iOS, Android • If you’re not aware, there are two [actually three, you dolt -ed.] different Spiel des Jahres awards each year. One for a ‘family’ game that tends to be a little lighter than I prefer, and the other is the Kennerspiel des Jahres which awards more complex titles. Considering that my tastes run in the Vital Lacerda/Martin Wallace/18xx vein, these games tend to still be on the light side for me, but I still try to at least give them a go once or twice. Two years ago the award was won by Isle of Skye and it remains one of the few KSdJ winners that I’ve never played. In fact my only contact with the game came at Gen Con in 2016 when I was working the BGG Game Room and had people returning it to the library. As a rule I would be told two things about the game: it was great and the printing was really, really small and hard to read. Well, now Digidiced and Asmodee Digital have teamed up to bring it to digital and here’s hoping they blew up that text out so even old farts like me can read it.
Android, PC • The overall reaction when we heard that our overlords at Asmodee Digital were taking over Carcassonne was one of worry. After all, Carcassonne for iOS was the first “real” digital board game and is still one of the best you’ll find on the App Store. Why mess with a good thing? The worriers must all own Apple products, because once you leave the confusing confines of iTunes there’s not a real good version of Carcassonne for you to play anywhere. Sure, there was an Android version, but it couldn’t hold a candle to Coding Monkey’s magnum opus. Asmodee is hoping to fix that with a new version of Carcassonne releasing today for Android and PC.
iOS, Android, Kindle • While those of us in the US were spending Friday sleeping off hangovers, the rest of the world was still hard at work making things. One of those things is of interest to us, a digital port of the board game Metro from Queen Games. While it sells itself as a train-builder circa 1900, don’t be fooled. Metro is about as abstract a title as you can get and bears little resemblance to the Metro that currently runs under the streets of Paris. Still, if you like Tsuro but thought it was a bit too simple, Metro should be right up your alley.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac • For a bit it was looking as if Asmodee Digital was going to corner the entire digital board game market, pushing out more titles than anyone else could possibly manage. DIGIDICED doesn’t seem to be buying into that scenario, and has been just as active with releasing and announcing new board and card games for iOS, Android, and Steam. All but one of their titles, however, have been 2-player Uwe Rosenberg titles, so it’s hard to be surprised by any of their announcements unless, of course, they announce a non-Rosenberg, non-two-player game, which is what happened last night. Their next title will be Isle of Skye, and it’s coming in early 2018.
Tabletop • While board gaming is still a fairly small niche of the hobby world, it’s made up of many smaller niches. Many of those I’ve dabbled in: war games, miniatures, 18xx, smelling like you haven’t showered in three weeks. One group I’ve never participated deals with something called Print-and-Play. These are the crazy people [I only say this because a good friend is one of these people and he’s only slightly not crazy -ed.] who spend a lot of time to handcraft beautiful copies of games released for free and posted on sites like BGG. I haven’t even been one of the lazy ones who just print everything on regular paper and tape it together with Scotch tape. Nothing in this process interested me in until I helped design a Print-and-Play game of my own, and now I think they’re the greatest thing ever. Well, this game is, at least.
Android, PC • Last week the somewhat surprising news broke that Asmodee and Obsidian had joined forces, and that Asmodee would now be publishing Pathfinder Adventures for PC and mobile. The Asmodee surprises keep coming with this week revealing that they’re tackling one of the most beloved digital games out there: Carcassonne.
I’m generally not a big fan of abstract board games and, despite its attempt at theme, Lanterns: The Harvest Festival is an abstract game. That said, it’s a very pretty one and a game that looks like it would be perfect for chilling out on the couch in front of a fire. It’s pretty enough that I plan on giving it a go later today which is completely possible due to it being released this morning for both iOS Universal and Android.