GAMES NEWS! 20/11/16

high finance, dusty teams, stranglin' lando, shadow muses
Quinns: GOOD MORNING everybody! Who’s excited about board games? All of you? Not yet you’re not. Soak up the below news like an high-end paper towel and then we’ll talk.

Fantasy Flight has announced the next big box expansion for the superb Android: Netrunner, and it’s Netrunner Legacy.

The copywriting on the announcement page for Netrunner: Terminal Directive is a bit of a nightmare, but basically anyone who owns a Netrunner core set and the Terminal Directive expansion will be able to play through a narrative campaign of runners vs. corporations. Sealed packs of never-before-seen cards will be opened one after another as a cyberpunk murder mystery plays out, and players will apply new stickers to their faction’s sheet as they win or lose games.

Going into this expansion blind sounds like a delight. Not only do you get the surprise of adding brand new cards to your deck, you then get to surprise your opponent as you unleash them mid-game!

So obviously this is a flirtatious and fun way to introduce new cards to the game’s competitive scene, but WAY MORE IMPORTANTLY, people who want to get into Netrunner now have a step between “Buy game” and “Buy all of the expansions and go get your teeth knocked out at your local meet”. You can now fool around with the core set, then play a campaign, and the campaign cards you unwrapped are your first step in expanding your collection.

I love it! On the subject of FFG’s campaign boxes The Corellian Conflict for Star Wars Armada will be out soon, too. I ask you, is there any more exciting word in board games than “campaign”?

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In other Fantasy Flight card game news, their co-operative Arkham Horror card game came out this month! …And it immediately sold out. For those of you who either snagged a copy or are OK with your excitement reaching unsustainable levels, they’ve now announced the first three expansions.

The Dunwich Legacy is a big ol’ box with cover art that I can’t stop looking at, and it comes out next month. It contains 4 new investigators for you to play as and 59 new cards to build your decks with, but most importantly it’ll add the first two scenarios of a new campaign.

Coming out at the start of next year is the first collection of “mythos packs” starting with The Miskatonic Museum and The Essex County Express. All six will contain some more investigator cards as well as a complete adventure to slot into your Dunwich Legacy campaign, meaning a full collection of Dunwich Legacy cards (the big box and the six smaller expansions that follow) will let you play a whopping eight act story. With the Arkham Horror LCG’s mechanics for each player’s deck becoming more experienced but also more twisted after each game, that sounds like a fascinating time.

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RELEVANCY ALARM! On Friday I reviewed Vinhos Deluxe, a beautiful box that was a staggeringly complete (if mad) piece of work by both game designer Vital Lacerda and art designer Ian O’Toole.

The pair’s next project is called Lisboa, it’s now live on Kickstarter and anyone who had their interest piqued by my Vinhos review should have a good think about backing it. Not only will the Kickstarter let you lower the horrific shipping costs involved with games this heavy, I think it’s worth backing because at this point we know what we’re getting from Lacerda & O’Toole. For most people games like Vinhos and The Gallerist will be too complex to get to the table, but if your group does love a bit of Lacerda then where better to get your next box from than a Kickstarter that’s fat with stretch goals?

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Oooh, here’s a name we haven’t heard in some time. The American designer behind The Resistance and The Resistance: Avalon, Don Eskridge, has just announced his second game! Abandon Planet is now live on Kickstarter and, curiously, is struggling with its funding a bit.

It sounds great to me. First and foremost this is a team game and there aren’t enough team games out thereBeyond that, Abandon Planet is all about flying your rickety rocket around a collapsing planet earth, snatching at supplies and secretly sharing information with your partner as to where the next bit of meteorite will hit, re-shaping the board. Two problems in your way are that (a) you might not know where the meteorite is going to hit, and (b) you might not know who your partner is.

Frankly, reading the Kickstarter makes Eskridge sound very sharp indeed. See:

A EUROGAME WITH EXPLOSIONS — While we’re calling Abandon Planet a party game, it’s also got enough depth to appeal to the efficiency-engine gamers in your group. It’s got classic worker placement and set collection elements mixed with fast-paced negotiation and deduction. There just aren’t many games with this level of depth that take up to eight players – just this and 7 Wonders, and 7 Wonders doesn’t have rockets or the apocalypse.

I’m just happy to see someone else measure games in “how many drinks can you have and it still works”. If I had my way that’d be printed on all board game boxes, together with the time it takes and the number of players.

Heck, I’m gonna back this project now. Eskridge has brought so much joy into my life, and I want to see what he can do next.

EDIT: Oh ok it’s $35, plus another $35 to ship to the United Kingdom. Screw that! Haha, so much for my grand philanthropy. I’m going to spend £35 (plus £4 shipping) on my friend’s comic curation box instead.

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Who’s played Acquire? Not us, that’s for sure.

On the left you can see one of the original 1960s editions of Acquire. “HIGH ADVENTURE IN THE WORLD OF HIGH FINANCE,” it says. Wow!

I’ve put the picture there for reference because on the right you can see Hasbro’s first press shot of their new edition of Acquire, and some elements of the board game press are treating this like very important news! I still take my cues from them sometimes, I guess. Apparently the edition before this used a lot of flat cardboard and was a bit shit, and this is a welcome return to the 3D buildings of the edition before that.

I’ve actually not played any Sid Sackson games despite him being hugely prolific. Should I play some? I’m not sure I should. I’m going to make a cup of tea, brb

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Speaking of “games that Hasbro keeps making” like they’re a fairground operator who won’t stop the whirlitzer no matter how loudly the children are vomiting, say hello to the new Star Wars Clue!

Incredible scenes. It looks like you have to fully walk around this 3D board to see all of it. I just hope they haven’t changed any of the actual writing, and kids will proclaim that R2-D2 is the murderer and strangled Lando with the noose in the conservatory.

Finally, let’s draw back the velvet curtain and enter our reader gallery!

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I love this watercolour interpretation of the Cosmic Encounter box from Jason Hall. He writes…

I was toying around with some ideas for simple boardgame art at the time, and settled on looking at playing pieces that are synonymous with particular games – in this case the Cosmic Encounter ships. Through the combination of the simple shapes and the shadows, I’ve tried to capture the ‘3D-ness’ of the pieces many of us are familiar with and are unique to boardgaming.

… And then I stopped being so rational and just splodged some colours about.

Thanks for all the hard work!

Jason (aka J0hnny_Utah7)

Lovely stuff.

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Meanwhile, one year on from this site’s review of Infinity, Dominic Parker sends in a picture of his friends’ new table!

Being one of the lucky few to work with like minded boardgamers and such, we couldn’t help but be drawn to SU&SDs favourable coverage of Infinity. You see, our playgroup at work had just come off the back of an attempted BloodBowl League and were itching to play a new game. So, excited with the prospect of ‘Lets play that tabletop XCom game” we ended up here:

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I don’t think we can do anything but blame you for all of this. I dread to think how much time and money this has all taken, but it’s been a very fun journey that’s helped to rekindle the Hobby side of my gaming that had fallen away. I also deeply enjoyed Quinns’ lets play of Infinity that was released earlier in the year.

I am currently trying to build a second board (this time by myself as my friend built the cityscape with me) that is inspired by Shadow Moses from Metal Gear Solid. I’ve even got an entire room of the house i’ve just moved into with my partner intending to be a games room with a convinient 4×4 table…

Send help. Urgently.     -Dom

I absolutely refuse. Excellent work, Dom!

If you want to send in photos of the game nights in your part of the world or just show off some creativity, send in your entries to [email protected] with the subject “Gallery!”