Lord of the RIngs Card Game Nightmare ExpansionFantasy Flight Games announced the launch of three new encounter decks for the Lord of the Rings: The card game and Heirs of Númenor expansion’s Against the Shadow cycle. With these three new adventures, players can test their mettle in Nightmare mode with lethal enemies, harsher locations, and even more difficult traps.

The three Nightmare decks provide new, alternate encounter cards for the Heirs of Númenor expansion with specific instructions for how to reshape a scenario’s encounter deck. There are new plots and mechanics, as well as more challenging missions. Read the rest of this entry »

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Gen Con 2013 logoThe annual In-Flight Report is a Gen Con presentation by Fantasy Flight Games’ Christian Petersen covering the state of the company, as well as previewing some of its upcoming products. After giving away the Star Wars RPG beta free to attendees last time, FFG had to turn away hundreds this year.

Though there were no product giveaways, the presentation was, as usual, highly informative.


Regarding FFG’s business, we learned this year that the company continues to experience strong growth—greater than 25 percent every year since 2000. After the presentation, Christian also told me that FFG was up to 106 employees.

Fantasy Flight Games is in the process of moving its office and consolidating warehouse space in the same building. The Event Center will join them shortly.

FFG experienced its three biggest product launches ever, all in the preceding year: X-Wing Miniatures Game, Netrunner, and Descent 2nd Edition.

By product line, 37 percent of FFG’s sales are board games, 24 percent card games, 16 percent miniatures, 10 percent roleplaying games, 9 percent supplies, and 4 percent other products. Comparing this to last year’s numbers, it appears that as a percentage of the company’s business, board games dropped significantly, while card games, miniatures, and roleplaying games rose.

Fantasy Flight Games has acquired CardGameDB.com, an independent website dedicated to deck-building in FFG’s living card games. All of the website’s tools will be integrated in to FFG’s website. Drew, CardGameDB’s developer, will stay with the project. And all existing data will be preserved when the transition takes place in early 2014.

New Products

For the fans in the audience, the new product announcements were the most anticipated part of the presentation…

For Descent, FFG will be releasing The Trollfens, an expansion with new rumors and a mini campaign, and Lieutenant Packs. The latter will be individual plastic miniatures in the $9-14 range. Each miniature, however, will also come with a selection of Evil Plot Cards, material from which the overlord can choose in order to customize a game.

FFG’s Diskwars game will return as a Warhammer product in December. Warhammer: Diskwars was actually the first idea that Christian Petersen pitched to Games Workshop many years ago, before their licensing arrangement.

The next products in the Star Wars RPG line are Beyond the Rim, an adventure, Enter the Unknown, a sourcebook for explorers, and print-on-demand Specialization Decks, reference cards with specialization tree information.

Eldritch Horror, a “sister game” to Arkham Horror but presenting a “global experience”, will ship in December.

Fantasy Flight is bringing back BattleLore with a new Runebound theme. The rules will be slightly updated, though the game will maintain the same left-center-right and command-card mechanics of the Commands & Colors system. Changes include a fog-of-war element in setup and more objective-based victory conditions. Those pesky banners will be gone from the new edition. And instead of defining specific scenarios like the previous version, BattleLore 2nd Edition will include a scenario generator and rules for army-building.

Several developments are underway for the Lord of the Rings Card Game. Game modes being incorporated in to all new adventure packs are meant to provide better experiences at different levels of play. There will be an easy mode for new players. And separately sold $7 Nightmare Decks will give advanced players new challenges with old adventures. Additionally, while past releases introduced new stories to Tolkien’s Middle Earth setting, future products will give people the opportunity to play out the original adventures from the books. These Saga Expansions will also feature campaign play.

For the X-Wing Miniatures Game, FFG announced the addition of larger ships to the line, starting with the Rebel Transport and the Tantive IV Blockade Runner. Priced at $60 and $90, respectively, their arrival in early 2014 will usher in a new Epic tournament format to accommodate the larger sizes and higher point values.

And finally, FFG is planning the rerelease of Blue Moon. With all the previous products in a single box, they’re calling it Blue Moon Legends.

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Toy Fair 2013 Logo

Playroom Entertainment recently delivered the super-sized, all-inclusive Killer Bunnies Deluxe Edition. Next up for the company’s perennial best-selling line is Killer Bunnies: Heroes vs. Villains, a comic book superhero themed set. In comparison to previous Killer Bunnies games, the victory conditions for Heroes vs. Villains will be significantly less random. No more collecting carrots. The winner is the first player to collect four bunnies in the Bunny Circle and four cities in the City Circle.

Killer Bunnies Heroes vs. Villains

But of course there will be more to Playroom in 2013 than just Killer Bunnies. Shipping in the second quarter will be two games based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings books. And later in the year, we’ll see three games celebrating the 50th anniversary of Puff the Magic Dragon.

Previously published by Fantasy Flight Games, The Hobbit Board Game is a family adventure and activity board game. As players move around the board, they must answer riddles and recite poetry to collect jewels, which are needed to defeat the dragon.

A new Lord of the Rings Card Game requires players to assemble groups of characters (i.e., collect their cards) in order to attack enemies with matching colors. Victory points are earned for each bad guy defeated.

Puff the Magic Dragon Board Game is for ages 3+ and cooperative—everyone plays Jackie Paper. The players’ goal is to collect a set number of gifts and deliver them to Puff before he’s moved through the eight verses of his song. On their turns, players can move either forwards or backwards the number they’ve spun on the spinner.

The Puff the Magic Dragon Sing Along Memory Game and Puff the Magic Dragon Land of Honalee Card Game are both matching games. The first involves matching song lyrics in order. The second is a cooperative game with pictures.

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