Running a kingdom, especially one of the Cutthroat Kingdoms, doesn’t come cheap. The Jeweler in the latest preview on Alderac’s Facebook page helps deal with that problem, and the Bazaar helps you acquire the gems he sells.
Plaid Hat Games
We’re entering the second round of Crystal Clans previews with another look at the necromantic Skull Clan. That they can bring back dead cards from the discard pile is already a powerful ability, but with the Raise the Dead power that some of their units have it becomes truly terrifying. Suddenly those reanimated fighters don’t appear at your opponent’s stronghold but right on the front line, shifting the balance of power in an instant.
Spiel des Jahres winners get expansions, it’s pretty much a given at this point. The Isle of Skye expansion doesn’t come as a surprise, but we’re still glad to see it. Isle of Skye: Wanderer will add for important characters to the game to aid you in your quest for victory points. Warrior, Merchant and Herald can be found on the new player board where each of them has their own progress track that unlocks new ways to fame and fortune. To advance there they need the fourth character, the Wanderer from the title. Starting from your castle he wanders the land to gather whisky barrels, scrolls, and the other icons you’re familiar with from the base game, and those pay for the advancement. This expansion falls into “all new game mechanics” territory, it’s certainly not just more of the same.
There’s a final expansion module to present in Cities of Splendor and it’s going to send you on your furthest travel of the four. The Orient adds three new stacks of development card to put alongside the original three. They work the same as plain, old developments, only not quite. You will see new bonuses from these cards, like the Jewel Bag that gives you another bonus of a type you already have, or sometimes even the option to pick another development card, straight away and for free. There are also new ideas in how you pay for these developments. Some of the new developments you pay by discarding other developments – not too useful early in the game, but a great way to score some more points just before the game ends.
After the player boards Quined Games continue their Agra previews with the main board. Still no word how the game will be played, but the board gives another indication that it’ll be quite an intricate game. The board is also another beautiful example of Michael Menzel’s work. Just looking at it makes me want to start playing.
Indie Boards and Cards
It’s been a long time since we’ve had anything new to report about Flash Point: Fire Rescue, the cooperative game about heroic firefighters saving lives. But there’s a new expansion on Kickstarter right now, and it seems to be aimed at Flash Point pros. Flash Point: Tragic Events takes away the Hot Spot rule for experienced players from the base game and replaces it with two decks of cards. One changes specifically how the fire behaves based on the cards that come up, the other adds all kinds of other events, some beneficial for the firefighters, others not so much. Because nothing ever goes according to plan.
Rio Grande Games
Didn’t someone say the previous Dominion expansion was the final one? Well, I’m not going to complain because Dominion: Nocturne sounds interesting. The 33 new Kingdom cards will bring forth the creatures of the night: Vampires, werewolves, living statues and the like. This change of direction towards more sinister, Gothic fantasy makes me want to play Dominion again.
Z-Man Games / Hans im Glück
Last week we wondered what the Guardhouse in Majesty: For the Realm was supposed to defend against. This week’s preview has the answer. The Barracks have the Attack sign to match the Guardhouse’s Defend one. It’s safe to assume that some level of negative player interaction will be part of this game.
Working for the T.I.M.E. Agency never gets boring. You’ve just returned from beautiful, medieval Spain in Lumen Fidei when your next mission is ready to go. Codenamed Estrella Drive, it will take you to Hollywood, California, 1982. And to bring some variety to your work you’re not supposed to put an end to a time anomaly this time. Just observe it and see what makes it tick. What will make this mission interesting is the exact nature of the anomaly: A suspected time loop that the locals who don’t understand temporal physics understand as a haunting. Promises to be interesting, doesn’t it?