Archive for April, 2007

Origins Awards nominees announced for 2007

Sunday, April 29th, 2007

Though underannounced and hard to find (as usual), the 2007 Origins Awards top nominees are decided. ‘Tis an interesting batch this year, with many expected titles (Ptolus was a no-brainer), and some surprises as well (Shear Panic? Really? Huh). The list also contains a few endangered or extinct products, such as Paizo’s Dragon Magazine and the defunct MSM publication Games Quarterly Magazine. Click below for the full list of nominees.
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GTS: A report from the floor

Friday, April 27th, 2007

That title sounds like someone collapsed, doesn’t it? But no, Lee Valentine of Veritas Games Company did not falter under the weighty task of reporting on the GAMA Trade Show 2007 (while staffing the Veritas Games booth simultaneously!), and has provided OgreCave with a lengthy overview of this year’s show. Please direct your comments to the thread already in progress, and remember, kids: it’s not OgreCave unless there’s a beverage recommendation.

Select droplets from the GTS news trickle

Wednesday, April 25th, 2007

Yeah, it doesn’t look like much of anyone has a well-oiled journalism machine in operation at GAMA this year. GR (which does not mean Green Ronin) has some stuff, here’s some annotated-for-your-convenience highlights and extra bits:

New TITAN. Yes, that one. These folks are bringing it but nothing’s on the site yet.

Pokemon CMG. Make it stop.

Pinnacle‘s doing a hallelujah NON-collectible pre-painted plastic minis game called Slaughter Gulch. (Also a Pirates of the Spanish Main RPG in May, which I hadn’t heard.)

CCGs for 24 and Stargate SG-1, *yawn* huzzah.

The third- and fourth-place distribution firms, Premier and Centurion, are merging, which is actually kind of a big deal, and maybe not altogether a good one for retailers. The combined company will operate under the Premier name.

Fantasy Flight announces 2007 releases at GTS

Wednesday, April 25th, 2007

Timed to reflect news from GTS, Fantasy Flight has announced (most of) the rest of its planned releases for 2007. Note the Mutant Chronicles CMG teaser predicting a September release, the StarCraft boardgame due in August (big GenCon title, no doubt), and Descent: The Road to Legend which will add campaign rules to the game.

Dragonlance license not renewed to Margaret Weis Productions

Wednesday, April 25th, 2007

Rumored at GTS yesterday, this post by Margaret Weis at Dragonlance.com (copied below) confirms that Wizards of the Coast has not renewed the Dragonlance RPG license that was with Margaret Weis Productions. As Weis mentions in her statement, her company “will be releasing new Dragonlance RPG product through the end of this year and then will step back from our association with Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro.” Weis went on to mention a new world being developed with Tracy Hickman (also of Dragonlance fame) called Dragonships of the Vindras, which will be a new game complimented by novels through Tor Books. Like Paizo, which just lost Dragon and Dungeon, Margaret Weis Productions seems to be maximizing its bonuses for the best possible saving throw in its upcoming post-WotC license era. We’ll see how it turns out for them.
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Green Ronin takes over A Song Of Ice And Fire RPG duties

Tuesday, April 24th, 2007

Mind you, they won’t be taking over the version that Guardians of Order did; they’re doing a new one. Targeted for 2008. Awesome quote: George R.R. Martin says in the release that “[t]here were days I felt like Scarlett O’Hara at the Twelve Oaks barbeque” when the RPG rights were back in play. Hot.

Audio Report: we have explosive!

Sunday, April 22nd, 2007

Just in time for GTS, listen to our talk on the final – like, really final – aftermath of Games Expo. And on the Endgame Minicon, the naval-miniatures boomlet and lots of other fun stuff. As always, join us if you haven’t.

Dragon and Dungeon Magazines will return to Wizards, go electronic only

Thursday, April 19th, 2007

Rumored for a while now, today it was officially announced that Paizo Publishing will no longer be publishing Dragon Magazine or its sister magazine, Dungeon. This doesn’t seem to be by Paizo’s choice, as Wizards of the Coast jointly announced the conclusion of Paizo’s license to publish the magazines – seems that Hasbro-owned WotC is looking to drink more deeply of the PDF market. In the press release (copied below), Scott Rouse, Senior Brand Manager of Dungeons & Dragons at WotC stated “Today the internet is where people go to get this kind of information. By moving to an online model we are using a delivery system that broadens our reach to fans around the world.” Readers that liked having the magazines in hand rather than being forced to a computer screen may disagree, especially those who recently resubscribed. Paizo is offering multiple transition options to subscribers with issues remaining after the final issues in September (Dragon #359 and Dungeon #150), including the option of signing on for Pathfinder, “a new monthly 96-page perfect-bound, OGL-compatible, full-color softcover Adventure Path book printed on high-quality paper for use with the world’s most popular roleplaying game.” Personally, I just received the May ’07 issue of Dragon today, and it contains a “Last issue. Resubscribe!” announcement bundled with it. Either Paizo got caught off guard with this, or someone forgot to notify the shipping department.
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They also announced Rocketmen! (sound of crickets)

Monday, April 16th, 2007

Okay, so Allan beat me to the post. Savor the flavor, hotshot. But anyway: Xbox Livers and PS3 owners (all twelve of them) will be getting this tweaked-up Rocketmen game in the fall. No word on whether it’ll have some kind of collectible-sales aspect, probably because no one cares. Me, I always thought the strongest and least-exploited part of Rocketmen‘s IP was the character designs, and it looks like this game’s a lot more about that. So hey.

Talisman making the leap to consoles, PC

Monday, April 16th, 2007

The classic Games Workshop fantasy boardgameTalisman, for which countless gamers are quite willing to shell out for each new edition, is headed for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PCs. From the Capcom announcement (also copied below), it looks like additional adventure cards, characters, and alternate endings (achieved by cards in the original boardgame) will be offered as downloadable extras. I still say GW nailed Talisman with the second edition way back in 1985 (and ebay prices seem to agree). However, if uninitiated gamers of the electronic era can get a taste of the “magical quest” boardgame that so many game designers still try to imitate, I’m all for it. The Capcom version is scheduled for a Winter ’07 release. As for the completists out there, or the curious newbies, GW has 4th edition slated for release this October, guys.
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True Dungeon info for 2007

Tuesday, April 10th, 2007

While we still wonder if a spin-off location for True Dungeon will come to light now that Gen Con SoCal is no more, we at least have information on this fall’s general True Dungeon plan at Gen Con Indy. Company Director Jeff Martin’s update (below) mentions larger encounter areas, hooded LED necklace lights for each player, better looking treasure tokens, a proper and “final” arrangement of 5.1 surround sound for each encounter area, and dedicated GMs for each area. All the improvements, the loss of Gen Con SoCal, and the event’s failure to cover costs last year were mentioned as justification for the increased price of $39 per ticket. True Dungeon tickets will go on sale May 7 at GenCon.com.
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Games Quarterly sold, MSM shuts down

Monday, April 9th, 2007

As we mentioned in a recent Audio Report episode, it was plainly apparent that Games Expo, the trade show produced by Matthews Simmons Marketing, came up short in achieving its goals. What we didn’t expect was Friday’s announcement (below) of MSM closing down and the sale of Games Quarterly Catalog to two individuals already associated with the publication. In the press release, Mark Simmons states “the closure was forced by mounting bad accounts receivable through the past eighteen months and recent losses due to the launch of Games Expo 2007.” In addition, Games Quarterly Magazine, a much smaller product, has been discontinued, and the future of National Games Week (which never seemed to take off out here near SF) is in question. We’ll have plenty more to say about the fall of MSM in an upcoming podcast.
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Uncivilized goblins attack in May; Knizia on Nintendo DS in the fall?

Sunday, April 1st, 2007

Savvy readers will recall “The Goblin Game”, now titled Uncivilized: The Goblin Game and hitting public beta in about another month. Promo materials for Uncivilized name all four factions in the game (the League of Tyrants has a snazzy recruiting poster), and a few words about the world: “familiar fantasy races and monsters with a gobliny twist – elves are foppish, trolls are pimpish, dwarves are bikerish[...]” Um, trolls are pimpish? Something tells me that isn’t going to end well for our friend WotC.

Also! At the GameStorm convention here in Portland where he was guest of honor this past weekend, Reiner Knizia announced that he has completed a game design for the Nintendo DS handheld platform. He added that he has seen the completed game, so he guesses at a fall release but that’s only a guess. No, he didn’t say anything else about it, except that his name will indeed be on the cover of the box.