iOS Board Games

Among the best things in life is playing printed games in person with family and close friends. When those are not convenient we like iOS Board Games. News, reviews, previews, and opinions about board gaming on iPhones, iPads, iPods and even Android devices. (iPhone board games, iPad board games, iPod board games, Android board games)

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First Look: Catan Universe

Brad Cummings
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Catan Universe
Availability: iOS, Android
Price: Free with IAP
Store Links: iOS, Android

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App News: Catan Universe Arrives on Mobile, Carrier Battles For Guadalcanal Gets Another Update and more...

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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
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Catan Universe Released on iOS and Android
There's been a digital version of Catan (2007) for so long, I'm not sure Brad was even born when it was released (he's really young...like 12 or something). Last week, for some reason, a new version of Catan (2017 / Mobile) was unleashed onto mobile called Catan Universe. No, it's not a space-themed Catan, it's just a new way to play the same game of Catan we always used to play. Weird.

Catan Universe is a free-to-play version of Catan that lets you play, for free, against two other humans. I think it also has solo play, because nothing is more fun than trading with a computer. I'm not really sure what's going on, but I do know that there's an in-game currency which, I'm guessing you can earn by playing or via credit card, and that you'll use that to unlock new modes like Seafarers or Knights & Cities.

Due to my ignorance [and laziness -ed.] I'm going to blurb a bunch here:

Go on a journey to the Catan universe, and enter into exciting duels against players from all over the world. The board game classic and the Catan card game bring a real table top feeling to your screen, with brand new graphics.

Play the basic board game in multi-player mode, and the introductory game of “Catan – The Duel” free of charge. You can also master the free “Arrival on Catan”, to permanently unlock the single player and custom match mode for the “Arrival on Catan” scenario, to play against the AI or with your friends.

For even more variety, unlock the complete basic game, and the expansions “Cities & Knights” and “Seafarers” as in-app purchases, defend yourself against barbarian invasions, journey to new shores, and compete against cunning computer opponents.

Play with your Catan Universe account on the device of your choice: You can use your login on numerous desktop and mobile platforms! Become part of the huge worldwide Catan community, and compete against players from all over the world, and on all supported platforms!

Features:

- Settle - trade - build - become ruler of Catan!
- Play on all your devices with one account
- Faithful reconstruction of the board game “Catan” and the card game “Catan – The Duel”
- Design your own avatar
- Chat with other players
- Form guilds
- Play numerous achievements and unlocks
- Get additional expansions and play modes as in-app purchases
- Start very easily with the comprehensive tutorial

Features in development:

- Fight tournaments as guilds or for your own glory.
- Prove yourself in numerous additional expansions.

Free-to-play content:

- Basic game free matches against two other human players
- “Arrival on Catan” – permanently unlock single-player and custom-match modes against friends, or against the AI
- Introductory game free matches: Catan duel
- Registration bonus of 100 gold and 2 scrolls – unlock expansions and complete access to auto match, single player and custom matches with scrolls for a limited time
- Further scrolls by leveling up


Now that, my friends, is how you blurb it.

Want to give this new version of Catan a go? It won't cost you a penny. At least not right away.

- Catan Universe for iOS Universal, free
- Catan Universe for Android, free
- Catan Universe for Kindle, free
- Catan Universe for PC via Steam, free



Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal Updates Again
In these rather news-free times of the year, we can always count on one thing: our favorite iOS war game getting an update. That's because Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal is always getting updated. Seriously, I don't think its designer, Cyril Jarnot, has taken a day off since it released a few years back. Go take a nap, Cyril!

Anyway, the new update brings CBfG to version 2.2.1 and includes the following:

Cyril Jarnot wrote:
The 2.2 brings a new scenario occuring early 1942
The US carriers were raiding Japanese position everywhere to avenge Pear Harbor

The 2.1 has mainly concentrated on naval forces
They are now smaller (12 ships) which requires careful composition and open new tactical opportunities
The naval torpedo system has been reworked with limited ammunition and reduced power. This is balancing surface battles although the Imperial Japanese Navy remains a dangerous opponent


Not as major an update as some in the past, but consider the 2.0 update included adding multiplayer, I think we can give Cyril a pass.

If you're a grognard looking for some good hex & counter action on your iPad, look no further. This is the best you'll find on the App Store.

- Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal for iPad, $5



Pathfinder Adventures Gets an Update
It's been a while since I've talked about my favorite mobile game of 2016, Pathfinder Adventures. That's not because I love it any less, simply because 2017 has been so crazy with other great releases I haven't had a lot of time to spend flinging cards at Goblins.

Sadly, the world doesn't revolve around me and the developers at Obsidian Entertainment keep working on the game even when I'm not playing it. Strange, I know. This week they released a big patch that didn't add any new content, but did target a bunch of niggling bugs and other community issues which sounds like the perfect intro for a blurb:

Obsidian wrote:
New Feature

A new set of dice! The Asmodee Magma Dice are in. This dice set is free to all users who create an Asmodee account or have an existing Asmodee account linked to their device. Once you have the dice you can assign them to a character like you would any other dice.

Top Community Issue

Unicode Support for character nicknames. Characters will no longer become unavailable and will properly display their nicknames throughout the game.

Other Fixes

Progression Break
-Post act events were sometimes stuck in the roll state because the state was not advanced
-Game sometimes crashed when evaluating a card filter

Card
-Card power effect boost was not deactivating so the effect was never removed when canceling a card. We're looking at you Orbs!
-Damage reduction effects were not applied during global damage iterators
-Before You Act damage which skipped the player had dice applied twice (double damage)
-Map move ignoring move restrictions only worked when multiple targets were involved
-Card power examine sometimes ran its callbacks multiple times
-Clear all the card type marks after the ambush phase finishes
-When using Vicious Trident against Leng Spider, check now refreshes correctly to Combat
-Fixed Mokmurian so it won't continually apply -1 to your check even if you cancel using Orb of firestorm
-Fixed BYA and AYA damage failing to be mitigated when discarding Blue Warder to explore the location in All Areas.
-Fixed when the BYA deals 2 damage instead of 1 damage to the first off-turn character when the active character encounters Jaagrath Kreeg in All Areas.
-Fixed when using the Blessing of Nethys, if used to encounter a monster with BYA, encountering the monster twice
-Fixed bonus die being granted from power remains if player cancels discarding a Polearm weapon
-Fixed If you use an item to mitigate BYA damage, you cannot use an item to mitigate combat damage
-Fixed when using stride and moving another person into a bar table, the moved character does not take damage
-Fixed Sunwrought Kyra being unable to learn Enemy Lore: Outsider
-Fixed Summon Monster not activating Ezren's Expanded Spellbook

Character
-Recharge/discard character power was not marked active so it was never disabled

Other
-When boosting a combat check, sometimes the dice/check was not refreshed
-Fixed mobile keyboards displaying password on the autocomplete bar when inputting Asmodee login information


Go ahead and update if you're a longtime player. If you haven't checked out Pathfinder Adventures yet, what's the matter? It was the best game released in 2016, and it's free to download. Sure, all the extra content is going to cost you, but it's worth it.

- Pathfinder Adventures for iOS Universal, free
- Pathfinder Adventures for Android, free
- Pathfinder Adventures for PC/Mac via Steam, $15



Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game on Steam is Good
This is just a reminder in case you've forgotten: The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game from Evil Hat Productions is going digital. Wait, change that. It HAS gone digital. The fine folks at Hidden Achievement have already brought it to Steam for PC/Mac and it should be coming to iOS and Android soon.

The reason I'm brining this up is because we've posted a review at my other site, Stately Play. Head over there to read the whole thing, but know that our reviewer, Nick, liked the digital port quite a bit. I usually wouldn't cross-post like this, but I know there are a lot of you interested in the digital version of Dresden Files and I wanted to make sure you knew it was out on Steam and coming to iOS/Android.

That's all the shameless self-promotion I can handle for one day. Whew.

- Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game for PC/Mac via Steam, $20


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Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:38 pm
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Nintendo Switch for Board Gamers

Brad Cummings
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Hey All,

As you all know, I'm a big fan of portable gaming. It's part of why I play digital board games. Unsurprisingly, I've been a fan of the Switch since day one.

With holiday shopping approaching, I wanted to share 10 games I've loved on the Switch that I think are a great fit for board gamers. So, if you are picking one up for your kids or were maybe curious yourself, this is a good place to start as board game fan.

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Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:36 pm
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First Look: 7 Wonders

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7 Wonders
Availability: iPad only, Android Tablet release on December 20
Price: $4.99
Store Links: iOS

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Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:09 pm
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App News: Asmodee Takes over Talisman, Mansions of Mansions Updates, Zach Gage Is An Evil Genius and more...

David Neumann
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Talisman Is Now Being Published By Asmodee Digital
Once we learned that Asmodee Digital was publishing the Nomad Games Ltd (II) developed Smash Up, we should have known it was only a matter of time before Talisman: Digital Edition fell under their domain as well. Earlier today, Talisman became an Asmodee published title.

We've heard of Asmodee Digital publishing games for non-Asmodee titles before, even coming in and taking over publishing duties after the game has already been released, so it doesn't seem like this will affect us, the players, too much other than it will give Nomad some capital and the ability to pump out more content, although how much more they can possibly fit into Talisman remains to be seen.

They're going to try, however, as Asmodee has announced that a new expansions will be released by the end of 2017, Talisman (Revised 4th Edition): The Harbinger Expansion. This will include 75 Harbinger Cards, 10 new Spell Cards, 10 Terrain Cards, 32 Omen Cards, 2 Alternative Endings, 3 new characters and the Harbinger, a mysterious figure warning of the apocalypse to come. Spooky! It's good news because, unlike a lot of games, Talisman gets better the more stuff you throw at it.

We'll keep an eye out for the Harbinger expansion, and also see if we can poke around in Asmodee's brain to see what else this new collaboration might lead to. Stay tuned.

- Talisman: Digital Edition for iOS Universal, $4
- Talisman: Digital Edition for Android, $4
- Talisman: Digital Edition for Kindle, $3
- Talisman: Digital Edition for PC/Mac/Linux via Steam, $8



Mansions of Madness App Updates to Include Streets of Arkham
One of the best (if not the best) uses of electronics in a board game comes from Fantasy Flight Games's Mansions of Madness: Second Edition. It's a truly wonderful gaming experience, so when more content lands, we feel it's worth a mention. Last Thursday the latest physical expansion, Mansions of Madness: Second Edition – Streets of Arkham, landed in your FLGS and, on the same day, the app was updated to include the new expansion's material.

The update includes new investigators, monsters, cards, and everything you'd expect a new expansion to have. It also has a bunch of new tiles and three new scenarios with all new locations to hang out in. One of the new scenarios is a "mystery" in which you have to deduce which artifact is causing all the problems at the museum. They even mention you should have pen and paper along to write down clues. Color me intrigued. Wondering if the artifact changes each go around, making the scenario replayable over and over? It will be a while before I get a chance to give it a go, so if anyone's played it, let us know in the comments.

Besides all the new content, the app was also updated with Czech and Chinese localization of the core scenarios and the ever-present bug fixes.

- Mansions of Madness Companion for iOS Universal, free
- Mansions of Madness Companion for Android, free
- Mansions of Madness for Kindle, free
- Mansions of Madness Companion for PC/Mac/Linux via Steam, free



Zach Gage's latest, Flipflop Solitaire, Released
You might not of heard of Zach Gage, but you've probably played (or at least heard of) some of his games. He's incredibly prolific, and just about everything he's released has been critically praised. Games like Ridiculous Fishing, SpellTower, Sage Solitaire, and Really Bad Chess just to name a few. He released his latest title, Flipflop Solitaire, last week and it's just as mind-boggling and addictive as his other titles. Maybe more so.

Flipflop Solitaire takes the Klondike solitaire we all know and either love or hate, and turns it on its head by throwing out all the rules. Cards can be placed onto columns of any other color with the only restriction being that columns of different colors can't be moved whole cloth. Also, the sequence of cards can be either ascending or descending or both. So, you could play a 8 then a 7 then an 8 then a 9 and then an 8 all in the same column. The changes don't seem like much, but they make a game in which winning is predetermined by how the deck was shuffled into a game of skill and tactics where 99% of deals have a solution.

It's tons of fun, and it's free to download with ads. You can unlock the full game via a $3 IAP which I did and haven't regretted a bit. The game has different modes consisting of single-suit games (super easy) all the way up to 5 suit games (impossible) with full recording of win-loss stats and a bunch of other numbers so you can compare how you're doing against the world.

Flipflop Solitaire is available right now for iOS Universal. No word on an Android release.

- Flipflop Solitaire for iOS Universal, free





7 Wonders Coming Tomorrow
In case you forgot.
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Mon Nov 13, 2017 5:19 pm
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First Look: Catan Stories

Brad Cummings
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Catan Stories
Availability: iOS, Android
Price: $1.99
Store Links: iOS, Android

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Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:49 pm
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App News: Sad News Regarding 7 Wonders

David Neumann
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Next Week the 7 Wonders Jokes Must Cease
Jokes about the never-imminent release of Antoine Bauza's SdJ winner, 7 Wonders have been a part of iOS Board Games lore for so long that I'm really going to be sad to see them go away. Why are they leaving? Because 7 Wonders is finally, really, for sure arriving on iPad next week on November 14.

Today, Repos Production posted in their latest TestFlight update for beta testers that the beta is ending next week followed by the iPad release on the 14 with the Android version coming on December 20th.

Repos wrote:
November 14th is the official release date of the application in the Apple Store. The Android version will be available December 20.

This last version is the realisation of long months of work, of testing, of listening to your feedbacks and we hope it will fulfil your expectations.

With your collaboration, we ran more than 37,500 games during more than 5000 hours.


I don't really have a lot more to say. Other than it's a sad, sad day for fans of 7 Wonders-related humor. Great day for fans of 7 Wonders, sure, but I'll be in the corner weeping.
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App News: One Deck Dungeon Digital Heads to Kickstarter, Cottage Garden Arrives on Steam, Isle of Skye Coming in 2018 and more...

David Neumann
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
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Handelabra Launches Kickstarter for Digital One Deck Dungeon
One Deck Dungeon from Chris Cieslik and Asmadi Games has been on my radar for a long time, mainly because it's a game you can play solo and it's a roguelike. I've even been interested enough to put my money behind the game when it was on Kickstarter earlier this year. Now, I'm putting my money behind another One Deck Dungeon Kickstarter, this time to bring it to my laptop.

Handelabra Games has launched their latest Kickstarter with the goal of bringing a digital version of One Deck Dungeon to PC/Mac/Linux via Steam. Wondering where the iOS/Android version is? Well, they're not dealing with that in this Kickstarter due to the issues involved with getting iOS/Android copies into the hands of backers. They are planning on doing a tablet version, however, as long as the Kickstarter does well. Look for it to be an upcoming stretch goal.

Other than that, the Kickstarter has given us a ton of new info about what we can expect if the digital version does come to life:

Handelabra wrote:
The first retail release of One Deck Dungeon will be $10 (USD) and will include all the content from the base tabletop game. The rules and card effects will be carefully adapted and thoroughly tested by expert players, including the designer, Chris Cieslik.

-Includes 5 heroes, 5 dungeons, and 44 encounter cards
-Solo play with 1 or 2 heroes
-Local co-op play with 2 heroes
-Campaign mode allows you to build up a hero’s power over multiple plays
-Choose your hero & dungeon, or face a randomized challenge
-Learn the game while you play with an interactive tutorial
-Original music for each dungeon by Beatscribe (some tracks adapted from the tabletop soundtrack, others brand new)
-Compatible with Windows, macOS and Linux (system requirements)
-Steam Achievements
-Steam Cloud Saves


Of course, there are different pledge levels with different rewards as well as stretch goals that require you to head over to the Kickstarter to parse for yourself.

The Kickstarter opened yesterday and they're already nearly 60% of the way to their $20K goal. Of course, if we want that mobile version, we'll have to do better than $20K. Head on over to the Kickstarter and see about pledging, remembering that this is Handelabra we're talking about. You know, the makers of some great polished and well-done tabletop conversions, so the odds of this one not being worth the $10 they're asking are slim.

You can find the Kickstarter here. Only 29 days left to go.





Cottage Garden Spreads to Steam
Our friends over at Digidiced UG can't seem to stay out of the news (check out the next news item for an example). Last week they released Cottage Garden for iOS and Android devices and, only a week later, they have released the app now for PC/Mac/Linux on Steam.

Cottage Garden is a...oh, what am I doing? Blurb time!

Digidiced wrote:
Goal of the Game - In Cottage Garden, you compete in the art of gardening. Plant two Flowerbeds with different flowers. Score each Flowerbed when there are no more free spaces visible on it, then exchange it for a new, unplanted one. You receive points for all visible Flower Pots and Garden Cloches on the completed Flowerbed, and you may also receive Flower Pots and Cats that will help you with your gardening. The player with the most points at the end of the game is the winner.

Features

• True digital conversion of Uwe Rosenbergs famous board game
• 2-4 players locally, online or even cross-platform
• Family friendly - non violent theme
• Worldwide ranked multiplayer and casual play with your friends
• fast real time games or asynchronous games with 24 hour time limit per turn
• Easy interactive tutorial to learn the game from scratch
• Analyze your best games or learn tricks from the best with Playback
• 3 different computer opponents
• uses the newest rules of the board game


What makes this even better is that the Steam version is currently on sale for 30% off, making the laptop version under $5 right now. Those are mobile prices on Steam, which doesn't happen too often. No idea how long the sale will last, so don't dawdle if you're looking for a copy you can play at work while your boss thinks you're working.

- Cottage Garden for iOS Universal, $5
- Cottage Garden for Android, $5
- Cottage Garden for PC/Mac/Linux via Steam, $5





DIGIDICED Announces Digital Port of Isle of Skye
In more DIGIDICED news, they've also announced that a digital version of the 2016 Kennerspiel des Jahres winner, Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King, is coming to iOS/Android in Q1 of 2018.

There's not much to talk about at this point, with the only news coming from the intrepid Suzanne who seems to be everywhere, all the time.



As usual, we'll try to pick the DIGIDICED minds and see if we can come up with any other info. At this point, I would count on the usual polish we get in DIGIDICED apps: solo play vs. AI, online asynchronous multiplayer, etc. More info coming!



Cublo Games Bringing Among the Stars to iOS/Android
Another digital game announcement occurred earlier this week. Cublo, makers of the very nice digital version of Brass, have teamed up with Artipia Games to bring a digital version of Among the Stars to our phones and tablets.

Much like the Isle of Skye announcement above, information on this one is hard to come by. In fact, all we have is Cublo teasing it with this:



We're already bugging Cublo about it and will get back to you guys as soon as we have some more info.



Neuroshima Hex Gets Makeover from Portal
The digital version of Neuroshima Hex! was one of the first digital board games that revealed just how good digital board games could be. Developed by Big Daddy's Creations, it was extremely polished and, at least at first, was supported with more and more armies.

It looks as if BDC has gone the way of the dodo, however, and Portal Games has taken over the digital duties now. As such, they just released their first version of Neuroshima Hex as an update to the existing version.

The main addition are the graphics from the latest version of the cardboard version, bringing the app in-line with what you'd expect if you have the latest version. Other than that, however, additions seem to be slim.

Portal Games wrote:
Long awaited update, catch up with application support.
Tile graphics updated to look exactly like their board's counterpart.

New Uranopolis army available through In-App Purchase.

New bundles of armies - all armies available as a Bundle of Ten Armies (Neojungle, New York, Smart, Vegas, Steel Police, Dancer, DoomsDay Machine, Mississippi, Sharrash, Uranopolis) and the Second Bundle of Five Armies (Dancer, DoomsDay Machine, Mississippi, Sharrash, Uranopolis) to fit the previous Five Armies Bundle.


I haven't played NH in ages, not because the app is shabby but because I truly, truly suck at it. As such, I'm not familiar with any smaller changes they might have made to the app. If you're a longtime NH player who has updated to the new version, let us know in the comments if there are any other changes and how the new management seems to be doing. (FYI, the update appears to only be available for the iOS version. The Android version was last updated in 2016)

- Neuroshima Hex for iOS Universal, $5
- Neuroshima Hex for Android, $3
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Thu Nov 2, 2017 5:33 pm
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Hybrid Lab: Shop 'N Time

Brad Cummings
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We continune our coverage of hybrid board games with this semi-regular feature: the Hybrid Lab.

Shop 'N Time
App Availability: iOS, Android
Store Links: iOS, Android

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Thu Nov 2, 2017 3:19 pm
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First Look: Bohnanza the Duel

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Bohnanza the Duel
Availability: iOS, Android
Price: $3.99
Store Links: iOS, Android

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Mon Oct 30, 2017 2:50 pm
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