Last week, Kickstarter was the focus of the news. This week it's all about expansions and new releases, with Bunny Kingdom heading to the sky and KeyForge making its return.
Bunny Kingdom takes to the Sky
Bunny Kingdom, released in 2017 by Iello, is a card drafting, area control game where players draft cards to place bunnies, resources and buildings on a board. Players are trying to create groups of bunnies, or Fiefs, to gain the most influence. The first expansion has just been announced and the bunnies are taking to the skies in Bunny Kingdom: In the Sky.
In this expansion there is a new Sky board where players can link their fiefs on the main board to fiefs in the sky. There are also new level five buildings, the carrothedral (see what they did there), new resources and pieces for a fifth player, along with some new mechanisms. The expansion is due to hit retail sometime in April 2019, the exact date has not been announced but with a game about bunnies and a particular holiday happening in April I think we can all guess when it might be available.
KeyForge is Back
Despite being out for less than a year, KeyForge is getting a second starter set and decks. KeyForge: Call of the Archons was the first set of decks released and employs some amazing production technology that ensures that every deck is totally unique. Each deck comes pre-constructed and can be played straight of the packet.
KeyForge: Age of Ascension is not an expansion as such but is a new set of decks. It introduces a load of new cards to the KeyForge card pool, more new cards than the original set, meaning the unique deck combinations are now in the billions upon billions. Age of Ascension is fully compatible with Call of the Archons and can be purchased and played even if you don't own the original set.
The new set of cards have new features, abilities and keywords such as Alpha (abilities played as the first action), Omega (abilities played as the last action) and Deploy (allow players to place creatures anywhere in the battle line). The new sets of cards are due to hit retail in the second quarter of 2019. For all KeyForge fans I am sure this is something that is going to be very exciting and opens up the possible deck combinations even further.
Ignorance is Bliss
Stonemaier Games are probably better known for Scythe, Viticulture and more recently Wingspan. One of their early games, Euphoria: Build a Better Dystopia, is a worker placement game where players lead a team of workers and recruits to claim ownership of the dystopian world by manipulating three factions. Each worker (represented by a die) has a certain intelligence based on its pip value, the higher the number the better the action. Players will generate commodities, construct markets, claim artefacts, strengthen allegiances and try to fulfil secret goals and agendas. Players can also dig tunnels to infiltrate other areas for control.
Euphoria is now six years old and is getting an expansion: Ignorance is Bliss. This expansion adds more content to the base game. There are more recruit cards and market tiles as alternatives to the base game cards and tiles. The expansion also adds a single player mode to the game, but it can also be included with two players to represent the interaction at a higher player count. There are also some tweaks to the rules, a “New Antiques Bazaar” board and some new components. No release date has been announced yet.
Crime Doesn’t Pay
Chronicles of Crime, from Lucy Duck Games, was a huge success in 2018 and has ranked very highly on a lot of people's top ten lists for the year. It is a co-operative game where players take on the role of a detective trying to solve a crime. The unique thing about Chronicles is the app that allows you to Scan&Play. Every location, character and item has a QR code that is scanned with a smartphone which when scanned will trigger a different clue or snippet of story. There is also a VR aspect to the game where, with optional VR glasses, players can immerse themselves in the crime scene to search for clues.
The base game comes with five scenarios and is getting an expansion in April of this year. Welcome to Redview has players investigating strange occurrences in the town of Redview. This expansion is more friendly family with players taking on the role of six kids investigating the strange events, rather than a detective investigating murders. Welcome to Redview is due to be released in March 2019.
Rooting Around the Forest
Root was one of the big hits of 2018. It is an asymmetric war game where players control a band of creatures vying for control and dominance. It offers truly unique asymmetric gameplay with each faction having different end goals, gameplay strategies. The third addition to the series, The Underworld Expansion, adds two new factions (The Crows and the Moles) offering even more replay-ability to the base game. The expansion also comes with a double-sided map, one with a skirmish on the edge of lake and the other with a double-sided mountain. This new map sits alongside the current map in the base game.
If that was not enough, the expansion also adds a brand-new deck of cards which can replace the original deck that is used to perform actions, craft items and apply ongoing effects. The new deck seems to be very different and offers more player interactions and unique ways of mincing up the gameplay.
The new expansion is due to hit Kickstarter on March 14, 2019 and will hopefully include the opportunity for people to grab the base game alongside the expansions. It is rumoured that the campaign might also include a new bigger box to hold all the base content as well as the first and second expansions.
Gamewright have announced their line up of games for 2019 and probably the game that will generate the most online chatter is Sushi Roll. This is a dice based version of Sushi Go which was designed by Phil Walker-Harding.
Sushi Go is one of the most accessible card drafting, set collection games that people play. It is still going strong today and I personally have introduced this to a wide range of people and played it with non-gamers and gamers alike. Sushi Roll is a set to release in Q2 of this year.
WizKids' 2019 Announcement
WizKids have announced some new titles to be released this year. The first is Nemo Rising: Robur the Conqueror. Nemo Rising is a one to four player co-operative game following the adventures of Captain Nemo and the crew of the Nautilus, as per the novels by C. Courtney Joyner. Players will take on the role of one of the four main protagonists, Captain Nemo, Sara Duncanm, Adam Fulmer or Ulysses S. Grant. Players will explore new worlds, overcome obstacles and complete missions. The game comes with two scenarios, Undersea Grotto and City in the Sky. Nemo Rising is due out in June 2019.
Sovereign's Chain is a two to four player strategic cutthroat card game. Not a lot is known about this yet, but it looks like it involves playing cards on either your own chains or your opponents' and activating abilities immediately (if played face-up) or later (if played face-down). The cards come in two suits, stars and planets, and the player which has the highest difference in points between the two suits when a chain reaches seven cards is the winner. There is also a deck of event cards which mix up the gameplay in unique and different ways.
Palm Trees is a small box game of 78 cards containing fronds and coconuts. Each card has a different rule in how it can be held in your hand such as between your thumb and pinky, using your palm and index finger only and can't touch other cards, plus many more. Players are trying to grow the best palm tree in their hand by following these rules. Sounds like a light fun entertaining party game for two to six players and is due to be released in June 2019.
New Milestone for BGG
BoardGameGeek (BGG) has just reached two million users. For those that might not be aware, BGG is the biggest source of news, reviews, opinions and information for all things board game related. It is a one stop shop for most of your board game news and it is free.
The number of users has doubled since February 2015, when it announced it had just reached the milestone of one million users. Almost four years later another one million users have joined. Perhaps this massive increase in users reflects the popularity of the hobby and more people playing games and joining the hobby, which is never a bad thing right?