Posted Friday, 5-Aug-2016
Gen Con is here! Here are the games we think you should check out at the biggest four days in gaming.
Contributed by Calvin Wong
Designed by Kevin Wilson and Eric Lang (Descent, Blood Rage), Arcane Academy is set in the Finding Gossamyr universe, where math is the language of magic.
2 to 4 players take on the role of student wizards trying desperately to complete their exams by laying tiles to create ever more powerful combinations of magical items and spells. A fast-playing, gorgeous all-ages appropriate game.
Watch the trailer:
Based on the hit video game, Bloodborne is a risk management card game set in the Chalice Dungeons beneath the fallen city of Yharnam.
3 to 5 players must co-operatively take on terrible monsters in order to collect their blood – but as the fighting grows more intense, players can fall back from combat, saving their spoils and improving their character – potentially leaving the others to die.
Watch the designer Eric Lang talk about the game:
Corporate espionage, resource management, and steampunk combat – Brass Empire is a card driven game of rival ccompanies trying to accrue the most valuable resources in the world.
1 to 5 players take on the role of fantastical corporations such as Windcraft Enterprises, McGlynn Clockwerk, The Omni-Edo Corp and Harlem Electric. Send your employees to do your bidding – build structures, buy units and send them into combat for territory and resources.
Check out the official overview video of Brass Empire:
It’s Codenames… with Pictures.
The massive best-selling party game of word-guessing goes language independent with 280 whimsical and weird cards. The grid is smaller and the challenge is made visual rather than purely linguistic – fans of the original should definitely check this out.
One of the most hotly anticipated titles of the year, Cry Havoc is a strategy board game in the vein of Nexus Ops or Chaos in the Old World, but with a science fiction twist.
Four unique factions fight over an alien planet and its resources. From the native Trog to the alien Pilgrims, the four sides have wildly different playstyles and components unique to each faction. The game features diceless combat, cards with multiple uses, and a deck building/hand management system to keep each play fresh and unpredictable.
Check out the official hype trailer:
This deck building game set in the Harry Potter universe promises quick, family-friendly play. Take on the role of Harry, Ron, Hermione and Neville, each with their own personal deck of cards, and fight off the Dark Arts.
Hogwarts Battle comes with 7 games representing the 7 years of the character’s stay in Hogwarts (well, technically 6, but…) so there should be plenty of variety to keep fans going.
Designed by Martin Wallace (A Few Acres of Snow, A Study in Emerald) this kitschy zombie game is set in the heyday of retro Americana, where 1 to 4 players drive down Route 66 in search of the best route to avoid the hordes and pick up enough supplies to win.
Through a series of auctions, players compete to get the best routes, scavenge the most gas, and stay alive long enough to make it through.
Watch the official trailer:
Designed and illustrated by the multi-talented Ryan Laukat and set in the same universe as Above & Below, Islebound is a worker placement game of exploration, plunder, monsters, and island conquest.
2 to 4 players seek to build up their capital city, whether through battle, diplomacy, or trade – and recruit pirates and sea monsters to their cause. Draft cards and out-maneuver your rivals to be crowned the winner.
Watch Ryan Laukat talking about the game below:
The game of Cthulhu-ian horror and investigation receives a brand new app-driven update. Designed by Nikki Valens (Eldritch Horror), Mansions of Madness Second Edition is fully compatible with your copy of First Edition through a conversion kit which allows you to import your maps, monsters, and investigators.
The game is now fully co-operative, without the need for a Keeper player, and the app (available on all major platforms, including PC and MacOS) allows infinite generation of scenarios, mysteries, and monsters for the game.
The official trailer follows:
From the designer of Risk: Legacy and Pandemic: Legacy Rob Daviau, Seafall is his first standalone title to feature his Legacy mechanic – where players must make permanent choices which forever alter their copy of the game.
3 to 5 players guide their seafaring civilizations through voyages of exploration and colonization, but they may permanently lose characters, be forced to destroy components, and open sealed packages that reveal new ways to play the game. Exploration, settlement, trading and conflict on the high seas: Seafall is going to be one of the most talked-about games of the next few years.
Check out one of the teaser trailers for the game:
The Star Trek board game Trekkies have been waiting for.
Exploration, expansion, conflict – these are the voyages you must undergo. Play as the Federation, the Romulans, or the Klingons as they explore the galaxy, expand their territory, construct starbases, establish warp routes – and so much more.
Featuring a dynamic board, rich graphic design and over 200 plastic miniatures, Ascendancy looks like a real winner.
Tavern brawl! From the Engelstein family, designers of Space Cadets and Survive: Space Attack! comes a fun, frantic fantasy game about heroic adventurers fighting over a magical drink.
This 2 to 8 player game features 3D terrain that characters will try to throw at each other – but as you try to fight in this chaotic brawl, your enemies may have already moved out of the way! Simultaneous cardplay and careful management of time are required to ensure that things go your way.
Watch the Engelsteins talk about the game here:
A cave-crawling game for 1 to 5 players where players can be the heroic knight, the powerful dragon, the sneaky goblins – or the cave itself. (There’s also a thief)
This highly asymmetric game puts a spin on the traditional dungeon crawl by making the game play extremely differently depending on which role you select – the knight is trying to slay the dragon, the goblins are trying to kill her, the dragon simply wants to escape, and the cave is trying to kill everyone.
Watch Man Vs Meeple explain this ‘genre-defining’ game:
Vast: The Crystal Caverns will be available for pre-order soon.
Published by BoardGamePrices.com
Can we fit all the photos we took at Spiel into this article? No. But we’ll sure try! Here’s your last look at the last day of the biggest board games show in the world.
The tiredness starts to take hold; but we press on toward Day 3! We’ve got dice! We’ve got minis! We’ve got mechs! It’s Spiel!