Archive for June, 2009

Blood Bowl Now Available for the PC

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

The Games Workshop Ltd. miniatures game Blood Bowl is now available for the PC, Nintendo DS, and Sony PSP.  Wikipedia reports that the portable versions of this game are missing career league play and other functionality that is available in the PC release. For those who can’t wait for their local store to carry this product, a downloadable version is available for purchase for $49.99.

Dominion wins 2009 Spiel des Jahres

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Not content to win the 2009 Origins Award for Best Card Game, Dominion has now also won this year’s Spiel des Jahres. The card game that takes the collectible card game side-activity of card drafting and makes it the game’s central activity is at the height of its popularity right now. The first expansion, Dominion: Intrigue, was shown at Origins this past weekend, and should be in stores soon. I know several gamers who’ve ordered it already – and you probably do, too.

OgreCave reviews – Kung Fu Fighting

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Today we’re joined by Dennis, who provides his take on Kung Fu Fighting by Slugfest Games. This card game is fast becoming a go-to favorite in local gaming circles, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, see what Dennis has to say, and go try it out for yourself. And if his write-up puts you in the mood for other martial arts themed games, don’t forget our Games of the Ninja 2008 feature.

2009 Origins Award winners

Sunday, June 28th, 2009

We’ve known the nominees for a while now, and resisted judging too harshly for having a t-shirt in the “Game Accessory” category. This year’s winners were awarded in a ceremony overseen by James Ernest last night at Origins. A notable winner was the Mouseguard RPG for Best RPG, despite being up against the Dungeons & Dragons Fourth Edition Player’s Handbook and Trail of Cthulhu. (I could say it “eeked” out a win, but then I’d feel ashamed.) Serenity Adventures won for Best RPG Supplement, and Magic: The Gathering – Shards of Alara was named Best CCG Supplement. As many expected, Dominion took the title as Best Card Game, while Pandemic got he nod as Best Board Game. Click below for the full list of nominees and winners.
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Upper Deck Signs Long-Term Deal with Marvel

Friday, June 26th, 2009

Today Upper Deck Entertainment signed a multi-year licensing deal to use characters from the Marvel Universe. Covered products will include trading card games (TCGs), miniature games and trading cards. The agreement also includes rights to develop products based on Marvel’s upcoming films. The first products are expected to be released in January of 2010.

BattleTech’s “Unseen” revealed by Catalyst

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

Catalyst Game Labs is continuing its quest to fulfill BattleTech fans’ every wish by bringing back the out-of-print illustrations for several mech models. The press release has more:

In 1996 numerous images originally licensed from several Japanese anime sources were retired from use within the BattleTech universe. Those illustrations formed the bedrock of the BattleTech 2nd Edition and BattleTech 3rd Edition Box Sets and were generally considered “fan favorites” across the board. These images—such as the Warhammer, Marauder, BattleMaster, Phoenix Hawk and so on—became known as the “unseen.”

After much blood, sweat and tears, Catalyst Game Labs is exceptionally pleased to announce the return of these “unseen” images.

New versions of some of the “Unseen” mechs will show up in upcoming BattleTech books. The return of these image rights will be particularly useful for Catalyst’s BattleTech: 25 Years of Art and Fiction, which is already being previewed here.

Twitter’s got a use after all!

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

I’ll go out on a limb and say that the increasing uptake of Twitter amongst the gaming community is gonna make this season’s con coverage a little easier to generate. I’m not at Origins myself this year – it’s Go Play Northwest for me, starting tomorrow – but the #origins2009 hashtag is already well populated with product pics and general chatter. Need a gander at the Shadowrun 20th Anniversary rulebook? Look, a dude has you covered! Want dozens of “sitting down to play ___” notices? Sure, why not! I’m not sure why Twitter is the right place at the right time, but it’s pretty exciting to see gamers suddenly start using the internet the way we should have been six years ago. I can’t wait for the flood of tweets from Gen Con.

BattleLore: Heroes expansion due this fall from FFG

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

It seems like anytime a BattleLore enthusiast talks about the game these days, they bemoan Days of Wonder not getting around to releasing the Heroes set. Well, today the game’s current publisher Fantasy Flight just announced a release date for BattleLore: Heroes. According to FFG’s website, the expansion will include “10 unique Hero figures, a Rules booklet, 110 Skill, Artifact, and Landmark cards, and much more”. Several previews are planned at the company’s website, and the Cleric is already on display along with the abilities of Riding, Chant, and Herbal Remedy. At a pricetag of $39.95, FFG will release BattleLore: Heroes this fall.

Doctor Who RPG finally arriving this October

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

Early today, Cubicle 7 announced its upcoming Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space RPG has finally chosen when to appear – October 2009. This must mean the company has sucessfully jumped through the BBC’s licensing hoops, and won’t need to go offline again anytime soon. The new game will be a full-color boxed set release (!) drawing upon images from the current TV show. You may begin celebrating, if that is your inclination.

OgreCave reviews – Genji

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

To keep our flow of reviews moving along, we offer Demian’s review of Genji from Z-Man Games. The attractive card game gives players the opportunity to win the hearts of Japanese princesses through poetry – but how much challenge does the game offer? Click through to find out.

The story of raising Hellas

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

Avid roleplaying gamers, prospective game publishers, and anyone even mildly interested in how the wacky tabletop game industry functions should take note of a new column launching today over at RPGnet. Michael Fiegel, creator of the Ninja Burger phenomenon and co-author of Hellas, has begun HELLAS: From Alpha to Omega, a four-episode column detailing the trials and tribulations of publishing the impressive 300-in-space RPG. Fiegel starts his tale in Theogonia, wherein the disastrous Games Expo helps cement a new project. RPGnet will reveal new episodes of the Greek sci-fi game’s story over the next three months. Whether you like the concept of Hellas or not, you owe it to yourself to have a read. (And if you haven’t heard our PAX ’08 Audio Report episode with its Hellas interview, you’d be doing yourself a favor by listening to it now.)

Free RPG Day ’09 is upon us

Saturday, June 20th, 2009

Time to get dressed and head out the door, ‘cuz today is Free RPG Day 2009. As you heard in our recent Gaming News Update interview on the subject, this year’s event has shaped up quite nicely – all that remains is to find a participating store and get yourself there. Let us know how the festivities go in your neck of the woods.

(Oh, and other companies often make special offers of free downloads and such today, so if you spot any, let us all know about those, too.)

FFG’s Warhammer Fantasy goes downloadable

Friday, June 19th, 2009

In case you’ve been fruitlessly searching for the last few Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay supplements to finish your collection, Fantasy Flight Games just began making them available as PDF downloads. The first three books, the Core Rulebook, the Old World Bestiary, and Sigmar’s Heirs, are available on the DriveThruRPG and RPGNow websites as of today, with more to follow “every few weeks throughout the summer, with plans to have more than twenty books available for download”. While it’s good the books “are being updated to incorporate errata, and the PDFs are being generated in an easy-to-use format with handy chapter tabs and searchable text for greater utility”, my hope is for future print releases to include a code for a free electronic copy. It’s not a unique idea, and provides an easy way to add value. I’m just sayin’.

Deadlands, Martians game details updated at Twilight Creations

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

I heard about this from Twilight Creations’ Todd Breitenstein at KublaCon ’09 last month, but this is the first visual evidence I’ve seen of it: Deadlands: The Battle for Slaughter Gulch, a licensed board game of the Weird West for 2-6 players. Due out around August ’09, the game will involve claiming ghost rock, shootouts at high noon, and the walking dead, of course. Part of me wonders how similar this will be to the old Doomtown CCG, which I enjoyed to an extent. The Twilight Creations site also has new images from Martians!!!, which is due out this month (or at least by Origins), so swing by and have a look at all the freshly-revealed goodness.

Mutant Chronicles Movie on Sci Fi Channel

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

The Mutant Chronicles movie is coming to the small screen on the Sci Fi Channel (soon to be the SyFy channel). For those who blinked and missed it, Mutant Chronicles premiered in theaters in April 2009 and its already coming to TV.  That’s gotta be one of the shortest turnarounds from big screen to small screen on record for anything other than an independent film.  The hobby game-inspired movie stars Thomas Jane and co-stars Ron Perlman, John Malkovich, and Devon Aoki. Its first Sci Fi showing is Saturday, June 27 at 9 p.m., followed by a planned repeat on Sunday, June 28 at 6:30 p.m.

The movie’s official site (with trailer) is here.

Matt Forbeck gives a Mutant Chronicles author’s perspective on the film here.

Laptops? We don’t need no stinkin’ laptops

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

Andy Kitkowski at Story Games points out a Japanese tabletop-RPG gamebook and comprehensive play aid for the Nintendo DS. In a kinder universe than this one, we would not have to ask where the hell the iPhone app was for D&D Insider.

Come Out and Play ’09 came and played

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

Another June, and once again, I’m somewhat annoyed that I didn’t get myself out to New York City to participate in Come Out & Play, the annual weekend festival of city-wide games that strike an odd balance between LARP, sport, and flash mob. Sprawling throughout Times Square, Central Park, Brooklyn, and even venturing into Grand Central Station (as you can read in this article), CoaP organized dozens of game events that ranged from board games with live pieces (players, not pigeons) to iPhone-enabled hide-and-seek games and scavenger hunts. Similar to some ARG events or certain LARP events at RopeCon in Finland, CoaP is the sort of event that could be set up in multiple cities nationwide, or worldwide even. If anyone made it out to CoaP this year, let us know how it went in the comments.

Toys R Us wins lawsuit against Amazon

Monday, June 15th, 2009

Toys R Us is in the news again. No, it’s not buying another competitor. This time, the company has won $51 million in its lawsuit against Amazon.com. This comes three years after the early end of the ten year exclusive contract Toys R Us signed with Amazon in 2000, which made Amazon the only online sales venue for certain Toys R Us products. In that supposedly-exclusive partnership, Amazon didn’t remain exclusive on its end, and allowed other companies to sell identical toys, games, and other items through its site (hence the lawsuit). While there’s still talk of appeals, Toys R Us seems to be on the upswing right now.

OgreCave reviews – Shadows Over Filmland

Monday, June 15th, 2009

We’ve been keeping busy around the Cave, and as proof, we have another new review. This time, Lee provides us with his impressions of Shadows Over Filmland, a Trail of Cthulhu supplement from Pelgrane Press. The adventure compilation offers multiple nasty scenarios, but do they merit picking up a copy of the book? Read on to find out, or have a look at the review index for more Cthulhu goodness.

Small World Game Design Contest

Saturday, June 13th, 2009

Days of Wonder has a great contest open to hobby game designers and fans of its new Small World game. From now through July 31, Small World fans are encouraged to submit their best Race and/or Special Power designs to Days of Wonder in the hopes of winning the Grand Prize: round-trip train or airfare; accommodations; and €200 in cash to spend at Essen Spiel ’09 in Germany. The winner will also receive 24 copies of a mini game expansion containing their winning work which will be released at Essen. For more information, visit the Small World contest page.

Battlestar Galactica: The Board Game – Pegasus Expansion announced

Friday, June 12th, 2009

Battlestar Galactica, the popular board game of cautious cooperation/suspicion, is preparing to receive an expansion set. Fantasy Flight is working on the Pegasus Expansion, which will add two new game boards – one for the Battlestar Pegasus, and the other for the planet of New Caprica. The expansion will also add “seven new characters, a new Cylon Locations overlay, two plastic Basestars, as well as new Destination, Crisis, Loyalty, Quorum, Super Crisis, and Skill cards”, plus a Cylon Leader character with a new Treachery Skill card type. Of interest to both gamers and BSG fans is the option to use the Pegasus board alone or with the New Caprica colony board, apparently to simulate different parts of the series’ timeline. Admiral Cain and her ship will arrive this fall to rally the Colonial Fleet at game tables. So say we all.

Wizards rewarding customers this weekend

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Perhaps as a warm-up to next week’s Free RPG Day, Wizards of the Coast is holding a Gift With Purchase Weekend starting tomorrow, June 12, and running through Sunday, June 14. At participating retail stores, gamers who buy WotC products totaling $15 or more will get to choose a free gift, selected from the following items:

  • A pair of Magic:The Gathering Half Decks
  • A D&D Miniatures: Demonweb booster pack
  • A Star Wars Miniatures: The Clone Wars starter set
  • The Orc King, a D&D hardcover novel by R.A. Salvatore

If there’s a WotC book or some miniatures you’ve been waiting to pick up, this may be your time. Just get there early, as it’s one gift per customer, while they last.

Not much time left to Chill

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

We’ve all seen the successful use of alternate funding by game publishers in the last few years (Delta Green fans are well aware of this trend). However, it seems like OtherWorld Creations may need a last-minute rally to make its Fundable round for Chill 3rd Edition reach the goal of $25,301. As I’m writing this, the Fundable page has only secured pledges for $3,600, well short of what’s required by this Saturday, June 13. Gamers who’d like to support the horror RPG’s return can get a copy of the game for as little as $45, but unless pledge amounts increase quickly, the new edition may be a non-starter. To quote the Fundable page:

“If this fundraiser fails to generate the minimum amount then unfortunately the prospects for any new version of the game look bleak. It will have to wait until we raise enough money through other means which could take forever.

“And frankly, if we can’t get a few hundred fans to pledge the money, then most likely the fan base isn’t really there for Chill and any additional time and money spent on it is a waste. So, if you want to see a new version of Chill then please pledge.”

There you have it. If you’re a fan of Chill, get your pledge in now. If you don’t know the game, try the 44-page QuickStart PDF – and then pledge.

OgreCave reviews – Dragon Warriors & Citadel of the Corruptor

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

A pair of lovely new reviews have just gone up in our RPG section. First, Demian has become acquainted with the new edition of Dragon Warriors from Magnum Opus Press, and he clears up why the RPG used to be mistaken for a gamebook. Then Gerald joins our illustrious (dubious?) Cave-dwelling crew with his review of Dungeon Crawl Classics #61: Citadel of the Corruptor from Goodman Games. Have a look at these write-ups, or browse through our review index for much more.

Audio Report – Rumors of demise are highly exaggerated

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

Okay, mostly exaggerated. I’ve struggled to get this podcast recording functional for many moons (well, more like a couple moons). A few months and a hardware upgrade later, and we have, at long last, the DunDraCon ’09 episode of the OgreCave Audio Report. You’ll notice this episode takes the news bits we usually discuss at the beginning and formally makes them a distinct segment, which sounds suspiciously like our other podcast show, OgreCave’s Gaming News Update (because it is). We’ll still discuss the latest gaming news, don’t worry – but this show is mainly given over to interviews with Joseph Goodman and Aaron “Blackdirge” Rudel of Goodman Games, Steven Chenault of Troll Lord Games, Aldo Ghiozzi of Free RPG Day 2009, and various DunDraCon ’09 convention-goers. Have a listen, and deposit some comments if you like. We’ll have more for you soon.