The Curse of the Temple

You are a team of adventurers – trapped in a cursed temple. Together you must activate the magic gems in the temple chambers in order to banish the curse.

Look out for one another. Some tasks can be accomplished only as a team – and you have only 10 minutes before the temple collapses!

Escape is a cooperative real-time game, that is not played in rounds. Instead, each player rolls as quickly and as often as he can with his five dice.

The dice determine your fate:

Discover the different temple chambers by rolling the correct dice combinations. Take care, though, because if you fall under the spell of the Black Mask, you‘ll need the help of the Golden Mask and your team-mates in order to keep moving!

Act together:

If several adventurers are together in one chamber, you‘ll activate more magic gems faster!

Two modules make Escape even more exciting: The modules “Curses” and “Treasures“ make gameplay even more varied. The treasures aid you whereas the curses make escape more difficult. After all, an adventurer who is unable to talk or who must roll his dice with one hand stuck on top of his head will have a tough time working with his team!

The 10-minute soundtrack enhances the exciting atmosphere of the temple adventure!

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