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New Game Round-up: Anniversaries for Beans and Fruit, Abstract Dragon Conflict, and Knizia's Khans

W. Eric Martin
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• German publisher AMIGO Spiel is celebrating a couple of anniversaries among its early 2017 releases, with Uwe Rosenberg's Bohnanza turning twenty years old. Twenty years of bean farming, with more than two million copies sold over that time — who would have guessed? To release something new for the occasion, AMIGO and Rosenberg have Bohnanza: 20 Jahre, which features new artwork, a new card back, and (most importantly) a new type of bean. The spring bean appears on six cards, and when you harvest two of them, you draw cards from the deck equal to one more than the number of players. You plant one of these cards for yourself, then pass the cards around the table so that each other player can do the same. The final card is returned to you, which you convert into a Taler.

• Similarly, Haim Shafir's Halli Galli turns 25 in 2017 (which suggests that our version with a 1990 release date is incorrect), so bring on the Halli Gally Party. Instead of simply counting fruit and slapping when the time is right, you now must look for fruit, color, and musical instrument and slap when two of them are identical in order to collect all the revealed cards. Or slap when the singing plum is on stage because, seriously, a singing plum? Everyone knows that plums can't carry a note.

• In sum, AMIGO Spiel will release eight new titles in the first half of 2017, and you can find the remainder of them here in BGG's Nürnberg/NYC/Cannes 2017 Preview.

ThunderGryph Games debuted in 2016 with a new edition of Overseers, and in 2017 it will release the two-player game Tao Long: The Way of the Dragon from first-time designers Dox Lucchin and Pedro Latro. Images would likely clarify the description below, but perhaps this is enough to give you a toehold for now:

Quote:
Tao Long: The Way of the Dragon is a circular abstract-like game in which each action taken leaves different options for your foe. In it, each player controls a dragon striving to diminish the other whilst bound together by the Tao; you manipulate tokens on a special board in order to activate your dragon, leaving that same board to be manipulated by your opponent on their turn.

• Australian publisher Grail Games has already released two titles from Reiner Knizia (fab-looking versions of Medici and Circus Flohcati) with another on the way (Medici: The Card Game), and now it's announced yet another: King's Road, with this being a reimplemented version of Imperium, which first appeared in 1994's Neue Spiele im alten Rom before reappearing in 2001's Rome: Imperium, Circus Maximus, Hannibal vs Rome. Here's an overview of gameplay:

Quote:
In King's Road, the players are nobles who are attempting to gain power and influence within the king's many provinces. As the king travels along the road that connects all the major landmarks within his territory, he will allow the most influential noble in each region to govern in his stead. Over time, the most favored noble will win the game.

King's Road is an area-majority game. Each player has identical decks of eleven cards. On a turn, players simultaneously select the three cards they will play, and in what order. To win, players not only have to influence the king as he traverses the land, but attempt to read the minds of their opponents.

• Speaking of Knizia, in what has to be one of the oddest combinations in recent years, Chaosium Inc. will release a Knizia design titled Khan of Khans that is set in Greg Stafford's mythic world of Glorantha — the same setting as RuneQuest and Glorantha: The Gods' War — with artwork by Ian O'Toole.

In the game, players try to raid as many cattle as possible from the ten locations. Each location deck features the same eight cards: four worth 20-100 cattle, and one each of "Stampede!", "Enemy Magic", "Tribal Champion", and "Waha's Blessing". On a turn, you choose to reveal the top card of one location, use a saved "Waha's Blessing" to steal someone's cattle, corral the cattle you have so that they can't be lost, or use your unique khan ability. The game is all about pressing your luck (while watching what everyone draws from where so that you can turn luck to your side) and timing when to use one of your few corral tokens to lock in your holdings.

Khan of Khans hits Kickstarter on January 10, 2017 with a scheduled release in October 2017.


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