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News Round Up: Vampires, Stephen King, Other Stranger Things

Vampire The Masquerade Heritage News

Some blasts from the horror past this week as Vampire: The Masquerade goes Legacy, Tales From The Loop gets deadly and Stephen King haunts Betrayal.

Vampire: The Masquerade: The Legacy

One of the great mysteries of gaming is why venerable RPG Vampire: The Masquerade wasn’t huge during the Twilight led vampire resurgence. With vampires on the cultural decline a Fifth Edition of the RPG is out this year, and we’ve got news of a new entry into the ‘World of Darkness’: Vampire: The Masquerade: Heritage.

It’s a legacy system spanning 700 years of history, as you game through a series of episodes which take you from 1306 to 1990. You don’t just influence the course of your own clan and historical events, as characters you meet can be turned into vampires via two sided cards and encountered in later eras. Play time seems short at 20–40 minutes a game, but we don’t know how many games are in a campaign and different scenarios appear as a result of your actions. Speaking of long time periods, the release is targeted for autumn 2019 after a Kickstarter campaign.

Guild Ball Launches App

Guild Ball players have previously used cards for the stats and points of their characters, but Steamforged have announced this will all be moved into a new app. As well as having a timer and reference material, the app will allow players to build Season Four teams using the latest points value while allowing those points to be tweaked instantly by the developers. Furthermore, all the older cards will soon be loaded into the system. Physical ones will then be obsolete. The app is the Guild Ball Manager, and it’s available for iOS and Android.

Betrayal At House on the Hill was almost Stephen King Branded

Stephen King is one of the most popular modern horror writers, and he almost had his name on a game that’s done well enough without him. Legacy king Rob Daviau has been talking to Tabletop Gaming Magazine, and they came to the period when Rob worked on Betrayal at House on the Hill:

“At my time at Hasbro, when I was working [Betrayal], there was pretty serious discussion for about six or nine months that they were going to get Stephen King to come on and be like 'Stephen King Presents: Betrayal at House on the Hill'.”

Alas it didn’t happen, and the horror in the game was changed to the one we know today.

Tales From the Loop gets Expansion that can Kill You

Tales From The Loop won many plaudits for its mixture of 80's set science horror, and now it’s getting the inevitable expansion. This time, however, you can die in it. So, you’re once again in a world influenced by striking artwork of Sweden’s Simon Stålenhag, but this time you’re in the 1990s, a place affected by both the aftermath of the Loop and the changing role of Sweden in the world.

The tone is more mature, characters from the Loop can have grown up into characters from ‘Things From The Flood’ - as it’s known - and you’ll have a chance to back it on Kickstarter later this month.

Ghosts of the Moor

Tasty Minstrel have a new one from Michael Kiesling and Wolfgang Kramer, and the cover art suggests a charming game suitable for younger fans… of ghosts. You play a team of treasure hunters trying to escape a cursed… well Moor, although imagine a swamp, and you have to play tiles to avoid ghosts, walk across planks and find the hidden goodies. It’ll appear at Essen 18.

DLP doing an Essen Triple Header

DLP Games are bringing three interesting properties to Essen. The first is an expansion for Altiplano called The Traveler (sic), and you’re not the titular character. Instead you can trade with them, and this extra wrinkle allows for both long term planning and spontaneous reactions.

Next up is Valparaíso, which is themed around the Chilean port of the same name. You’re once again competing to grow your stake in a city, but the twist is you programme actions and everyone’s run together. While you can change what you’re doing mid turn there are penalties. Furthermore, an advanced version can be played with a timer…

The third game is Manitoba, in which you’re competing to be the chieftain of the Cree tribe of Native Americans. This isn’t just an economic or territory game as there’s a large element of spiritual competition too. It has already caused considerable controversy for it’s… let’s just say unusual representation of the Cree.

Last Chance for Yggdrasil

Ludonaute is reacting to demand by releasing a “last time” reissue of Yggdrasil. There’s going to be a print run of 1000, with the first sold at Essen and the rest sold through the Board Game Geek store. The new batch contains the extra ‘Trance’ rules, but not the bits from the Asgard expansion.

The Table is Lava

Do you have a table? Yes, yes you probably do if you’re reading this, so why not make your table from Lava? That’s the mental image of new game The Table is Lava which sees you "Toss cards onto the table to save your meeples, while trying to knock other players' pieces into the lava at the same time. Have the most survivors, and you win!" One for the end of an evening perhaps.

Dungeon Mayhem

Wizards of the Coast are thinning down Magic the Gathering and turning the combat of D&D more card based in Dungeon Mayhem, which seems to occupy a party based middle ground. The game sees you playing a fantasy character and using a deck of class themed cards to fight your opponents, by playing weapon or magical attacks, blocking and more. It’s a 15-minute a round affair with cartoon artwork, with a release of November 2018 planned.