Games News! 15/07/13

pro molds, trolleys in time, plastic ninjas, pet slugs, pro knifings
Quinns: Good afternoon you pretty people! Did you have a nice weekend?

Mine was mostly spent questing for the One Beverage that would make me feel better in this heat, but I perked up on Sunday when I spotted Fantasy Flight’s announcement of Blood Bound. Like Mayday! Mayday!, which I looked at in the news a few weeks back, this looks to be part of the post-Resistance wave of games. An incredibly tight game of hidden roles, negotiation and lying, but with more… game.

Players are divided into two eyeliner-powered teams of vampires, each trying to capture the other team’s leader, though no-one knows who anyone else is. To do this you’ll need information, gleaned from (apparently?) a highly scientific process of shanking one another. Around and around the huge cardboard knife goes, with each knifer becoming the knifee after revealing a single piece of information about their character.

Where things get foxy is that everyone has a different power. The Harlequin can masquerade as a member of the other team, the Elder can make the lowest-ranked vampire in the clan the new leader, and so on.

I am desperate to play this. And not just because I want to film a Let’s Play with the entire SU&SD crew in makeup and lace.

Probably one to bookmark and watch later, this is Eric Hautemont, the uniquely French CEO and co-founder of Days of Wonder (developers of such fine board game brands as Ticket to Ride, Small World and Memoir ’44) , talking at Google about his work.

There’s a ton of good stuff in here. Eric’s uniquely opinionated among board game publishers I’ve heard speak, and it’s no coincidence that Ticket to Ride is outselling Settlers of Catan today, making it the biggest board game outside of the salty bog of Cluedo / Monopoly / Risk.

We’ll be posting our interview with Eric Hautemont soon, but for now, here’s a preview to help define his company in your mind: Days of Wonder consider themselves the Porsche of the board game world. They currently only release 0-1 game a year, but make this number work for them. Which is extra interesting because it’s the opposite ethos of the other big board game publisher everybody thinks of, Fantasy Flight, who subscribe to a “More is more” ethos.

Hell, they’ve had new game announcements in our games news for two weeks running.

PROSPERITY

PROSPERITY! What is it? We sort of don’t know, except that (1) it’s the new game coming later this year from Reiner Knizia and Keyflower designer Sebastian Bleasdale, (2) it’s about building up countries on a “grand and abstract scale”, and (3) the colour palette for the box art has been drawn exclusively from rare bathroom molds.

A short description from the developers can be found here, which starts like this:

The game starts with 24 tiles available, half on the energy side of the shared game board and half on the ecology side. Two tiles on each side are placed on levels 1-6, with the players each having two research markers – energy and ecology – that start at level 1. Each player has an individual game board with color-coded spaces for tiles, a pollution track, and tracks for energy and ecology. A stack of 36 tiles – with tiles arranged by decades: the six from 2030 on the bottom, then the five from 2020, and so on to the five from 1970 – is set up during the playing area.

…and continues until you’ve lost the will to live.

Here at SU&SD we’ve long suspected Reiner Knizia of being our nemesis in making board games look cool. Every time we release a video where we use the word “love” or feature a popular indie track, he announces another game involving maths, draped with a mucusy sneeze of theme. Knizia? We’re onto you.

Timeline

On the bright side, no less than THREE expansions were announced this week for cool games that are cool. First off, Timeline: Music & Cinema.

Have you played Timeline? It couldn’t be simpler, and all the expansions also work as standalone games.

In the box are 110 cards, you get dealt a hand of them, and then everyone struggles to insert these cards into a growing timeline of when they occurred. So, to begin with you’re declaring, proudly, that the dinosaurs died out before the invention of the supermarket trolley (yet FOR SOME REASON you’ll still be tense as you flip the card and cehck), then by the end you’re searching fruitlessly through your hand for anything you’re remotely confident about. Was the motorcycle… no… but the decade of Martin Luther King’s speech was… no…

This is an absolutely perfect Christmas present. It’s impossible not to like it, and that’s a FACT*.

Mice and Mystics: The Heart of Glorm

Next up, the first big expansion for Mice and Mystics, Mice and Mystics: The Heart of Glorm is now available to pre-order.

A game we famously haven’t played yet, Mice & Mystics is a co-op adventure allowing players (as mice) to struggle against such horrors as a centipede or running water. I think. We haven’t played it. We’d like to, but we haven’t.

The expansion will add 6 new “chapters”, pet slugs, little cheese tokens and will probably shed some light on the mystery of who Glorm is, and why his heart is so important. Maybe? We haven’t played it.

7 Wonders

Last but not least is 7 Wonders: Babel, the third expansion for the stellar card game 7 Wonders, which we reviewed waaaaay back here. Babel will have players building a wonder TOGETHER, which literally sounds quite interesting. No pictures as yet, so here are some drunk people playing 7 Wonders with cards on their head.

We’ve got a copy of 7 Wonders: Cities somewhere around here, waiting to be reviewed. Guess we’ve got a deadline, now.

AND FINALLY!

Shuriken

Shuriken is a game by Awesome Enterprise(!) featuring 250 plastic ninjas! Because it wouldn’t be Games News without a slightly ill-advised Kickstarter.

Not sure what makes me quite so nervous about this one. Perhaps it’s the fact that the 3D render of the box bears a shape that has never existed in reality. Perhaps it’s the way the page emphasises cards before tactics. Or perhaps it’s sentences like “Unarmed ninja can be trained into shuriken ninja. They aren’t as strong as sword ninja, but are deadlier than unarmed.”

I just don’t know. Probably keep your money in your pocket for the time being.

*a FACT