Meople News: Cryptic Samurai

Plaid Hat Games

Do you sometimes wake up and think: What this world needs are more giant samurai robots fighting in space? Yeah, me neither, but as a game it could be fun. We’ll know for sure when Starship Samurai is released, the new game by Isaac Vega (Dead of Winter,…). You might think that once giant robot space samurai are a thing those are the only way to win, but in Starship Samurai you have a second option. If you convince enough of the minor samurai clans to support your claim to the throne, that might also be enough. “An area control game with robot samurai with different powers” is not much to go by, but knowing Plaid Hat Games there’ll be more in-depth previews soon.

Restoration Games

Nostalgia makes everything look better. Even, or maybe especially, those games you may have played as a kid, with huge plastic bits on the boards that your guys moved around on, and sometimes boulders roll down the mountain, or stairs, or whatever, and knock them over. Nostalgia makes those games appear awesome when really they were just roll-and-move games with bells and whistles. It’s lucky for us that Restoration Games are not kickstarting a new edition of Fireball Island that plays just like the original. Fireball Island: The Curse of Vul-Kar is a modernization, with all the good bits intact but more depth and player agency added to the mix. A perfect mix of nostalgia and fun.

LudiCreations

Economic worker placement game Crisis by LudiCreations is back on Kickstarter. There’s a new reprint of the Deluxe edition to be had if you missed the first Kickstarter. More importantly, there is the first expansion The New Economy. This one will be a small expansion with fifteen new company cards. They are designed to replace cards from the base game, and since you don’t use them all at once there’ll be many different combinations to try out. Bigger expansion are in playtest at the moment, so keep your eyes open for more Crisis soon.

Road to Infamy Games

Crypt (Road to Infamy Games)
Crypt (Road to Infamy Games)

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: games don’t have to be huge, long strategy monsters to be fun. A quick game with clever mechanisms can be just as much fun, and you’ll find more opportunities to play it. Crypt is one of those games. Crypt players are in the graverobbing business. But they don’t have to get their own hands dirty. That’s what minions are for. Those come in the form of dice you can turn to any face you like and send them a-plundering. But the higher you turn them the higher is the chance they’ll quit their job in exhaustion afterwards. With the loot from the crypts you make sets to pawn off to collectors. Collector cards give you points and special abilities and are, ultimately, what makes you win the game. That’s all there is, but with those compact rules Crypt gives you many tough decisions to make.

Deep Water Games / Blue Cocker Games

Even old mechanisms like Roll & Write games have new games in them yet. Okay, so Welcome To … is not strictly a Roll & Write game because you have cards instead of dice. Cards to build a better neighbourhood with than your opponents. But you all use the same cards. Three cards are drawn every turn and all players pick one of them and write its value on their player sheet. Whoever arranges them in the most valuable way has a good chance to win, although the objectives you complete on the way also play a role. With all players arranging the same elements in different ways Welcome To… has a Take It Easy vibe mixed in with its Draw & Write, and that combination does sound appealing.

Snakebit Games

We don’t often write about word games, but sometimes one pops up that we don’t want to skip. Wordoboros mixes the classic “build a word from letters” with some tactical card use and a bit of magic. Your main business is to collect letters by landing on the right spaces and make words from them. But inbetween you can help yourself or hinder your opponents with magic spells and player powers, and you get quests to complete. All that sounds really good, plus I couldn’t resist the description as a Word & Sorcery game.

Our photo of the week this week was taken in the Tsingy de Bemaraha nature reserve on Madagascar. Beautiful, isn’t it? The photo was taken by Marco Zanferrari. Thanks for sharing, Marco! (Tsingy Tsingy, Marco Zanferrari, CC-BY-SA, resized and cropped)