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App News: Armello Enters Early Access, Sid Meier Coming Back to iOS, Musket Smoke 2 on Kickstarter and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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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.
App News

From gallery of Neumannium

Armello Early Access on Steam Begins Tonight
Armello is one of our most anticipated games for this year. Brad and I got to play it a while back, and it's a pretty great original board game and that was with only a fraction of the content.

Up until now, it's only been available for backers of the League of Geeks Kickstarter. Tonight at 11:00GMT, it will become available for everyone over on Steam.

This is still a beta version of the game, with a lot of missing content and bugs, so if you don't want to deal with any of that you can skip the Early Access and wait for the actual release in late 2015. That said, the beta that we've been playing with is pretty sweet so, if you're interested, it won't be a complete waste of your time to check the game out while it's being developed.

For those of you who don't want to deal with Steam, it is coming to iPad and Android, as well as a DRM free desktop version, later this year.

From gallery of Neumannium

Sid Meier's Starships Coming to iPad
One of the more exciting announcements of the last week was that legendary designer, Sid Meier, was getting back into the iPad scene. The last games that he directly developed were Sid Meier's Ace Patrol and Sid Meier's Ace Patrol: Pacific Skies which were both iPad releases as well. This one is called Starships and looks like Ace Patrol in space, but that doesn't appear to be the case, and in fact it has a lot of 4X qualities.

Here's what Firaxis is saying:

Firaxis wrote:
• Tactical space combat: Encounter unique tactical challenges in every mission, with dynamically generated maps, victory conditions, and foes.
• Fully customizable starships: Create an armada that fits your tactical plan with modular spaceship design.
• Diplomacy, strategy, and Exploration: Expand the influence of your Federation and gain the trust of the citizens of new planets. Use the unique abilities of the each planet to enhance your fleet and Federation, and keep your opponents in check. Build improvements on worlds to increase the capabilities and resources of your Federation.
• A galaxy of adventure: Explore the galaxy as you lead your fleet to distant worlds and complete missions to help the citizens of these planets. Fight pirates, protect colony ships, destroy rogue AI, and more.
• Multiple paths to victory: Will you win by conquering the greatest threat to the galaxy? Or will you unite a plurality of worlds in your Federation? Perhaps you will lead your people to push the frontiers of science. Each choice you make carries consequences on your path to victory

If you're looking for a little more meat, Owen over at Pocket Tactics has a lengthy article listing what we know about Starships at this point. Instead of retreading it here, head on over and give it a once-over.

Starships is coming to both PC/Mac and iPad sometime this spring.

From gallery of Neumannium

Musket Smoke II is on Kickstarter Now
The original Musket Smoke was a fairly original hex & counter wargame for iOS that had a really fantastic multiplayer campaign. Well, Musket Smoke II is currently on Kickstarter and things are a little different now. Musket Smoke II's focus is on making a fantastic single-player campaign based on the English Civil War.

I was talking with developer Woodie Dovich of snowpunch about what Musket Smoke II is all about. I could paraphrase, but he brings a lot of passion into it, so I'll just quote him directly:

Woodie Dovich wrote:
It is a gritty war-game that constantly challenges us by tossing random pre-Napolionic encounters at us. A variety of cannons, cavalry, pikemen and musket wielding folks will stand in your way.

You are never certain of the full size of the enemy forces and so you have to carefully scout out each battle. Always being wary of scout traps or tricks with the enemy hiding partial forces in the woods.

Every time, you depend upon your scouts to help answer the question.. can I defeat them? It’s a question only each player can answer as each battle will be a unique matchup upon partially random terrain. Can I beat them? Do I have enough resources to recover if I am forced to retreat? Is this particular battle worth fighting? Can my raw tactical skills make up for some unit deficiencies?

After a few battles, when you finally get a sense of where that line is, you find yourself slowly pushing the boundaries. Trying new tactics, looking for any edge that can help tip the odds in your favour.

Sometimes though you will have to sacrifice great numbers in order to keep your leader, Cromwell, alive after an ambush. Precious units that you have fought with in many battles will make the ultimate sacrifice. It will be these times when everything you have learned so far will be critical.

You will grow daily and rack up a lot of battle experience. Some experiences will make you feel like one of the brilliant Commanders of yester-year. Others will be more like Custer’s last stand. Don’t expect to win this war on your first try.

The mountain is the English Civil war. The climber is Cromwell. The top of the mountain will not be easy, but freedom and democracy is on the line. You will constantly be outnumbered or outgunned. Your fellow citizens brother and father are fighting each other and the longer this war goes on the weaker your country becomes. You must win the war quickly, you must win the war.
If you're at all interested in war games on the iPad or a fan of the original Musket Smoke, head on over to the Kickstarter. They're only looking for $9K CAD, but are still about $7.5K short with 19 days left to go.

If you want to check out the original Musket Smoke, it's available for iOS Universal here and it's a free download.

From gallery of Neumannium

Card Game Humble Bundle Now Available
Nothing we cover on the blog makes me feel more like an old man that Humble Bundle. I just don't get it. I read the page, but I'm still not exactly sure what I'm looking at. From what I can gather, you can pay whatever you want to get something, but if you pay at least at certain levels you get more. Am I close?

Right now they have a Card Game bundle that I'm guessing a lot of you might be interested in. Included are games like Star Realms, Scrolls, and packs for SolForge and Talisman: Digital Edition. There are a ton of different items you can nab, so head on over the the site and check out everything they have to offer.

From gallery of Neumannium

Companion App for Mage Wars Released
Arcane Wonders just released a companion app for their popular card battler, Mage Wars Arena. While Mage Wars is a game I've always wanted to try, I've never gotten a chance to play it so I'm just going to give you the iTunes blurb:

Arcane Wonders wrote:
Whether you are looking to keep track of your Mage’s statistics during battle or you are looking to build your custom Spellbooks quickly and on the go, this app has it all for you!

Included is a fully interactive Status Tracker that will keep track of your, and your opponent’s, statistics during game play. Track your Mana, Channeling, Life, Damage, and Initiative all with simple taps! No more “shifting cubes” or game states to reset – this app will keep everyone’s statistics in order.

Also included is a full Spellbook builder that will calculate your spell points as you build! Dynamically search the Mage Wars card database by keywords and schools of magic, containing cards up to and including Forged in Fire!

App includes:
· Status Tracker
· Spellbook Builder
· Card Database up to and including Forged in Fire
· Ability to select any of 12 Mages for Status Tracking or Spellbook building
You can pick it up for iPad here. It's also available for Android tablets, but I cannot seem to find the Google Play link anywhere, so maybe it hasn't quite propagated their servers? Let us know if you find the Android link! The price for either version is $5.
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