There’s quite a bit of news to catch up on, but they nearly all pale in comparison to the fact that the Voyages of Marco Polo is finally back in print! This was one of my favorites of last year and I will finally get myself a copy. We have a limited number, so if you want one let us know, cuz when it’s gone, it’ll be another 6-12 months before it’s return.
On par with the return of Marco Polo is the launching of the Hero Realms Kickstarter campaign. This is the fantasy version of Star Realms that everyone wanted a year ago, but with a lot more than Star Realms. In Hero Realms, you can each start with a unique character deck and play competitively, cooperatively, semi-cooperatively, or in campaign mode. This look to be a very cool system, though the price point gets up there if you want the full package. We’ll be picking up prerelease kits from White Wizard, so we’ll have copies to play and buy early. Let us know if you want to get a copy reserved, and at what level, with all the promos and Kickstarter bells and whistles.
We’ve got one notable new release this week, Star Trek Panic. This is a cool take on the popular cooperative game, Castle Panic. This time, baddies are encroaching upon the Enterprise, and as a team the players must fight them off by playing cards to rotate the ship, fire phasers and torpedos, and manage the shields. We’ll get a rental prepped by the end of today!
For those who haven’t heard, the Spiel des Jahres nominees have been announced, check here for the full list. For those who don’t know, this is currently the most prestigious tabletop game award in the world. Codenames made the list of course, along with another of our all staff picks, Karuba. The third nominee, Imhotep, has yet to find its way to our shores, but we’ll get a shot at it later this year. We’ve got them all for rent, except Imhotep of course.
Finally, here’s a round up of some upcoming titles that we’re interested in. the Origins Game fair is in full swing right now too, so
Crash of Games has acquired publication rights to Wolfgang Sentker and Ralf zur Linde’s Finca, which was nominated for Spiel des Jahres in 2009. In Finca, players use their workers to collect fruit, then fulfill orders scattered across the Mallorca countryside.
White Goblin Games is reprinting the base game of Åse and Henrik Berg’s Rattus and expects to have information in mid-2016 about its availability.
The image to the left appeared on a Facebook group page, then was referenced in a Reddit post. I asked Asmodee North America whether Arkham Horror: The Card Game was indeed in the works from Fantasy Flight Games, and social marketing coordinator Cynthia Hornbeck responded as anticipated: “Our official statement is ‘no comment’.”
Dungeons & Dragons: Assault of the Giants.
This design by Andrew Parks is based on the “Storm King’s Thunder” D&D storyline that starts in August 2016, but the board game, which bears a $100 MSRP, won’t be available until Q2 2017. Here’s an overview of the game: “Dungeons & Dragons: Assault of the Giants challenges players to command one of the six types of giants and claim the right to rule over all giantkind. Command giants and assault settlements to score points and secure important resources, including food, treasure, ore, and runes. The game contents include fourteen giants miniatures, measuring from approximately 4″ to over 5½” in height.”
Deus: Egypt, the first expansion the 2014 hit, Deus, is expected to release at Spiel 2016 in October
Happy Gaming everyone!
First off, got another play of Star Wars Rebellion in, and it is still one heck of an amazing game. We’re considering a rental of this beast, anyone interested?
Second, our March of the Ants demo night with designer Tim Eisner of Weird City Games went swell. Thanks to Tim and his brother Ben for hanging out with the Cloud crew. I got two games in with the new expansion and thoroughly enjoyed both. The game really plays different each time, and the expansion materials are great. We’ll be backing a retail package for the base games and expansions, so if anyone wants to back through us, let us know.
Upcoming Special Events
Sol: Last Days of a Star demo night (Wednesday May 25, 6pm): We’ll have another local designer and friend of Cloud Cap showing off his creation this coming game night. Check out his Kickstarter here. He’ll have two demo tables going, and the reviews so far have been immensely positive.
Gamer Garage Sale (Saturday, May 28, 4pm): Staying in town this Memorial weekend? You should, and clean out your closet while you’re at it. Bring in games you want to sell, we’ll set you up with space to sell them. $5 gets you space to sell 10 games, access to the game night afterward, and a $5 Cloud Coin usable towards new-non-discounted items. Please RSVP to reserve a selling spot.
Garage Sale Game Night (Saturday, May 28, 7pm): Hang out after the garage sale to play, or just come to play. Cost is $5 for the game night and a Cloud Coin. If you already paid for the garage sale, no need to pay a second cover.
Have a great weekend everyone!
I’ve got some news tidbits and some pretty sweet events to announce below. But first, Star Wars Rebellion. I finally played it, and I’m gonna call it somewhat of a masterpiece.
This game is a shining example of professional design, with the mechanics perfectly enabling the cinematic epicness that the designer clearly hoped to capture from the fiction. At the shop, whenever we ask customers who’ve played the game what they thought, we know we’re in for a 20 minute foamy mouth excited retelling of the stories that occurred during the game. This lead me to believe that I was in for a game of random card events and dice chucking.
Well, that those elements are surely there, but the game also has rich strategy and tactics, and the design beautifully intertwines the story elements with the tactical elements to become something very special.
Well done, again, Fantasy Flight, and kudos for making this the breakout game for Asmodee’s new ‘Brand Protection Program’ (my term, not theirs). Star Wars Rebellion does not deserve devaluation, play it if you can, and just try not to have epic moments.
Oh, and speaking of brand protection and Asmodee. Think a bit about the Harley Davidson brand. Here’s a company that only allows sales of their products through authorized retailers with no third party selling on Amazon. Does that make HD an evil company out to rip everyone off? Just found the analogy intersting, and perhaps it might be educational for other publishers struggling to mature.
Gamer Garage Sale (Saturday, May 28, 4pm): You know you’ve got some great games that need new homes because they are simply being neglected on your shelf. Let Cloud Cap be your social worker and help find those babies a new home. Actually, all we’re going to do is provide the space, you bring the games, you get the proceeds from your sales. Yep, this is a stupid crazy thing for a retail establishment to do, but who cares, we’re just hoping to get to hang out with y’all. We’ll also be having a game night that night in case you want to pull out some of your new used games.
$5 gets you an area to sell 10 of your games, a sale sheet for pricing, entrance to our Saturday game night and a $5 Cloud Coin (redeemable on any new non-discounted item) Not interested in buying or selling, just want to play games? No problem. $5 gets you a Cloud Coin and entrance to the Garage Sale Game Night, starting at 7pm.
March of the Ants Demo (Wednesday, May 18, 6pm): One of Portland’s own published game designers, Tim Eisner, will be showing up at our strategy game gathering to show off their upcoming expansion to their great game of ant survival, March of the Ants. I’m looking forward to revisiting the underground. Come check it out with me and Tim, and you can visit the Kickstarter campaign page here for more info.
Sol: Last Days of a Star (Wednesday, May 25, 6pm): Oh yeah, another Portland game designer will be in the house to show off his game on kickstarter this month. I have not tried this yet but have heard many great things. The kickstarter campaign is here.
A few new Stronghold game titles have been announced for the Great Designer Series. While you can preorder direct through Stronghold, we are offering our 20% preorder discount on these titles, which will actually be cheaper than going direct, we’ll just be getting it a few days later.
Matthias Cramer‘s Kraftwagen: V6 Edition is an updated version of his 2015 release Kraftwagen from ADC Blackfire Entertainment that now includes a new set of tiles that feature the next technology available at the time, the V6 engine. Kraftwagen: V6 Edition, dubbed title #3 in Stronghold’s “Great Designer Series” is due out in August 2016.
The Fog of War is a two-player grand strategic game covering the European theater of World War II from 1940-1945. One player plays the Axis forces, and the other the Allies.The game doesn’t have units that move around a map; instead the game focuses on the planning and intelligence aspects of the war. Each player has a deck of cards that represent the army, navy, and other assets of their nations. A map shows the 28 land and sea provinces over which the players are battling.
For Alexander Pfister fans, here are some tidbits about his upcoming projects:
My card game “Oh My Goods” really does well, currently I’m working on an expansion on this. In 3 weeks “Broom Service – The card game” will be available. It’s fast and fun and uses the brave/cowardly mechanic from Broom Service. I’m also working on a new expansion for Port Royal. Port Royal became very popular all over the world, I think it’s now available in more than 20 languages. It offers fun and easy rules for players new to our hobby. But also many different characters which makes it interesting for experienced gamers.
And finally, a few more preorders you may want to consider:
Splotter Games Titles: Food Chain Magnate, Great Zimbabwe, Indonesia (Pricing on these titles is a bit weird right now, it looks our retail price on these will be $125, which puts them in your hands for $100 with the preorder discount, but get your requests in soon, should be very limited quantities)
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask. A whole new series!
Hero Realms. What everyone wanted Epic to be (except me) will be hitting kickstarter soon. The boys at White Wizard Games know how to treat their retailers, so we will be backing a sweet retailer package. So you can back the game through us and get invited to the release party, with swag!
Cheers all and happy gaming!
It’s a bit of a slow week for board game news, but still some interesting tidbits to take note of, especially if you want to preorder any of these titles through us (at 20% off of course):
The battle between Winter and Summer continues, with some great sunny days in between some dark soggy ones. It is not time to pack away the board games and bust out the lawn games just yet. Here’s a list of upcoming special events and some gaming news to help make the gloomy days brighter.
International Tabletop Day Saturday, April 30, 1pm-11pm: Wil Wheaton and his crew at Geek & Sundry have designated this Saturday as the day that the whole world should find a table, some chairs, and a bunch of friends to celebrate our wonderful hobby. We’ll be playing games all day at the shop, swing on by to run a game or jump in on one. And yes, we’ll have stuff to give away, but aint nothing gonna stop the gaming!
Dames & Games Saturday, May 7, 7pm, $3: No smelly boys allowed, this is a night for just ladies at the tables. Come join the fun, beer and wine service available.
Game Club Thursdays, 4:30-6:30pm, $10: Got some young minds at home interested in playing some board games? Send ’em on over every Thursday afternoon and we’ll get them thinking and laughing!
Tabletop Season 4 Lineup Announced: Wil Wheaton has announced the game line-up for the fourth season of Tabletop, an online series showing games being played by Wheaton and others. The titles being featured include Eldritch Horror, Codenames, Mysterium, Flash Point, Star Realms, Champions of Midgard, Steam Park, and Star Trek: Five-Year Mission. I’d expect a bit of role-playing in that last one, assuming they use The Next Generation role cards, which seems like a must. Filming begins before the end of April, and Wheaton expects to start publishing episodes in June or July 2016.
Origins Award Nominees: The Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design has announced their nominees for the Origins hobby show awards (see the full list here). These awards are always a bit contentious among the hardcore hobby community because, although they are nominated by a jury, the final votes come from Origins show attendees, a group that can easily be swayed by great promotions on the show floor. Still, there are some great games in the nominee lists, any of your favorites?
MENSA Board Game Awards: The minds of the MENSA society have met, played many games, and voted on their favorites. Again, some fine titles in the list (which is here). New York 1901 is an Origins nominee and now a MENSA winner, and we are ashamed to admit that none of us have tried the game yet. Guess what I’m bringing to the table at the next game night?
Stonemeier Legacy Game Announced: The legacy game format has become crazy popular with its chaining together of successive game sessions into one larger story. Now the popular kickstarter publisher Stonemeier games will be producing their own title. For the most part, legacy games have presented players with extreme situations — global warfare, global pandemics, the dawning of civilization, a shortage of furry costumes — but designer Jamey Stegmaier of Stonemaier Games is taking a different approach with a legacy design of his own, one that isn’t so doomy and gloomy. In Charterstone — which carries a 20-60 min. playing time for 1-6 players — players compete to populate a village, a village that starts off with almost nothing, but which becomes larger, with more options available, in subsequent games. Look for us to be offering kickstarter packages to customers once Stegmeier gives the word!
New Game Announcements: (PS, we offer 20% off preorders of these products, though the discounts on kickstarter titles may vary):
Cheers everyone and happy gaming!
We’re back folks, we survived, and we had a blast. The entire full time staff essentially got a Vegas vacation, with a little ‘work’ thrown in, but the kind of work we do at GAMA hardly feels like work. We have to throw out a huge thank you to our friend Carissa, without her covering the shop not all of us would have made it to Vegas. If there is one advantage to being small, it’s the personal perks we get by being able to engage with all of our customers, and being able to establish long term relationships with many of them.
So what did we see at GAMA? Well there are two sides to the show. I approach the show primarily as a business guy, after all, this stuff is how I keep my heat on and feed my face, and I’ve also got a few people relying on me for paychecks to feed their own faces. Every now and then my inner child pops out, but overall I’m far too serious at these trade shows. Luckily, the rest of the gang helps balance me out. They are able to step much further back from the business than I am, and their passion for the hobby shines just as it would with any tabletop game enthusiast.
So from the hobby passion perspective, we saw and played some great stuff. Star Wars Rebellion was there in all of its epic glory. The miniatures, and they are truly mini, look amazing, but do we really expect anything less from Fantasy Flight at this point? Pandemic Cthulhu was on display, and we can attest to the fact that while it will feel like Pandemic, it will also be very different. Outbreaks now have character, in the form of old ones, each with their own unique way to drive you nuts. Z-Man also had Knit Wit to show off, and we’re all excited to get this very attractive Scattergories-style word game to the table. Tasty Minstrel had a fake Guild of London box on display essentially to say ‘yeah, we’re gonna make it.’ Iello had a handful of new titles, and I enjoyed each that I played, including Sea of Clouds and Happy Pigs. I actually really enjoyed Quadropolis too, by Days of Wonder, and discovered that it is far more into the Five Tribes end of the pool than the Ticket to Ride end. Finally, Onitama was awesome as a highly replayable 2-player abstract game.
So that was our GAMA in a nutshell, excluding all of the extracurricular activities. But really, we’re tame folks, we are still nerds after all. We may be a little more vanilla flavored, but we’re nerds nonetheless! Game on everyone, and stay dry!