Gen Con 2018—Iello

Highlights from Iello’s booth at Gen Con include Nessos and 8 Bit Box.

Nessos ($15, Q4) is a bluffing card game for up to six players with a Greek mythology theme. One player passes to the next a single card face down. If it’s a red creature card, they must correctly name the creature and card value. If it’s a green Charon card, though, they have to lie. The receiving player, then, has three choices (before looking). They can accept the card (and flip it over); they can return it (in which case, the first player flips it over); or they can pass it, along with a card of their own. The first player to 30 points is the winner but a player with three green cards is out.

8 Bit Box ($40, Q4) is something Iello is calling a “board game console.” Inspired by early video games, 8 Bit Box provides a set of “controllers” (dual cardboard dials) for use with a series of individual games. Included with the base box are the game modules Outspeed (a racing game), Pixoid (similar to Pac Man), and Stadium (team racing). There’s also room in there for seven additional games.

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As part of a new retailer-support program of the Game Manufacturers Association, Iello is providing member shops with roughly 2 months of exclusive early access to its upcoming title, Decrypto. GAMA retail members will be able to sell the game beginning February 22nd, while other brick-and-mortar stores will have to wait until April 19th and online sellers until May 3rd.

Decrypto ($20 suggested retail) is a party game that combines word association and code breaking. Two teams are given displays of four words, each tied to a number (1-4). Then, one member of each team uses related but different words in an attempt to get their teammates to guess secret three-digit codes. If they make their clue words too obvious, though, their opponents may guess the code.

Other participants in the GAMA early release program should be announced at the GAME Trade Show in March.

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It’s only been about a year-and-a-half since Asmodee consolidated operations and abandoned Fantasy Flight Games’ exclusive deal with Alliance Game Distributors (in favor of a portfolio approach with ACD, Alliance, GTS, Southern Hobby, and PHD). Effective this month, though, Asmodee North America back to exclusive with Alliance, claiming the arrangement will benefit hobby retailers.

Alliance Game Distributors is building a dedicated team of Asmodee Sales Specialists who will work directly with retailers to help them grow sales by understanding the retailer’s specific needs and providing in-depth product knowledge of ANA products and services. This sales team will also provide greater visibility into stock availability, allocations, and other retailer initiatives, as well as sending retailer feedback to ANA.

At the same time, Asmodee is restructuring its broader sales policies and assigning all specialty retailers (new or existing) to one of three categories. Flagship Accounts are for those with brick-and-mortar stores that provide in-store gaming space. These will have access to the full range of ANA products, early access to new releases, and benefit from organized play support. Toy and Gift Accounts, for those without in-store gaming space, will be limited to the top-selling, broad-appeal titles and restricted to general release dates. General Accounts are for those with different business models, perhaps such as event sales, game cafes, and primarily online businesses. These will be able to participate in organized play and sell the full catalog but not benefit from early access. All three types of account will henceforth be permitted online sales but also must commit to a minimum advertised price (MAP, of no more than a 20 percent discount off of MSRP).

Coiledspring Games has signed on as exclusive U.K. distribution agent for Iello Games’ full product line and for Games Workshop’s Talisman: The Magical Quest board game.

Ares Games of Italy will be distributing the English-language games of Phalanx (UK) worldwide except for Europe. This includes existing products, such as Germania Magna: Border in Flames and Hunger: The Show, as well as the soon to be republished classic, Hannibal & Hamilcar – Rome vs. Carthage (due November 2017).

CMON is no longer handling U.S. distribution for Ankama Products (Krosmaster board games).

This week marks the formal launch of a distribution arrangement that sees Passport Game Studios carrying the product line of Rule & Make of Australia. These include Skyward: The Airborne City, Entropy: Worlds Collide, Smiths of Winterforge, Robots & Rockets, Tavern Fame, and more. Passport also recently expanded its existing distribution partnership with the Polish game company, Granna, to bring the CV series of board games to Canada.

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2017 Mensa Select Winners

At the Mensa Mind Games this past weekend in the Virginia suburbs outside Washington, DC, member judges played through and selected the following games as 2017 Mensa Select winners:

Amalgam from Simply Fun—A game in which the players, as wizards, try to collect sets of potion ingredients but have to rely on their memories of the ingredients they’ve already collected.

Around the World in 80 Days from Iello Games—A Spiel des Jahres winner from years ago (Hare & Tortoise), reproduced based on the Jules Verne novel. Players race around the board, moving forward and back as they wish. However, they must carefully plan to arrive back in London with the least amount of cash left in hand.

Clank! from Renegade Game Studio—A dungeon delve fantasy adventure game built on deck-building mechanisms.

Harry Potter Hogwarts Battle from USAopoly—Another deck-building game, this one follows the novels with a series of cooperative games that get more complex and more difficult to beat as they progress.

Imagine from Gamewright—A party game where the giver-of-clues chooses an item from a card and then tries to illustrate the item by combining images and symbols with an overlay of transparent cards.

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IELLO’s Arena: For the Gods Teaser

IELLO just shot out a teaser for their new combat game, Arena: For the Gods. The game, premiering at Origins 2017 in June, is an arena combat game with a bidding mechanic that uses life points to purchase better equipment. There’s not a whole lot of information about the game right now, but it will come with a sweet looking King of Tokyo card, too!

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Toy Fair 2017—Iello

At Toy Fair, Iello was talking about expanding its line of children’s games this year.

The Legend of the Wendigo, available now at $20, centers around a native-American monster fable. In this version of the fable, the monster takes over the bodies of kids at summer camp. One player replaces a new camper tile each round with a special version that shows the wendigo on the back-side. If the other players can’t guess which camper has been replaced, the monster player gets to posses another, keeping past victims as they go.

Also available now is The Mysterious Forest ($30). This one has memory and resource-collection elements and is based on The Wormworld Saga comic series. It’s also a cooperative game. At the beginning, players get a quick look at a set of cards with the resources they need to collect. Then the cards are turned face down and the players roll dice and pick tokens representing the resources they need. Finally, the cards, which represent an unfolding story, are turned back over one-at-a-time. If they have the right tokens, they complete the saga and win. Fortunately, they also start out with a few special Loki helper tokens to fill in the gaps.

For adults and older children, Iello had on display Pyramids (March, $20), a game of constructing monuments in ancient Egypt. Each round, players choose from among a pool of god tiles that give them the ability to add stone cards to their pyramids and obelisks. At the end, pyramids score points for stones strung together and in various colors. Obelisks score points for height, glyphs, and a range of colors.

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Set to release in April 2017 for $19.99 this new edition of the King of Tokyo: Power Up! Expansion brings evolution decks for the six monsters of the new version and two monsters from the original version: Cyber Bunny and Kraken. It also brings a new monster, Pandakaï, into the fray!

Those eager to get their hands on the new edition of this great expansion can tide themselves over with the new rulebook until it’s actually released.

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In Q4 of 2017 IELLO will be releasing Mountains of Madness, a new board game by Rob Daviau based on the novel At the Mountains of Madness by H.P. Lovecraft. IELLO tweeted out the following teaser image with artwork by Miguel Coimbra.


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Gen Con 2016 logoIello’s latest is Sea of Clouds ($30, now), a set collecting card game in which the players are sky pirates gathering treasures, artifacts, and rum. They can also pick up pirate cards, which help them in combat against their neighbors. To collect the cards, players go through a type of draft, each on their turn looking at a stack and then deciding whether to keep it or add another card at random from the draw pile and move on to the next.

Shipping to retail later this month are Schotten Totten ($15) and Oceanos ($40). The former is a reprint of a well-known Reiner Knizia title (also published as Battle Line) but is new to Iello. The latter was designed by Antoine Bauza and has players collecting animals and treasures from the ocean in submarines that they can upgrade with better propellers, periscopes, fish tanks, and other features.

Looking further out, Iello has planned for September Aladdin & the Magic Lamp ($25), the next in its Tales & Games series. Game-play for this 20 minute, 2-5 player title incorporates set collection and secret action selection.

October will see release of Around the World in 80 Days in a beautiful gilt slip-case. I didn’t catch much about game-play, other than it’s for 2-6 players and takes about 45 minutes.

Then in November, Iello delivers The Mysterious Forest, a cooperative memory game based on the Wormworld Saga web comic.

And sometime later comes Farm Friends, an expansion for Happy Pigs with blocky cows, sheep, and chickens; Bunny Kingdom, a card drafting, area control game by Richard Garfield; and a Cthulhu Monster Pack for King of Tokyo.

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KOT_Target_FlatCoverSince we’re talking about Target exclusive games, let’s not forget about the exclusive King of Tokyo edition coming to Target on July 31st.

This edition replaces Gigazaur with Baby Gigazaur. As you can see, it’s extremely cute.

Other than a monster swap, this is the same King of Tokyo 2016 that we’ve previously posted about.

MSRP will be the same.

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