iOS, Android, Steam When we think of the “greats” of digital board games, our minds easily think of names like Playdek, CGE, Digidiced, Acram, and even Asmodee. One name that doesn’t come to mind is Dire Wolf, but that’s more our fault than theirs. Not only have they created two extremely beautiful ports for Lanterns: The Harvest Festival and Lotus, but they’re also the digital brains behind Clank! and Clank! In Space!, bringing to life the digital companions for both of those titles as well. Not bad, but 2019 is going to launch them to near the top of that list. This isn’t hyperbole. They just announced a slew of upcoming board game adaptations that are, literally, going to be insta-buys.
iOS, PC Since the day I picked up a Atari 2600 joystick, I’ve never played anything like DUNKYPUNG, the latest game from Missile Cards developer Nathan Meunier. That’s not to say it’s entirely unique or there’s never been another game like DUNKYPUNG, it’s just that these are the type of games I’ve always avoided like the plague. Games which serve up a difficulty that’s so severe only the inhuman can compete just have no allure (with the sole exception of Defender). Yet, for some reason, DUNKYPUNG has its claws in me and has become my time waster of choice.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac I heard about a digital version of Evolution way back when I attended my first Gen Con in Indianapolis a whopping five years ago. I’ve seen it in action at every Gen Con since, and it’s always looked polished and ready for prime-time. I was wrong, apparently, as its release was repeatedly pushed back as North Star Games tried to polish Evolution into the perfect digital board game. Did they succeed? We’ll find out on February 12.
If you only look at the screenshots or trailer you might think that DUNKYPUNG isn’t something we’d normally cover at Stately Play. You’d be right. That said, the developer of DUNKYPUNG is Nathan Meunier, a chap we’ve met before when he released the rather wonderful Missile Cards. You don’t make a game like Missile Cards without a load of game-crafting creativity, so we’re happy to take a look at whatever Nathan drops on the App Store, even if it looks like it might make me mad enough to throw my phone into a wood chipper.
iOS Universal, Android • I’m currently putting together our top five lists for the End of Year Hullabaloo and, while I don’t want to drop any spoilers, you may see Meteorfall pop up once or twice. Just to be clear, I collected those lists before the latest mega-patch dropped, which introduces a new skin, new cards, and new Meteorfall goodness. Say hello to the Queen of Shadows.
iOS, Android • While my gaming desires tend to lean toward heavier fare such as Through the Ages or Twilight Struggle, there’s a warm place in my heart for simple, quick card games. Games that, while sitting at your child’s Holiday Concert and you spot another dad from your game group, can be played without dedicating all your attention, thus lowering the chances of your wife catching you sneaking turns. This is an entirely hypothetical situation, by the way. I’d never play games…who am I kidding? Lost Cities was our School Concert/Play/Sports game of choice but it has been surpassed by a little game that, until November, none of us had played, Morels. [Whoa, big reveal! It’s in the title of the piece you dink -ed.]
iOS, Switch, PC/Mac/Linux • My kids think it’s weird that I enjoy programming games like TIS-100 from Zachtronics (or any Zachtronics game, actually), or Human Resource Machine from Tomorrow Corporation. This is because they think I sit at work all day and write code which is most definitely not what I do. In fact, my “writing code” to “writing boring documentation” ratio is so horrifically skewed to the latter that it shouldn’t be a surprise that I’d leap at the chance to do a little coding without all that legal overhead. 7 Billion Humans is Tomorrow Corporation’s follow-up to the aforementioned Human Resource Machine and it’s been out on Steam and Switch for a couple months. Yesterday, however, it arrived for iOS and now it can be played the way it was meant to be: on a tablet.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac • So, all the voices in my head the last couple days have been talking about one thing, the new game from indie dev Kenny Sun, Twinfold. “Wait, what voices?” you’re probably asking. To that I say, Sandwiches! [we’re not sure when Dave fell and hit his head, but we’re all guessing it was somewhere around the age of 7 -ed.]
iOS • Plague, Inc. was one of the early App Store success stories, eventually pulling in over 100 million downloads. Thus, creator Ndemic Creations is responsible for the wholesale slaughter of trillions of digital humans. They’re basically the Earth equivalent of the people on Eminiar VII. [Deep cut, nerd. Also, the people on Eminiar VII and Vendikar were disintegrated after the computer simulation. Gah, why do I even bother with this guy? -ed.] Having destroyed humanity so many times, Ndemic has shifted their focus. Instead of a global lens, their new game, Rebel, Inc., focuses on a single country and all the fun that comes along with counter insurgency. Yep, it’s a war game, of sorts. There aren’t hexes or counters, but the point of Rebel, Inc. is to quell a post-war insurgency by winning over the hearts and minds of the people.
iOS, Android, PC • I’m not a huge fan of Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer, but that has more to do with bloat than the game itself. I know I’ve mentioned it before, but when a game keeps adding cards and rules and mechanisms, eventually my brain shuts down and I can’t handle it. Sure, I could play Ascension without the expansions, but then the same part of my brain will keep telling me that I’m missing out on “the big picture”. It’s a sickness. That said, I know a lot of you love Ascension, so you’ll be happy to hear that its follow-up, Shards of Infinity from Stoneblade Entertainment, is coming to digital next year. You’ll also be happy to hear who’s behind the port. No, it’s not the Ascension-crafting Playdek. Instead we have Race for the Galaxy upstart, Temple Gates, taking the helm.