Fourth Dice & Mystics Sentinal Shout Out

Dear fellow gamers hear me out!

You all are sitting next to me at the fire with sane minds, unscarred bodies nor ripped-off limbs.

It is clear to my old eyes that you do not know the wrath of dragon fire.

But out there in the land of Kickstarter are brave warriors, fighting and battling mighty dragons, demons and even the god of storm.

Their leader is named Leonidas by friends and cursed by foes. His most loyal retainer Az beats the war Drummond and keeps the troops in line. I have seen the battlefields on which they fought beasts of legends, and I collected many unattended corpses.

Are you thirsty for glory – thirthty to make yourself known to the people of the land of Kickstarter?

Do you want to bring boxes full of loot with you when you return to your home again or be known as one who fought and died on the bonefields of Legend?

Then follow this path to the KS and do not hesitate!

Pledge your soul to your god.

Offer your live to godfather death.

I will take care of your unattended corpse.

Come and follow me and let me tell you that the warriors of Mythic Games will gather at the Dice & Mystics Fringe Event with us. And they bring loot for our raffle: One copy of Time of Legends: Joan of Arc and one canvas print showing glorious art from the game!

Give them the proper support on KS and have big fun playing their games!

Third Dice & Mystics Fringe Event 2019 Sentinel Shout Out

Speaking of giant shadows – have you heard it?

The singing from over the waves, of course.

It is a sung sweet like a happy return and bitter like a last farewell.

The ship is calling upon us to gather round, to be ready, to be prepared.

You like civilisation building? It is there.

You like resource management? It is there.

You like epic fights like battling with giants against all odds? It is there.

You like detailed and unique miniatures? It is there.

Look out! See the ship named ARGO calling for us.

She want us to tend to her, to get cradled by her in the stormy nights and carried by her into the fight against Titans! She will tell us vast stories from the verge of time!

Come and see  AEON TRESPASS ODYSSEY: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1492106834/407946890?ref=9ov821&token=37592c16

And now my warriors and seafarers let me tell you. The genius mind behind the game will join us at the Dice & Mystics Fringe Event. To us he is known as Marcin and we are delighted to have him!

We wish great success to his campaign!

Exciting times my fellow gamers!

Second Dice & Mystics Fringe Event 2019 Sentinel Shout Out

I come to you with good tidings. In midsts a ocean of titles I have seen a light. 

It heads right towards us. But beware I see a huge shadow following it like a giant sea monster.

The light is fuelled by the creativity, passion and outstanding love to detail that is presented to us by Albe Pavo. They have shown all those qualities in the last KS for the second edition of Carnival Zombie.

I own the first edition and am always delighted to play it. But beware: the second edition comes with so much more detail, frolic, depth and new game mechanics without loosing the beauty and gripping immersion of the first edition. Have a look: CARNIVAL ZOMBIE – Second Edition

The wonderful talented people from Albe Pavo will join our Fringe Event. And if their presence wound not be enough to get us excited they donate one copy of their game „Beer & Vikings“.

We are delighted and honored to have them with us.

Mellekai  

First Dice & Mystics Fringe Event 2019 Sentinal Shout Out

With the first sightings  of the moloch named Spiel Essen on the horizon let me take up my duty as sentinal for the Dice & Mystics Event on the Fringe of that giant beast of a fair.

Firstly I sighted a new company that is burning  with passion to ease our need to organise game components in the boxes and to help us with setting up and storing away all those precious goodies that make up all those glorious games today.

I am talking about InMyBox. They are making inserts, overlays, dice towers, cardholders, t-shirts for board gamers, 3D led lamps, 3D printed parts for and other accessories for board games. You can have a good look at their products at their online shop: https://inmybox.euor their FB page: https://www.facebook.com/InMyBox.eu/

You will find these warriors on a crusade for better inserts at Spiel Essen in hall 5, booth 5K106. Make sure to visit them and give them a nice welcome and  their products a good look!

And those passionate guys will join our Dice & Mystics Fringe Event and donate one copy of their flag ship product for their big entry at Spiel Essen:  

The Scythe BigBadBox!

This is hot from the press. 🙂

That box will provide space for all possible game pieces and all expansions. In addition to that they will provide us with two inserts for other games to give away in our raffle!

And big THANK YOU to Ivan from InMyBox for those kind donations and we wish you and your team a wonderful and successful time at Spiel Essen 2019.

We all cannot wait to have you at our Dice & Mystics Fringe Event!

Addendum: They have opened up the possibility to pickup orders at Spiel Essen without delivery costs for you.

Double Feature

Dear friends and gamers:

We give you time and space for all those epic board games that need more than a  single game night can provide you with. You can bring those loved but long unplayed gems from your collection to our event to play on large tables and leave them set up over night. In addition we have prepared five tables hosting: 

Descent 2nd edition
Dragonfire
Mega Civilization 
Time Stories
Twilight Imperium 3rd edition

Hate (Newly added!)

If you are set on playing a specific game you can reserve a seat in advance with your ticket. Do not delay, the spaces are limited. If you reserve seats at different tables we may  have to change your reservations.

The event starts Saturday the 4th of May at 04.00 PM.
At 07.00 PM we are collecting food orders for the delivery service.
At midnight we close the rooms. Your games can stay over the night but sadly we must send you all back to your own living places, dens and lairs.
On the 5th of May the second day of gaming starts at 09.00 AM.
At 11.00 AM we are collecting food orders for the delivery service.
At 02.00 PM we are closing the event softly.
During the whole event we will provide you with coffee, tea varieties and cookies for free.
You can order soft drinks from the delivery service with your food order.

You can book your free ticket here.

We are looking forward to play with you.
Good Play, Better Day!

A Sentinel’s View of The Tainted Grail

Dear friends and fellow gamers:

With the KS campaign for Tainted Grail approaching its end may I ask you all to indulge me and hear me out on my observations made during that campaign.

The Tainted Grail came with the promise of a deep story, enriched by wonderful expressive art. The story is written by a prolific Polish writer of Fantasy novels. In addition to that, the publisher Awaken Realms has proven that it is possible to build a board game injected with deep storytelling with the game This War Of Mine. I regard that game as a piece of art. I have watched all the play through videos available on YouTube at this moment and I have read all articles I could find regarding the gameplay for The Tainted Grail. And time after time I have been more convinced that The Tainted Grail will stand up to the task to give its players a wonderful story that is worth their time. But mind you, the story is gruesome. It touches on the darkest sides of the old legends and calls forth the Foimore, the red plague, and the monster that lies within human nature itself. Given the expressive character of the art the illustrations follow closely and are gorgeous and gruesome. Nothing for the faint hearted I might tell you.

For a story to be good, really good like a warm broth in the morning, it has to be humble in the beginning  and glorious in the end. The publisher of Tainted Grail have always expressed their will to counter power play. Like with the game Mice and Mystic your character comes with inbuild weakness. Ahhh, does that sound familiar to us like Flea from the Disney classic Merlin and Mim or like Taran from the not lesser fabulous The Black Cauldron. Yes, those are the heroes our hearts are bound to. And this games comes with such underdogs, a plethora of them. And mind you those weaknesses are not supposed to go away. No, they stay with the character and force you to build around them, making the game into a personal endeavor. You play the second choice of the gods, those who are leftovers deemed unworthy in the first instance.

And when you follow these weakened souls on their journey through the tainted land of Avalon, carefully watching their steps, managing their health, actions, food and magic you feel the loneliness of a dying land taken over by an old magic called the Wyrd. Like a fog, only countered by the light of large menhirs, encroaches it your game board, shaped of wonderful designed playing cards, laid down like the tiles of a wondrous roof you do not dare to touch given its delicate and withered character, and takes them away from you. The game entitles you only to see through a narrow hole in the fog of war that hides Avalon from you. And like the astonishing board game The 7th Continent you are craving to see more, to explore more. And your character cries up to you to find more food, a secure place to sleep and dream and for more experience to fuel its never ending desire for character evolvement. The game is a constant balance between your own desire to explore and and longing of your alter ego on the game board for safety and growing expertise. This dualism is the main attraction for me.

And the game shows this Janus doubled face to you in the fighting system, too.

You guess it. It starts with a monster card filled with fine art and markings on its side. The inexperienced guest in the realm of faerie is immediately taken hostage by the art on the card and is immersed. You know what, he is under the spell of the little folk now and we must wait for his excitement to ebb down. But the eyes of the seasoned board gamer are caught immediately by the small markings on the side of the card. And that is where the real beauty lies, the encounter system. It is build around those nodes. They tell you what and were you can find entry into the encounter with this entity thrown your way. They are emulating smell, noise and sensation, the rush of blood in your ears and the shiver of cold air that surrounds you. And you are going through your limited hand of cards to find the cards that provide you with the key to the riddle that this encounter truly is in nature. Truly amazing, engaging and new to my humble self.

While all those impressions still hold there are certain flaws that show up during the campaign. May I ask you for a little more time of your busy schedule to show you the parts where this beautiful corpse is starting to rot.

There are unsettling reports about the qualities of game components that reach me from the depths of Reddit.

The user nkMEGA writes:

‘The thing with AR is that their decisions were really … not up to par for the amount of funding they have gotten. For four million USD from Nemesis, they provided a production that is not as close as their 3D renders (in which btw they only show 3D render or resin – better material than plastic – to advertise), bad cardstock that worn down quickly for a game that requires you to shuffle and hold cards on hand all the time, and a rulebook with bad grammar even when the backer community had alerted them loudly about their major grammar problems weeks before production started.

They just shipped Nemesis now and only after many reports of bad minis, finally decided to hire their very first quality control person to improve production quality. Meaning 1st wave backers paid more just to be a test run with bad presentation.’

He continues:

‘I brought up that point when I saw my friend’s personal copy of Nemesis got worn out only after 1 game, because he was impatient to get sleeves for the cards. Another one had his copy of LoH and he also said the same. Most people I talked to dismissed my concern and said just buy sleeves. But at what point that it’s up to the consumer to be responsible to make the cards sturdy and pristine?’

Regarding the quality of the miniatures that are included in the prototype for reviewers my fellow backer and YouTube reviewer King of Average told me personally that no one should back this game because of the quality of the miniatures but because of the story and the art. I want to express my thanks to him and direct your gaze to his excellent YouTube Channel. If you like his work make sure to subscribe.

The Reddit user nkMega reports about the quality:

‘Nemesis just shipped and the game presentation was … sub-par. Heroes minis are small and details are not there. 1st wave backers will and can get a bad batch if they didn’t choose sun-drop option. Adult aliens show decent details and only the Queen is the redeeming mini of the set.’

On December the 22th Awaken Realms revealed via KS Live and Update # 20 that they will grant a download code for a video game of The Tainted Grail, OST, app with a voice-over of the story for free to all backers. This decision was triggered by the overall success of the KS for the board game, they continue. This free gift was cheered by many, especially those who are enjoying pc games equally or even more than board games and of course by all who are concerned about having to read the texts of the game out loud themselves.

This announcement raised some eyebrows with  all who are more deeply involved into the creation of video games or are following the actual happenings in that segment of gaming. At his point in time we can observe the failing of triple A publishers in their attempt to create video games that are really good. It seems that those publishers are more concerned about injecting their triple A games with in game micro transactions and loot boxes. For more information about that I want to point you to the YouTube channels of YongYea and Jim Sterling. Many publishers are now more concerned with creating a constant  inflow of cash from their gamers. You could argue that this is all well and good because they are bound to make money. But keep in mind that those gamers have already payed about USD 60 for those games only to find that those games are made grindiger and hard to play to sell those micro transactions to ease the gameplay. That is fine with a free to play game. 

And here we find the free to play video game from Awaken Realms. They are eager to join those companies and get their share of the video game market which is currently changing its main focus from producing good games into providing live services.

May I quote a very talented gentleman and knight of the Empire that goes by the name of Terry Pratchett:

‘Taxation, gentleman, is very much like dairy farming. The task is to extract the maximum amount of milk with the minimum amount of moo.’

And despite all expertise and long years of producing video games we find that many of those highly experienced video game publishers are going under. Telltale Games, maker of The Walking Dead with 275 employees closed 10 studios. EA despite holding worldwide  licenses  for many beloved IP like Marvel, Star Wars and Bat Man has closed dozens of studios including previously acquired ones like Westwood and Black Box Games. Visceral, creator of Dead Space and Battlefield Hardline with at least 80 employees closed the gates. And mind you the shit storm that is caused by Blizzard with their decision to go for the free to play mobile phone market instead of concentrating on a long awaited new game for pc. Right now Blizzard is reducing the number of their employees worldwide to counter the meager revenues of this year.

And into this turbulent market Awaken Realms want to venture. They have earned a solid reputation with board gamers. But they have no such leverage in the video segment of gaming. Hence it seems possible that they will fail with this endeavor. In addition to that they do not rely on the service of any experienced third party like CMON does with Blood Rage Digital. Awaken Realms stated that they will develop their video game in house. This rose the questions how both projects are interlinked? They told us that both projects are relying on separate funds and that different teams are working on the projects. In the very same update they also announced that both teams will be connected and share Human Resources contradicting their former statement. And while update number 20 went online they were including a new pledge level for the video game only contradicting their former statement about strict separated fundings for both projects. May I add that the strict separated funding of projects could only be assured with the construct of two separate companies handling both tasks independly, but joining their efforts through a joint venture to grant a cooperate identity and seamless game design.

Many backer were toughed by the excitement of the co-producer and owner of Awaken Realms Marcin Swiercot. He was quite passionate about the video game project and happy to give it to the backers for free.

But may I add that despite I am touched by his excitement I am still not convinced by the gift. The gift comes tied in with the high risks of venturing into the video game market. To buffer that risk he invites his backers to follow him into that market with this free copy of the video game, creating an instant power base.

And the excitement he shows comes to me as an ill wind because we already know that Awaken Realms tended to wrong business decisions in the past leaving them poorly equipment to survive in a market full of hard fighting giants like EA and Activision. Those are steered by financial experts and not by idealists. And I am nervous about the fact that inexperienced idealists are putting the fundings of this KS campaign, that has started for a board game only, at such a high risk. They tend to support their dreams by all means and with all resources they have reign over, meaning our pledged money for the board game

The reddit user nkMEGA reminded us:

‘They just shipped Nemesis now and only after many reports of bad minis, finally decided to hire their very first quality control person to improve production quality. 

Meaning 1st wave backers paid more just to be a test run with bad presentation.

Not to mention the fiasco with retail version of This War of Mine expansions. They did not handle well that gave the retail publisher the right to completely make expansions bought during KS campaign obsolete. Anyone who wants to play retail version of the expansions will have to give up their KS version. If you’re not a collector, then you’re not really affected by it, but let’s say you got the free KS expansion and now want to buy other add-ons during retail, then you have to give up playing your KS ones.’

If you ask me how I assess those impressions and proceed with my pledge I answer to you that I will keep my pledge because I see the wonderful game I have fallen in love with still, despite the changes in the general framework made by Awaken Realms.

I do not expect them to fall prey to their own desire to venture into the video game market segment. But I think the production will be delayed further than even I have predicted right from the start. Hence I will go for a two wave delivery to receive the core box as soon as possible while moaning the far away expansions . And I will grudingly go for the sleeves, too, despite I do not sleeve my games on a regular basis. And I will choose sun drop for the miniatures to make sure that I get double-checked quality.

May I thank you for the time you spared reading my words.

Keep in mind that those are the view points of only me and me alone.

Miremarsh Nights 2018

There is something spooky out tonight. Well, most of the time it is just some creepy-crawly looking for some toes to bite. But this night, this night it was different. Because it was the Miremarsh Night!

All the goblins in their settlement in the midsts of the Miremarsh knew, they felt it in their bones and teeth. A chill that the burning bone fire could not ease, a whisper in the shadows like the ancestors calling your name. All the birds hid, silent during daylight before this particular night, and all the snares were empty as nothing has moved around in the marsh.
Under the disconcerned gazes of the elders all pointy sticks were sharpened with many goblin fingers harmed in the process.
And now all the goblins were waiting for the return of their scout. The only one brave enough to venture out into the darkened swamp under the low hanging sky. Well, they more or less just pushed one unlucky goblin out of the gates and pointed him – with quite some harsh words and threats to spit roast him – into the deep marsh.
Nevertheless they were waiting, all bulwarks manned and the gate closed, just the little porch remained open, ready to grant entry to the returning scout.
And then there came a screeching noise as if all the humans sacrificed by their tribes, bound at wrists and ankles, drowned by their priesest of old, were trying to scratch with their fingernails through the gates of the Undermire to find a less dark and dampen place to rest till the end of times. The noise punched into the goblin ears with thorny fingers, pulled at their bare teeth and blew icy cold in their staring eyes.
But the goblins did not leave the bulwark, they did not give up their posts at the gate and with a grin and a last pull at their hair the screeching sound danced off deeper into the marsh.
Out of the empty silence that followed the screech the small figure of a goblin grew into sight. The goblins at the gates and the porch screamed and cheered the returning scout to be faster, to reach the settlement before the source of this awe bearing sound could reach the gates. And they noticed that the scout held something above his head, something round, glazed deep blue. With eyes wide open and gasping breath the goblin reached the porch and all the goblins gathered around him eager to hear what he has found, what he has brought.
Shivering he holds up a blue potty! And with trembling finders he pulls out a rolled parchment. On it is written: Come to me in the Miremarsh. Signed Mellekai.

We gather for the Miremarsh Night at Gemeindeheim St. Engelbert, Kassenberger Strasse 94, Bochum on Saturday the 17th of November from 05.00 PM to 11.00 PM. There you will have the opportunity to play a shiny pre-production copy of the game Miremarsh and test Museum Rush, too, before the pledge-manager for Miremarsh by Room 17 Games closes on December the 07th. And for all guests there will be a promo card, too. We can host 15 brave goblins (we are planning three rounds, first come, first served). You will only gain entrance to the Marsh if you reserve your seat here.

Always ready to serve you! We have coffee, tea and biscuits for free and there will be the opportunity to order food and drinks.

Mellekai

And there ist even more to experience if you follow the honorable goblin Kehlenschnitt. He is organising another great Miremarsh Night. I am happy to present you his message:

Imagine you are a Goblin in a deadly swamp, filled with terrifying monsters, vicious traps and a lot of unlucky, unruly and reckless fellow Goblins, each vying to be the next Goblin King. Do you have what it takes to become a Goblin King ? Can you beat the odds and are you clever (or reckless) enough to survive the many deadly challenges that can be found in the Miremarsh ? Now is your chance to heed the call and accept the challenge to become the new Goblin King of Miremarsh. I will host demogames of Miremarsh (with a shiny, new prototype copy) at my local gaming store on Saturday, 24th November from 3pm-7pm. Don’t miss this opportunity to get a first glimpse at this wonderful game and the highly detailed Goblin miniatures.
Event location:
Brave New World

Dice & Mystics Fringe 2018

Update 2 (20.08.2018):

Dice & Mystics Fringe on October 27th – Need a Taxi?

We have spoken with Bednarz Elektro Taxi GmbH (www.bednarz-elektrotaxi.de), a very reliable local service, and we  are glad that we were able to secure a

special offer for taxi rides to or from the Dice & Mystics Fringe:                                    10 % off all fares outside Bochum!

(Please note that all fares within the city limits of Bochum have to be charged the regular taxi rates; all fares beyond the city limits are 10 % off for you.)

In order to use this special offer, contact one of the numbers below or send a mail  and state that you are a guest at the “Dice & Mystics Fringe” event.

Tel.:  0234-490024   OR    Tel.:  0234-490026

Fax.: 0234-490025

mwahl@bednarz-elektrotaxi.de

_________________________________________________________________________

Update 1:

We are happy and proud to announce:

The Dice & Mystics Fringe event on Sat. 27th Oct. 2018 is booked full! 

We are very much looking forward to seeing you wonderful people in October.  With over 80 % returners from previous years it is going to be a happy reunion for many.

Like last year, anybody who is late but is still wanting to join in the fun is from now on going to be put on our waiting list.

PLEASE:

If you are booked but can for whatever reason not attend, do give us a shout so that somebody else can have a chance to take your place. Thank you so much!

_________________________________________________________________________

Going to Essen and want to play?
Join us at the Dice & Mystics Fringe 2018
October 27th (from 4 p.m. until midnight)

Yes, we’re doing it AGAIN! How could we not, after all the positive vibes, the fun and happiness we experienced at our previous Fringes?
You are looking for a nice and comfortable game night to round up your visit at SPIEL Essen? Then come to play with us on Saturday October 27th at our game location in Bochum, 15 Minutes by car from the SPIEL. You are very welcome at the Dice & Mystics Fringe, aka “Tiny Con.”
It is free of any charge and entirely non-commercial. We just want to give our fellow board gamers a place to enjoy their new games, meet people, exchange their experiences of the fair and have fun. There is space and time to play on Saturday
from 4.00 p.m. to midnight.

However, the places are limited, so we do kindly ask you to contact us so that we can put you on our guest list. We can give you directions on how to find us (by car just 3 turns from the autobahn; also by public transport).                             Hotels and restaurants in the vicinity may be about the same driving distance to the SPIEL as some in Essen.

There will be the opportunity to order food and drinks on the premises; a delivery service will take orders at the tables. Teas, coffees and biscuits are free!

You would like to come?         Contact us by clicking here. We need your full name and home address and also the full names of any friends you want to bring along. You are going to receive a confirmation as soon as you are booked.
Registration ends on Saturday, 13.10.2018.

TSUKUYUMI – Full Moon Down @ Fringe 2017

We are very proud to present a fresh and brand new game that is on KS right now. And the best thing is that you will be able to play the game at our Fringe Event!

Tsukuyumi – Full Moon Down is a boardgame without any elements of luck or chance, that demands specific strategic skills of its 3-5 (6) players. The modular battlefield represents the dried out ground of the former Pacific Ocean: Up to 40 hexagonal area tiles circle the moon panels, providing score points, blockades and contaminations. The goal is to gather as many score points as possible, through conquering and occupying areas – thus becoming the most dominant species on the board. Tsukuyumi – Full Moon Down’s particular appeal lies in the clash of diverse, asymmetrical factions. At the beginning, each player picks a faction. Each faction comes with their own respective abilities, units and strategies. The game therefore changes depending on which factions meet on the battlefield. You may decide between wild boars, whales, marines, battle mechs, cybersamurai and many more.

STORYWOLD

The world has changed – and with it the creatures who are fighting for survival. Whether human survivors, mutated beasts or human-machine hybrids – every faction wants to seize power, in order to finally face their greatest enemy: The white dragon Tsukuyumi.

As the moon hit the earth, it had an effect which usually takes thousands of years: land masses were moved, pushed down and raised, water was displaced, and down appeared to be up. Creaking and groaning, the face of the planet was changed. The moon however came to a standstill amid massive earth walls in the muddy floor of the former Pacific Ocean.

The moon sliced up stretches of land, broke continental tectonic plates, splintered mountains and broke its own stone hull on the icy summits of the Himalaya. Wherever Tsukuyumi’s pheromones touch life, a rapid evolution takes place. But his original plan failed. While humans who get in his way fall victim to his influence and become highly intelligent and destructive Oni, the other creatures have resisted. Thus his own creations turn against him, and become his most powerful enemies. These include the insect swarms of the Dark Seed, the pig herds of the Boarlords, the beasts of the Children of the Lion and the massive land whales of the Lords of the Lost Sea.

 

Exclusiv @ Fringe Event 2017

We are happy and proud to announce that you all will have the unique opportunity to see and play a pre-production copy of the new game Canyon Cup. You will not find this game at the Spiel Essen. It will be shown and demoed exclusively at our event by the creators Simon & François Pirson.

Authors : Simon&François Pirson
Illustrator : Hugo Thomas
Players : 2-4
Duration : 40′
Public: Family/Expert

Canyon Cup is a game of scoring and optimization mixing tactical choices, interactions and risk taking in a fun and offbeat universe. The duration and the difficulty are modulable.

In Canyon Cup, players embody crazy pilots who gather in the desert to compete in their custom cars. The Canyon Cup takes place on a desert and rocky circuit, surrounded by numerous terraces where the public is ready to choose its new champion!

The final winner of the game is the most popular driver, the one with the most popularity points scored during the race. Overtaking, public greetings, vehicle destruction, … there are plenty of opportunities to amaze the public, making every Canyon Cup race intense and unique!

Served by a nervous and fluid mechanic, this game will delight racing enthusiasts. In addition, the original and instinctive system of displacement allows the young as well as the older ones to compete in the joy and the good mood! As for the more seasoned players, they will be able to discuss the respective interests of the cross tires and the grapple, the reasons for choosing reinforced shielding rather than a pre – race massage or the well – founded knives on fast track, improbable combination between the turbo kit and the combat bumper. It’s time to heat the engines … Go to the track!