Modern board games are games created after 1900 or so, including early games such as Monopoly and Scrabble, to the latest games from Europe and around the world.


Second Look - Boardgame reviews in depth. Check out that cat.The Island of Doctor Lucky is the newest iteration of Kill Doctor Lucky by Cheapass Games. The original game, which is basically Clue before the murder, centers on the eponymous Doctor Lucky as he travels along a set path through his mansion while dinner guests attempt to kill him. The Titanic Games (a now-defunct imprint of Paizo Publishing) edition had several rooms in the sprawling mansion that weren’t on Lucky’s path, which slowed down the would-be murderers. The 19.5th Anniversary Edition removed these empty rooms (and ignored movement in hallways). With the Island of Doctor Lucky, it’s as if the mansion evolved to be just rooms that Lucky will wander through, without hallways or anything else to detract from the Doctor’s path.

Each turn your murderer may move, then either draw a card or attempt to kill Doctor Lucky if there are no witnesses. If there is nobody in your location or an adjacent location, go for murder! In the mansion-based earlier games, checking to see if you are undiscovered required tracing sight lines through walls and open doorways up to two or three rooms away. On the island, it’s easier and faster to tell if your character is seen or unseen. Once your turn is over, Doctor Lucky moves to another space.

When attempting to kill the Doctor, the other players must discard cards with enough Luck symbols to keep him alive — we all want him dead, but we want to be the one with our hands around his scrawny neck. Eventually enough players’ cards are played that the other players won’t be able to thwart a killing. It’s always reminded me of playing Munchkin with several players at level 9, all trying to get to 10, waiting for that card attrition to assist your victory.

The board itself just has free-form locations depicted, which gave us a bit of pause when initially trying to find the fastest route to a target space or picturing who is visible to others. Each location has a terrain type that is referenced on new hazard cards. Hazards can be played on Lucky like any normal murder attempt or on other players, but only if the terrain type your victim is in matches the card’s. While this seems to be a good way to attempt to kill your prey (and interact with the other players), in our playthroughs it seemed like we never had the correct terrain on cards in our hands. This was a problem for us, as failing a hazard play on Doctor Lucky is how you increase your movement. Without being able to play hazards on the Doctor, we were crawling all over the island instead of rushing to an opportune position for murder.

The Lucky Train continues in this version: if he stops in your area, it becomes your turn, even if you just went. In our three-player game (which adds three other non-player murderers to the board), we had a player with turn after turn as Lucky either ran into her token or the non-player token just before her. By our count, she wound up being able to act on the Island six times to second player’s two. That wasn’t fun for the second player and felt a bit embarrassing for the first player, getting to act three times in a row. That game ended with the third player managed to move twice, running into the doctor and playing a low-level attack card–the other two players didn’t have any cards with Luck symbols on them. Like Munchkin, it felt like the game randomly picked a victor and, like Munchkin, it seems like the time the game takes to play is determined by the draw of the cards.

I hate to say it, but The Island of Doctor Lucky isn’t as fun as the Kill Doctor Lucky games. By moving the game from the mansion to an island, the nostalgic memories of childhood games of Clue and the theme of “Clue before Clue” are further removed. The colorful simple board where some locations are puns but others aren’t, condensing the scene of crime to a point where players can take several turns in a row, and the way hazard cards are used to increase movement (but only if used on the Doctor), coupled with the random draw of cards which might give players a game that’s much shorter than the 40 minutes on the box? Well, we’d rather go with the 19.5 Anniversary Edition, which we reviewed a few years back.

A copy of The Island of Doctor Lucky was provided free for review by Cheapass Games.

The first board game video reviewer to 1 million subscribers is the winner! That’s the premise of Watch This Game!, a new title out of the partnership between publisher Buffalo Games and licensing house Pocket.Watch.

On the box cover are a bunch of kid YouTubers known for their video toy reviews. Inside are dice, dice cups, and cards.

Three new cards each round define the dice combinations needed to acquire subscribers. Players roll their dice as fast as they can, setting aside those they like on each card. The first player to match the full combo on a card gets to book it. When all three have been claimed, a new round begins.

Besides subscriber cards, there are also troll cards, which drive subscribers away from an opponent, glitch cards, which force an opponent to divert their dice away from the subscriber race, and system crash cards, which make them start all over from the beginning.

Watch This Game! is available from Target at $18 and will take up to six players.

Game Bandit

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesFor 50% off anything in-stock direct from GMT—war games, accessories, even already discounted products—use coupon code “GMTSale2018”. Offer ends October 25th.

Record an IceCool trick-shot video for a chance to win a trip for two to Antarctica from Brain Games.

DriveThruRPG is holding a 31% off Halloween Sale on horror titles. Also, click on holiday-themed icons spread around the site for treats (free downloads) and a few tricks.

Privateer Press’ Hallowed Harvest Sale means 20% discounts on select items.

USAopoly is giving away a new game each day through the 23rd. They’re calling it the Ghoulish Games Giveaway.

Toy Vault is giving away a 36 piece set of its Zfigs 3D modular dungeon terrain.

Out Little Escapades is giving away Let’s Feed the Very Hungry Caterpillar from Paul Lamond Games (UK residents only).

Heroic Maps’ Halloween Sale means 50% savings on spooky locations, including Murder House, Abandoned Asylum, and more print-and-play at DriveThruRPG.

Everything at Print & Play’s print-on-demand store is 15% off through the end of the month. Discount provided at checkout.

For Avalanche Press’ Black October Sale, 31 games and books have been discounted 12%. For Gold Club members, they’re 30% off.

JasonTDnDDm will be giving away several 2 month subscriptions to Syrinscape’s Dungeons & Dragons soundsets. Tweet now, prizes awarded in November.

What the Redhead Said is giving away Reveal from Paul Lamond Games (UK).

The latest roleplaying deal of this October at Bundle of Holding is Leagues of Gothic Horror, featuring the Leagues of Adventure RPG from Triple Ace Games, with various horror-themed setting supplements.

Heck of a Bunch is giving away Everybody Knows from Endless Games.

Dog Fright is Dog Might Games 15% off Halloween Sale.

Penny Plays is giving away Perudo from Paul Lamond Games (UK).

Saving Throw Show is giving away a starter kit for the Pugmire RPG from Onyx Path Publishing. The kit includes a rulebook, GM screen, cards, and dice.

Ravensburger in Germany is accepting applications for 18 month Board Game Internships. The work includes project management, designer relationship maintenance, market analysis, and product testing.

Hasbro is interviewing for spring semester (2019) Games Brand Writing Co-ops. These are temporary full-time jobs for undergraduate students and involve developing rules and instructions for games, creating content for party games, and writing for product packaging. Among the more than 100 other job openings at Hasbro, there’s one for a Dungeons & Dragons Game Designer and one for a Manager of Product Design in Adult Gaming.

USAopoly has two openings. One is for an Inside Sales Account Manager. One is for a Product Manager/Producer to coordinate “concept, costing, sourcing, design, manufacturing, shipping, and marketing in a cost-effective and timely manner.” Both are located in Carlsbad, California.

Konami Digital Entertainment, publisher of Yu-Gi-Oh!, is recruiting for an Organized Play Manager and an Organized Play Specialist. Responsibilities of the former include developing new organized play programs and managing the organized play budget. Responsibilities of the latter include interfacing with tournament organizers on administrative matters, forecasting inventory needs (such as prize support), and maintaining procedure documents.

Strategy & Tactics Press in Bakersfield, California is recruiting for a Magazine and Game Component Designer. The job involves magazine layout, creating artwork, and designing game components and packaging.

Genius Games in the St. Louis area is looking for a part-time Operations Assistant to organize company records, keep the books, communicate with customers, and manage bank accounts.

A number of openings exist at the Pokemon Company in Bellevue, Washington. The job of the Organized Play Associate is to schedule events, manage the contracting process for Premier Events, and coordinate with internal departments to support events. The job of the Events Manager is to develop and implement event plans. The former requires 3 years of experience, the latter 5-7 years. Pokemon also has two openings for Social Marketing Associates to implement the company’s social marketing strategy. Minimum 2 years experience required for this one.

The Chicago Chess Federation needs an Executive Director with experience at professional management and fundraising.

Jobs for youth Chess instructors abound, in DC, in Palm Beach, in Walnut Creek, California, in Framingham, Massachusetts, in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, another in Eden Prairie, in Nutley, New Jersey, in Union City, California, in Park Ridge, New Jersey, in Midvale, Utah, in Grandview, Missouri, in Brecksville, Ohio, in Leander, Texas, in Atlanta, Georgia, and with four organizations in New York City: first, second, third, fourth.

OneBookShelf needs a Senior PHP Developer to help the organization to reengineer its legacy ecommerce system. This is a work-from-home position.

North Star Games in Kensignton, Maryland needs a Marketing Specialist to promote the video game versions of its board games. Two or more years of marketing experience is required and the position pays $30-60k per year.

Breaking Games is looking for a couple of new staff members, one for accounting and transaction management and one to assist with Target and Walmart accounts.

Panda Game Manufacturing has openings for an Account Manager, a Project Manager, and a Prepresss Specialist. The Account Manager’s responsibilities are focused on business development with new and existing customers. The Project Manager’s responsibilities are focused on guiding clients through the production process. And the Prepress Specialist’s responsibilities include verifying that incoming files comply with manufacturing specifications, as well as providing real-time support to clients.

At Atlas Games there’s an opening for an RPG Developer and Producer. Responsibilities include identifying projects, managing production, contributing to crowdfunding campaigns, and promoting releases.

Blok Party, makers of the PlayTable board game console, has an opportunity for a Marketing Intern. The position is paid and requires fluency in Mandarin.

Game Trayz is looking for part-time help 3D modeling board game inserts.

BAE Systems has at least two wargame-related positions available on contracts supporting the Marine Corps in Quantico, Virginia. Military experience and security clearances required.

Booz Allen Hamilton also has open wargame jobs. Both the Junior Wargame Analyst and the Mid Wargame Analyst position descriptions note “experience with commercial or hobby wargaming, including manual board games” as qualifications.

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Game Bandit

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesThinkFun will give away a package of 42 games to 50 different PTA organizations.

In recognition of World Teachers’ Day, Goliath is giving away prize packages of seven different games to five winners, and to a teacher designated by each of those winners. The games are Let’s Go Fishin’, Lucky Ducks, Mastermind, Pop the Pig, Sequence, Googly Eyes, and Wordsearch.

Ebooks of Pelgrane Press’ Gumshoe games are discounted in a Birthday Sale, up to 75% off.

The Open Gaming Store is holding a Warehouse Clearance Sale with 30% discounts for the duration of October.

Matt is giving away a Dungeons & Dragons adventure book, either Dragon Heist or Dungeon of the Mad Mage.

This West Coast Mommy is giving away two sets of four games each from Pressman: Charades for Kids, Rummikub, Tri-Ominos, and Mastermind.

CoolStuffInc is holding a Columbus Day Sale through the upcoming weekend.

Tilted Table is giving away two tickets to PAX Unplugged (two separate winners of one ticket each).

John Adams is giving away a copy of the Strictly Come Dancing board game, along with two tickets to the Strictly Come Dancing live tour (UK residents only).

Another Path is giving away three sets of dice and dice trays.

Heck of a Bunch is giving away Horror Trivia from Endless Games.

For the upcoming Halloween holiday, Chronicles of Darkness and World of Darkness storyteller screens and deluxe editions are 50% off at Indie Press Revolution.

Four deals are currently running at Bundle of Holding.

  • Tunnels & Trolls—At $7.95, the Solitaire Collection includes solo adventures and quickstart rules. At $19, the Gamemaster Collection includes more adventures and the rulebook.
  • Weird War I and Weird War II—Covering Pinnacle Entertainment’s Weird War line. The former supernatural horror during the Great War for Savage Worlds. The latter titles using the d20 system, as well as Savage Worlds World War II. Get everything, both bundles, all four collections, for $38.
  • Palladium Horror—Including Beyond the Supernatural, Nightbane, and Dead Reign games.

Chatty Patty’s Place is giving away Happy Salmon from North Star Games.

Calliope Games is giving away Dicey Peaks.

Worlds Apart and Tabletop Loot are giving away a set of dice.

Brawlin’ Brothers is giving away Stonebound Saga and its expansion from Sky Kingdom Games.

Emily Reviews is giving away Act Your Wage, a financial education game from Dave Ramsey.

Get a free activity book with orders over £25 from Orchard Toys.

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Crowdfunding Highlights

It is my belief that the cube tower is an underused mechanic in gaming.  Ape games must share this belief with me as it is the main piece of there new game The Styhian Society. The Stygian Society is a cooperative dungeon crawl designed by Kevin Wilson (A Game Of Thrones, Elder Sign and numerous other games).

In a very interesting twist, The Stygian Society often requires heroes to sacrifice themselves and their own actions for the good of the party. Battle monsters and fight the forces of evil in this dungeon crawl…errr.. ascent. As of this posting is has three weeks left and has well past it’s funding goal. You can find it here.

 

Next up is the card caddy triple decker. The triple decker Holds 100+ sleeved cards OR 4+ playing card decks. The thing I really like about this Kickstarter is the modular add-ons as stretch goals (although I wish it was a regular purchase option) that you can use it for mini-cards and/or to store dice, tokens, chips coins. The potential to use this storage system for multiple types of games makes it something a little different from your normal deck storage system. The kickstarter can be check out here.

 

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The Potion

New from FoxMind is a small bluffing game of alchemy called The Potion. Players start with a number of ingredient tokens, mushrooms, vials, and beetles. Every round, a set of dice are rolled to define which ingredients are required for the potion. They secretly select one token each from their stash and if all-together their ingredients exactly match a die, then those who contributed give up their tokens. The first to narrow their stash to a single ingredient type is the winner.

The Potion comes in a small medicinal style bottle and retails for $12.

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Founders Paul and Eden Dedrick have sold Buffalo Games to a group of current management led by CEO Nagendra Raina and backed by private equity firm Mason Wells. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Buffalo Games makes Watch Ya’ Mouth, Brain Games, and a variety of party games. The company is also a major producer of jigsaw puzzles.

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Hasbro is partnering with Epic Games to produce Fortnite-based toys and games. Of course, there’s to be a Fortnite Monopoly (due this fall) but also other unspecified games.

Shinobi 7 announced acquisition of the Conan license for tabletop games. Two products are planned. The first, a miniatures game via Kickstarter project. The second, a direct-to-retail card game.

With a license from Sony Interactive, Steamforged Games is pursuing plans for a miniatures-heavy Horizon Zero Dawn board game via Kickstarter. Pledges already total more than $1 million, though Steamforged estimates delivery not until March 2020.

Things from the Flood is a just-launched Kickstarter RPG project that’s a sequel to Tales from the Loop and based on another of Simon Stålenhag’s art books. The new one from Free League Publishing is more grim and bleak than its predecessor.

Coming to Kickstarter on the 1st of October is The Hunger Games: Mockingjay from River Horse.

Then scheduled for November 13th is Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood of Venice from Triton Noir. The company promises a cooperative miniatures game focused on stealth mechanisms.

WizKids recently announced a licensing arrangement with WWE. The company will add WWE wrestling personalities to HeroClix and Dice Masters and create WWE board games.

Available now from WizKids is Star Trek Galactic Enterprises, a game in which you play as Ferengi.

Also available now at retail is Munchkin Starfinder. It’s the Munchkin grab-the-loot card game from Steve Jackson Games, based on the Starfinder sci-fi RPG from Paizo Publishing.

Next up for Munchkin is Munchkin Warhammer 40,000 based on the property from Games Workshop. I love the meta of this previewed card, Unpainted.

But Steve Jackson isn’t the only company with a new Warhammer 40,000 license. Devir has made a racing game, Gretchinz, out of the property. WizKids has adapted Warhammer 40K to Dice Masters in Battle for Ultramar. Ulisses did Wrath & Glory, a Warhammer 40,000 roleplaying game. And USAopoly has made Warhammer 40,000 Monopoly.

Based on Warhammer Age of Sigmar, PlayFusion recently launched Champions, a collectible card game with an online play option. A non-collectible card game, Warhammer Doomseeker is available from Ninja Division.

EN Publishing, under license from Rebellion, is launching a Judge Dredd and the Worlds of 2000AD roleplaying game on Kickstarter.

IDW will ship to retail this coming February Nickelodeon Splat Attack!, as well as an expansion, Reptar Rampage. The game represents a food fight between teams of characters from various Nickelodeon shows, including Spongebob Squarepants, Hey Arnold!, Rugrats, and Invader Zim.

IDW also signed on with Toei Animation for a series of Dragon Ball games. The first two are due in stores this holiday season. Dragon Ball Super: Heroic Battle has players flicking tokens at each other, while Dragon Ball Z: Over 9000 is supposed to provide a more strategic gameplay experience. In 2019 (after a planned Kickstarter campaign), IDW will release a Dragon Ball Z miniatures game.

Coming this fall from USAopoly is the Dragon Ball Z Power Up Board Game in 3D. Also scheduled to deliver soon is a new Disney Chess Set celebrating 90 years of Mickey Mouse. Available now is one celebrating 25 years of Tim Burton’s A Nightmare Before Christmas. The company’s latest Monopoly games include Five Nights at Freddy’s Monopoly, Ren & Stimpy Monopoly, and BoJack Horseman Monopoly.

Looney Labs recently released Mary Engelbreit Loonacy, a matching card game with the artwork of Mary Engelbreit.

Dog Might Games is now making officially licensed Vampire: The Masquerade dice trays, storyteller screens, and storage boxes, each with a choice of clan symbol. Orders ship with exclusive V5 loresheets tied to the new Geek & Sundry show, LA by Night.

Elderwood Academy is taking preorders for a Vampire: The Masquerade Spellbook gaming box made from walnut and leather. It also ships with LA by Night loresheets.

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Game Bandit

Game Bandit - Scouring the net to find the cheapest discount boardgames and best free boardgame prizesSave 20% on select games in Victory Point Games’ Back to Cool Sale, now through the 17th.

100 Amazon board game deals:

World of Darkness products (all editions) are on sale at DriveThruRPG. Official products are 75% off. Community products are 25% off.

Brawlin’ Brothers is giving away Bunny Kingdom from Iello.

Hubby Helps (UK) is giving away Lowlands from Asmodee.

Board Game Revolution is giving away 40 games, 25 in one grand prize. All entries require membership in a Facebook group.

Miniature Market asks what game you’d like to give to someone else. Answer and maybe they’ll give it for you.

Two bundles covering the King Arthur Pendragon RPG are available now at Bundle of Holding. One includes the core rulebook and essential supplements. The other adds location sourcebooks and scenarios.

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