Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Uncharted Boardgame

Street Date June 8th!
Moved up from original June 23rd Street Date. Good for solitaire play too.

Uncharted Board Game
$ 29.99 SRP

Dive into a world where mysteries are waiting to be solved, the past waiting to be uncovered, and the competition pursuing you at every turn. Should you push farther into the ruins to find the treasure, or should you deal with the pursuers at your back? Will you find the key to eternal life, endless riches, or will the pages of history close on you? The mysteries of the past unlock in the Uncharted Board Game, where you and up to 3 other friends compete to find treasure, defeat the competition, and ultimately succeed where others before you have failed. Will you fall victim to a trap set hundreds of years ago, or hold the power to shape the world itself? The choice is yours, but one misstep could spell the end of your adventuring career… permanently. Remember, among thieves and adventurers alike, there are no rules. Game contents: •Game manual and 190 cards •Game board •Tokens

Monday, April 23, 2012

Lupin the 3rd Boardgame

This looks pretty cool:

Lupin The Third
$60.00 SRP
$ 33.75 NPI

Lupin The Third brings the characters of the decades-old manga series Lupin III, created by Kazuhiko Kato, to the game board, with players taking the role of one of five characters from the series, each represented by a colorful miniature:
• The unpredictable gentleman thief Lupin
• His inseparable friend with the unerring aim, Jigen
• The taciturn master swordsman Goemon Ishikawa XIII
• The charming and mischievous Fujiko Mine, Lupin's love interest
• The stubborn and indefatigable Inspector Zenigata

In Lupin The Third, one of the players will control Inspector Zenigata and be visible on the game board along with his team of police agents, while the other players will work together to try together to steal the treasure and escape; these players are visible only when within view of Zenigata and the police, but both sides can use tricks to misdirect the other. What's more, as in the comic, Fujiko Mine can betray the group to try to escape with the treasure on her own!

Lotus Guardian Update

Spoke to the guys from The Lotus Guardian about their robbery and got an update.  Officially it is still unsolved and the police have had no luck in identifying the criminals.  Unofficially, the owners believe they know who was responsible but have no proof to back up their belief. they did report those suspects to the police but the police found nothing when they questioned them and searched the apartment.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

In and out of The Helvault

I guess it was too much to hope for that some dink would refrain from opening WOTC’s Helvault ahead of time, then taking photographs of the contents and posting them online.  Even worse, reportedly someone else unsealed the Helvault and posted the contents for sale on eBay.  A quick search on eBay didn’t turn up any currently running auctions for one, so hopefully it got pulled fast.  Luckily, the first set of photos got pulled down as well but some other twits have bragged about copying and reposting them. If a store owner cracked open the Helvault , I certainly hope WOTC finds out whom and pulls their store status permanently. WOTC had set up a very cool promotion, especially by not telling anyone, except for those within the super secret circle at WOTC, what it contained.  This essentially made the Helvault a giant booster pack with Magic players free to project onto it what it concealed.  There was even an amusing Twitter feed #intheHelvault, with people tweeting what they thought it held.  Me, I hoped for a set of revised Dual Lands and a new Spindown counter. 
Point is, whatever the Helvault held would be nowise as cool as what people thought it held. It couldn’t be, that is the strength and the curse of our imagination.  Paraphrasing Mr. Spock from the Star Trek episode Amok Time, “You will find the having is not as pleasurable as the wanting.” Cracking it open and posting the contents likely made the person who did it feel like they were important for a period of time and drawn some attention to their website or Tumblr.  Meanwhile, WOTC now has an event they put a lot of time and effort (and money) into that won’t have nearly the impact that it would, store owners who won’t have a big a turnout for the opening of the Helvault as they expected prior to the breach (I have already seen postings from players who are skipping the pre-release as a result of finding out the contents of the Helvault) and players who had a potentially dang cool event ruined.  Here’s hoping most of them haven’t see the posting of the Helvault contents but given the pervasiveness of the internet, it’s not likely, unless they actively avoid the information.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Thoughts on Egypt Wars and Cons

I am perched behind the registration table at Egypt Wars 3, our local gaming convention with the evening of the second day winding down.  I hear the chatter of the Yu Gi Oh players in the room behind me, the phrase “I can’t stop 6000” suddenly sounds loud and clear, followed by a laugh.  From other parts of the building the murmur of voices sounds, punctuated by the sporadic giggles of children and the guffaw of other players as something happens, either to them or another gamer.  There’s a mom standing at the far end of the registration hall, waiting on her son to drag himself away from casual Magic play.  Aside from that, it’s quiet for the first time today, giving me a chance to muse upon this con and small regional gaming conventions in general.

1.        OP puts “butts in seats”.  At the university I where I teach, a factor considered when deciding whether to offer a class is “Does it put butts in seats?”  Less bluntly, does the offering attract enough people to justify making it available to the group to which we target it.  A course needs to attract a certain number of students in order to justify offering it.  If not enough students sign up, the university cannot justify devoting space and faculty time to it.

Likewise, Organized Play appears the driving force behind filling RPG tables at smaller cons.  At Egypt Wars, Pazio’s Pathfinder Society has taken the place of WOTC’s RPGA events. While every table of Pathfinder Society filled to capacity, with a waiting list, non-OP RPG events, for the most part languished. Similarly at another small regional con, Cogcon in Rolla MO (now seemingly defunct), Heroes of Rokugon OP filled tables, while tables of non-OP RPGs sat empty.  Based on our experience at this, and the past couple of cons held here, we will work to ensure that Egypt Wars offered numerous tables of Pathfinder Society.

2.        Opinion leaders matter.  Conversely from what I just said in #1, there were two table of non-OP at Egypt Wars that consistently filled, both run by long-time GMs with a reputation for running a quality game within the gaming community.  One has run RPGs since the dawn of D&D, the other not so long but well thought of by those in the area that love Whit Wolf’s product lines.  Both are known to love their games, to love running them and to put extensive time and care into prepping for any games they run.  People within their gaming community know this and flock to their tables when they sign  up to run a game, while other GMs, without the same reputation, sit idle.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Egypt Wars

The third annual Egypt Wars kicks off tomorrow at noon with events starting at 2 and 7 p.m.  Local favorite Fat Patties will cater. There will be Pathfinder Society events every slot, Pokemon every slot, Warhammer 40000 Friday night and all day Saturday as well as the return of an old favorite, Clay-o-rama.  Can't make the con?  Follow it on Twitter at #egyptwars2012.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Two Many Pre-releases

For those of you who just might have missed it, Konami has announced the Sneak Peek for the next Yu Gi Oh! set, Galactic Overlord, takes place the weekend of April 28th. In case you really missed the news, something else pre-releases that same weekend, namely WOTC’s latest Magic expansion Avacyn Restored, the third set in the Innistrad block.  WOTC really pushed interest in this release with their announcement of the Helvault promotion, which sparked a round of guesses on Twitter as to what’s #IntheHelvault.  Based on customer interest so far, I expect this to be our best attended pre-release in some time, which begs the question, why put the Galactic Overlord Sneak Peek up against it, making life more difficult for the retailer?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

New Flying Frog Releases

Here are upcoming releases for Last Night on Earth and Flying Frog' s other games:


FFP 0107
Last Night on Earth Blood in the Forest Exp

As the Zombie plague spreads, the forests will run red! The Blood in the Forest Expansion for Last Night On Earth features a full set of Forest Boards and a double-sided Forest Center Board (with the Airfield), a set of seven vicious, new Feral Zombies, two new Heroes, a host of new Hero and Zombie cards, counters, Scenarios, and Game Mechanics.

FFP 0108
Last Night on Earth Timber Peak Exp

Escaping from the Zombie-overrun town of Woodinvale, a handful of survivors make their way up into the mountains. But as they reach the small logging and mining town of Timber Peak, they will discover that a new nightmare has just begun! This expansion to Last Night On Earth introduces the brand-new town of Timber Peak with a full set of game boards, six new Heroes, four Generator objective pieces, a set of 14 Zombies, a host of new Scenarios, an Experience System for both Heroes and the Zombie horde, and over 130 new game cards.

FFP 0205
A Touch of Evil The Coast Exp

The Heroes must fend off deadly curses and contend with all manner of creatures from the dark depths to keep evil at bay, forcing it back into the icy waters that break along the rocky shores of The Coast. This expansion for A Touch of Evil is jam-packed with new material, including four new Heroes, four fearsome new Villains to hunt like The Ghost Ship, Siren, or the dreaded Dreamweaver, a game board of the fog-shrouded coastline to add to the main Shadowbrook board, three new Town Elders, and a host of new mysteries to be solved. The Coast also features tons of new game cards including decks for three new Locations to explore (The SmugglerÕs Cove, Lighthouse, and the haunted Shipwreck), as well as a new town - the long-cursed village of Tidewater.

FFP 0206
A Touch of Evil Hero Pack 2

Hero Pack 2 introduces four new Heroes to A Touch of Evil (Sara, the Bright Witch; Jack Fellows, Privateer; Frederic Leon, the Foreign Diplomat from distant France; and Abigail Sturn, Student of the Occult), each with a highly-detailed plastic miniature as well as a corresponding Hero Character Sheet. Hero Pack 2 also features several new game cards and a new Villain to hunt.

FFP 0403
Conquest of Planet Earth Apocalypse

The Apocalypse Expansion for Conquest of Planet Earth sees the battle for Earth continue, escalating in scale as more Alien species are dispatched to the planet to take on the growing resistance of the stubborn Human defenders. This expansion introduces several new Alien races to play such as the fearsome Selenian Sirens or the Martian Confederacy, a new deck of Coastal Resistance for the Humans, and the awesome power of the dreaded Apocalypse Cube, emissary of Armageddon. Apocalypse also adds new cards to all of the  original decks and includes more saucers and boards to expand the player count up to 5-6 players.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Queen Games Goes Exclusive

Queen Games got more press this week then they have so far this year, with their announcement of  agreement for exclusive distribution with ACD Distribution.  In the last few months, that makes two for ACD (Queen Games and Playroom), one for Alliance (Z-Man Games) and a split between the two (Looney Labs).  I find it interesting that all of these exclusives are happening in the boardgame industry.  No exclusives signed with RPG companies, none with miniatures companies, none with book publishers and certainly none with any TCG companies.