Fantasy Flight have released a new preview video of the highly anticipated Dust Warfare. It discusses the rule set and looks at some of the amazing miniatures to make this skirmish game come alive. Enjoy!
Archive for 'Board Games'
Ever wondered what the board game Small World was all about? Well I think I have found the greatest “Let’s Play” video of all time. Featuring the likes of Will Wheaton (Star Trek, Stand By Me, Big Bang Theory), Sean Plott (aka Day9 of Starcraft fame), Grant Imahara (host on Mythbusters), and Jenna Busch (geek blogger & host). It is a genuinely fun, charming and accessible look at the risk-like board game with a fantasy twist from designer Philippe Keyaerts. Check it out, its a solid 30 minute feature so get comfortable:
What I found interesting, whilst admiring the quality of this video, is that it also pricked the ears of a few of my non-gaming friends in passing, and held their interest. Perhaps it was the witty tones of Wheaton, or the accessible approach taken with the production to help explain the games rules in simple terms. Either way, I’ve made it my goal to get them over this Easter break for a few games of Small World ourselves to see how a group of dewy-eyed board game ‘newbies’ fair up.
I will detail my success, or failure, as and when it happens…Now to make sure I get to play as the trusty Dwarves.
You can buy Small World here from Spinning Dice Games and its expansions.
Most of the time, gaming sessions can sometimes really be enhanced by a little background music. We’re not talking about the dross on Radio 1 playing over a game of Warhammer but rather music that’s tailored to armies marching and charging across the board or role players exploring a labyrinth. Music aids the imagination and also adds an element of the cinematic to the proceedings.
Here’s some great music which Spinning Dice Games suggests you try out for either dungeon exploring or table top wargaming.
Star Wars Episode 1: Duel of Fates – John WIlliams
John WIlliams- Duel of Fates. Forget the film content but listen to John Williams’ epic Episode 1 score that can apply to both fantasy and sci-fi battles without the familiar Star Wars fanfare. What this piece has is a tremendous sense of build up and the dramatic choral sections only help make this a memorable Williams’ tune overall.
Gladiator – Hans Zimmer
A classic choice for wargamers but also not the usual dull Zimmer treatment we tend o hear in Michael Bay movies. Zimmer captures the rage and action of warfare. Essential.
Vaughan Williams: Symphony No.6 Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis
If there is one track that I can definitely recommend for those epic melancholic moments in an RPG – Just imagine your character standing on a cliff top surveying a large landscape dwelling on the adventures ahead. Epic!
Mass Effect 1/2/3 – Jack Wall & Sam Hulick
Computer game soundtracks are often overlooked and mostly unfairly by music critics. In my opinion they offer some rich musical interludes for your gaming sessions. Jack Wall provides some electronica and orchestral combination to naturally make a great sci fi atmosphere for RPGs and table top wargaming.
Babylon 5 Series soundtrack – Christopher Franke
As a huge Babylon 5 fan, I’m inclined to say that Franke’s work on the show was excellent and produced one of Sci Fi’s most memorable theme tunes for me anyway. Lots of sci-fi orchestral tracks to choose from which are more often than not for raging space battles so this makes it excellent choice for a game of Warhammer 40k or a space combat strategy table top game.
Ripley’s Rescue – Aliens – James Horner
Humble beginnings for James Horner when he created an awesome theme for Battle Beyond the Stars and then soon moved onto the heights of Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan, Avatar and BraveHeart. He’s the composer of choice for director, James Cameron and decent one at that.
Also try out Brave Heart – For the Love of A Princess by James Horner for those RPG quieter moments…
Ride of the Valkyries – Die Walküre – Wagner
A cliché but classic tune that is famed for its use in Francis Ford Coppla’s Apocalypse Now! It maybe too late to disconnect the tune with the film but for added bombastic effect add a little Wagner into your Table Top-war game just for the fun of it!
The Lord of the Rings Soundtrack – Howard Shore
Shore won multiple Oscar awards for his stellar work on Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings. There’s too many tracks to name from this work that’ll will suit your gaming sessions and I’ll leave it up to you, the reader, to pick and choose your favourites. For those who haven’t heard the entire LOTR soundtrack on CD yet, well, shame on you!
If you threatened to put a fluorescent pink spray can to my miniature collection, I would pick the following as my tune of choice…
The Breaking of the Fellowship – Howard Shore
This reminds me of seeing the The Fellowship of the Ring to the end and thinking that I’ve finally seen one of the greatest films I’ve seen.
Last of the Mohicans: Top of the World – Randy Edelman
Need a rousing tune to sure up your defenses?…
Be great to get your comments and feedback…
Probably one of the most important elements when choosing a game is its rules system. However, artwork plays an equally important part in immersing the player in to the game itself. Excellent artwork helps convey characters, situations and adds to the overall enjoyment of the game. I see it much like how decent special effects nowadays in films help with a dramatic and believable action scene.
The following artists are some of the best I’ve seen. Some of you may agree or disagree and I hope that you’ll pass on your thoughts in the comments section below.
An artist I admire simply for his skill in creating some seductive fantasy females. You can find his artwork in WIzard of the Coasts products such as Magic the Gathering. This talented artist already has a growing following in amongst digital artists
Innistrad – Magic The Gathering – Steve Arygle
Larry Elmore (larryelmore.com)
A name which goes hand-in-hand with classic Dungeons and Dragons. His artwork inspired generations of fantasy artists and his paintings for D&D are incredibly iconic such as the cover of the Red Box starter set back in the early 80s. Artist Ralph Horsle recently did the updated Redbox art in 2010 which was directly inspired by Larry’s original masterpiece.
Classic Red Box Cover Art – Larry Elmore
Check out these other D&D artists:-
Keith Parkinson - www.keithparkinson.com/main.php
Clyde Caldwell - www.clydecaldwell.com
Advanced Dungeons and Dragons – Clyde Caldwell
Paul Bonner (www.paulbonner.net)
Paul works exclusively in water colour and has provided art for Rackham, Games Workshop and FASA in the past. Bonner’s paintings are incredibly detailed and contain rich narrative inspired from folklore and legends. He still works for GW on a freelance basis and creates illustrations for World of Warcraft.
Oriental flavour to the proceedings with Mario’s exquisite fantasy art for AEGs Legend of the Five Rings CCG and RPGs. His digital artwork offers a dynamic realism which is quite unlike most artists in the industry I know of.
Franz Frazeta (frankfrazetta.net)
The Grandfather of Fantasy Art and not necessarily table top games artwork . His excellent reputation for me comes from his work on Conan which supplied the template for most artists when approaching fantasy artists. Again, ‘pin up’ style women with equally buffed up strong men were the staple. Frazeta’s work portrayed the brutally and romanticism needed to bring Robert E Howard’s Conan world alive. Frazeta died in 2010 but left a huge legacy of work for future artists to admire.
More Computer Game Crossovers
Increasingly computer games have had a bigger influence on ‘offline’ gaming. 2011 saw big releases like ‘Gears of War’ for instance making the transition to baord games and HeroClix. What other big IPs can we see making the leap? Well, I’d really like to see much more done in the worlds of Elder Scroll series. Skyrim is a massive gaming hit (Previous versions have done equally well) and in my opinion needs to see much more coverage in card games, board games and traditional role playing.
Sci-fi mega hit: Mass Effect most definitely needs the offline treatment. Someone? Anyone? Makers Bioware were gracious enough to give Dragon Age brand to Role playing game publisher Green Ronin: which they called: Dragon Age: Dark Fantasy Role Playing (greenronin.com/dragon_age/). So why not Mass Effect? The mystery continues but I reckon there would be something in 2012 for Mass Effect fans.
Dust Warfare a Hit
The strategy board game, Dust Tactics has been going strength to strength. However, 2012 sees the release of Dust Warfare. This is a new take on the game which frees it from the grided board of Tactics and allows its whole raft of its cool miniatures to be played freely on the table top!
One of the biggest attractions of the game is commanding large attack walkers in your armies. It is unclear how the rules of the game will evolve but expect flowing game play to say the least. Rumours suggest that each player has commend points to spend during each turn. These points must be spent wisely to gain the upper hand on your opponent. Further pints can be spent on each unit and obviously for attack.
One final comment, with Veteran games designer, Andy Chambers involved we expect great things.
Star Wars Gaming to go from strength to strength
With Lucas releasing the film saga in 3D, the merchandise tie-ins are soon to follow. Episode 1 3D gets its cinematic airing in February but it’s the classic trilogy that the SDG staff are waiting for.
The classic Star Wars franchise comes back to the card game format with Fantasy Flight’s 2012 offering: Star Wars: The Card Game. This living card game features a whole wealth of card options for this co-operative game where the Rebellion must defeat the dark forces of the Empire.
Also on the horizon is a space combat strategy game which promises to capture the fast paced action of Star Wars space dog fights. Personally, I want to play the Tie Fighter squadrons in this set myself but this game is bound to be a sure fire hit. Expansion could be plentiful for this game and we expect a series this year to include Han Solo’s Millennium Falcon and dreaded Star Destroyers.
The Hobbit will rock
You’ve most likely seen the Trailer for the new Hobbit film to be released in December 2012. Expect a plethora of new stuff to come out from CCGs, Board games and other merchandise. Games Workshop are looking to re-energise its Lord of the Rings offering and it should release a table-top strategy game before the film’s release. The Lord of the Rings films released from 2001 to 2003 will most likely have new life breathed through them so new products should be launched including Lego sets and more from WizKids Heroclix range which is already out there.
Warhammer 40k 6th Edition released
Another big release for Games Workshop the cards? Rumblings of the next edition of 40k have been gathering throughout 2011 and it is cited that GW will indeed release the next iteration of 40k doing the Summer.
The supposed 6th Edition box set have had intenet buzz talking of a match up between the Chaos Space Marines and the noble Eldar forces. The rumour mill has been churning for potential rule changes including turn phase changes to make the action more ‘real-time’ for instance. I’m not going to speculate too much but it’s bound to be a high point for 40k fans!
No official announcement yet but with all the buzz I’d expect it to happen sooner rather than later.