Kickstarter Spotlight | Feb. 5

February 6, 2014
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Welcome to the weekly roundup of all things wild, interesting, or simply weird in the realms of Kickstarter. The focus of this column will generally be tabletop games, with the occasional foray off into digital games and comics, or anything else that is exceptionally noteworthy!

Draco-Magi

by Robert Burke

LoNG_KS_Badge_01A veteran of six other successful Kickstarter projects (most of which I’ll admit I’ve never heard of!), Robert Burke brings us a two-player strategic card game of draconian domination. Fighting over varied Battlefields, you deploy your Dragons in an attempt to overpower the opponent and claim the buried gems. The first to collect either three identical, three unique, or four of any sort is entitled as the Draco Magi and the winner.

While the artwork on the dragon cards is well detailed and polished, the admittedly Beta rules feel as if they could use several additional editing passes. Already doubling their goal of 15k, this project has a rather modest buy-in of only $15 for the base game, and is estimated to come out in September 2014.


Lagoon: Land of Druids

by David Chott

LoNG_KS_Badge_01Lagoon: Land Of Druids is a game of exploration in a magical world, with circles of Druids attempting to influence the three basic types of magical energy that permeates the land of Lagoon. Supporting 2-4 players (the designer notes that 4 players is a ‘team’ variant of the game), a play-through should take 60 minutes or less.

Exploration allows you to flip over and add a new tile to the map; those tiles representing a new font of magical energy, each belonging to one of the three base types of Spirit, Heart, and Mind, and also allowing use of a special power unique to that tile. The world is still in flux, however, and tiles may just as easily be Unraveled and their energies claimed for yourself, if the balance is in your favour.

One thing I must say is that the art style is delightful and something I would certainly love to see in a larger format! Currently funded above the 20k goal, this project has an estimated delivery date of August 2014.


Tortuga

by Queen Games

Yet another Kickstarter offering by the established Queen Games, Tortuga is a quick-playing (30min!) game for 2-4 players in which you, a dastardly swashbuckling pirate, attempt to store your ill-gotten goods in the haven of Tortuga before your rivals manage to relieve you of them.

Gameplay revolves around simultaneous planning, where each player rolls the dice available to them and commits at least one of the resulting resources to their board for the round. Treasure (Dig, me hearties!), Crew to carry the treasure, Cannons to attack ships, Sabres to attack crew on the land, or Ships to transport the treasure to Tortuga.

For additional insight into the how the game proceeds from there (IE: Now what do I do with all of these dice?), I would suggest watching the instructional video linked from the project page.


Scoville

by Tasty Minstrel Games

Tasty Minstrel Games (… they were forced to eat Robin’s minstrels; and there was much rejoicing.) has another set of irons in the fire with their latest offering, Scoville, by designer Ed Marriott. Planting pecks of prestigious peppers, your job is to grow, crossbreed, and harvest the hottest peppers to sate the desires of the increasingly demanding townsfolk. Making this job harder, you must share the fields with up to 3 (5, if the stretch goals are reached) additional competing farmers!
With two weeks left to go, Scoville is sitting at about 85% of the needed 40k goal, and has a projected delivery date, if successful, of November, 2014.


Chaosmos

by Mirror Box Games

I will admit that I was quite surprised when I first read the description of this project from the newcomer Mirror Box Games, it reminded me so strongly of a game that I had seen previously that I reached out to the developer for confirmation. Indeed, he readily admitted that the concept of the game came from an old William Sleator novel by the name of Interstellar Pig.

A game of deceit, planning, and out-maneuvering your opponents, the objective of this game is to control one particular artifact, the Ovoid, at the end of the allotted time. The upside of this? Your race gets to survive the coming galactic conflagration, while everyone else gets left in the dust. Each player represents a unique alien race with their own powers and restrictions, and build up a powerful hand of cards by visiting and exploring the various planets in search of the Ovoid. Of course, holding on to that particular artifact may be just as dangerous as searching for it, so tucking it into a well-defended vault or even hiding it in plain sight may well be the order of the day.


Fief – France 1429

by Uwe Eickert

LoNG_KS_Badge_01Fief – France 1429 is an upgraded reimplementation of the original french-language Fief by Philippe Mouchebeuf, supported by Uwe Eickert. A game of dynastic ambition for 3-6 players, Fief pits the players together as various Lords and Ladies of France in the Middle Ages, vying with each other and the church for political power.

Currently sitting at over 10x of their original $20k funding goal, this project has broken all of their currently announced stretch goals, including better quality components, and a whole host of expansion material that will now be a part of the base pledge. This project is also being made available in four different languages, English, Spanish, German, and the original French.


Games of Art

by Gryphon and Eagle Games

From Gryphon and Eagle Games comes this project, involving a new ‘Rucksack’ version of Fantastiqa, a ‘Petite’ version of Pastiche, and Sid Sackson’s Games of Art. Also being made available are Cubist and Rocco, which provide a smorgasbord of art styles and game types for your perusal. Reading between the lines, all of these titles are reprints of currently available games, with Fantastiqa and Pastiche being slimmed down, losing both the main playing board as well as a number of game pieces in the process.

Currently halfway to their goal of 20k, this project still has nearly four weeks to run, and has an estimated date of June 2014.

Smee

SENIOR EDITOR : Refined gamer, collector, consummate geek. Hoarder of miniatures, reluctant painter. My tastes run towards the strategic side of the fence, with city / civilization / empire builders at the focus. I've moved away from direct-conflict games these days, unless they're two-player or one versus many, so one can properly admire the beatdown put upon the opposing side. Yes, I've been known to wear hats with fuzzy ears on them.