August is finally over and so is the summer break, that plenty of KS creators were on since June. Season of second editions and expansions is behind us. Despite what many people expected, there actually were tons of great projects launching in summer.
Today, let’s take a look at another monthly portion of Kickstarter tabletop game campaigns. Welcome to our August retrospective!
Pen & Paper Stronger Than Ever
It’s been a while since we’ve had some big campaigns for pen & paper RPG books. This month however introduced us to two. Both of them attracted thousands of Kickstarter backers.
Your Best Game Ever is a set of resource books for RPG players. It was written by people at Monte Cook Games, who have been selling their pen & paper systems on Kickstarter for over 6 years. The book is filled with advice for game masters and players – from finding a party to creating unforgettable RPG/LARP sessions. Higher pledge options included author’s own Cypher System RPG and a number of resource books introducing new settings – all playable with Cypher.
August also offered something for people who want pen & paper RPGs set in familiar settings. The Expanse Role Playing Game lets players explore the world known from the SF works of James S.A. Corey. The game is based on AGE (Adventure Game Engine) system, and is newcomer friendly. The Expanse RPG upgrades AGE with mechanics like space battles and interlude periods, where players can decide what to do when traveling long distances through space.
August Board Game Game Debuts
August had some unexpected new games and less revisions/expansions than previous months. 3 new titles are especially worth mentioning because of their incredible performance.
Trogdor!! The Board Game managed to collect $1,421,903 during its campaign. The game was made by the authors of Homestar Runner – a cult online cartoon with almost 20 years of history. Even though they had zero prior Kickstarter experience, their fanbase was enough to accelerate the campaign and attract thousands of backers.
Trogdor!! The Board Game is built around an interesting idea, where players collectively control a huge fire breathing dragon and try to burn down a whole kingdom. Players take turns to control the dragon and use special cards to grant him new deadly abilities.
Call to Adventure is a game based around “hero crafting”. Each player starts by picking his or her own hero’s origin card (describing character’s backstory). All actions throughout the game increase hero’s “Destiny Score”. Whoever earns more of these points – wins.
Cards uncovered along the way often include choices leading to different outcomes and rewards. The campaign offered a special set of expansions themed after famous modern fantasy books. The first one introduces events and places from “The Kingkiller Chronicles” by P. Rothfuss, and the second uses “The Stormlight Archive” by B. Sanderson.
Escape Plan is the third August campaign that got more than half million dollars from backers. The game takes place in a modern american metropolis. Players become thieves, who have just finished their first successful heist. Now they’re all wanted by the police and need to escape the city ASAP. Whoever escapes first – wins. To succeed you’ll have to befriend local gangsters, invest in businesses in the city and get proper equipment that’ll help you survive. Game is aimed at 2 to 5 players but can also be enjoyed solo.
Back on Kickstarter
Two new editions of already released games had some great results as well. One of them debuted on Kickstarter a year ago, and the other has almost 10 years of history.
Bargain Quest got crowdfunded in 2017, but the new edition collected almost 800% of the first campaign’s result.
Bargain Quest lets players become shop owners in a quite generic (but incredibly charming) fantasy setting. By putting goods in the shop window and offering items for sale, you attract local heroes. The goal is to help them in defeating dangers lurking around the town (and earn lots of money). New campaign introduced the black market to the mechanics and added a new set of heroes to the mix.
Thunderstone Quest is a deck building game that debuted back in 2009. The goal is simple: to win you have to gather more points than all other players. To earn points you’ll have to create the best card deck possible, preferably having a certain strategy in mind. Decks represent fantasy heroes on their journey through a dungeon. This new version comes with dungeon tiles, that add tons of mechanics to an already good game. Latest campaign introduces solo mode and a 6th quest expansion called “What Lies Beneath”.
Campaign of the Month
8. Bargain Quest – 392,045 USD
7. The Expanse RPG – 402,832 USD
6. Your Best Game Ever! – 581,673 USD
5. Escape Plan – 659,609 USD
4. Thunderstone Quest – 731,383 USD
3. Call to Adventure – 760,576 USD
2. Trogdor!! – 1,421,903 USD
1. Caverns Deep! by Dwarven Forge – 3,317,658 USD
Most funded campaign of the month belongs to well known Kickstarter veterans. Their result is twice as high as the creator who placed second. Dwarven Forge, one of the biggest players in Kickstarter’s “tabletop” category, introduced yet another of their marvelous wargaming terrains.
All products by Dwarven Forge can be used in D&D and other game systems. So far they’ve successfully funded 5 campaigns and Caverns Deep is their sixth one.
Caverns Deep offers a nice choice of subterranean environment models designed to look like caves created by nature. All pieces are incredibly detailed and solid. Terrain models offered in the campaign represent any cave types you could imagine: crystal filled, submerged in water and decorated with rotting bridges. Certain pieces contain LEDs so that torches and magic crystals can actually emit light. Every piece comes equipped with a magnet and can be put together in any way you desire.