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"You're not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on." – Dean Martin


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KICKSTARTER QUICK THOUGHTS: 27th JUNE 2018

So another big month of Kickstarters with allot of good projects coming out. Here is my thoughts on some of them.

KUNG-FU PANDA by MODIPHUS ENTERTAINMENT:  A real-time co-operative game where you are going through a board. Based on the Escape the Temple system, I am concerned with how much say the designer doesn’t have (similar to Orcs Must Die!). But I like the theme. I will have to check later to see whether the big box is worthwhile with the lack of content compared to normal. Backed for now.

HUNTERS AD 2114 by ALBRITCH: Looks like a cool game where you are hunting robots co-operatively. I really liked Exiled: Siege but hope some component and rulebook lessons are learned. Backed but will check the rulebook closely prior to deciding.

TANG GARDEN by BISI: A game that looks really pretty and promises a relaxing stroll, which sounds like Tokaido or that game where you are painting the emperor. Nothing in it really grabs me too much. It looks nice and I am on an early bird, but I predict a few people will be dropping off at the end. It does have a solo mode, which keeps me more interested. Backed (for now).

CARD CITY XL THE CRIME EXPANSION by VIARD: This seems like a cool game but it is in a crowded genre of grid tableau builder (or that is what it seems like). The original game didn’t get much buzz, but it seems allot of people came back for the expansion, which gives my more confidence. Reassess later.

SOLOMON KANE by MYTHIC GAMES: The concept looks interesting. But it seems like Unicornus Knights. Unicornus Knights does it better in my opinion, with you all having your own physical character rather than collectively just influencing the one character. I was excited but didn’t seem too interesting playing it long term for the price. Passed.

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Kickstarter Retrospective: Softer World and Strife

So this is a new series where I look back at my Kickstarters (2 at a time) and give a retrospective on where are they now.

 

A Softer World 4- Lets Do Something Wrong: So the first Kickstarter I backed (and how I found out about Kickstarter) was due to a webcomic I was reading (A Softer World). This is a great comic which seems to set up a normal scenario then twists it via a few photographic panels. This kickstarter gave me a flask and a book. The Kickstarter was cool, although you miss the alt-text (what you get when you leave your mouse cursor over the comic) if memory serves me correctly. All up, a good Kickstarter, although I think I eventually wore out the flask (I drank cordial from it because it looked cool, not alcohol).

Strife- Legacy of the Eternals: This was a perfect information game where the conceit was that it was like war (play a card to beat the other), but your champion inherits traits from your last champion (i.e. bonus power, an ability, etc.). It was a better idea than it was in execution. The rulebook needed more examples and the special ability rules needed to be a bit clearer. There was a follow-up Strife that could be combined, but it didn’t interest me too much. I did sell this off eventually as better games for 2 players were available.


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Kickstarter Board Game Thoughts (27 November 2017)

It has been relatively quiet on the Kickstarter front. Well, apart from Too Many Bones and 7th Continent’s second wave Kickstarters just finishing and the general bunch of really succesful Kickstarters going along. Here are some that have caught my eye:

Folklore: The Affliction (2nd Printing): This has got me interested in that there is now a review of the game up on Dice Tower. The review seemed to be quite positive and it looked interesting.

Sorcerer: A duel-type card game from the makers of Star Realms. It seems good but I already have allot of these duelling type games that I can play. So this is probably a pass for me but it seems good if you need a game like this.

Galactic Warlords Battle for Dominion: This is a relaunch. The first game cover looked unique. The relaunch… Not so much. It looks like a nice little area-control game that relies on card-interaction. It does look interesting and I backed the first launch. However, since that time I got Kemet, 1754 and a couple of other semi-area control games so I think this is a miss for this launch.

Dawn of Peacemakers: A quasi-war game with legacy and campaign elements. It has a pretty cool theme of trying to stop an animal-type war. The company seems to have done good games (Dale of Merchants 2 previously) that have been reviewed well, but the games advertising doesn’t quite pop on the Kickstarter page.

Ravine: This seems to be going well. The creator made the Space Team card game and the game looks kind-of bleak and simplistic for my tastes. I hope it goes well as it seems like a Robinson Crusoe or similar style game but much lighter.


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INFURIATING THINGS IN BOARD GAME RULEBOOKS

The following thing I find infuriating in the rulesbooks for board games:

Multiple Gameplay Walkthroughs- Having more than 1 gameplay runthrough, with the rules split between them, makes it extremely hard to look-up rules. It also confuses people as they are trying to go through the rules to learn the game. Have all the rules in one spot in a logical order. See Portal Games for the worst examples.

Missing Significant Rules- If something is in the game, it should be defined in the rulebook. This is a problem with Kickstarters, with terms defined (oftentimes not intuitively) on cards that are just missing from the rulebook. See Endure the Stars (1st Edition).

No Player Aids or Rules Only on Summary- The summary should give you the rules that have been explained in depth elsewhere. If your game has 11 different actions (with effects that aren’t indicated anywhere) and an action only fully defined on a summary, you need a decent player aid and blind test. See In The Name of Odin.

Wall of Text- This is self-explanatory. Things should be set out with headings, examples, etc. Having just a wall of text to try to find rules and definitions is a nightmare. See Ravens of Thrh-Sahari.


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THINGS I LOOK FOR IN BOARD-GAME KICKSTARTERS

So no new music has been added to the playlist. No big new kickstarters have come out. So I thought I would just talk about what I normally look for when deciding to back a Kickstarter:

History of Delivering Games- Kickstarter isn’t about companies delivering on dreams anymore. It is much more of a pre-order service. For this, I look for the history of a company delivering quality products (well reviewed games) in the past.

Good Customer Support- Similarly, I know Kickstarter’s often have first print runs. However, a company that doesn’t seem interesting in addressing issues with previous kickstarters (errors, component quality, etc.) isn’t going to get my money.

Uniqueness in the Game- Probably less important than the other two, I am looking for games that give me some advantage to getting a Kickstarter. Whether this is unique components or Kickstarter bonuses (although I hate the practice of game-affecting exclusives). I need something to justify spending the money when waiting for retail will likely be cheaper.

That is what I look for. Sometimes companies can succeed and then fail later, in which case they will have to earn my trust. As a Kickstarter backer, I am not a proto-typer or investor. Pure and simple, I give you money (including some for postage) and I should get a quality, tested game.


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Kickstarter Board Game Thoughts (10 July 2017)

Well, after the madness of May/June Kickstarter, things look a bit quieter now on here for the big projects. Instead, there seems to be a bunch of small projects around the place. Here are some quick thoughts on some new projects:

TRIPLOCK by JOSH AND ADAM CARLSON: Too Many Bones has come out to great reviews. So now, they have made a puzzle-type game that looks great. It has well-passed its funding goal. It is 1-2 players only though and abstract, but that doesn’t seem to have slowed it down. Backed.

PERDITIONS MOUTH: TRAITOR GUARD EXPANSION by ARCTIC UNION: I have the original game, and this looks like a nice little mini-expansion. Not only that, but you can bundle it with the kickstarter stuff from the original. This is a cool campaign-based dungeon crawler with an action rondel where your party gets worn down between missions and needs to rest. And the rondel also punishes you from spamming action. Backed.

GODS OF TYN HARRA: With a Dice Tower Origins preview video and gorgeous art, this game looks intriguing. Not to mention the price point seems pretty good. However, with Codex, Aventuria, Allegiance: A Realm Divided, Star Realms, etc.  in my collection, I don’t feel the need to try another dueling-type game unfortunately.  Not to mention $20 worldwide shipping seems a bit steep.  Pass.

PEPPER AND CARROT by LOYALIST GAMES: A nice little puzzle-type game. It seems quite cheap and has you modifying your goods tableau to pattern match. I have the early-bird pledge locked in but, with Century: Spice Road and Splendor (or Theseus for a more serious theme), I may not keep it. It is a decent price but shelf space is not. Backed (for now, but may pass soon).

BIO-LOGIC by ANDREW GAIA: A game about moving through the human body. It looks cool, kind-of like Mage Knight with a Carcasssone tile-placement. But, with Viral coming out soon and a previous Kickstarter game about an anatomy (not sure what the name was), the theme isn’t quite as unique as it was a year or so ago. The price point for a non-miniature Kickstarter also seems slightly high, but shipping seems low (so some base shipping costs appear to be part of the pledge).  At the moment it is a pass, but it doesn’t seem to be getting much traction. With a few more reviews and playthroughs (if it relaunches) it may be backed.


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Kickstarter Board Game Thoughts (15 June)

Well, wasn’t this a busy month for boardgames on kickstarter and through retail. So here are my latest thoughts on a few boardgame kickstarters that have started up recently:

EPIC AF by AWFUL FANTASY: This game re-implements the awesome Warhammer Quest: Adventure Card Game system. Unfortunately, the theme and artwork is not serious nor cartoony, instead trying to be tongue-in-cheek. I see this struggling to get to the table, similar to Cthulhu Realms. So this will be a pass.

HUMAN INTERFACE: BE A BETTER HUMAN by POSTINDUSTRIAL GAMES: This is a stand-alone expansion to Human Interface: Nakamura Tower. It offers plastic miniatures and playing out of the box. However, the first game wasn’t anything special compared to Necromunda or similar and the rules and miniature quality were sub-par at best. A hard pass.

RONE (2nd Edition) and RONE EXPANSIONS by STEPAN STEFANOVIK: This seems like an interesting game. It takes the rotating damage idea from Blood Bowl and makes a full fledged Magic-style duel game from it. Unfortunately, the lack of any proper reviews of the first edition means that I am hesitant to pull the trigger on it. It is currently a pass but free shipping and decent reviews could turn it around.

BLOOD AND DUST by MATEUS ALBRICHT: Well, it hasn’t set the world on fire after being launched. But Exiled: Siege was really solid and good (with some poor component choices, though), and this looks like a detailed miniatures game minus the miniatures and on a grid. This looks cool, and I am hoping we get some more armies in there. A proven track record nails it for me. Backed.

METAL DAWN by EVERYTHING EPIC: So this game looks like Dead of Winter but full co-op, progressing characters and a final boss fight. Looks very cool, but the price point seems high (compared to the plethora of miniature games out there). There is also a lack of videos showing this off, which makes me hesitant. At the moment, it is a tentative backed but the heavy competition might make this a reluctant pass.

Well, wasn’t this a busy month for boardgames on kickstarter and through retail. So here are my latest thoughts on a few boardgame kickstarters that have started up recently:

EPIC AF by AWFUL FANTASY: This game re-implements the awesome Warhammer Quest: Adventure Card Game system. Unfortunately, the theme and artwork is not serious nor cartoony, instead trying to be tongue-in-cheek. I see this struggling to get to the table, similar to Cthulhu Realms. So this will be a pass.

HUMAN INTERFACE: BE A BETTER HUMAN by POSTINDUSTRIAL GAMES:  This is a stand-alone expansion to Human Interface: Nakamura Tower. It offers plastic miniatures and playing out of the box. However, the first game wasn’t anything special compared to Necromunda or similar and the rules and miniature quality were sub-par at best. A hard pass.

RONE (2nd Edition) and RONE EXPANSIONS by STEPAN STEFANOVIK: This seems like an interesting game. It takes the rotating damage idea from Blood Bowl and makes a full fledged Magic-style duel game from it. Unfortunately, the lack of any proper reviews of the first edition means that I am hesitant to pull the trigger on it. It is currently a pass but free shipping and decent reviews could turn it around.

BLOOD AND DUST by MATEUS ALBRICHT: Well, it hasn’t set the world on fire after being launched. But Exiled: Siege was really solid and good (with some poor component choices, though), and this looks like a detailed miniatures game minus the miniatures and on a grid. This looks cool, and I am hoping we get some more armies in there. A proven track record nails it for me. Backed.

METAL DAWN by EVERYTHING EPIC: So this game looks like Dead of Winter but full co-op, progressing characters and a final boss fight. Looks very cool, but the price point seems high (compared to the plethora of miniature games out there). There is also a lack of videos showing this off, which makes me hesitant. At the moment, it is a tentative backed but the heavy competition might make this a reluctant pass.

Well, wasn’t this a busy month for boardgames on kickstarter and through retail. So here are my latest thoughts on a few boardgame kickstarters that have started up recently:

EPIC AF by AWFUL FANTASY: This game re-implements the awesome Warhammer Quest: Adventure Card Game system. Unfortunately, the theme and artwork is not serious nor cartoony, instead trying to be tongue-in-cheek. I see this struggling to get to the table, similar to Cthulhu Realms. So this will be a pass.

HUMAN INTERFACE: BE A BETTER HUMAN by POSTINDUSTRIAL GAMES:  This is a stand-alone expansion to Human Interface: Nakamura Tower. It offers plastic miniatures and playing out of the box. However, the first game wasn’t anything special compared to Necromunda or similar and the rules and miniature quality were sub-par at best. A hard pass.

RONE (2nd Edition) and RONE EXPANSIONS by STEPAN STEFANOVIK: This seems like an interesting game. It takes the rotating damage idea from Blood Bowl and makes a full fledged Magic-style duel game from it. Unfortunately, the lack of any proper reviews of the first edition means that I am hesitant to pull the trigger on it. It is currently a pass but free shipping and decent reviews could turn it around.

BLOOD AND DUST by MATEUS ALBRICHT: Well, it hasn’t set the world on fire after being launched. But Exiled: Siege was really solid and good (with some poor component choices, though), and this looks like a detailed miniatures game minus the miniatures and on a grid. This looks cool, and I am hoping we get some more armies in there. A proven track record nails it for me. Backed.

METAL DAWN by EVERYTHING EPIC: So this game looks like Dead of Winter but full co-op, progressing characters and a final boss fight. Looks very cool, but the price point seems high (compared to the plethora of miniature games out there). There is also a lack of videos showing this off, which makes me hesitant. At the moment, it is a tentative backed but the heavy competition might make this a reluctant pass.

Well, wasn’t this a busy month for boardgames on kickstarter and through retail. So here are my latest thoughts on a few boardgame kickstarters that have started up recently:

EPIC AF by AWFUL FANTASY: This game re-implements the awesome Warhammer Quest: Adventure Card Game system. Unfortunately, the theme and artwork is not serious nor cartoony, instead trying to be tongue-in-cheek. I see this struggling to get to the table, similar to Cthulhu Realms. So this will be a pass.

HUMAN INTERFACE: BE A BETTER HUMAN by POSTINDUSTRIAL GAMES:  This is a stand-alone expansion to Human Interface: Nakamura Tower. It offers plastic miniatures and playing out of the box. However, the first game wasn’t anything special compared to Necromunda or similar and the rules and miniature quality were sub-par at best. A hard pass.

RONE (2nd Edition) and RONE EXPANSIONS by STEPAN STEFANOVIK: This seems like an interesting game. It takes the rotating damage idea from Blood Bowl and makes a full fledged Magic-style duel game from it. Unfortunately, the lack of any proper reviews of the first edition means that I am hesitant to pull the trigger on it. It is currently a pass but free shipping and decent reviews could turn it around.

BLOOD AND DUST by MATEUS ALBRICHT: Well, it hasn’t set the world on fire after being launched. But Exiled: Siege was really solid and good (with some poor component choices, though), and this looks like a detailed miniatures game minus the miniatures and on a grid. This looks cool, and I am hoping we get some more armies in there. A proven track record nails it for me. Backed.

METAL DAWN by EVERYTHING EPIC: So this game looks like Dead of Winter but full co-op, progressing characters and a final boss fight. Looks very cool, but the price point seems high (compared to the plethora of miniature games out there). There is also a lack of videos showing this off, which makes me hesitant. At the moment, it is a tentative backed but the heavy competition might make this a reluctant pass.