Awards Season brings about a Time Traveling Coven

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Camels in Istanbul dominate competition

The big news to come out of the board gaming world this week was the official announcement of the Spiel des Jahres and Kennerspiel des Jahres awards for 2014. After months of speculation and debate the judges laid it all to rest with their announcement Monday. In what some may deem as a surprise “upset,” Camel Up managed to spit on favorite, Splendor, and take the Spiel des Jahres.

As for the Kennerspiel des Jahres, Istanbul managed to walk away from the hotly contested field and claim the crown. I personally own all of the Kennerspiel nominees, but sadly have not had a chance to get them to the table yet. The announcement at least helped me decide which game I will push to the table first.

For more details on the nominees and other honorable mentions, check out the Spiel des Jahres website.

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The Dice Tower Has Spoken

The Dice Tower also handed it out its coveted awards this past week after much deliberation and voting. The winners are as follows:

Tom Knows Best

This week, Arcane Wonders announced their new line of games, The Dice Tower Essentials. The Essentials line will contain games that board game high overlord, Tom Vasel, believes are essential to any gamer’s library.  I typically find myself disagreeing with Tom on a number of game reviews so I’m not sure how much appeal this line of games will have for me.  Also, in order for a game to be “essential” in my collection I would assume that it is a tried and true classic or a reboot of a classic. In November 2013, Dice Tower published Tom and Eric’s Top 10 Essential Games. I don’t foresee any of these being published by Arcane Wonders in the future so I am curious to know what titles they have lined up for this product line. That being said, I am very intrigued by the first game to hit shelves in the Essentials line, Sheriff of Nottingham.  This reboot of the classic Robin Hood, which we spoke about in a previous Boardcast News, is described on BoardGameGeek as follows:

Players, in the role of merchants, see this as an opportunity to make quick profits by selling goods in the bustling city during the Prince’s visit. However, players must first get their goods through the city gate, which is under the watch of the Sheriff of Nottingham. Should you play it safe with legal goods and make a profit, or risk it all by sneaking in illicit goods? Be mindful, though, as the Sheriff always has his eyes out for liars and tricksters and if he catches one, he very well may confiscate those goods for himself!

Stay tuned for more Dice Tower Essentials in the near future and keep an eye out for Sheriff of Nottingham, hitting your FLGS in October 2014.

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Donald X Marks the Spot in the future

Donald X. Vaccarino and Rio Grande Games have teamed up again to bring you Temporum, a time traveling romp through history. Players will assume the role of time-travelers manipulating history as they see fit in order create a perfect world in which they can rule. BoardGameGeek describes the game play as follows:

In Temporum, the board shows the possible paths history can take and the actual path it currently takes. On your turn, you can change history, travel through time, and visit a point in history. You draw cards, play some of them for money and abilities, and score some of them to advance your power through history. Having more power in a time period gives you abilities, but your goal is to have all of your power in the last time period, the time from which you come.

Temporum will be available in 2014, with a Gen Con release being rumored. For more details on the game check out Rio Grande Games website.

A Non-COVEN-tional Game

Publisher 8th Summit has announced that Paul Saxberg’s Coven will be released in 2015. Coven, the 2012 FallCon Gaming Society Canadian Game Design of the Year Award,  features a unique twist on hidden alignment games in that both the players and the NPC’s are assigned a hidden alignment. In order to win, players will have to do more than decipher these alignments; they will have to use this knowledge to dominate both their opposition, as well as their own alignment.

As described by the 8th Summit’s Press Release:

The board features an interlocking (and rotating) pentagram that rotates bonuses, penalties and the “spin action” that match to the 25 actions in the outer ring.   Players circle the outer ring casting spells,  collecting resources and trying to figure out who best to trust and who best to Hex.   The gameplay is deceptively simple:  your game could start with four players against one player (alignment, that is)  in a five player game!  Does that seem fair?  You can make a determination yourself later this year, and you might be surprised.

Coven will include five hand sculpted miniatures of the player witches –  Fire, Spirit,  Air, Water, and Earth.   Also included are artifacts, spells,  alignment tokens,  a Goddess board that also contains The Cauldron.  We are right now working on the addition of story mechanics to the game for those who desire more of a thematic experience with ambiance.  You decide.    There are other goodies inside the box, but we can’t tell you everything.The board itself may hold a secret, and I’m not talking about the rotating pentagram.

8th Summit plans to Kickstart Coven in the Fall of 2014 with a projected 2015 release. Stay tuned for more details as they become available.

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Dungeon Fight the Elements

Fantasy Flight Games announced the first 2 expansions for Dungeon Fighter; Fire At Will and The Big WaveDungeon Fighter is a dexterity-based, cooperative board game where the number rolled on the die is just as important as where the dice landed on the board. In the expansions Fire At Will and The Big Wave, designed by Aureliano Buonfino, Lorenzo Silva, and Lorenzo Tucci Sorrentino, players will will have to use their heroic abilities to withstand the elements

As described in the Fantasy Flight Games announcement:

In each expansion, a new dungeon sheet transforms the dungeon into a different location filled with new perils. Fire at Will finds the heroes deep within in a cavern beneath the fire mountains. There dwells a horde of scorching (and scorched) monsters, including the Bullrog – a flame-throwing, fire-breathing minotaur who is not one bit interested in letting the heroes escape. Thankfully a new heroine, Melissa, The Fire Sorceress, joins the party. Her expertise in fire magic will prove useful to any group of heroes battling their way through the flames.

Fancy a refreshing day at the beach? The Big Wave sends the heroes on an adventure through a clammy seaside cave near a noxious swamp. The fearless pirate Jack Parrot (and his little bird, too!) will stand alongside you as you combat various monsters from the vasty deep. Awaiting you near the dungeon’s exit is the ocean’s most dreaded creature of all, The Great Cthulhu, who seeks to wrap you in his tentacles and drag you beneath the surface.

There are a total of 4 elemental expansions planned for Dungeon Fighter. The third has already been teased and looks to revolve around Wind as the next element. Look for Fire At Will and The Big Wave to hit your local FLGS in the near future.

Run for Cover

And last but certainly not least, Android: Netrunner fans this week rejoiced with the announcement of official Fantasy Flight Games Art Sleeves for the game. I am not quite sure what took them so long to produce these seeing, as its by far their hottest LCG, but nevertheless they are coming soon. Each pack will contain 50 sleeves in one of 6 game-art designs: Pop-Up, Deep Red, Snare, Wotan, Inside Job and Posted Bounty.

Remember to practice safe card play and always wear a sleeve.

 

 

 

 

Until next time, stay class and keep your game(s) tight!

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Dan H. (Nad)

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF/PODCAST CO-HOST : Allow myself, to introduce myself. Boardgaming since the womb, I have an unsound infatuation with buying, playing, discussing, photographing, and writing about boardgames. As a boardgame aesthetics enthusiast (say that 5 times fast) you'll typically find that I spend a large majority of the game examining the design, art, and components. I prefer strategic eurogames but will play just about anything these days (except Arkham Horror). And I love Pearl Jam.