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Svarog's Den - Board Games

Dress for Battle in Conquest Princess, Scale Giants in Leviathan Wilds, and Get Stacked for a Party in the Back

by W. Eric Martin

• After years of unavailability, Carson City: Big Box from Xavier Georges and Quined Games is being republished, with this edition including new solo rules and a fancy-shmancy insert. (Gamefound link)

• Let’s jump genres from cowboys to pirates with SlackJack, a game from Thomas Robert Beatman, Joel Colombo, Travis Magrum, Ian Moss, Jim Schoch, and Jellybean Games in which players try to convince the captain to make them part of the treasure-search team. Each player has a hidden role, including a scofflaw who will make off with all the gold should they part of the captain’s team — assuming that team even gets the gold as that will be awarded to one side or another depending on the strength of each team. (Kickstarter link)

Pavlov’s House: The Battle of Stalingrad, Castle Itter: The Strangest Battle of WWII, and Lanzerath Ridge: Battle of the Bulge is a trio of solitaire games from David Thompson and Dan Verssen Games that are not new, but I suppose a Gamefound campaign will bring them to the attention of new players.

All three titles are part of Thompson and DVG’s “Valiant Defense” series, which also includes 2021’s Soldiers in Postmen’s Uniforms.

Conquest Princess: Fashion Is Power is a co-operative game from Peter Yang, Seppy Yoon, and Fight in a Box in which you are a member of the Temporal Intergalactic Armed Response Agency (TIARA) who dresses for battle, then faces off against “the worst classic space problems: Invaders from Space, Giant Mecha-Monsters, and the dreaded Fashion Tyrant Mu-gahgah”. (GF link)

• In Loam from Cardboard Revolution, you are a plant that wants to build healthy soils. Writes designer Max Helmberger, who is also a soil ecologist and biology lecturer at Boston University, “You have a lot more power and agency over your environment than humans often give you credit for. Use chemical inputs to sculpt the soil’s weird and wonderful biodiversity to assemble vibrant ecological communities.” (GF link)

9th Circle seems like a radical departure from R&R Games‘ usual fare, with this design from Rebecca Bleau and Nicholas Cravotta putting you in the role of a demon lord who uses minions to gain control of various parts of the eighth circle so that you can use those powers to gain favor with Malacoda, that is, a bad ending. (KS link)

Leviathan Wilds from Justin Kemppainen and Moon Crab Games challenges 1-4 players to scale gigantic creatures that are depicted on a two-fold spread in a spiral-bound notebook to remove the crystals that bind them.

Each player has a unique deck of multi-use cards, and they also represent your ability to hold on to the leviathan; run out of cards and you fall to a rest point, which resets your deck. The bound leviathans resist your efforts to free them with a deck of effect cards that gain strength over the course of play. (KS link)

• In Asteroid Dice from Camden Games, players play cards to compete for the giant squishy die of their choice, then roll them on the table — or smash them against already rolled dice — to try to get the high number. (KS link)

• We’ll close with a non-game project from BGG’s own Chad Krizan and his wife Caylyn, who run the company Puzzle Bomb and are currently running a Kickstarter campaign for a trilogy of all-wood jigsaw puzzles titled “Party in the Back”.

All three puzzles have multiple layers to them, with many different thematic images in the parts of the puzzle that will be buried once it’s fully assembled. The images below give a taste of what these puzzles are like, with the KS campaign featuring animated GIFs that feature all the levels…should you wish to have them spoiled in advance.


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