Archive for January, 2004

More goofy **** from Hasbro

Tuesday, January 13th, 2004

Hey, because if we combine Shadowrun Duels with Z-G, that ought to go over: XEVOZ is not just a metal band from 1979 but a new collectible action-figure-parts game from Hasbro, for the 6-and-up set. From the nicely done demo, it looks to basically be a simple dice game using figures as a score track. GR seems to have . Ooh, the loading widget on the XEVOZ page Flash applet goes all the way to 101%, so I guess they have some advanced technology after all.

APE brings Big Top, Anathema

Monday, January 12th, 2004

APE Games has finally released two card game titles I’ve been waiting to have a look at: Anathema and Big Top. Of the two titles, Anathema is obviously the darker, themed around the Salem Witch Trials. Illustrated by Drew Tucker, whose murky, brooding works in Magic and Jyhad are widely recognized, Anathema pits 2-4 players against each other as they try to capture cards. Big Top lets players act as circus owners, investing in up-and-coming acts and making sure the show goes on. These cards are illustrated by Alessandra Cimatoribus (of Torres fame), having a distinctly non-“burn-them-at-the-stake” look to them. Both full-color games are based on classic, time-proven card games, so playability shouldn’t be a problem. Anathema carries a pricetag of $11.95, while Big Top is a bit more at $19.95.

OgreCave Reviews: Deathtrap Dungeon

Monday, January 12th, 2004

Demian has brought us his analysis of Deathtrap Dungeon from Myriador Ltd. So how did the classic Fighting Fantasy gamebook turn out when translated to the d20 System? Have a read and find out.

Carcassonne: The Castle Playtest Report

Thursday, January 8th, 2004

I admit that our newest poll is more cryptic than usual, particularly if you aren’t already a fan of the Carcassonne franchise. Carcassonne is now large enough in Europe to challenge the hegemony of the last big megahit, everyone’s favorite settlers from a little spot called Catan. More to the immediate point, it is now getting remixes from superstars: namely, this new two-player design from Reiner Knizia.
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Counterassault for MechWarrior hits streets

Thursday, January 8th, 2004

The newest Mechwarrior: Dark Age expansion, Counterassault, has hit stores (see the full release below), though I can’t say I’ve heard much about it yet. The “positive heat effects” certainly sound interesting though, as something that could change MW’s overall gameplay. One of my local stores has an extremely active MW league and can’t keep each expansion in stock; others hardly sell any of the game. As with any collectible game, seems it’s all about building the community to sell it, and supporting that community. That, and the “first taste’s free” approach.
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Topps shows great results with Juicy Drop Pop, not so much with WizKids

Wednesday, January 7th, 2004

The publicly traded Topps Company reported disappointing results from WizKids for the third quarter of the 2004 fiscal year; the division lost $3 million largely as a result of Creepy Freaks. A loss that focused is certainly fixable, although if their idea of a fix is SportsClix, well, we’ll have to see how that goes. We here at the Cave believe that Creepy Freaks is not really the crux of the trouble with WizKids, but for more on that, you’ll have to wait for our upcoming feature on 2003 Products That Mattered in the Game Industry.

Green Ronin in 2004

Wednesday, January 7th, 2004

In Green Ronin‘s annual state of the union address, company president Chris Pramas looked ahead toward plans for the new year. Citing a theme of “diversity,” Pramas mentioned several highlights on the schedule for 2004, including a card game and board game that have yet to be revealed fully. Naturally, expanded support for Mutants & Masterminds is in the works, and the system will take on the Red Star comic license, which was a surprise revealed in time for Gen Con SoCal. The Advanced d20 Rulebooks and an OGL game of “romantic fantasy” called Blue Rose were also mentioned as parts Green Ronin’s grand plan. Click the link below to see the full press release.
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Much Ado About Foglios

Monday, January 5th, 2004

Through the help of a tipster, we learn what Studio Foglio is up to. Apparently, in an update sent to the Girl Genius Yahoo group, Phil and Kaja Foglio let fans know that the recent decision by WizKids to close its new publishing department would not affect plans to continue the comic series. WizKids had been planning to publish the series, which has inspired a card game using the Xxxenophile game mechanic. The rights to publish the series have been returned to Studio Foglio, and the next issue (#11) will release in April, to the cheers of all assembled. The full update from the Girl Genius group is below.
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Cheapass expects you to talk, die

Friday, January 2nd, 2004

It’s on: Cheapass will be reprinting the classic Before I Kill You, Mister Bond with a new title. They just don’t know what that title will be, which is where you come in. Come up with a good name and you might win a year’s supply of new Cheapass stuff. Come up with a series of mediocre puns, like I’m doing (“Terminally Spy,” anyone?), and you will get nothing.

WotC and Pokémon settle lawsuit

Friday, January 2nd, 2004

Apparently, continued pursuit of legal proceedings weren’t necessary for Wizards of the Coast and Pokémon USA. The two companies have agreed to settle things out of court after WotC charged two former employees of revealing trade secrets to their new employer, Pokémon. No details have been revealed, and likely never will be. With any luck, no further Pokémon products will be revealed either. I can dream, can’t I?