(Almost) every Saturday we review all Kickstarter campaigns in the "Games" category ending in the next week. We try to do a write up on anything we find notable here. This is written from the perspective of people looking to buy games and game accessories that offer interesting mechanics or ideas. We prefer heavy strategy games, miniature-heavy games, and games with real-time mechanics as opposed to party games, children's games, or light strategy games.
Sometimes you have to put your money where your mouth is. These are the campaigns we backed in this batch.
I'm just the right age for Fireball Island to have been a major part of my childhood. I had such fond memories of this game from my childhood that after college I bought a copy on eBay (before they cost $400+). As with most games we remember from our childhood, it wasn't quite as fun as I had remembered. Luckily, Restoration games has taken an outdated game and given it updated mechanics so we can all relive the nostalgia of rolling red marbles through a 3D board to knock over opponents.
It's rare that you could call a Roll and Write beautiful, but I think Fleet fits that description. The pads, the dice, and the game box all have this New England fisherman theme.
Like most Roll and Writes, it's got a fantastic price point, coming in at only $19 for the basic edition, and $26 for the deluxe. We definitely wanted the Deluxe on this one because it comes with not only neat pens, but also bonus cards which appear to add a bit to the game.
Street Fighter - FOMO of the Week!
Street Fighter had to get FOMO of the week this week because not only is it Kickstarter-Exclusive, but it's overflowing with really neat pre-painted miniatures. The miniature quality looks very good here, and I don't think anyone complained about the miniatures featured in Jasco's previous game: Mega Man. Unfortunately, almost everyone agreed that Mega Man was not a good game. While the previews for Street Fighter look promising, it's hard to put money behind a company that's produced such underwhelming games in the past, particularly when the lead designer is a first-timer named "Angry Joe" who is popular on YouTube.
I was really on the fence on backing this one, mostly because of the amazing board. This is a one vs many game where one player controls an Alien as they move through and attempt to clear a human ship of life. It has hidden movement and is diceless.
Previously, the designers made a game called Gloom of Kilforth which has a solid 7.7 on BGG. If there was a bit more body horror, I think we would have probably backed. I did add both this and Gloom of Kilforth to my wishlist.
Crypt is a light strategy game where you'll be pushing your luck in an attempt to acquire treasures from the newly-deceased king. We played this on Tabletopia and thought it was just OK. The $9 price point is definitely helping push it very high above its funding goal. The game may scale better with more players, and we might try it out with 6 to see how it plays.
Well, Street Fighter beat out the latest CMON game for FOMO of the week, but that doesn't mean CMON is losing any steps with this campaign. Like the 5(!) Zombicide Kickstarter campaigns before it, the game has found it's audience and raised millions. However, it looks like it is on track to have raised significantly less than its predecessor Zombicide: Green Horde. I guess I'm not the first one to have completely run out of closet space.
This Kickstarter is for a streamlined version of the popular Tom Vasel-designed Nothing Personal game (7.2 BGG, #764 Overall). It's good to see the designer/developers have come back to streamline the game by making the playtime shorter and removing some of the components. This should almost always makes for a better game.
The Kickstarter is quite light on exclusives and stretch goals, and the (admittedly less-desirable) original can be purchased at Cool Stuff for a lower price than this Kickstarter is currently offering the game. This might explain why the game is not doing too well (about $3,500 short of its goal with 6 days left.)
This is a Role Playing Game set in the universe of The Resistance and Coup (popular board games for lots of players.) Since most people are playing those games with 6+ players, an RPG seems like a perfect fit. The RPG itself is by the designers of the popular FATE system. The game itself seems to adopt much of what people like about FATE. You only roll dice to shape how your action turns out (as opposed to deciding if an action passed or failed as in D&D and others.)
This game seems to be leveraging both the faithful FATE players by adding new mechanics to FATE Core, as well as brand new Role Players who like the universe of The Resistance. There isn't a lot of crossover between pen and paper RPGs and party strategy board games, and that's reflected in the mild success of this Kickstarter. Some pretty uneven artwork is probably holding back the game's potential as well.
Most of the D&D-inspired children's books on the market focus on the heroes (most of the time, this is children.) Instead focusing on the monsters is a refreshing take, and the artwork is super-cute.
Knights of Vasteel consistently puts out cards that are high quality and useful as tools in RPGs. This magic item set has a great understated water color aesthetic. It also has a free app so you can check out if you like it before you back.
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*None of the campaigns mentioned here are sponsored or influenced via payment, prize or other means. If we know or have a connection to someone running the campaign, we will mention it in the campaign notes. If there is a campaign you think should be mentioned here, please e-mail us and tell us what makes it special and we'll review!