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Links: Hippodice Game Design Winners for 2012, Never Scene It Again & Game Gifts Reborn

W. Eric Martin
United States
North Carolina
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• The results of the 2012 Hippodice Spieleclub game design competition have been announced, and the winners are:

-----1. Brethren of the Coast, by Brett Gilbert (UK)
-----2. Druid Stones, by Alf Seegert (USA)
-----3. Stapel-Lauf, by Hilko Drude (D)

The other finalists are:

-----Der kleine Punkt, by Peter Vetter (D)
-----Feuer und Wasser, by Jens Bernsdorf (D)
-----Kami no Kawa, by Franck Renault (F)
-----Karma, by Christian Rossiquet (F)
-----Roulix, by Tanja Triminek (D)
-----Schnack nich … Dat geit!!!, by Timo Diegel (D)

Games on the recommended list are:

-----Erstkontakt, by Peer Sylvester (D)
-----Sibir, by Andreas Steding (D)
-----Valley of the Kings, by Kalle Malmioja (Fin)

And finally a few special prizes:

-----• Best two-player game: Lamello, by Klaus Salzmann (D)
-----• Best full-length game: Kohlezechen & ZechenKolonie, by Thomas Spitzer (D)
-----• Best cooperative game: Emergency Room, by Florian Goldmann-Hartl (D)

Congratulations to all the winners! Pictures and descriptions of the games are available in PDF from the Hippodice website. Now get cracking on those entries to the BGG database...

Glory to Rome picked up the 2011 Swiss Gamers Award, which is determined by the votes of sixteen gaming clubs in Switzerland. The Castles of Burgundy took second, while Helvetia came in third, the Swiss not succumbing to thematic favoritism. (HT:

Screenlife, publisher of more than four dozen versions of Scene It? since the initial game's debut in 2002, is being closed by its parent company Paramount Pictures, according to The Seattle Times. From an article announcing the closure:

"Screenlife was the victim of the same radical changes that all the media companies are facing," Steve Banfield, former Screenlife senior vice president of digital strategy, wrote in a personal blog post...

"Consumers aren't buying as many DVDs and instead relying on digital downloads. Consumers aren't playing board games but instead getting their gaming on mobile phones and tablets, and instead of playing together in a living room they are playing together on Facebook."

Why do I keep writing news posts when no one is playing board games any more? Will someone tell me that? Oh, wait, no one is reading this post either. Nevermind...

• In a press release from North Star Games about giving games as Easter gifts, the publisher reveals a bit of data that gamers might find interesting:

The numbers tell an interesting story. Target sold on average 348 copies of Wits & Wagers during each week in March 2011. During the week leading up to Easter, Target sold 1,321 Wits & Wagers. That is a 379% increase over the March average!

So, okay, maybe Easter celebrants really are turning to games over chocolates, but the larger point is that 348 copies of Wits & Wagers sold each week equals roughly 18,000 for the year - not including peak sales periods like Christmas and (apparently) Easter. Imagine how much better the game would sell if it ever got better placement on the shelves and wasn't hidden on the floor. (Okay, I'm sure North Star's Dominic and Satish imagine this every night while lying on their pillows...)

The Hanging Gardens is in beta version on the online gaming site
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