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News Round Up: Big Boxes, Sprouts and Paradox comes to the Table

Big Box News - Agticola All Creatures Big and Small

The industry is trying new things this week, with Paradox turning their video games into physical ones and Games Workshop creating a bespoke children’s line.

Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small gets a modest Big Box

Good news for fans of farming games: Agricola’s two-player spin-off, All Creatures Big and Small, is being reprinted. Furthermore, the new package will include both the expansions (More Buildings Big and Small and Even More Buildings Big and Small) and some fancier Meeples, because we all love them. It’s being branded as the Big Box Edition, but reports say it’s really the same size as Barenpark so not really big… but still a great product if you’re new to it.

Azul gets a Huge Big Box

The rumour has been going round for a while and here we go: Azul’s promo giant version proved so successful you can now pre-order a commercial release. It’s the Azul you know and love but everything is 200% the size, and cardboard sheets have been replaced with neoprene mats.

We assume the first player token isn’t cardboard this time either, and the whole thing comes in a glorious carry case. The downside is the several hundred pound cost, but this is a luxurious collector’s item. If Next Move Games get 500 pre-orders by June 22, it will happen.

Games Workshop Announce Children’s Book Series

Games Workshop’s (GW) two main worlds have always been dark places filled with things best avoided by children, but there have been attempts to translate Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 to them before in comics and such like. Now GW and Black Library have announced the Warhammer Adventures series which will turn both those IPs into books for eight to 12-year-olds.

If this sounds like GW looked at how Star Wars is doing and jumped in you might be right, because the first two books (Age of Sigmar’s Realm Quest: The City of Lifestone, 40k’s Warped Galaxies: Attack of the Necron) are by people who have written children’s books for that universe. The release date is 2019.

Lost Cities: Rivals Increases the Player Count

Classic two-player game Lost Cities is getting a spin off called Rivals, and it brings two new things to the table. Firstly, you can play it with four people, so well done everyone with gaming groups, and secondly; auctions. Yes, the familiar Lost Cities card mechanics are in play, but now there’s a bidding element just to really get those four players peeved with each other. Cost is a little over a tenner, which is superb.

Paradox Interactive to turn its PC Games into Board Games

Paradox Interactive make some big, deep video games, such as Hearts of Iron and Europa Universalis. You don’t quite get to the point of choosing the rivets on your tanks, but close. Now, however, Paradox is turning these properties into board games, albeit much shorter games than the month spanning digital ones.

The medieval simulation Crusader Kings is already on Kickstarter. Designed by Free League (who did Tales from the Loop), it’s playable in two to three hours, the sort of time frame only possible on the PC if you die.

Cities: Skylines is being turned into a one hour game by Nations designer Rustan Håkansson, while Hearts of Iron is being lined up by Eahle-Gryphon for a Kickstarter next year and Europa Universalis, which was a board game before it inspired the video one, will come too.

Star Wars: Legion Announce Boba Fett

If your Star Wars: Legion battles were missing bounty hunters then strap in, Boba Fett is coming to the line. He’s getting his own expansion pack and introduces the new ‘operative’ rule, which attaches the aforementioned operatives to commanders, i.e. the reason why a lone wolf like Boba is running around in a huge battle.

You can also now buy the Empire’s Scout Troopers, if for some reason you’ve got enough Storm and Snow Troopers.

Betrayal at House on the Hill is being Pimped

Wizkids have announced an upgrade kit for Betrayal at House on the Hill. You won’t need this if you’re satisfied with the original components, but a lot of people weren’t so this offers snazzy player stat trackers, dice and new art.

Axis and Allies and Zombies: You can’t Play the Zombies

WOTC / Avalon Hill have announced more details for their ‘this is actually happening’ Axis and Allies and Zombies, and there must be a mistake because it says here you can’t play the Zeds. The player sides are USA, UK, USSR, Germany and Japan, and every battle you win will cause fresh corpses for the zombie hordes you also have to face.

The game is released October 26, 2018, and home brewed zombie player rules will hit BGG 10 seconds later.

Leading designer creates Choose Your Own Legacy novel

Corey Konieczka has a lot of hits under his belt, from Star Wars: Rebellion to Mansions of Madness. Now he’s releasing something he’s worked on for years and it makes your scribe’s heart sing: an interactive novel. It sounds part 'Choose Your Own Adventure', part interactive puzzle and part legacy game, as you’ll be writing in and physically altering the book as you solve seventy puzzles and craft your story.

Or as he puts it:

“This book will not be complete until you write in it… When you reach the end of this journey, your book will be unlike any other copy in the entire universe. Your unique thoughts and quirks will be forever captured in the pages, and anyone who reads your book will immediately connect with your creative spirit.”

As you can imagine, there won’t be a digital version and it will start as Print on Demand and might develop from there. The initial story involves a student, a riddle in a will and treasure.

Herbaceous Sprouts come to Kickstarter

Herbaceous was a hit on Kickstarter thanks to beautiful artwork and card-based mechanics, and now the sequel is going to the platform. It turns the herb growing game into a dice experience, continues with the rich, garden theme and art, but does itself no favours by using the Christmas Dinner food everyone loves to hate: it’s called Herbaceous Sprouts.

It’s a 30 minute filler, has a solo mode and at time of writing has doubled its goal. Okay, we take it back, people like sprouts.