Thursday, July 26, 2018

Eye on Kickstarter #48

Welcome to my Eye on Kickstarter series!  This series will highlight Kickstarter campaigns I am following that have recently launched (or I've recently discovered) because they have caught my interest.  Usually they'll catch my interest because they look like great games that I have either backed or would like to back (unfortunately budget doesn't allow me to back everything I'd like to).  But occasionally the campaigns caught my attention for other reasons.  Twice a month, on the 2nd and 4th Fridays, I'll make a new post in this series, highlighting the campaigns that have caught my attention since the last post.  In each post I'll highlight one campaign that has really grabbed my attention, followed by other campaigns I've backed or am interested in.  I'll also include links to any reviews I've done.  Comments are welcome, as are suggestions for new campaigns to check out!

You can also see my full Kickstarter Profile to see what I've backed or my old Eye on Kickstarter page that was too unwieldy to maintain.  Also, check out the 2018 Kickstarter Boardgame Projects geeklist over on Board Game Geek for a list of all the tabletop games of the year.
So, without further ado, here are the projects I'm currently watching as of the fourth Friday of July, 2018:

Live Campaigns from Past Eyes:
Rurik: Dawn of Kiev

Rurik: Dawn of Kiev
  • GJJ Games Backed
  • I usually don't feature a game two Eyes in a row, but occasionally a game I featured previously still has my full attention, even more than the newest launches. If it's a game I'm really excited about anod nothing else has usurped it, I'll feature it again. Such is the case with Rurik: Dawn of Kiev. There have been other interesting games launched on Kickstarter in the past two weeks, but none that have me quite as excited as Rurik. I playtested Rurik several times over the past 9 months and am thrilled with how it turned out. And you know what? It keeps getting better! The game has blown past funded and has been knocking out stretch goal after stretch goal. There are now 8 leaders and minis, a ton of component upgrades, and more! Plus, Piecekeeper Games listened to feedback and worked to find a more cost effective shipping solution for international backers. So if you live outside the US and were dissuaded from backing because of shipping, take another look. Or, if you're a fan of highly thematic blends of Euro and American style games, like Scythe, Blood Rage, Kemet, etc. then be sure to take a good look at this. I truly believe Rurik will be on a bunch of top 10 lists next year when it's released! Check out the last Eye on Kickstarter to see what I said about it then, too.

Rurik: Dawn of Kiev is a euro-style realm building game featuring area control, resource management, and a new mechanic - "auction programming."

Establish your legacy by constructing buildings and performing great deeds or pursue your own agenda by ruling large areas of land and collecting tribute. Will you win over the hearts of the people to become the next Grand Prince or Princess of Kiev?

Rurik brings to life the ancient culture of Kievan Rus - the precursor to both Russia and Ukraine - with game design by Russian game designer Stanislav Kordonskiy and illustrations by Ukrainian artist Yaroslav Radeckyi.

Auction Programming. The gameplay in Rurik revolves around a central strategy board. Openly bid for actions with your advisors in this novel “auction programming” mechanic. Higher numbered advisors earn greater benefits, but lower numbered advisors resolve their actions sooner.

  • Do you like games like Pictionary, but can't draw? Well, in Bilder you use wooden blocks in all sorts of interesting shapes to build a scene, item, etc. for the other players to guess. It looks like an interesting twist on an otherwise fairly played out style of game. You don't see that very often.

Atlantis: Island of Gods
  • When I was in high school I did a research paper on the myth and legend of Atlantis. That sparked quite an interest in the fabled lost continent and even now, over 20 years later, I find myself fascinated by anything Atlantean. This game takes the mythology, twists it a bit, and creates a new story for the island, and packages it all into an interesting looking game.

Tiny Trees
  • Every so often a game comes along that's pretty simple, but looks incredible in three dimensions. Tiny Trees looks like a gorgeous, three dimensional cousin of Kodama.

Call to Adventure
  • I'll be honest, it's the box cover that caught my attention here. The split artwork is incredibly eye catching. In Call to Adventure you get to build your character based on experiences and decisions that you'll make throughout the game. Will your character become a hero? Or will you walt the patch of evil and treachery? The decision is yours in this intriguing game.

Era of Kingdoms
  • At first I was about to write this off as another deck-building Dominion clone, but then I looked closer. There's a lot more going on in this game than just deck-building. You have to build up your kingdom, upgrade locations, and manage resources. The game does quite a few interesting things in a fairly simple, quick playing package.

Knights of Glory
  • So often bluffing games are either too simple or just not interesting. I was about to pass by Knights of Glory when I decided to take a closer look and watch the preview video from Brody at Everything Board Games. I'm glad I did because I found a very interesting blend of bluffing and press-your-luck. In Knights of Glory each player is a knight trying to earn a place in the king's guard. To do so they must survive the dungeon. The mechanics blend hand management, press-your-luck, and bluffing into a quick playing, fun little game.

  • Now this is an absolutely gorgeous game. The handmade wooden pieces are absolutely stunning. However, without a gameplay video, rulebook, reviews, or any other 'requirements' of a modern Kickstarter campaign, I can't recommend backing this. There are a few other red flags, too, like a promise of November delivery when there's only one person doing the manufacturing in his personal workshop. So oggle the beautiful pieces, but I say pass on backing this one for now.

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