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.

Cryptic Nature

Our first game this week is Cryptic Nature from iDventure on  Kickstarter.

Cryptic Nature is a competitive euro-game for 1-4 players where players will track legendary cryptids across Europe and build a wildlife sanctuary from them in an effort to become the most renowned cryptozoologist.

As a cryptozoologist you will travel to different cities and regions in Europe trying to gather evidence of the elusive cryptids you are tracking.  To find a cryptid you will need to reach its particular location on the map with the evidence you have gathered. With enough evidence you can find and claim the cryptid card for yourself but if you can only have some of the required evidence you can roll the tracking dice to see if you can find the cryptid with a little luck.

You will earn reputation points for finding cryptids and also for managing to settle a creature into the wildlife sanctuary. The sanctuary is built collectively by the players during the game. They will place terrain tiles of either forests, mountains or water into the sanctuary to build a habitat for different cryptids. To settle a new cryptid into the sanctuary you will need to place the cryptid polyomino tile (a Tetris style shape) onto terrain suitable for that cryptid. Some cryptids will grant “when relocated” bonuses when they are moved into the sanctuary.

Outside of finding and settling cryptids into the sanctuary you can further your reputation as a cryptozoologist by completing private and public contracts and by fulfilling special requests of a city to relocate cryptids there rather than to the sanctuary. At the end of the game the player with the highest reputation will become the most renowned cryptozoologist and win the game!

The Cryptic Nature base game will be available for $45 at the first pledge level which also includes a Kickstarter exclusive mini-expansion and any unlocked stretch goals.  For $81 you can get the game and the Flora and Islands expansions which almost double the amount of available cryptids in the game. A deluxe all-in pledge is also available for $130 and includes the game, expansions, metal coins, upgrades wooden components and a hardcover art book featuring high quality art of 76 different cryptids.

If you are ready to make a pledge for Cryptic Nature, track down the Kickstarter campaign before it ends on February 21, 2024.

Among Cultists

Next up we have Among Cultists on Kickstarter from Godot Games.

Among Cultists is a murder mystery thriller board game for 4 to 8 players. Among Cultists was originally funded on Kickstarter in 2023 so this new campaign features a reprint of the original game and a new expansion “Under the Surface ”. In the game players will play one of several investigators for a secret society or secret cultist working against the investigators. The investigators must work together to disrupt the dark ritual of a group of cultists – some of whom are posing as investigators. If the investigators can expose and eliminate all the cultists in time or collect enough victory points they will win. The cultists on the other hand will be attempting to eliminate the investigators or sabotage them to prevent the investigators from collecting the needed victory points.

The game takes place in an old university where the characters will be moving through the various rooms in the university attempting to find eldritch books to thwart the cultists’ ritual. Moving through the hallways among potential cultists is dangerous though. When in the same location as another character you secretly exchange cards giving a cultist the chance to murder an investigator they encounter. Yes you can be murdered in the game but thankfully they have done away with player elimination in this game. If killed you can continue to play as a ghost and for the most part you will be taking the same actions as if your character were alive.

Among Cultists is a more complex kind of social deduction game and it is  full of markers, cards, and tokens giving it much more the feel of a board game then something like Werewolf. The new expansion for this campaign “Under the Surface” features a new double sided game board and is set in the Antarctic. A mind controlling monster dwells somewhere under the ice and the creature must be located to ensure it cannot escape its frozen prison.

If you were a backer of the original campaign you can opt just to get the new expansion on its own for the discounted price of $31. The next pledge level is for new backers and includes the reprinted core game and any unlocked stretch goals for $54. The all-in pledge level is available for $135 and includes the core game 2 prior expansions (Mountains of Chaos and Down into the Abyss) and the new expansion.

The campaign for Among Cultists will end on February 16, 2024, so be sure to make your pledge before then.

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.

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