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Kickstart Monday: Deep Regrets and Emerald Skulls

Welcome to Kickstart Monday! This is our weekly series featuring 2 or more crowdfunding projects that have caught our eye. We scour over platforms like Kickstarter, Gamefound, and Indigogo to find projects that interest us.

There are certainly some exciting projects out in crowdfunding land. Let’s take a look at a couple of games that we think you should check out. We have two awesome looking dice games this week so let’s get into it. 

Kickstart Monday: Odalin: Dungeons of Doom and Yield

Welcome to Kickstart Monday! This is our weekly series featuring 2 or more crowdfunding projects that have caught our eye. We scour over platforms like Kickstarter, Gamefound, and Indigogo to find projects that interest us.

There are certainly some exciting projects out in crowdfunding land. Let’s take a look at a couple of games that we think you should check out.

Odalin: Dungeons of Doom

Our first game this week is Odalin: Dungeons of Doom from Dragori Games on Gamefound.

Odalin: Dungeons of Doom is a 1 to 4 player dungeon crawler set in a desert realm of demons and monsters. There are many great options for dungeon crawl board games out there but Odalin has some unique aspects that made it stand out for me. First off, it has some nice built in flexibility in terms of how you can play the game. You can choose between an ongoing campaign or instead play single one-off scenarios. It offers the option to immerse yourself in the lore and make choices that affect the game or just get right into the action and start fighting your way through the dungeon. Of course it also provides a cooperative mode for up to 4 players and a dedicated solo mode.

As many dungeon crawlers do Odalin comes with miniatures for the heroes, monsters and bosses and the design of some of these minis impressed me. One of the hero characters is a heavily armored humanoid elephant with a giant warhammer, which is just too cool. The desert setting lends itself to some uniquely designed miniatures you might not see in a more typical fantasy world. There are humanoid snake enemies, a massive djinn with a flaming sword, giant scarab beetles and a four-armed demonic centaur. 

Another aspect that stood out to me is a card crafting mechanic that lets you customize your heroes unique deck of attack cards. If you manage to subdue one of the dreaded demon lords you gain the power to transform into a demonic form and you can combine a demon’s special attack cards with your hero cards in a sleeve to make a custom attack card for your hero.

Harnessing demonic power is not without its costs though, you will need to manage the corruption that this power brings or risk losing control. Defeating a demon lord is surely not an easy task though as each demon lord has its own unique mechanics making each fight a different and challenging experience.

And as you would expect of a good dungeon crawler the game also provides many options to upgrade your hero to prepare them for these challenges. It features a host of unique items to equip your heroes, including magic items, legendary items and even a set collection mechanic. And who knows what else awaits you in the dungeon? Odalin includes a number of mystery boxes with new and unexpected components for you to discover during your adventures!

Odalin: Dungeons of Doom is available with 3 core pledge levels starting with the Core Box at $129. This pledge gets you the core game (Act I) with 40 miniatures including 4 demon lords, 8 heroes and 28 miniatures for villains and monsters as well as digital rewards. The Expanded Campaign pledge is $219 and adds on an expansion box (Act II)  with 31 additional minis including one huge manticore figure. Finally the Full Immersion pledge comes in at $299 and on top of the expansion adds the Lust and Wrath demon pack (2 large minis), a Scenario pack with 25 miniatures and deluxe dice and player boards. If you feel ready to face the demon lords of Odalin: Dungeons of Doom head over to Gamefound before July 11, 2024, to make a pledge.

Yield

Our second game this week is Yield on Kickstarter from BFF Games.

Yield is a quick playing area control and battle game for 2 to 5 players. The emperor of Oshra has gone mad and 5 powerful families are struggling for dominance in this crisis. Your goal is to strategically guide your family’s army over the land of Oshra to outwit your enemies and conquer fortresses to secure your dynasty. You will play 4 strategy cards in each of 4 seasons to move your armies, set ambushes and conquer and upgrade fortresses. If you find yourself in battle as the result of an ambush or your army positioning, you will reveal your secret army value. The weaker player then has the option to play battle cards that match the territory you are in a bid to increase their strength or yield and retreat with their army to fight another day.

The battle and bidding continues until one player yields! Battles can even happen between multiple players at once! To prevail as the most powerful family you will ultimately need to conquer fortresses which interestingly increase in value each time a fortress is conquered by a new player. At the end three years (rounds) of play the value of all fortresses is counted and the player controlling the most points from fortresses is victorious.

Pledge levels for Yield start with the Yield Kickstarter Edition for $70. This will get you the deluxe kickstarter version of the game and all stretch goals. For $96 you can opt for the Yield Kickstarter Edition + Expansion pledge which adds the “Cousins, Curses and Catapults” expansion. Finally the Yield – All in pledge for $124 gets you the game, the expansion, the Oshra Almanac art and storybook and upgraded tarot size strategy cards. Claim your territory in the land of Oshra by pledging for Yield before July 19, 2024, when the campaign ends.

Kickstart Monday: Ada’s Dream and Apothebakery

Welcome to Kickstart Monday! This is our weekly series featuring 2 or more crowdfunding projects that have caught our eye. We scour over platforms like Kickstarter, Gamefound, and Indigogo to find projects that interest us.

There are certainly some exciting projects out in crowdfunding land. Let’s take a look at a couple of games that we think you should check out.

Ada’s Dream

First up this week we have Ada’s Dream from Alley Cat Games on Kickstarter. 

It’s 1893 and you are one of the assistants of Ada Lovelace. In the reimagined history of Ada’s Dream you are working in her workshop in a pursuit to build the steam powered Analytical Engine, one of the first programmable computers ever made.

The game is a dice drafting euro game for 1 to 4 players. The game board features a rondel where you will draft dice to power your own analytical engine on your player board. The dice you draft also determines you can take on your turn. You will also add gears to your board that can manipulate the values of your dice with addition subtraction and multiplication to adjust your machine’s scoring for the end game.

Outside of the workshop you will travel to universities to give lectures, form partnerships with important historical figures like Charles Babbage. You’ll visit Ada in her study to get punch card programs for your machine to earn bonus points. Once one of the players completes their prototype engine each player will score for their machine, their partnerships, their travel and lectures and all their other accomplishments. Only one assistant will be chosen by Lovelace to complete her project and be the winner!

Check out the different pledge levels available below: 

  • Retail Edition – $57
  • Deluxe Edition – $69 – includes deluxe components, the Great Exhibition expansion and stretch goals
  • Complete Edition – $99 – all deluxe edition items plus a neoprene playmat and metal coins

The campaign for Ada’s Dream will conclude on July 3, 2024, so you will need to select your pledge before then. 

Apothebakery

Our second game this week is Apothebakery on Kickstarter from Lux Lupo games.

In the cute world of Apothebakery, you’ll use alchemy to make delicious treats to heal Adventurers  and cure their maladies. You’ll employ cuddle creatures known as Forries to gather resources for you from the wilderness. Using your foraged ingredients you will use alchemy to produce elixirs. You’ll need to be wary of brewing impure and failed elixirs though, if you don’t purge them from your inventory before the end of the game you’ll lose points!

Hopefully you’ll only be trying to heal adventurers with pure elixirs as impure ones can have unexpected side effects (even death!). Adventures show up with all kinds of problems from rope burn to dragon lacerations and you’ll need the right combination of elixirs to treat them. You need to help them quickly though, if an adventurer dies their vengeful ghost will haunt you using it’s unique ability to cause some havoc. The total reputation each player has earned by helping adventures will determine the winner. 

Here are the pledge tiers for Apothebakery:

  • Deluxe – $53 – premium cards stock, extra thick tokens, scoring dials, custom fabric bags and the micro expansion “Arcane Adventurers”
  • Master Alchemist – $90 – everything from deluxe plus upgraded acrylic and wooden tokens and two additional micro expansions. 

This campaign for Apothebakery is only brewing for a few more days so get to the campaign page before June 28, 2024, to make a pledge. 

Did we miss your favorite project?

Thank you for checking out this week’s Kickstart Monday! If you find these interesting or want some attention on a Kickstarter or other crowdfunded projects that you would like to read more about please share your thoughts with us via our social media or email.

Stay informed when new Kickstart Monday projects come out by following us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and following the #KickstartMonday hashtag. Also, take a look at some of the latest articles from WiscoDice:

My Experience with the Ironside Game Table

The gaming table market has become increasingly competitive over the past five years, with many new options emerging annually, often through Kickstarter campaigns. Despite this, many affordable tables lack variety, especially for those who aren’t fans of wood. As a woodworker, I appreciate wood, but I knew how long it might take me to build the perfect gaming table myself. So, when I stumbled upon the “Project Ironside” Kickstarter by Cloud Puncher Games, I was intrigued by their unique approach of using solid steel construction. It was a leap of faith, but here’s how it turned out.

Assembly

The table arrived in three boxes: one for the frame, one for the topper, and one for the play surface base and mat. Each box was under 60 lbs, making it manageable. Even though the boxes had some dents and tears, the contents were well-protected thanks to excellent packaging. 

Assembling the Ironside Table was straightforward. We opted for the standard 3′ x 5′ play area model, which is designed for easy future expansion. While the company claims a 5-minute assembly time, it realistically took longer without a specialized drill extension. The table’s design ensures ease of assembly, with alignment pegs and pre-drilled holes for all hardware. I did face some challenges fitting the bolts due to the size of my hands, but once tightened, the frame was rock solid.

The middle support system, initially a concern due to its use of circular tubes and foam spacers, proved effective and stable upon full assembly. 

Play Area and Frame

The play area is a standard 3′ x 5′ with a foam rubber base and a smooth cloth cover. The mat is easy to roll out and replace, with various designs available. We chose a simple blue mat that complements the table well. It has a nice spring, making card games easy to play and pick up cards from the surface. This size accommodates most games except the largest ones.

The frame is powder-coated steel, available in various colors. We chose black to match our chairs, and the slightly glossy finish looks great. The legs have rubber feet with screws for easy leveling. The hardwood toppers connect via a tongue and groove system, though they aren’t waterproof, they look nice for the price point.

Accessories

We purchased the base table, a wood topper, and a few accessories: six cup holders, extension legs for the toppers, and a set of components holders. Cloud Puncher Games offers a range of accessories including card holders, bag hooks, rail cushions, and more. Their attachment system uses holes in the table rails, which limits flexibility compared to competitors’ groove rail systems. The accessories are easy to clip in and remove, though I’m concerned about the long-term durability of the plastic cup holder bases.

The cup holders are standard-sized, suitable for regular drink cups but not larger bottles. The metal inserts are dishwasher safe. The component holders are functional but small for those with larger fingers. They are adjustable and can be configured in various shapes.

We also got extra metal legs for the toppers, allowing them to be used as elevated surfaces or short tables. They come with cardboard disks to protect surfaces, though I might add rubber feet for extra protection.

Affordability

Post-Kickstarter, the table is available at https://ironsidegametable.com. The base table retails for around $700 but was on sale for $599 at the time of writing. While not cheap, it’s affordable compared to high-end wooden tables that can cost over $10,000. With a bundle, including toppers and accessories, you can keep the total under $1500.

Customization options include various table sizes, colors, and playmat designs. If you’re budget-conscious or looking for an alternative to traditional wood tables, the Ironside Game Table is worth considering. 

Other Game Table Reviews by WiscoDice:

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Kickstart Monday: Phantom Ink Arcana and DC20

Welcome to Kickstart Monday! This is our weekly series featuring 2 or more crowdfunding projects that have caught our eye. We scour over platforms like Kickstarter, Gamefound, and Indigogo to find projects that interest us.

There are certainly some exciting projects out in crowdfunding land. Let’s take a look at a couple of games that we think you should check out.

Phantom Ink Arcana

Phantom Ink from Resonym is a game we discovered a few years ago while doing a Gen Con preview list. We were intrigued at how this party-style game engaged both the giver of clues for each team and the remaining players of the team could ask the clue giver questions. When we picked up our copy and get it to the table, we were delighted by how good the gameplay is. Whether you are the player giving clues (the spirit player) or are in the remaining players (known as mediums) there is plenty of challenge to this game for all groups.

Where this expansion to Phantom Ink is concerned is the new twists that it will add to gameplay. The addition of arcana cards that can now be played provide new depth to the game. Arcana cards add unique powers for that round of play. When you combine this with a new pad for writing the clues on that allows for disappearing ink, it can be harder for the other team to use your clues to solve the puzzle.

If you are like us and love word games that are party games then you should check out this expansion and pick up the base game while you are at it.

DC20 – A New D20 Role Playing Game

DC20 designed by the Dungeon Coach with much of the content creator community having feedback on this new streamlined D20 RPG system has been seeing a lot of discussion. This is another fantasy RPG system, and there seems to be quite a high number. However, besides being inspired and driven by content creators, this system features several changes that make the system exciting to use.

Two key features that catch our attention are how they handle rolling high on checks and the action point system. Neither of these is new to the world of RPGs, but both are refreshing in a system that uses the D20 dice roll as a key mechanism. Rolling high on checks means you can have different margins of success. In addition, having 4 action points that you can spend during your turn as a player gives you more options. Do you need to push for that extra attack this turn, or do you need to hold onto an action point so that you can react to something your foes do?

If you love collecting new RPGs or are ready to check out a new system with a D20 dice then you should check this project out!

Did we miss your favorite project?

Thank you for checking out this week’s Kickstart Monday! If you find these interesting or want some attention on a Kickstarter or other crowdfunded projects that you would like to read more about please share your thoughts with us via our social media or email.

Stay informed when new Kickstart Monday projects come out by following us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and following the #KickstartMonday hashtag. Also, take a look at some of the latest articles from WiscoDice:

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