There’s changes to venerable names this week, with Mayfair selling up, Uno becoming Dos and Magic the Gathering starting a run on eBay.
Stronghold Games Evolve
Stronghold Games, who were behind Terraforming Mars among other great hits, had their best year ever in 2017 and consequently are evolving. They’ve brought in two new staff members, one a industry veteran in Bill Bricker and one a newcomer (Pauline Milano), moved from their old New Jersey base to one in Florida and debuted a new take on their logo.
The theory is the logo will be just as striking when on many different sizes (such as game boxes).
Mayfair close but live on in Asmodee
Mayfair are gaming royalty, having published Catan among many others. Now, however, their 36-year history is kind of coming to an end, as they’ve followed up their sale of Catan to Asmodee by selling all of themselves to the latter, who will take over their publishing, development and everything else.
Uno will have a sequel called… Dos
There’s been many types of Uno over the years, and they’ve all essentially been called Uno. But as news comes that Uno remains a growing and profitable product, there is also news of a new way to monetise it: by releasing a sequel game called Dos.
The change relates to the gameplay: from one stack in Uno, to two stacks in Dos, and the aim of finishing with two cards. That and plenty of other tweaks that help make this a fully-fledged sequel, even if your scribe did spend a whole afternoon thinking it was a spoof. The release date is March if you live near a Target store, and August when that exclusivity runs out.
Aeon’s End goes legacy
Legacy is all the rage now, and with good reason: it’s great. The latest game to dive into the trend is Aeon’s End, a co-op deck-builder which is turning into the ‘does what it says on the tin’ Aeon’s End: Legacy.
We’re promised the game will be more creative than the name, with players engaged in a series of linked chapters where their magic users grow from rookies to experts (we’re promised half a million combinations of character upgrades) as well as allowing key moments from the campaign to be replayed at will and your team to be (80%) compatible with the earlier game.
A Kickstarter has met its goal, and the ever-hopeful timetable says an October release.
Pickle Rick: The Game and more Deck Building
I’m Rob, your humble scribe, and I have to confess I’ve never seen hit cartoon Rick and Morty so I’m really not sure what I’m talking about here. Apparently, during the series the titular Rick becomes a pickle, Pickle Rick, and now he’s getting his own themed game in Rick and Morty: The Pickle Rick Game.
One player will be the pickle (in a cyber suit), the other will be an assassin called Jaguar and a horde of baddies. You’ll fight with miniatures over a set of tiles which can be turned over. The box will be a pickle; it’s out later this year.
In addition, the deck building game Rick and Morty: Close Rick-Counters of the Rick Kind Deck-Building Game (did you gather there’s a Rick in this show), will be getting a follow-up in Rick and Morty: The Rickshank Rickdemption Deck-Building Game that, among other things, introduces a voting system.
Old Spice waft over an RPG class
Old Spice are still going, but they’re in a bit of a timewarp. Why? They’ve hit on the brilliant PR stunt of creating a character class for RPGs, and in their four page (free) PDF they describe the Gentleman / Gentle Lady who wears smart clothes with an AC of 10, can heal with the smell of their perfumes, and has lots of other special rules for the dapper person, but oddly they use OGL and D&D 3.5 instead of the big selling new edition.
However, the rules seem mainly set-up for Pathfinder, although Pazio have said they aren’t allowed in tournaments. Old Spice is.
Patchwork Express: Here’s Why Express
We’ve now got some information on why the forthcoming Patchwork sequel is called ‘Express’. The original is played on a 9x9 grid, but Express is on a 7x7, with simple shapes and more smaller pieces to fill gaps. The idea is to make it quicker and easier, so this could be the gateway you were looking for.
Munchkin meets Ninja Turtles
Munchkin continues to rival Fluxx in bringing out themed expansions, and the latest one is a kid’s property which has lasted longer than anyone from their original ever thought possible. Yep, Steve Jackson Games and IDW Games are producing a Munchkin Ninja Turtles, and you’ll be playing the turtles themselves.
Fluxx signs up Star Trek
Did we just mention Fluxx? Yes we did, and here they are again with a new licence. Looney Labs are working with Gale Force Nine to produce not just one Star Trek game, but two. Star Trek Fluxx and Star Trek: The Next Generation Fluxx, coming in August 2018, and they’ll deliver the familiar mix of crazy ever changing gameplay.
Magic the Gathering makes two banned cards legal again
In the world of Magic The Gathering, a card called Jace the Mind Sculptor is something of a legend, not least because it’s been banned from Modern and standard matches. However, Magic HQ have now un-banned it for Modern, and they’re allowing a counter card in too, none other than Bloodbraid Elf.
The reasoning is that the makeup of magic decks has changed over the year, and that ‘four mana’ cards are now harder to play and more of a strategic choice than a bulldozer.
From Kittens and Babies to Crabs
The team behind Exploding Kittens and Bears vs Babies are back with a new game, and we mean both designers and Oatmeal artist Matthew Inman. This time they’ve created a kid friendly game by redesigning the card game Kemp, and then torpedoed the kiddy friendly part by calling it You’ve Got Crabs.
You play in teams. Each team picks a secret signal, and then everyone comes together to try and create sets of cards. To win a point you have to achieve the set and secretly signal well enough for a partner to shout out You’ve Got Crabs. If the opponents realise what you’re doing you lose a point.
The game appeared for sale without any fanfare, and there’s only a limited run of first edition sets. There’s also an expansion with crab claw gloves and we are not making that up.