Welcome to the Indie Tabletop Newsletter, hear from independent tabletop games designers about their current and upcoming projects. Take a look at the games we’ve already self-published and our upcoming Kickstarters, maybe even get yourself a free print n play game. Learn more about this newsletter here.
Check out the latest Tabletop SPIRIT Magazine
In other news, production is due to wrap up shortly for Threads of Fate, and we are getting ready to book our overseas freight shipments. Although we were hoping to be a bit farther along by now, we’ve still got our fingers crossed that Threads of Fate will land in backers’ hands before the end of 2023. If you missed the crowdfunding campaign, preorders are still available on the PostCurious website.
Crash Test Zombies is a revolutionary game where players are using a pizza saver table to launch their die and hopefully land it on the target. The value of the die is recorded as this is what the zombie crashed into from roller skates to ice cream trucks to UFOs. Your opponents will also launch their own dice. Doing so may result in a change to your die which you will record at the beginning of your turn before launching again.
As you gain skill with each type of crash you will earn bonus effects such as relaunches. Points are also scored based on how many of the target rings you have landed on. Get your crash gear ready for this brand new game! Bring up to 3 friends to play on the same sheet or take on the crash test missions solo, where you will launch multiple dice at the same time.
I’ve been getting artwork back for Pukeapocalypse which will be coming out from Exalted Funeral. Artwork is always one of the most fun parts of the process for me, and with a publisher picking up the tab, it’s even more enjoyable. Everything has been moving along extremely quickly with them, which is really exciting.
For myself, I’ve mostly been playtesting and iterating a couple of games, a duel deckbuilder that’s coming together really nicely that I’m working on with an artist who has a whole set of fantastic art assets to fit it and a cooperative driven miniatures game that another publisher is interested in. If you’d like to check out what I’m working on you can take a look at our Rule of Carnage YouTube channel or our Discord.
“Chess Attack – Spooky Creatures”: Command the forces of the Great Pumpkin & the Witch Queen! Battle against Clan Dinosaur, the Animal Army, or Chess’ traditional faceless warriors! Rolling the dice keeps victory a fun possibility for younger/less-experienced players while they practice their strategic thinking.
“Hotel Escape – Zombie Edition”: The hotel is on fire AND zombies are chasing you! It’s a perfect time to increase familiarity with negative numbers and the conventions of the number line, isn’t it?
“Pirates vs Skeletons”: Skeletons are attacking the pirates while their ship is at anchor. Scale the complexity of the dice rolls and introduce more strategy with different commander abilities to fit the interests of the players.
“The Bone Game”: Learn the names of the bones in the human skeleton with the help of this fast-paced card game. Might be useful the next time you bump into one!
How about creating your own spooky Halloween games – Our multi-sided game dice templates might get the ideas…rolling? 😉
“Snowball Slide” is our latest tiny game which fits on a greetings card. It’s basically a print-and-play which you send through the post — except you don’t need to print it yourself. It’s an A5 card which comes with cut out counters (because it’s a game) and a shiny metallic envelope (because it’s a Christmas card)!
So, in “Snowball Slide” the Christmas elves have taken some time off to race snowballs down the hill. They’ve fitted big cogs to their workshops to direct the snowballs down ski slopes, which twist and turn until they get to one of two camps at the bottom. The aim of the game is to get as many snowballs as possible into your camp.
One player is aiming for Camp Stripes, the other Camp Spots. Players take turns at rolling two dice, and then use the results to move cogs or release snowballs. The snowball rolls down the slopes until it gets to a horizontal cog — or until it arrives in one of the two camps and scores a point for that player.
The Kickstarter goes live on 13 November, and closes a mere five days later on 18 November. It’s a double-header KS with a card stacking game called Gingerbread Towers (which we’ll talk about in the next newsletter). Take a look at our website to find out more.
Take the helm and captain your pack of Muttley Crue to become top dog of the seas in this competitive, co-op & solo strategy game! 1-4 players, 10+, 45-90 mins. If you like games with ‘terriertory’ control, pick up and deliver and a bit of ‘Muttiny’, as well as a few puns, then you’ll love this game. The Kickstarter campaign runs until the 25th October and offers the Pugly Pirates base game, as well as the ‘Barkbados’ expansion, adding more strategy options, a board expansion, new victory condition, resources and ship upgrades. There’s also some early bird extras available, so don’t miss out!
On the much brighter side previews for the game have still been coming in and it has been wonderful to see people enjoying it. As I’m still not up to much I thought I would share some of my favourite player and previewer quotes, if you follow the link below, you’ll reach the Malum: Hortus page where I’ve added links to the full previews.
Jim from What Board Game: “The best way to describe the feeling I have when I play this game is a poetic wistfulness. It has a delightful narrative running underneath the clever card play and cooperative movement of the players that keeps you hooked
I will follow this campaign with great interest and am keen to see how the game develops both in terms of look and rules. But in its current form I would say this is a sure-fire hit, and a game I would happily play again and again. I found myself wrapped up in its beauty and whimsical charm. I found the theme intriguing, original, and captivating and the balance of the game play perfectly poised.”
Adam from Punchboard: “the descriptive text on the night cards is well-written and atmospheric, and it makes me want to know more about the garden and its inhabitants and prisoners… We had fun with Malum Hortus, and I think your family will too, especially if you’re trying to introduce them to modern games.”
Benny Sperling: “There is everything to love about this game! Bring along your friends or go it alone against a truly evil garden! I was captivated by the art and the next thing I knew, the game had wrapped me in its vines and I was green with envy I haven’t designed a cooperative game anywhere near this good!”
Suey from Diary of a Lincoln Geek: “We had the pleasure of trying out Malum Hortus at UKGE 2023 and absolutely loved it. It’s a brilliant cooperative game that you can’t help but get immersed in. The artwork is clever and stunning and the gameplay is family friendly whilst also capturing the hearts of seasoned gamers.”
Neil from Board Game Happy: “Cooperation is essential if you want to survive the night. Who knew plants could be so brutal? Malum Hortus offers an interesting take on the co-op genre and is really fun to play with friends.”
Labour Madness: My biggest gratitude goes to our backers who helped twice, once by backing our campaign and again by accepting an offer to reduce my manual labor. The collector edition is a product of love: getting a game ready to ship takes me 6 hours. My offer was that if anyone saved me the time that it takes me to manufacture the (beautiful) game box inserts, in return, I would gift the largest add-on we have on offer plus an add-on that cannot be purchased. Turned out that 42% of all affected backers accepted my offer saving me an astounding 190+ hours of time. That equals to 5 weeks of work if employed full-time. Without this, I would possibly work on the fulfilment until Christmas.
Material Madness: Throughout the fulfilment, I realized that I had been sold a product from different batches with ever so small deviations in their sizes. Consequently, I spent about 20 hours in re-adjusting to that different material. Right before the end of the fulfilment, I ran out of that material. I reordered and guess what happened. I am now hunting not just for a product, but for a product from a certain batch. Fun times at this final stretch.
Events: Not going crazy after attending every event, we chose a couple of 2-day events for the remainder of 2023. One in September that Till, the Castleshire designer, attends. Sven will showcase all Cheap Sheep Games in October in the country’s largest city. We’ll run Castleshire tournaments hoping to spread the joy of playing our latest game.
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