Gaming News in July

Spiel des Jahres award winners have been  announced…

Hanabi

Spiel des Jahres 2013: Hanabi

Named for the Japanese word for “fireworks” and consisting of the ideograms “Flower” and “Fire” – is a cooperative game in which players try to create the perfect fireworks show by placing the cards on the table in the right order.

The card deck consists of five different colors of cards, numbered 1-5 in each color. For each color, the players try to place a row in the correct order from 1-5. Sounds easy, right? Well, not quite as in this game you hold your cards so that they’re visible only to other players. To assist other players in playing a card, you must give them hints regarding the numbers or the colors of their cards. Players must act as a team to avoid errors and to finish the fireworks display before they run out of cards.

Kennerspiel des Jahres 2013: Legends of Andor

Game description from the publisher:

Legends of Andor is a cooperative adventure board game for two to four players in which a band of heroes must work together to defend a fantasy realm from invading hordes. To secure Andor’s borders, the heroes will embark on dangerous quests over the course of five unique scenarios (as well as a final scenario created by the players themselves). But as the clever game system keeps monsters on the march toward the castle, the players must balance their priorities carefully.

At the heart of Legends of Andor is its unique narrative, the linked scenarios of which tell an overarching story as the players successfully complete objectives. For each scenario, or “Legend”, a legend deck conveys the plot of an ever-unfolding tale…one in which the players are the protagonists. A wooden marker moves along the board’s legend track at key points during each scenario, triggering the draw of a new legend card, the introduction of new game-altering effects, and the advancement of the story’s plot. In the end, the players must endeavor to guide the fate of Andor through their heroic actions, bringing a happy ending to their epic fantasy tale.

Will their heroes roam the land completing quests in the name of glory, or devote themselves to the defense of  the realm? Uncover epic tales of glory as you live the Legends of Andor!

Kinderspiel des Jahres 2013: Der verzauberte Turm

Ack, the princess has been captured once again by an evil sorcerer! She should really stop hanging about in places where she can be captured so easily. Well, that’s neither here nor there for now – let’s get out there and free her from the enchanted tower.

In Der verzauberte Turm, one player plays the sorcerer and at the start of the game he hides a key under one of 16 spaces on the game board. The other players collectively take the part of Robin, who tries to find the key before the sorcerer can reach it. No matter who finds the key first, though, that player gets to try the key in one of the six locks on the tower; if he chooses the right one, the princess jumps free of the tower and that player wins. If not, the sorcerer hides the key once again, and everyone moves back to their starting locations.

The sorcerer starts the game on a supplementary movement board that takes him eight spaces to cover, giving Robin time to search various locations first for the key. (Robin and the sorceror are apparently magnetized, and when the character passes over the key location, the key will “clack” to its underside.) How do the pieces move? Each turn the sorcerer rolls a symbol die that shows which character moves first that turn; the Robin players take turns rolling a number die, which has values for both Robin and the sorcerer. Thus, they jockey back and forth to reach a location that only the sorcerer knows. Will the princess find freedom once again, at least for a little while?

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Fantasy Flight Games announced the upcoming release of a new storytelling game set in a familiar fairy tale land.

winter tales

Fantasy Flight Games is proud to announce Winter Tales, an upcoming board game for three to seven players focused on storytelling and imagination in a vibrant fairy tale world! The game is set in the immersive atmosphere of Wintertown, where players weave a story of the struggle between the Regime of Winter’s soldiers and the rebels fighting for the return of Spring. As players complete quests, lay traps, and engage in battles, they create an entirely new story with every game.

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