News Bits: 10/8/2012


Lots of stuff happened last week. Here’s a rundown:

Mayfair Games Licenses Official Catan Board
Mayfair Games “leaked” pictures last week of an appealing tile-lock board for Settlers of Catan, and it was officially released on Kickstarter a few days later. The project has already blown past its initial funding goal and some stretch goals. It sits at $65k and counting.

Minion Games Announces Print-on-Demand Card Service
Minion Games announced Drive Thru Cards via Twitter last week, a print-on-demand service for card games. While there isn’t much there now, the service seems like an exciting prospect for game designers (and wannabes). They also put out a call for designers. If this can work, I think it could be a fantastic new avenue for designers and card game lovers.

Game Salute Acquires Clever Mojo Games
In its continuing momentum to become the full-service gaming hub, Game Salute announced last week that it has acquired Clever Mojo Games, including Clever Mojo’s backlist, current, and forthcoming projects. Clever Mojo’s David MacKenzie has been named Chief Springboard Officer at Game Salute.

Days of Wonder Releases Rules for Shadows over Camelot: The Card Game
Erm…I gave everything away in the headline except for the link. So, here’s that. Shadows over Camelot: The Card Game is slated to release at Essen, along with two promo cards.

Game Designers Speak Up

John Kovalic, creator of Munchkin and Dork Tower, gives advice on game design and publishing in his blog post on Dork Tower. I know Munchkin is often reviled in hobby circles nowadays (we board gaming hipsters have moved on to other fare, only to be abandoned once it hits the “mainstream”), but this seems like sound advice to me.

Also, Bellwether Games interviewed Chevee Dodd, designer of GameWright’s Scallywags.

Kickstarters of Note

  • 12 Days: A Christmas-themed trick-taking card game based on “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” The art is beautiful, and the game is designed by James Ernest. $15.
  • Lost Valley: Another reprint from Pandasaurus Games. Pandasaurus seems to be putting Kickstarter projects in the pipeline at an alarming rate, with Tammany Hall and The Great Fire of London yet to be delivered (still projected on time). Still, if this interests you, the game looks pretty good. $55
  • Salmon Run: This game has already passed its funding goal and is swimming toward its first stretch goal. (Check out our preview and interview with the designer.) $36.
  • The Keep: This is for a game storage system rather than a game. It looks pretty cool, but the funding goal seems prohibitive. Still, if you want to contribute, you might be able to make this happen! Various buy-in levels.
  • The Official Settlers of Catan Gaming Board: This is an officially licensed Settlers of Catan tile-locking board. It seems great if you play Catan a lot. (I do not, so my tiles will just have to slip around.) $25.
Completely Unrelated Awesomeness of the Week
XKCD, a webcomic I enjoy and which makes the rounds quickly on Twitter, posted this comic on game design. I’ve always thought Chess was broken…

I'll try anything once, but my favorite games are generally middleweight Euros.

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