You should buy this game for the presentation itself.

Onitama is nearly here and Asmodee is looking for beta testers

iOS, Android •

If you haven’t played Onitama from Arcane Wonders, you’re really in for a treat when the game lands on iOS and Android later this year. I’m not much of an abstract fan, but I fell in love with Onitama when I played it at Gen Con and can’t wait for Asmodee Digital to bring it to all my touchscreens. From the sound of it, we won’t have long to wait.

Onitama is a simple 2-player abstract in which each player has five pieces consisting of four students and one master. The goal is to either capture your opponent’s master or manage to move your master across the board and occupy your enemy master’s starting space. There are 16 “move” cards and for each game you will draw two for each player and then one more that is placed next to the board. The other 11 Move cards are placed back into the box, never to be heard from again.

Each turn a player will play one of his two Move cards, performing the move shown on the card, and then switching it with the Move card next to the board. Thus, each time you make a move you’re giving your Move card to your opponent.

That’s it. Each game takes about 10 minutes to play and then you can start up with all new Move cards, making each game a little different. It’s a fantastic little game that will make your brain hurt, but short enough that the pain is fleeting.

Earlier today, Asmodee Digital tweeted that they’re looking for iOS and Android beta testers to help get the mobile version of Onitama on the App Store.

No other information, but we can assume that a full release is close if they’re opening up the beta to plebs like you and me [Dave’s the only pleb I see around here -ed.]. If you want to sign up for the beta, head over here. You’ll have to sign in with your Asmodee account (you have one of those, right?) and then head to the beta test tab on the left side of the screen. Enter your device and information and, voilà, you’re in! Even more interesting is the fact that you can also sign up for the XenoShyft 2.0 beta. Not only didn’t I know that Asmodee had taken over XenoShyft from Cool Mini or Not, but the Dreadmire expansion content is coming at some point. Make that two betas entered.

[We know Dave botched the game explanation above–big surprise–so we’ve included the Watch It Played video demonstrating how the game works. Enjoy! -ed.]

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Notable Replies

  1. js619 says:

    Says no keys available for the beta test… must’ve gotten there too late. Serves me right for not paying attention to anyone but @Neumannium on Twitter…

  2. Jules says:

    If you own an Android phone:

    Base game is free with a few move cards.
    There are 2 skins for 0.99 each.
    Or buy a bundle with those 2 skins and 16 sensei’s path cards for 1.99.
    You can add Friends and invite them. Create games with turns from 15 mins to 48h. I dont know if it’s a-sync. With 48h-turns I would say it is, but I dont know what happens when you close the app and/or if there will be any notifications when it’s your turn.
    There is an ELO ranking system and ingame chat. First impressions are good.

  3. Seriously, “-ed.” is just hurtful sometimes.

  4. Well, it said I’d get an invite via TestFlight and I’ve not gotten anything yet…so, maybe we were both too late.

    Following me on Twitter is a good way to fall behind…

  5. If I ever figure out who’s doing that, there’ll be hell to pay.

  6. I think he should be taken out and flogged.

  7. I’ve got my beta test copy, so if anyone wants to try out the 48hour time, let me know.

    Edit: looks like a chess style timer, so 48 hours total per player I suspect

  8. I’m in beta as well.

    I have no idea how to add someone to my friends list. It says I can do that from their profile, but I can’t figure out how to view someone’s profile. You can enter text into a search field, but I think that only filters your existing friends list (which is currently empty). I saw Snotty post in the chat last night, but I couldn’t tap on that to view his profile.

    Has anyone figured this out?

  9. Jules says:

    You can only and Friends when they are also online.
    Click on their name in the chat menu. Then there is an icon in the top to and them. They dont have to accept. And when they are online you can challenge them.
    With 48h turns it is kinda a-sync. You get an notification if it’s your turn. When an opponent times out the AI should take over, but that part is still bugged.

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