iOS, Android, PC/Mac • A few years ago, Upper Deck leaped onto the board game scene with a deck-builder set in the Marvel universe. It was called Legendary, and since then has taken on so many different IPs that it’s nearly impossible to name them all. Luckily, we don’t have to name them because the digital version of Legendary is right around the corner and instead of using one of the existing IPs, the digital version will have a new fantasy theme tacked on. Considering how much everyone seems to love Marvel everything, I might be the only person on Earth excited by this change of scenery.
PC/Mac/Linux, iOS (coming in 2017) • As a kid I had no use for the Old West. Immersed in things like D&D, Tolkien, and Dragonlance, the Old West seemed like a boring, dusty place filled with images and stories that just didn’t push my buttons. As an adult, I stumbled onto the Deadlands RPG, and all the possibilities and adventure of the Old West suddenly made sense to me. These days, my favorite TV show of all time is Deadwood and I didn’t miss an episode of last year’s Westworld. Thus, when I heard about West of Loathing, I was excited. An RPG set in the untamed West that would, eventually, be coming to iOS? Sign me up! Then I saw the screenshots, and had to wonder what the hell was going on.
iPad, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • Faeria is one of the many games on my “must play” list that I never seem to get around to actually playing. The combined CCG and tactical board game elements would seem to be my chocolate and peanut butter but, alas, Race for the Galaxy came out and pretty much ruined me for card games until some time in 2019 when I might get a little bored with it. Still, Abrakam, is trying to get me to put RftG aside early by unleashing new expansion content for Faeria. Looking at what’s in the expansion, they might just succeed.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac • Last week Kelsey compared HexWar to Lucy van Pelt with the rest of us taking on the role of Charlie Brown running at the football. Well, let’s just say that the ball has been teed up again, and it’s up to us if we’re going to take the bait. Unfortunately, the football in this case is a pretty great board game from Academy called 1812: The Invasion of Canada, which means I’ll probably end up charging toward the App Store. I’m really hoping I don’t end up on my back this time.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac • I still play Pathfinder Adventures more than a year after it was released, and more than 8 months after any new major content was added. I’m not sure I can say that about many other board games on my iPad. Maybe Galaxy Trucker? Twilight Struggle? Agricola? Those are some of the App Store’s heaviest hitters when it comes to digital board games, so Pathfinder is in good company. I’m only going to be playing more now that the long awaited Rise of the Goblins campaign has gone live.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • This might come as a shock to you, but I have a few board games stowed away in my basement that I have yet to play. Actually, it might be a few dozen. Yep, brand new games, still in shrink wrap, just waiting for someone to come and play with them. My basement is basically the Island of Misfit Toys, but without that creepy Charlie-in-the-box. One of the games that remains unplayed is Eight-Minute Empire by Red Raven Games. I think I picked it up because it’s a 4X-style game that plays in slightly longer than eight minutes, but my wife will tell you I picked it up because I have a mental disorder that forces me to continually buy games. Whatever. Anyway, it’s coming to mobile soon so, while my copy will remain in shrink, I might actually get a chance to play it.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac • One of 2017’s biggest hits around these parts is a little card game called Age of Rivals. With the mixture of card drafting and empire building, it could be seen as a 7 Wonders replacement, particularly since it’s on the App Store and that oft-delayed title has yet to appear. The problem with the comparison, however, is that Age of Rivals is a better game. It’s more complex, requires more strategy, and, dare I say, is just more fun to play.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • “What game had you up so late last night,” my wife asked. I had been up until 1 AM or so, a rare thing is the age of the barbarian-monkey children, aka our seven-year old twin boys. “Predynastic Egypt,” I replied and was quickly greeted with a look of confusion. I explained it was a game set in Egypt, but well before the pyramids. It was a strategy simulation covering two millennia of ancient Egyptian history where you play as a nomadic tribe and grow that tribe, turn by turn, from humble origins toward the ultimate goal of unifying Egypt under your control within 220 turns. “Oooh, I want to play it,” was her immediate response. [Nick’s wife is cooler than my wife. Mine just elbowed me in the back and called me an idiot. -ed.]
iOS Universal, Android, PC/Mac • Yesterday morning I got into a minivan with my family, drove for several hours, and am now trapped in the northern woods of Wisconsin with three unappreciative and sunburnt children. Yay, vacation! Luckily, I found a weak wi-fi signal to log in because today is the day Nomad Games dropped they long awaited gamebook/top-down RPG, Fighting Fantasy Legends. Yes, if you’ve always really wanted to play through the classic gamebook, Warlock of Firetop Mountain, with fancy graphics you’ve been able to do so for quite awhile. Now, you can do it in another app! Just kidding. FFL doesn’t replicate the genius of Tin Man, instead Fighting Fantasy Legends is, to quote John Cleese, something completely different.
iOS, PC/Mac • It’s been a long time since I’ve played a true RPG on my iPad. Sure, there are a ton of games with RPG elements in them–Pathfinder Adventures immediately come to mind–but nothing with the joy of building your characters from scratch and watching them level up while working your way through a well-told story. Thus, I’m pretty excited for West of Loathing. Not only is it a “real” RPG, but it offers a graphic style that sets it apart from anything else I’ve seen on the App Store.