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Crowdfunding Round-up: Impulsively Rise to Peak Apocalypse

W. Eric Martin
United States
North Carolina
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• Here's an odd situation to lead off this crowdfunding round-up: Polish publisher Czacha Games, which released a Polish edition of Carl Chudyk's Impulse in 2016 with fan-created art by Zak Eidsvoog, is now releasing an English-language edition of their version of the game, along with two expansions — All Your Base and Brake for Launch — that have never before appeared in print. (KS link)

Original publisher Asmadi Games is dropping Impulse from their line and won't release the expansions in a style compatible with the first edition of the game, according to Asmadi owner Chris Cieslik, who later wrote, "The point at which it made sense to start considering printing the expansion is right about when they decided to go forward with a Polish version of the game with the fan-made artwork. It made it no longer worth pursuing for us, so we let them do what they wanted to." Did the publication of fan artwork on its own kill sales of the original release? Or was it the appearance of a non-English version with this artwork, similar to how people lavish praise on the Polish edition of Castles of Mad King Ludwig and complain that Bézier Games won't release a version with this artwork. Perhaps there's a lesson in here for publishers about what licensees are allowed to do with new editions of games...

• Speaking of Asmadi Games, they're on KS with a project of their own: Invasion of the Garden Gnomes, a revamped version of Reiner Knizia's majorities-based card game Vampire that now contains 100% fewer vampires — so maybe I should have gone with "devamped" instead. (KS link)

• Another new title emerging from old is Hardback, a "pre-quill" to Tim Fowers' deck-building, word-building game Paperback, and that pun makes sense only when you look closer at the game to discover that you're playing as 19th century author Penelope Quill. In any case, this game, co-designed with Jeff Beck, is both playable on its own and an expansion for Paperback, and like most titles from Fowers Games, it will not be available in regular retail stores. (KS link)

• Tobias Gohrbandt and Heiko Günther's Peak Oil from Spanish publisher 2Tomatoes puts you in charge of a petroleum corporation that's trying to squeeze out as much profit as possible from the world's dwindling supply of oil, then plowing that money into new industries to exit the oil market while the getting is good. (KS link) We shot an overview video of the game while at the Festival International des Jeux in Cannes, France if you want to see the game in more detail:

• Worker placement and resource management combine in King's Champion from Jason Washburn and Talon Strikes Studios, a 60-90 minute two-player game that's all about improving your knights so that you can outjoust the other guy. (KS link)

• Before you can joust, though, you might need to visit Smiths of Winterforge so that you can have the right tools in hand. This design by Dylan Shearer, Aaron Sparke, Rule & Make, and Table Tyrant Games pits dwarven guilds against one another to get components to complete crafting contracts. (KS link)

• Mike Gnade of Rock Manor Games is following up his 2016 debut title Brass Empire with Maximum Apocalypse, a "cooperative roguelike adventure game for 1-6 players" in which everyone needs to avoid monsters, collect gas, and drive to safety before another scenario begins. (KS link)

• What do you get when you a cross a Norseman with a pirate? Vikingar, a joke that makes sense only when said aloud in the right way, in addition to being a plundering/fighting/trading game from Jean-Thomas Rioux, Étienne Rioux, and JackBro Playful Creation that will have you throwing runes on the way to Valhalla. (KS link)

• Emanuele Santandrea's latest title from his VentoNuovo Games is Bloody Monday, which recreates the Sept. 7, 1812 Battle of Borodino, which the publisher dubs "the single bloodiest day of the entire Napoleonic Wars period". (KS link)

• Are you looking for a game that contains "an educational workbook about stellar evolution and the history and mythology of constellations"? If so, then Constellations from Dante Lauretta, Ian Zang, and Xtronaut Enterprises might be your thing. Word is that it also contains a game in which you collect different star types to complete constellations, which will then tile the night sky. (KS link)

• "This could be the hottest dice/worker placement game in 2017!" That teaser pull-quote leads off the KS project for Rise to Nobility from Vojkan Krstevski and Final Frontier Games, and while that tagline must appeal to some — given this project's $124k take in its first five days — I feel somewhat like we've fallen down a hole if that jargon is meant to appeal to people at large. Then I look above at some of the descriptions I've used to describe these games, and I see that I'm in that same hole. How about this instead? "Become a lord and take your seat at the Stone Council of Caveborn." (KS link)

Editor's note: Please don't post links to other Kickstarter projects in the comments section. Write to me via the email address in the header, and I'll consider them for inclusion in a future crowdfunding round-up. Thanks! —WEM
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