Aug 022013
 

Before we get too deep into the actual brand new gaming, a quick shout out to some long out of print games who reappeared on shelves today!

First up, the desperately sought Ghost Stories:  White Moon expansion combines two formerly released, and long out of print expansion, into one redesigned box.  Both of them alter the game experience slightly, by adding an extra task for the monks, that being the protection and saving of villagers.

Planet Steam also receives a make-over this week, along with a price drop.  Now contained within a concise square box, this version of Planet Steam still delivers the same steampunk resource management experience, with players competing to build dirigibles, overtake territory, and collect resources.

Since we’re already talking about steampunky stuff, why not continue with the new Kings of Air and Steam?

Structured similarly to Wings of War and the Star Wars X-Wing miniature game, Kings of Air and Steam has players controlling giant steam-powered ships by placing four movement cards per turn.  Each card is revealed one at a time, interspersed with actions, until all of them have been flipped.  However, the plot thickens as an added element of resource management spices up the miniature battle gameplay.

The recently released hit, Village, receives its first expansion this weekend in Village:  Inn.  Literally expanding the village, this addition provides two new buildings, the brewery and the titular inn.  The brewery, not shockingly, produces a beer craft, while the inn allows players to meet other residents of the town (in the form of cards).  Life is always more interesting with a couple friends and a couple beers!

More Munchkin is never a bad thing, especially when it comes to organizing the game better.

Munchkin Level Playing Field is another Munchkin accessory, allowing players to more easily track their character’s levels with a unique tracking board and specially colored male/female tokens.  As will all Steve Jackson expansion, this addition also includes four entirely original cards to be added to the base game.  Also, absent from last week’s post, but totally on the shelves, is the Munchkin Dragons booster pack expansion.

What if John Wilkes Booth simply stole Lincoln’s stovepipe hat instead of shooting him through it?

The successfully Kickstarted Pixel Lincoln deck building game sets out to answer that very question.  The simple answer is that Lincoln will follow him through the farthest reaches of time in order to get it back!  Players collect cards to enhance their decks, all so that they can restore the space time continuum.  Four score and seven years ago, Lincoln got pixelated!

The pulpy adventuring of the Spirit of the Century RPG system now bombard the world of board gaming!  Race to Adventure:  The Spirit of the Century Exploration Game (possibly the most concisely descriptive title I’ve ever seen) is exactly what it sounds like:  a race across the globe facilitated by wacky pulp-influenced devices.  Along the way, players also collect unique artifacts and equipment in every country they land in.  Get to the end before you’re vaporized by a coal powered ray gun.

Finally, the first deluxe expansion for the mega-popular Netrunner redux has shipped.

Creation and Control includes 165 new cards, nearly thirty of which are entirely faction neutral, able to influence and enhance any deck.

Don’t let those fat cat bureaucrats at Haas-Bioroid win!

Mar 162013
 

I reckon with the first book under discussion being none other than Constantine #1, a rather fine rogue of a gentleman, if I do say, there’s a wee amount of deception bound to occur.

A’right, me fingers are crossed, no lying.

Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes, the present writers of the phenomenal Justice League Dark series, bring their lead character, John Constantine, into his own ongoing series.  Supported by the vivid pencils of Renato Guedes, Constantine sets out on a quest across the mystic underbelly of the DC Universe to hunt down an artifact capable of such destruction…you may actually be rooting against Constantine to get his deceitful hands on it.

Trust me, love, you don’t want to miss it.

Steve Niles returns to his long on hiatus fan-favorite title, Mystery Society, this Wednesday.  The Mystery Society Special 2013 is an oversized, one-off adventure featuring the cast of the previous Mystery Society miniseries, Anastasia and Nick Mystery.  This time venturing to the depths of the ocean, these resilient investigators of the paranormal run across a collector of ancient memorabilia who may not be carrying a full deck.  Crazy, is what I’m saying, he’s crazy for cocopuffs!  Classic, pulpy adventure in a modern day package, the Mystery Society Special 2013 should be in your collection on new comic day.

Speaking of pulpy, it doesn’t get much more so than this week’s Five Ghosts: The Haunting of Fabian Grey.  I mean, that title alone should tell you something.  Fabian Grey is a notable treasure hunter, much like a certain fedora wearing, whip carrying hero of the silver screen, who was long ago bonded with the ghosts of five literary heroes (including Sherlock Holmes, Merlin, Robin Hood, and more).  Now, he may call upon their abilities during his expeditions…as long as they’re willing to lend them to him.  Honestly, they cause more trouble than it’s worth.  But that means enjoyable reading for you, so pick up a copy of #1 because it’s better than a cockpit full of snakes.

Picking up where last year’s hugely popular and extremely well-adapted Avatar the Last Airbender:  The Promise miniseries left off, this year’s The Search begins this week.  This time, the story sets out to answer the long awaited question of: “What happened to Zuko’s mother?”  With Aang, Katara, Toph, and Sokka at his side, Zuko leaves on a journey to find his mom and the answers she carries.  The only caveat is that Azula, Zuko’s loony sister, is the key to finding their mother.  Yeah, things are not likely to go well.  For fans of the Avatar series who wished there was more, these comics are like lost episodes of the series, written just as well, drawn in the exact same style, and full of the same blend of serious drama and goofy comedy.

Sep 172011
 

Like Doctor Jones says, “Fortune and glory, kid.  Fortune and glory”.

I understand that some of my segues can be quite the stretch, but the Indiana Jones reference here is rather apt.  That is because Fortune and Glory is a pulpy game set in the 1930′s revolving around treasure hunters, gangsters, lounge singers, and femme fatales globe trotting in search of…wait for it…fortune and/or glory.  Just like in Last Night on Earth (from the same company), players choose specific characters, all with their own unique abilities, with which to travel around the massive world map the game comes with battling baddies and collecting treasures.  Listen to Indy and take a peak at Fortune and Glory.

Grab some gear, become a legend.  You can accomplish both of these tasks for the world of Shadowrun by picking up this week’s new hardcover releases of Runner’s Black Book and Street Legends.  Both editions help to flesh out the deep, dark, dank world of Shadowrun in separate but equally grimy ways.  First up, the Runner’s Black Book is all about hardware. Hardware like the new Kriss X Submachine Gun and the TPP light pistol.  Plus it reprints and collects vehicle and weaponry information from previous releases like Deadly Waves, Gun Heaven, MilSpec Tech, This Old Drone, and Unfriendly Skies.  Second would be the mythical tome that is Street Legends.  Detailing the stats, back stories, and adventures of various famous runners, vampire hunters, and shadowy figures of the universe, Street Legends is the perfect way for a game master to expand their story.

Turn the gears, pump the valves, and steady the blimp ’cause Airship Pirates is off the starboard bow.  Steampunk lovers out there take notice because Airship Pirates is the new roleplaying game from Cubicle 7 (makers of such dandy RPGs as Doctor Who and The One Ring) set in a futuristic Victorian world where blimpships hover over the putrid clockwork cities below.  Based off of steampunk band Abney Park’s lyrics, this initial book in the Airship universe gives players and GMs, alike, all the information they need to be able to create a campaign, characters, and obstacles for a successful night of highskies adventure.

Continuing on the RPG bandwagon (What would that look like, by the way?  Lots of Mountain Dew I’m assuming.), the original master of the medium, Dungeons & Dragons, releases both a new supplement and a new adventure this week.  Both begin with M, coincidentally.  Anyway, Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium (please don’t make me type that again) is up first with numerous items of various magical, mystical, and monetary value.  Intelligent dungeon masters can use this book and the item-based story suggestions within to create a riveting quest for their players.  Next is Madness at Darmore Abbey, which is an adventure intended for 6th to 8th level characters.  Set in a former monastery that has now become a monstery, this adventure will challenge players as they face off against some of the worst creatures lurking in the dark. This box set includes every bit and piece players will need to run the adventure.

What’s that?  You didn’t get enough pulpy goodness with the first game?  Well, okay, we’re at your service.  In that effort, here’s the new expansion/standalone edition of The Adventurers, The Pyramid of Horus.  Also filled with all kinds of Indiana Jones homages, this threequel to the original Adventurers game from Fantasy Flight is set in a new local peppered with equally deadly traps and treasures.  Each person involved selects one of eight character options then begins searching through the pyramid amidst sharp, squirming, and striking dangers for artifacts.  Whoever makes it out with their head still attached to their shoulders wins.  Oh, and if the regular non-painted miniatures included with the game are not vivid enough for you, a separate set of pre-painted minis was released along with the game.  Buy a hat, a whip, and Sean Connery and you are good to go.

Okay, enough with this pulp stuff.  Let’s get into some dark, spookiness.  GURPS delivers on that front with a new flavor of setting in Horror.  If you’re looking to run a campaign outside of the normal fantasy setting, these hardcover editions are the perfect solution.  Horror, specifically, supplies tips and suggestions for both game masters and players on not just how to run a horror-themed game, but also the genre, in general.  Countless character archtypes sit alongside stats for hordes of nasty creatures (including everyone’s favorite, evil clowns).  Two campaign outlines are also included in the book to give another helping hand on getting going.

That H.P. Lovecraft guy certainly gets around, doesn’t he?  Another in the long line of Arkham Horror products, Elder Sign is a new spin on the classic explore-the-creature-infested-mansion structure.  Instead of using miniatures and a map, gamers play with a combination of dice and cards to gain courage and skill points that allow them to purchase objects, eventually shooting for the titled elder sign so that they can close off the Great One’s entrance into this world.  Special dice are also rolled to determine the obstacles and adventures that will unfold during the course of the game.  As the game serves one to eight participants, those who love Arkham Horror, but grow tired of the set-up phase, might find this a quicker, less part-heavy version of the game.

To wrap things up tonight, Bears!.  That’s all, thanks.

Okay, maybe a little more.  Bears! is a new entry in the growing trend of easy to learn, easier to play dice games, such as Zombie Dice, Martian Dice, and Cthulhu Dice.  Not surprisingly, maybe, these are not Yogi-and-Boo-Boo-type bears.  These are gnaw-on-your-fleshy-bits bears.  A dice pairing game at heart, players select which point nabbing strategy to explore:  shoot the bears or sleep through the attack.  Using a hand of five dice, everyone pairs their own rolled dice with a ones piled in the center of the table.  Certain combinations are worth different point values, but don’t worry, those are all outlined on a handy dandy reference chart.  That’s the game.  Heeeey, Boo Boo!