Friday, September 27, 2019

Eye on Kickstarter #74

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 related reviews or interviews 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 2019 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 September, 2019:

Seven Bridges
by Puzzling Pixel Games
  • People Behind the Meeples Interview
  • Roll & Write games seem to be all the rage lately, and they've been pretty awesome. Seven Bridges takes the classic mathematical conundrum that was resolved by Leonhard Euler in the 18th century. It features cool antique map style play sheets and some interesting gameplay mechanics.

SEVEN BRIDGES is a “roll-and-write” dice drafting game in which you will explore the historic city of Königsberg, coloring in the streets you have seen on your map. Points are earned by visiting different parts of the city, but the various ways of earning them are only unlocked by crossing the city’s seven bridges. The player who tallies the most points at the end of five rounds wins!

SEVEN BRIDGES stands out from other roll-and-write games because it includes a map of a real-world city created by a professional cartographer! The elements of the game have been creatively superimposed as a red overprint layer, a technique once used to update or re-purpose outdated maps.

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner
by 25th Century Games
  • This looks like a super fun, fast family filler game. (Lots of effs there!) It's press-your-luck with some fun art and clever use of dice that's a great filler or great for the family to play.

The Isofarian Guard
by Sky Kingdom Games
  • People Behind the Meeples Interview
  • This is a stand-alone game in the same universe as the Stonebound Saga. It features the same level of amazing artwork and very interesting story driven gameplay in a sandbox world for one or two players. This game makes use of a very clever combination of board game, soundtrack, character driven audio stories, and an optional app. It really seems to be pushing the boundaries of the kind of immersive experience you can have with tabletop games.

Camp Pinetop
by Talon Strike Studios
  • As a Cubmaster and someone very involved in Scouts, this looks like a fun little game with a theme that really speaks to me. I really like the clever parodies of Scouting life and the gameplay looks pretty solid, too.

Ruins of Mars
by Atheris Entertainment
  • I haven't played many rondel based games, but combine that with an awesome theme of exploring ancient ruins of a bygone civilization on Mars and you have my attention!

Sovereign Skies
by Deep Water Games
  • Here's another sci-fi based game that uses a worker-movement mechanic with a rondel. Move your ship around the planetary system to build bases, recruit alien senators, and occupy planets in a unique area control game.

Saints and Scoundrels
by GCRS Games
  • Saints and Scoundrels looks like a fun game, but what caught my attention is that it will be manufactured in the United States by The Game Crafter. The Game Crafter is known for being an excellent source for print-on-demand games and high quality prototypes, but in the past games that tried to use The Game Crafter as their main manufacturer definitely felt like more expensive, lower quality games than those manufactured in China. But here we are, a few years later, and The Game Crafter's quality has continued to improve while overseas manufacturing has continued to get more expensive (especially shipping and tariffs), plus production times are super slow in China, taking a year or more most times. Heck, just shipping games overseas adds a month or more to the fulfillment time. I can attest that The Game Crafter's component and card quality, box quality, and print quality have all improved drastically in the past couple of years. Will that improved quality, plus much faster turnaround times, bring The Game Crafter to the forefront of new US based manufacturers? Gray Gnome Games had success a few months ago with their crowd sale for Iron Helm, and now Gary Chavez is testing them out with this campaign. I think it's going to be interesting to see how well TGC produced games can compete with China produced games, and I hope they're successful!

Barbarians: The Invasion - 2nd Edition
by Tabula Games
  • This was on Kickstarter about 2.5 years ago and I was oggeling it back then. Now it's back with a ton of updates to make the game look and play even better. I really wish y budget could handle it this time!

POWERUP 4.0 - Smartphone Controlled Paper Airplane
  • Well, here I go sharing a campaign that's not a game again. But how cool is this? It's a smartphone driven flight system for a paper airplane! This has to be one of the coolest gadgets I've ever seen on Kickstarter. You can fly just about anything with this awesome little gizmo!

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