Nov 082014
 

EvolutionIt’s survival of the fittest in North Star GamesEvolution.

During the set-up phase, players draw random cards that will decide what sort of creature they will play.  Each turn sequence involves phases where food resources are laid out then devoured.  Those players who did not receive any food go extinct.  Players can choose to control carnivores or herbivores, however, so some players may end up being food themselves.Bang Heroes of the Storm

Your favorite characters from the various Blizzard video game properties have invaded the board game with Bang!: Heroes of the Storm!  The popular deception mechanics of Bang!, where players take on secretive roles, each with their own purpose, combine with characters from Yugioh The New ChallengersWorld of Warcraft, Diablo, and StarCraft.

Hot on the heels of Duelist Alliance, the Yu-gi-oh CCG receives its second set in its ninth consecutive series, The New Challengers.  The New Challengers consists of eighty new cards, including six ultra rares, ten super rares, twenty rares, fifty-four commons.  Booster packs for the set are on shelves now!Hypberborea

A  new spin on the civilization game, Hyperborea, from Asmodee, sends players into a newly discovered realm of myth and magic.  The goal of the game is to construct your own kingdom using various colored cubes, each representing different resources.  Where Asmodee has changed the dynamic up is with how players receive the cubes.  Each turn, players dig into a bag and pull out three Car Wars Steve Jacksonrandom cubes.

Steve Jackson‘s classic car versus car game has been reprinted this weekend in a new, updated version.  Car Wars basically allows players to live out the Road Warrior or Death Race 2000 by constructing their own dystopic roadsters and beating the crap out of each other.  Two to eight players construct their cars from the components included in the game, then battle for thirty minutes to decide the victor!Knightmare Chess

Steve Jackson‘s second rerelease this weekend is the updated version of Knightmare Chess.  Essentially, a variation of chess played with cards, Knightmare Chess does require a foreknowledge of chess to play.  However, those familiar with chess will love how the game is changed-up with the inclusion of cards.  During, after, or before turns players are allowed to Castles of the Mad King Ludwigplay cards from the set, with some drastically altering the move capabilities of pieces.

The Castles of Mad King Ludwig are renowned for their extravagance and grandeur, and now you have to surpass them all.  In Castles of Mad King Ludwig, players attempt to construct the most elaborate castle possible one room (one tile) at a time.  A single player takes the role of the Master Builder, who gets to decide the cost of each room tile, while the other players attempt to purchase the best option.  However, the Master Builder can only use the leftover tiles.  Walled City Londonderry and Borderlands

Walled City:  Londonerry and Borderlands finds players building a city from the ground up.  Divided into two separate rounds of gameplay, Walled City begins with a round of laying streets tiles, which separate the game board into sections.  Players then populate the sections with citizens.  During round two, walls are constructed and guarded by watchmen meeples.  Whoever has the most populated section reigns victorious.  And for more replay value, the game includes two Koryo card gameentirely different maps.

Set in a steampunk universe, Koryŏ, from Asmodee Games, is an easy to learn and expedient card game for two to four players.  Lasting only eight turns, has players laying down cards each turn, but only from a particular political family.  Each family is comprised of a certain number of cards, which can be utilized for powerful abilities and victory points.

The Doctor Who Roleplaying Game has regenerated again!Sixth Doctor Sourcebook Doctor Who

Out this weekend, the Sixth Doctor Sourcebook contains the same great materials as each of the previous volumes.  Providing the materials necessary for game masters to run a game involving the Sixth Doctor,  his companions, and enemies, the sourcebook has detailed outlines of every episode starring the Sixth Doctor, each playable as an adventure.  As well, stats are provided for key characters, monsters, and Commander Decks 2014companions, along with setting details.

Another set of five Commander Decks have been released for Magic the Gathering.

These Commander Decks are each structured around the five mana colors (black, red, white, green, blue), but include a new variant for the popular format.  Only included in these decks are special Planeswalker cards that can be used as Commanders, a possibility that was previously illegal.  As per usual, these decks contain 100 cards for a deck that is playable in the EDH/Commander format.

May 312014
 

Confederacy Union Pocket BattlesPocket Battles gets historical with Confederacy vs. Union, the newest addition to the Pocket Battles franchise!  A portable, tile-based wargame, Pocket Battles sees players lying down tiles that represent their armies, here being Union and Confederacy forces,  into three columns and two rows.  Units can be redistributed as you play and order is controlled by tokens.Ascension Theme Packs

The Ascension deck-building game, which is designed by former Magic the Gathering pro players, barrows from Munchkin‘s playbook by releasing a set of four theme packs.  These include the Leprechaun, the Rat King, Samael Claus, and the Rat Queen.  Each pack can be added to any of the base Ascension games, providing an extra, themed mechanic to Munchkin Apocalypse 2 Sheep Impactthe regular game.

Steve Jackson takes you back to the dystopic future with Munchkin Apocalypse 2:  Sheep Impact!

This 106 card expansion adds weapons like Patriot Axe and Ketchup Gas, but also make sure to avoid too much conflict with Disaster! Velocirapture! or The Thawed Reich.Zombie Dice 3 School Buss

Wake, time for school, little zombie!

Zombie Dice gains a third expansion this week with School Bus!  This expansion adds a twelve sided dice that represents a school bus full of brain-filled children.  But be careful because some My Little Pony Canterlot Nights booster boxsides have both brains and shotguns as well as the possibility of being run over by the bus.

Bronies unite!

The My Little Pony trading card game, which has become a huge success since its release, has expanded with its second set, Canterlot Nights!  This set adds 204 new cards to the CCG game.Magic the Gathering Modern Event Deck

Following in the footsteps of the Magic the Gathering Event Decks, the Modern format gains its own Event Deck, one which contains over a hundred dollars worth of cards.  Among the cards that are included in this ready-to-play, pre-built deck are Elspeth, Knight Errant, Sword of Feast and Star Wars Knowledge and Defense Force PackFamine, and Inquisition of Kozilek.

Another Star Wars LCG Force Pack has jumped out of lightspeed to appear on the Pulp Fiction shelves this weekend.  Knowledge and Defense includes sixty new cards Mummy's Mask Shifting Sands Pathfinder Adventure Pathto be incorporated into the base game, ten of which are entirely new objective sets.

Among the new Pathfinder supplement books out this weekend, the three major releases include the Shifting Sands expansion to the Mummy’s Mask adventure path, The Harrow Handbook player Viking Boardgamecompanion, and the Occult Mysteries Campaign Setting.

Not entirely new, Vikings is finally back in print after many years of out-of-print limbo.  This creative game has players purchasing meeples and resources with each other, but based on a fluctuating price system determined by a rotating wheel.Firefly board game Pirates and Bounty Hunters

The Firefly board game gets shinier with its second expansion, Pirates and Bounty Hunters.  Missions are included within this expansion that allow players to board other ships and steal cargo and crew for rewards.  New playable characters include Jubal Early from “Objects in Space” and Sash from “Out of Gas”.

Apr 262014
 

Krosmaster ArenaKrosmaster:  Arena is where miniature gaming, CCGs, and MMORPGs meet!

Award nominated and based off of the hit DOFUS and WAKFU MMORPG universes, Arena is a head-to-head battle game facilitated by miniatures and cards.  Each unique anime-esque miniature possesses their own unique powers and abilities, so players can form a balanced team of fighting, magic, and other power sets.  After your team is assembled, you face off in the special board game arena against your opponent.  All figures also come with special redemption codes for the online game.Rogue Agent board game

Cyberpunk adventure is the name of the game in Rogue Agent.

A multi-scenario resource and risk management game, Rogue Agent drops players into a futuristic cyberpunk society, pitting them against secretive networks of criminals.  Players gather resources, upgrade abilities, and take down evil opponents.  Featuring custom dice, miniature figures, and multiple Hive Pillbug expansionscenarios of gameplay, Rogue Agent is a beautifully designed, lengthy gaming experience.
Hive continues to grow its menagerie of bugs with the newest Pillbug expansion.
The Pillbug can move a single space each turn, but also can swap out its movement in order to move an adjacent (unstacked) piece up to two spaces.  If a piece is moved by the Pillbug, Go game keeper boardit can not move on its next turn.
Finally back in stock, Pulp once again has wooden Go, Chinese Chess, and Shogi boards!  Each of these boards are reasonably priced versions of the classic design, ready for new or old players.
Hirelings The AscentThe equivalent of red shirts in the world of fantasy world, Hirelings:  The Ascent is a quick, easy to learn, two to six player game of reverse dungeon crawling.  Players take control of Hirelings who have accompanied fearless adventures on their journey into the dungeon of the local foul dragon.  Now that those adventurers have died, the Hirelings must escape the dungeon before the dragon can catch up with them.Voluspa board game
An updated version of KachinaVöluspá places players in the middle of the Norse legend of godly combat and deception.  A tile laying game, Völuspá requires players to place tiles that represent the various Norse gods, each with their own ability, in a race to control the tiles of opponents.  The dominance of each godly faction differs each time the game is played, Professor Pugnacious' Portfolio of Perils Pugilism and Perfidyhowever, resulting in a unique gaming experience with each outing.
In Professor Pugnacious’ Portfolio of Perils, Pugilism, and Perfidy, players take on the role of the professor’s many students, each vying for his respect.  A deck-building game that pits Steampunk students against creatures of Gothic horror, Professor Pugnacious Professor Pugnacious' Portfolio of Perils Pugilism and Perfidychanges up the deck building dynamic by allowing each player access to only a portion of the card pool throughout the game.
The long-awaited expansion to Belfort is out this weekend and is appropriately named Belfort:  The Expansion Expansion.  This mini add-on includes creates individual scoring paths for each player to expand previously constructed buildings as well as assistant characters that possess Disc Duelersspecial ability or the option to acquire a permit.  New guilds are also included.
From the creators of Pixel Tactics, Disc Duelers, a three to five player dexterity game of disc battle, and 7 Card Slugfest, a three to eight player card battle game where each player only receives seven action cards, are both back in stock as of this weekend.Star Wars Age of Rebellion Beginner Game
Like the Edge of the Empire RPG Beginner Box, the new companion Age of Rebellion Beginner Game from Fantasy Flight is the perfect introductory point for new players.  This Star Wars RPG system is set during the post-rebellion against the Empire timeline, dropping players into the combat of galactic war.  This box set includes pre-generated character sheets, adventure options, dice, tokens, maps, and rules booklets, all easily accessible for new players.
Jan 032014
 

BEST.  PLAYMAT.  EVER!

Hot on the hooves of the My Little Pony CCG boosters and starter decks, comes matching playmats featuring Pinkie Pie in a scene from the season two episode with Discord.

And if you’re tired of your playmat flopping around in your bag or getting cheesy stains on it when your bag of chips rips open while you travel, then the new Ultra Pro Playmat Tube is here to rescue you.  A thick plastic tube, this casing will keep your playmat clean and secure even if you play Magic in a live volcano.

Not a brand new game, but new to the store is Monopoly Millionaire Deal card game.

If you’re tired of playing overlong games of economic warfare in the traditional version of Monopoly, then Millionaire Deal is for you.  Fast paced and converted for easy travel, this card game version of the popular original has players gathering money through card collection.

Historical gamers take note of the Expedition:  Northwest Passage board game out this week.

Players man sailing barges circa 1845 as they explore and chart the board in search of the Northwest Passage.  Seasons will change, causing parts of the map to close off as they freeze over, requiring that players carefully chart their progress in an attempt to collect victory points.

From popular game designer, Reiner Knizia, comes a new resource management game of Utopian architecture, Prosperity.  A game of metropolitan construction, Prosperity pits players against each other in a tile laying/resource management competition where they pull tiles from a chronologically organized pile that they then apply to their own miniature playing board.  Each tile has distinct markings for capital, energy, ecology, prosperity, and research that must be managed.

A new location, but the same popular family-friendly mechanics return in Carcassonne South Seas.

Unlike the original game, however, players lay their meeples on thin tracks of land, oceans, and dock planks.  As well, their is an added component where players collect bananas, shellfish, and fish which they then ship to other players for points.

The successful Power Grid series of board games gains a new map collection this weekend with Australia and the Indian Subcontinent.

Each board adds another element to the game.  Australia‘s board does not have a centrally connected power grid, so players may choose to connect different sources for a connection cost, while also adding a mining element unseen in previous versions.  India‘s board suffers from frequent outages when players extend their networks too fast, but also provides a more limited resource market for players to buy from, adding a layer of difficulty.

Galaxy Trucker expands its fleet with Latest Models, a board expansion for two to five players, each with new Model C ships.  Each board features ships in classes 1C to 4C, denoted by coloration and possessing various different beneficial abilities.

Finally, for all of the Legend of the Five Rings fanatics out there looking to get their buddies in on the game there is A Matter of Honor.  This two player starter features Lion and Crab decks as well as all of the materials to learn and play your own head-to-head battle.  Players may also incorporate other cards from other, previous sets.

Dec 212012
 

It’s not quite to midnight yet (as I start writing this), but I’m calling it in favor of us all outlasting the Mayan apocalypse.  If you didn’t get enough of the end-of-the-world conspiracy theory, then Tzolk’in:  The Mayan Calendar is here to supply you with more.  The oft talked about Mayan calendar plays into the mechanics of the game, as players carefully place their Mayan Meeples onto interlocking gears which rotate around the board, moving the pieces to different action zones.  To accomplish placement and conduct other key actions, players must spend corn, ultimately attempting to please the gods or constructing underground temples.  So, until the next apocalypse myth comes along, make mine Tzolk’in.

Is the force strong with you?

Or have you given into the dark side?

Either way, you’ve got a side to play in the new two-player Star Wars LCG card game from Fantasy Flight.  Set-up like many of their other popular LCGs (but with more X-Wings and stuff), Star Wars has players choosing sides in a head-to-head battle for galactic domination.  Players then balance objective decks (containing mission cards) and player decks (containing character and equipment cards) in order to complete their assigned tasks.  As with Magic the Gathering or most other CCG-style games, players place/play their cards into the center of the table in order to activate them.  Of course, the real question of the game will be, who shot first?

I’m going bet that many who read this have fantasized about manning a starship at one time in their life.  Be careful what you wish for, however.  Space Cadets fulfills that wish by assigning each player an important role on the bridge of a freshly minted starship.  This cooperative game for three to six players enlists a captain, helmsman, engineer, and weapons, shield, and sensor officers.  Each member of the crew has a specific  task to complete in order for the entire team to win, so make sure you staff your bridge wisely, or else it’ll be your final frontier.

Bad guys need friends, too.  Eclipse:  Rise of the Ancients is the first expansion for the epic space battle game, Eclipse, introduces tons of ancient adversaries which can assist all the baddies from the original game.  Along with these foes, the expansion also includes original rare technologies, developments, alliances, ancient homeworlds, and warp portals.  Three brand new player boards also offer four new alien races to choose from.  And with the game’s modular design, all or some of these additions can mixed in with the contents of the base game, completely at your discretion.