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February Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Releases

It’s time for more Yu-Gi-Oh! releases! February will see 3 new products hit the shelves.

February 12 – Wing Raiders and Chibi Card Sleeves

A special booster set with brand-new Xyz cards. New monster themes: spectral Phantom Knights and the Super Quantum mecha pilots. The 60 card set comes in 9-card boosters for $3.99 each.

Also on the 12th, Chibi Card Sleeves! These are tournament-legal sleeves feature the a super-deformed Yugi. 50 sleeves for $3.99.

February 26 – Breakers of Shadow Special Edition

Breakers of Shadow Special Edition boxes come with 3 boosters, one of two Super Rare preview cards from the upcoming Shining Victories booster set plus one of two Super Rare Cards – either Beast-Eyes Pendulum Dragon or Number 23: Lancelot, Dark Knight of the Underworld. These will be $9.99 per box.

 

Kickstarter Preview—Zombie Tower 3D

With an edition already released in Japan, Zombie Tower 3D has now hit Kickstarter for an updated, English release.

Zombie Tower 3D is a cooperative game with a twist. Each player can only see their own play space in the 3D game board. How is it cooperative, then? There’s certain spaces in the walls where you can pass items through. The problem? Zombie hoards quickly build up, and getting an item passed through the wall isn’t always easy! You can always search the rooms for more useful items, but sometimes rooms will collapse or fires will break out. There’s also survivors to worry about…or use as zombie bait to make a quick escape.

I have to admit I thought the game would be all about the gimmick, and not much else. That didn’t turn out to be the case at all. The Emergence mechanic of how Zombies populate the board, item trading through walls, using survivors as bait only to have them turn into zombies…all these things make for an entertaining game with an awesome cardboard tower.

The game plays 3-4 players, with a different setup of the tower for each. The Kickstarter page has some of the updates that differ from the version I have, but most of them are graphical. $42 will get you the game if it’s funded, which is a pretty good deal in an age of $80+ games being Kickstarted lately. I have a good feeling we’ll see this one succeed, and that’s great. It’s a surprisingly fun game.

A copy of the original Japanese release of Zombie Tower 3D was provided free for review by Cosaic, LLC.

 

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesHABA is running a sale on games with discounts around 50%.

Osprey Publishing’s 25% off sale on all Military and Adventures titles was supposed to close out at the end of January. However, because of problems with moving the company’s distribution warehouse, it’s been extended to February 14th.

The Firefly Role-Playing Game Core Book is 50% off at DriveThruRPG.

In Bundle of Holding’s Werewolf: The Apocalypse offer the core rule book and primary supplements start at $12. The Werewolf: The Apocalypse +2 bundle includes additional supplements starting at $10.

For 10% off anything from Fat Brain Toys, use promo code “UP-8583”.

For 10% off a subscription to the print edition of the American Journal of Play, use coupon code “216JP”.

At Amazon, the Iron Man Magic 8 Ball is 57% off.

iSlayTheDragon is giving away Roll for the Galaxy, XCOM, Fury of Dracula, and Mysterium.

Crowdfunding Highlights

Well now, there’s a lot of stuff on Kickstarter this past week. Let’s have a little looksee, shall we?

7th-seaJohn Wick’s 7th Sea Kickstarter campaign launched this morning and it funded within minutes. The Restoration Era roleplaying game returns to the land of Théah, a world that looks an awful lot like our Europe of 1668, but different. It’s The Princess Bride, Pirates of the Caribbean, and The Three Musketeers wrapped up into a roleplaying game of derring-do. $20 gets you the PDF of the main game, but $40 gets you PDFs of all stretch goal books plus the first edition books. (Full disclosure: I’m doing layout on the quickstart adventure for the campaign.)

The storyline of the Sentinels of the Multiverse game comes to an end in OblivAeon, and Greater Than Games has returned to Kickstarter with a huge game-ending campaign! You can get a copy of the last expansion for just $39 plus shipping, or you can add on $15 to get all the variant hero cards (with all new artwork ) you didn’t get from earlier Kickstarters, pre-orders, or convention appearances. Or up your pledge again to get shiny foil versions of every hero card! Or even more to get the collectors case to store every single expansion in one mighty mega-box!

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IDW Games has launched the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past board game and if they send a review copy to us, we’re probably going to fight each other to see who gets to play it first. It’s a story-driven adventure for players to fight their way through some of the comic book’s keystone moments. Stretch goals include hero packs based on April O’Neil, Casey Jones, and splinter; TMNT sculpts based on the original look of the turtles; and mousers! All this for $90 (or $150 for the earlier versions of the turtles).

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Jeff Siadek of Gorilla Games has a Kickstarter campaign for Battlestations: Second Edition. This update to the classic game that’s a little bit of a roleplaying game and a little bit of a board game has your crew on a modular space ship taking on one of hundreds of missions — official and fan-made. Zoom out to the star map where your ship encounters other ships, zoom in to what’s going on board your ship — or the enemy ship. It’s a crazy fun ride. Think Star Trek meets Space Hulk. Get the game in PDF format for $20, get a physical game with miniatures and all sorts of goodness for $90.

legacyRob Daviau and Matt Leacock have both stated that Season 2 of Pandemic: Legacy is under development. “We started it before [Season 1] came out,” Daviau told Polygon in a recent interview. “But we are not done, and when we are done I will leave it up to the publisher to say when they will choose to put it out.”

“Season 2 will not require anything from Season 1 and you will not have to have played Season 1,” Matt Leacock said on the Ludology podcast. “It’s a fully standalone product.” When asked if there are going to be additional seasons, Leacock said he doesn’t know if any more are planned.

Pandemic: Legacy Season 1 is published by Z-Man. In it, the base Pandemic game will change over the course of twelve to twenty-four games. As the game is played, permanent changes to the game are made, such as stickers being added to the rules or the board, cards being destroyed, and writing on the game’s board. Leacock describes legacy games as games where the “consequences of your actions in any one game will have reprecussions down the line the next time you play it…. You can evolve a story over time, like you might if you are watching say, a tv episode or a tv series like HBO’s Game of Thrones or something, where the story builds week after week.” In the six months since Pandemic: Legacy was released, it reached the number one ranked game spot on BoardGameGeek.com.

Hasbro logoMagic: The Gathering has been supplanted by Nerf as Hasbro’s largest brand. That news was revealed Monday by CEO Brian Goldner in the company’s 2015 earnings conference call. Nevertheless, Goldner also stated that Battle for Zendikar was the game’s most successful set launch yet.

Growth in Monopoly and Magic: The Gathering contributed to the 8 percent increase in the games category, absent FX. Magic had a very good fourth quarter with the release of Battle for Zendikar, which had the strongest start to a set in the brand’s history. In addition to higher revenues in our franchise brands and several other Hasbro gaming brands, Pie Face was a clear winner this holiday season and continues to be in high demand at retail. It was recently named Toy of the Year in the U.K. You’ll learn more about the next innovation for Pie Face later this week at Toy Fair.

The Magic Digital Next platform, which we first got a hint of in November, was said to be launching in 2017, and additional Magic initiatives to be announced at Toy Fair later this week.

With the potential of a Mattel merger recently in the news, Goldner offered this assessment:

We’re focused on executing our brand blueprint strategy… [though we] continue to remain open to ideas that enhance our strategic brand blueprint and the strategy that we’re executing. But we’re very focused on executing our own strategy.

Overall, Hasbro finished 2015 with a very strong performance. Year-to-year fourth quarter revenues grew 13 percent, or 23 percent before the impact of foreign exchange. Full-year revenues for 2015 were $4.4 billion and net earnings $451.8 million. That’s revenues 4 percent higher than 2014, or 13 percent higher without the foreign exchange impact.

Hasbro’s fourth quarter revenues in the games category were 18 percent higher than the previous year. For the full year, games grew 8 percent. (Both of these again representing numbers absent foreign exchange.) In comparison, the boys category grew 30 percent and the preschool category 28 percent, while the girls category shrunk 13 percent.

Mega Man: The Board Game

JCGMMBG01Coming soon from Jasco Games, Mega Man: The Board Game was created for the 25th anniversary of the Blue Bomber. The game is for 2-6 players, and has you controlling a character and Dr. Wily’s forces. You try to defeat robot masters while using Wily’s forces to hinder other players.

In March we’ll see the first expansion, Time Man & Oil Man Expansion. I love the fact that extra robot masters can be added to the game!

The Mega Man board game will retail for $79.99, while the expansion will be $29.99.

The Tour of Hârn Continues

kaldorFollowing up on the free map of Hârn, Columbia Games continues the tour of the world by zooming in on the map. You can now snag a free, 60-page sample PDF that covers the Kingdom of Kaldor. You can get more info here about what the sample covers, along with links to the supplemental products here.

Columbia has plans to further explore Hârn, so keep an eye out for more free samples!

12705169_151308598584453_2493438227099948849_nTaking place on International TableTop Day, April 30th, the Inaugural Connecticut Festival of Indie Games will be held in Southington, CT. The festival, as its name suggests, is all about independent games, designers, and publishers. Backed by Geek Fever Games, they hope to draw independent games from all over the northeast US.

If you’re interested, you can snag tickets here. There’s also a Facebook page setup for the event here.

I’ll be there for sure!

According to Bloomberg, Hasbro and Mattel have discussed a potential merger. No concrete steps are said to have been taken for a deal that would likely face significant regulatory and other hurdles. And in fact, other sources suggest the deal is definitely not going forward. But imagine the crossover potential! I’m thinking the next American Girl Girl of the Year is a competitor on the Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour. Or what might the attachments look like for a Monster High Mr. Potato Head?

Hasbro Mattel Crossover Potential

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