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New Game Round-up: Adventure Games Await Courtesy of Harding, Dunstan and KOSMOS, and Welcome the Gloom of Thrones

W. Eric Martin
United States
North Carolina
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From gallery of Photodump
• German publisher KOSMOS has had great success with its Exit: The Game series of "escape room" games from Inka and Markus Brand, even winning the Kennerspiel des Jahres in 2017.

Now for 2019, KOSMOS is launching a new series that seems to function along the same lines as Exit: The Game, a series that merges co-operative gameplay with heavy story elements. The first two titles in the Adventure Games series from designers Phil-Walker Harding and Matthew Dunstan will debut in May 2019, and both are for 1-4 players with a €15 MSRP. Here's an overview of the series, as well as these first two titles:

Explore places, combine items, and experience stories in Adventure Games. In each title in this series of co-operative games, players are presented with a mysterious story that they must unravel over the course of play. Working together, players explore common areas, talk to people, look for clues, and combine various items to reveal the secret of the story. Depending on what decisions the players make, the course of history changes and there is no going back!

Unlike the co-operative EXIT: The Game series, titles in this series focus on the telling and discovery of the story with no time pressure. That said, many different paths can be experienced during play, with more than one correction resolution to the story waiting to be discovered. Each title consists of three chapters, each taking about 75 minutes to play. Nothing is destroyed, so the games can be played multiple times.

In Das Verlies ("The Dungeon"), which is for ages 12+, the players awaken in a prison cell in the middle ages with no memory of how they got there. What happened? What strange things are taking place in this dungeon? And most importantly, how can they get out? Over three chapters, players will jointly explore rooms, combine objects, and perhaps even encounter creatures that lurk in the dark rooms of the old castle...

In Die Monochrome AG, which is for ages 16+, players have been instructed to break into the research building named in the game's title, and once they get inside this tower's mirrored windows, they are left on their own. What they find there, what conclusions they draw from these items, and how this nerve-wracking story ends is entirely in their hands. Only by co-ordinating their team will they avoid potential pitfalls, carry out their mission, and solve the mystery of this building.
From gallery of Photodump

Board Game Publisher: Spielworxx
• In early Dec. 2018, I posted an overview of five titles coming from German publisher Spielworxx in 2019 and 2020. Well, let's throw one more on the list for 2020: Routes of Steel '73 from Claude Sirois, a game that combines deck-building with a pick-up-and-deliver mechanism. You can read about the development of this game, which has only a working title for now, in Sirois' BGG blog, which has posts dating back to February 2015, although design of the game itself started in 2013.

Atlas Games has announced a new standalone expansion for Gloom titled Gloom of Thrones for release in 2019. No info other than the somewhat predictable teaser tagline for now: "When you play the Gloom of Thrones, you win when you die...miserably."

From gallery of W Eric Martin
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