Fantasy Flight  Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Fantasy Flight  RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Tabletop Company Fantasy Flight Games Breaks into Mobile Territory with BattleLore: Command Wed, 29 Oct 2014 09:38:17 -0400 Sara Ventura

BattleLore: Command is a new multi-platform tactical strategy game soon to be released by Fantasy Flight Games based on their popular board game, BattleLore.

The game features a single player campaign unique to this edition, custom battles, multiplayer versus capability on the same wireless network, and a 360 view of the scene.


Start the campaign as a Daqan commander and then fight hordes of Uthuk Y'llan demons with brute force and magic. In addition to battle strategy, the campaign offers high repayability for the player by allowing him or her to make decisions that affect the story. Do you choose to rescue villagers or one of your own men? Take an artifact or leave it?

Skirmish mode allows for custom battles within BattleLore. The more you progress in solo campaign, the more opens up in Skirmish. Here, you can play as the Uthuk Y'llans, change your statistics, play with a friend, or pit your army against itself. There's also five different objective modes: Deathmatch, Demolition, Cross the Line, Gather Power, and Strongholds.

BattleLore: Command will be coming soon to the Apple App Store, Amazon Marketplace, and Google Play for $9.95.

Mobile Games: Proving Grounds for the Big Leagues? [Updated] Tue, 18 Mar 2014 10:15:39 -0400 Proto Foe

Angry Birds, Plague Inc, Elder Sign: Omens, Into the Dead, and Deus Ex: The Fall...

What do these five titles have in common?

They started on mobile.

[Addition] Before we get started, I'd like to give a glimpse into my definition of 'Big League': Personally I see the hitting the big leagues as making a sustainable product, something that can attract a core following at first and then be picked up due to word of mouth. This happens a lot in the mobile sector, mainly due to the low costs or F2P nature of the titles. Hitting that stride on both PC and console is no easy feat, though the below titles have done so or are very close to doing so.

This should not make you angry.

Take Angry Birds for an example: who could have predicted flinging a multitude of birds at pigs would be so much darn fun? After conquering the mobile market with ease, Rovio, the creator of Angry Birds, took to other stages to showcase their game. From console and PC, Smart TV  to social media, Angry Birds is never more than a few clicks or presses away from your eye

Since 2009, the popular franchise has generated nine titles and a spin off.

Thanks to the success of Angry Birds, Rovio were able to land a licensing deal to make a game (and merchandise) based on a little franchise called Star Wars. Thank you, mobile.

After infecting tens of millions of the Human race on the go, Ndemic moves to eradicate the PC Master Race.

Overall Best Strategy Game - IGN

Here you have Plague Inc. A game about wiping mankind off the face of the Earth by using as many gruesome plagues as you can think up think up. Personally, I like to send a horde of zombies over to New Zealand... NZ is my nemesis country!

Created initially by one man in his spare time, James Vaughan, Plague Inc has gone on to be a smash hit on both Android and iOS. Hitting both #15 and #18 on the top paid titles charts on iPhone and iPad respectively. Plague Inc. also has won many numerous awards, including a 2012 Game of the Year award from IGN for "'Overall Best Strategy Game."

Since 2012, Plague Inc. has gone on to mutate on a regular basis, adding several paid expansions on the mobile front, and now moving to Steam with the assistance of proven games developer Auroch Digital. The early access version of Plague Inc. Evolved is a fantastic next step for the IP. Sporting a redone interface, audio library and graphics, but keeping the same engrossing gameplay, Plague Inc. Evolved is porting done right.

I can only hope that we see more games from Ndemic Creations and its partners. Thank you, mobile.

No matter what anyone tells you... Old Gods know best.

Okay, maybe this didn't start on mobile per say, but it has found a comfortable home on mobile. The Arkham Horror inspired Elder Sign: Omens is a fantastic take on the classic board game mixed with eyebrow raising, eye twitching moments of frustration where you fall victim to the Old Gods.

As with most mobile titles you should expect to put in five to ten minutes and feel rewarded. Or in the case on Elder Sign: Omens, punished. Fantasy Flight spent couple of years supporting the mobile version before heading to PC to add some extra spit and polish.

If you look around you can find ways to play this single player game with friends! Thank you, mobile.

A game that has you running back for more.

Tech Glen

Windows mobile sadly is a very under represented place for games.

Run, dodge, stumble, run, get eaten, and dodge. Simple, effective, and challenging gameplay: that is Into the Dead in a nutshell. Creators PikPok initially made the title available on Android and iOS, a basic start for most games, then with help from Rush Digital Interactive Into the Dead was ported to Windows Phone.  Windows mobile is sadly a very under represented place for games.

Into the Dead has also been ported to Windows 8.1, again by Rush Digital Interactive. So if you ever wanted to run, dodge, dodge, stumble, run and get eaten on your home PC or laptop now is your chance. Thank you, mobile.

We never asked for this, but we are glad it was made.

Android Spin

Set in a futuristic cyberpunk dystopia, Deus Ex: The Fall is a parallel story to that of Adam Jensen's tale in Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

Increased fidelity and overall polish is nothing short of a master class in the mobile to PC transition.

Created by Eidos Montreal, with the support of the studio N-FusionDeus Ex: The Fall was the game we never asked for. Though, I am glad that it was made; who would turn down a chance to step back into the world of Deus ExBoasting impressive visuals, story, and gameplay, The Fall is a fantastic addition to the arsenal that Eidos and Square Enix have acquired and built, and it gave the world a way to experience being a badass on the go!

March 18th is rapidly approaching and with this we get the PC version of Deus Ex: The Fall. Taking the core of the mobile experience and mixing in mouse & keyboard, enhanced boss fights, increased fidelity and overall polish is nothing short of a master class in the mobile to PC transition, I hope. Thank you, mobile.

 Answering the question.

Do I believe that mobile is the proving grounds to the big leagues? Honestly, yes. I hope that the brief examples I have shown here are signs that it doesn't matter if you are a part-time developer, AAA game producer or somewhere in between, a mobile start will not harm your product so long as you can deliver when it moves to the big leagues.

What are your opinions? Let me know below or via Twitter @ProtoFoe. Thank you, mobile.

In a Galaxy, Far Far Away: The Star Wars X-Wing Miniatures Game Wed, 08 Jan 2014 10:09:26 -0500 Amanda Wallace

Miniatures games can seem daunting at first. With the myriad of pieces, the precision of play, and the amount of money one can sink into them, they seem like a fringe market. 

Fantasy Flight, one of the best board game developers right now, has made a game that transcends the title of miniatures. With simplified board-game like gameplay, a readily recognizable property, and high-quality pieces, it's sure to appeal to miniatures players as well as more casual gamers. 

X-Wing is, at its heart, a 2-player game. One side plays the Rebels and the other side represents the Empire. Based on the incredibly popular Star Wars franchise, it's the second game of its type (the first being a Star Trek miniatures game) that Fantasy Flight has released. 

The starter pack for X-Wing contains all the pieces you'll need to start a simple two player game - two TIE Fighters and one X-Wing. Play is balanced through a point system, so despite the fact the X-Wing is seemingly outgunned, it still has the capacity to win. You choose between a variety of pilots from the series, and everything you need to know about your character is printed on a disk below you miniature as well as a card. 

The simplified gameplay is really where X-Wing shines. Your movement is dictated by a small spinner:

... And sloping game pieces like the one in front of the TIE fighter. These game pieces are easy to understand and create a simple measurement system. I've seen hardcore gamers as well as people who never play successfully navigate X-Wing. 

The quality of the pieces is really another perk for the X-Wing game. While the miniatures world certainly has higher quality figures, X-Wing's pieces are well made and lovely. The Millenium Falcon, one of the expansion pieces, has moving parts on it and the fine detail is fantastic for a miniatures amateur like myself.

The downside of X-Wing is that it's a two-player game. While some people have scaled the game up for more players (and it certainly does scale well), to do so you will need another core set. Expansions are well done and include more of the recognizable ships like the Millenium Falcon and Slave One (Boba Fett's ship). These expansions are fairly reasonably priced, and allow you to spend as much or as little money as you desire. Also, it's hard to put the pieces back into the original box, and for my set, I had to purchase a tackle box to re-package it. 

The game is quite fantastic, and if you're looking for a great game to add to your board game collection, I could not recommend it more. This game is easily playable by amateurs and enthusiasts alike. 

You can buy the core set and other expansions from Amazon

Gifts for the Tabletop Gamer with Everything Wed, 18 Dec 2013 11:32:20 -0500 Landon Sommer


Add a personal touch. Probably one of the best gifts I've ever gotten was from a friend that painted my vipers for my frequently used copy of Battlestar Galactica. They normally come in a plain plastic gray color. If you don't have much money to spend, but a little skill instead, painting minis for a board game really can make the game stand out.


Tackle Boxes like this one aren't just for fishing. Gamers have adopted them for their own uses. Some players go so far as to toss the original box and put it all in one of these. Games like War of the Ring and Descent usually won't fit in their original box once all the expansions are thrown in.


Give them something to carry it in. The above messenger bag is one specifically made by Battle Foam for the Iron Kingdoms RPG. Any Messenger bag would help out an RPG gamer. Several bookbags are big enough to hold RPG books or a board game or two.


Battlefoam creates trays for several games already. Privateer Press, Wyrd, and Cool Mini or Not are just a few companies that have contracted custom trays with Battlefoam. If you don't think one will fit your gamers needs, you can use the Custom Tray Creator to make your own. Get a few dimensions for card decks, tokens, and game boards and make it the right size for the box and you'll have a very happy gamer.


First player markers. Some games have that wimpy token that looks like it was just there to fill out the cardboard sheet. Some games, like Twilight Imperium, just need a player marker in the first place. It's such a good idea that Gale Force Nine encouraged players to get a dinosaur as a marker for their Firefly game and asked players to take a picture. They handed out a special promotional card to those that did.


Upgrade the tokens! Several card games have lousy cardboard tokens. Depending on the quality, they could bend and tear with little effort. For those games, I bring you the Fantasy Flight game tokens. They come in several different colors, allowing you to grab red for wounds, gold or silver for money, and many other uses based on color.


Sleeves. Some games get played. Great games get played a lot. A board game will start to show its wear over time, but an excellent way to keep them from aging so quickly is to sleeve the cards that come in the set. Not sure what size to get? Fantasy Flight marks the back of their boxes so you know exactly what size and how many you need! Just check the back of the box the next time you play. Say you're looking for instructions or something. In addition to protecting those cards, they can be used to add a little flair to the game by introducing art sleeves, like the ones above. A load of different card sleeves can be picked up at Cool Stuff Inc for $1-5 a pack based on quality and art.


Plenty of games come with the minimum necessary number of dice to keep the game... er... rolling. A lot of time can be wasted just looking for the one D8 that came in Battlestar Galactica. Sometimes it's just another D6 that can really help out. The dice above are from Super Dungeon Explore and, fortunately, CoolMiniorNot offers a pack full to reduce time searching for them. Fantasy Flight Games offers packs like this for Star Wars: X-wing and Descent as well. Dice sets usually run $10-15 for most custom dice sets and many can be found at sites like Cool Stuff Inc. or a nearby game store if you prefer local.


Does your tabletop gamer already have all the games you can think of? Don't want to buy a game they might not like? How about upgrading their game instead?

Board Game Exclusives: Are They Fair? Fri, 08 Nov 2013 02:08:22 -0500 Landon Sommer

I know the "Great Preorder Debate" here on GameSkinny has come and gone, but it got me thinking about how preorders and exclusives are affecting the tabletop community.

There once was a time, years ago, that release dates were as firm as a video game release. Not anymore. With powerhouse companies like Fantasy Flight Games constantly shoving product through the printers, it's hard to find space or even know when your product will come out.

Many companies used to post exactly when their models or board games would be released. Now, thanks to demands at the printer and the ever-changing whims of nature, no release date is safe in the tabletop community.

FFG now just posts on their website when games should be at your local game store. Store managers are left to scour their order lists every week looking for any new items that weren't formally announced. If they miss out on a big game release, they could lose their sales to online competitors.

The point of that tirade was to bring up how exclusives have edged their way into the tabletop market. Before, there were models or cards that you could only get at big shows such as GenCon. Quite often, they would be something silly, or something that didn't really affect the game.

However, Wizkids creates a fine example of huge models, such as Galactus or the Sentinel, that can only be bought at these cons and are used for scenario type games. These figures are incredibly powerful and their limited nature makes them pretty popular for collectors.

The Artful Dodger - Game Trade Magazine

Now Available on the GF9 Webstore

It's no secret that the Firefly Board Game is one of my new favorites. I knew how many exclusives Gale Force 9 has already managed to put out for Spartacus in one year, and I expected no less for Firefly. The exclusive engine started earlier than the game's release.

GTM, or Game Trade Magazine, is a detailed catalog of all the items expected to release in the next month or two for tabletop. It's usually not a big purchase for gamers. My LGS didn't even have a GTM for sale. It's more of a tool that store managers can use to get customers asking for the new hotness.

Even before GenCon, Firefly's pre-release, the GTM featured an add-on ship for the board game. It was a cool sea foam green color--way better than that mustard yellow ship that came in the box. The ship also had a few varied stats. You lost a bit of cargo so that you could have more crew aboard your ship and a faster engine. The ship was pretty balanced with the others in gameplay, but the kicker is that this promotional figure, only found in a magazine that you would probably already have trouble finding, is the only way to sit five players down for a game.

That's right, if you managed to know about this promo before the game ever went live, you would be able to have a five player game instead of the measly four suggested on the box. I haven't tried it yet, but five players would seem like more of a hassle than a game. It has been surmised that it would drastically increase the amount of time the game would take.

Resin Alliance Cruiser - GenCon

The Second exclusive to come out for the game is the resin Alliance Cruiser. I wasn't necessarily a big fan of resin for the Cruiser, mostly because of its shape. If you don't know much about resin, it's great for detail, but bad for long pointy parts. It's easy to break if you don't take care of it.

I heard that this exclusive was more of a mistake than intentional. The word is that all the copies of the game that went to GenCon were sent without the Alliance Cruiser packed inside, so GF9 found a friend and had the resin figures made to be put in the box. I don't know if the story is true. If it is, good work on GF9's part to get replacements made that quickly. The upside to resin is that it isn't bendy. I've seen the plastic Cruiser from the game, and it's not very pretty.

Mal's pretty floral Bonnet - Thinkgeek

Mal's floral bonnett is a special equipment card that you can only get from ordering your copy of Firefly from There isn't much to say about this one, except that it's one card--not game-breaking, and you'll still have to pay full price for your copy of the game. Online. When was the last time you paid full price online? And shipping?


Big Damn Hero cards - ACD Distributors

Now Available on the GF9 Webstore

These promos I didn't even know about until a few days ago., well after the game's intended release. What good is that? Not only that, what stores use ACD? Ever since the Diamond/Alliance combine, most stores I know get most of their goods from the same place. Comics, games, and supplies all come from the one wholesaler.

If I'm looking for these cards, how will I know where to find them? Your average game store employee, except for the managers, aren't likely to know their distributors. Online retailers rarely tell you where their stock comes from. If you're lucky, they might have a sticker on the box telling you if there are promos in the box anywhere. Apparently, this was a preorder offer, from a distributor I didn't even know existed, that I found out about after I had already owned my game for several months. Doesn't seem super-effective at all as a preorder.

I also feel that these cards just aren't good for the game. They are equal to their in-box versions, except that they add a simple "When you proceed while Misbehaving, take $100." It doesn't seem like much at first, but I've played the game several times now. There is a pretty solid balance between players taking the low risk, low stakes path and players taking the high risk path. The high risk path already pays off and wins the game regularly. Throw in a few extra $100 every time you go on a risky job, and the low risk path has no chance.

Wash's lucky dinosaurs

This one you can get for just sending Gale Force 9 a picture of you and your friends playing the game with an upgraded first player marker. Details are on their homepage. This is a good way to reward players for following the rulebook's suggestion on upgrading your first player marker to a real bona fide 3D dinosaur. Trust me, it actually helps players remember the first player marker better when it's that big. Also, most dinosaurs have a few sharp bits that could remind you as well as stepping on a Lego.

If you want all the promos and only one copy of the game, good luck!

Just taking a quick glance at eBay, this is already disheartening to see how much one would need to keep up with the promos. From my point of view, I got my game at Gencon, so I have the resin Cruiser. In order to fill out my collection, the Artful dodger runs about $25 on eBay, Big Damn Heroes are going for $50, and Mal's bonnet is nowhere to be found. At least you can get the dinosaurs without spending extra cash.

Fortunately for me, the only promos I don't have are the ones I'm not that big on. The ones I want are pretty easy to get or I already have. A completionist isn't going to be happy though. At this juncture, you would need to spend two and a half times the cost of the game just to get all the promos in hand. That's not to mention that GF9 is big on promos. If Spartacus is any example, this list will double in size by next year.

Don't get me wrong, I still love Gale Force 9 and the great Firefly board game that they have produced. I'm just a little disappointed that I could sit down with another players copy of the game and it won't even be the same game if the Big Damn Heroes cards are included.

Firefly isn't the only game like this, but at least it doesn't suffer for it. The game is perfectly playable without any of the exclusives. It does move into a mode that feels like you are paying to have a better version of the game than someone else.

Whatever happened to buying a board game and then never needing to buy anything for it again?

Most board games when I was younger were a non-changing experience. These days, games like Battlestar Galactica, Twilight Imperium, and pretty much anything FFG produces are expected to get new cards, rules and more boards for your board game pretty often. Are exclusives just another way to get on the "micro-transactions" train with expansions and their video game equivalents, DLC? Are they actually clever ways to drum up fanfare for a game? I'm not really sure where Gale Force 9's strategy for Firefly fits, since I didn't even know about a few of the "Order here!" exclusives until after the games general release.

Gale Force 9 recently annouced a Spartacus exclusive has been added to their webstore and they intend to release all future exclusives to their webstore after an unspecified period.

Need a Great Game for Your Next Gathering? Try Citadels Sun, 22 Sep 2013 20:46:36 -0400 Amanda Wallace

I'm probably a bit of a Fantasy Flight fanboy. Their Battlestar Galactica game is one of my favorites, Cosmic Encounters is a solid game that often shows up in our board game nights, Arkham Horror is the best game I've never finished. So when my boyfriend and I were looking for a game that played well with two players (or more) we jumped at the chance to buy Citadels.

Citadels is a 2-8 player game originally released in 2000. Newer copies of the game, like the one I played, feature the expansion Citadels: the Dark City which allows the game to be playable up to 8 players and features additional characters, etc. The suggested amount of players is around 5, but the game is playable above and below that number.  Play takes between 30-60 minutes depending on the competitiveness and speed of your participants. 


Citadels is thematically similar to a Euro game, in that it covers a topic that might seem at first boring. You are trying to build a medieval city. 

Each round you play as a different character, selected at the beginning of the round. Each character has a unique trait, and they encompass the full range of the social spectrum from the King, to the Bishop, to the lowly street thief or assassin. Together they create a living city. 


The game is relatively simple to learn, and could easily function for beginners or families. The start of a round has the character deck shuffled by the king who then lays down two cards from that deck face up, and one face down. From the rest of the cards, the king will select the character he will play as in that round, puts the card face down next to himself, and then passes the deck to the right.  

This system allows for a certain level of anonymity and randomness. By removing three cards from play every round, you can almost guarantee a shake up in roles. The anonymity is increased by the fact that the character selection remains secret, outside of your own personal skills of deduction, until the character is revealed. 

After character selection, the king goes numerically through the list of possible characters. As your character number is revealed, you can begin your turn. The Assassin and Thief are the first characters to play, as their abilities depend on not knowing the other characters in the game. (The Assassin can kill another character, but he must make his selection based off of the character, not the player, name. The Thief can steal, but his rules for selection are the same as the Assassin.) 

Play can progress really quickly, especially when everyone understands the mechanic. This also means that it is easy for players to discuss topics unrelated the game, making it a good game for social meetings. 


The game is solidly built, and incredibly attractive. With few pieces, it's an easy game to travel with, and to bring to a social get-together. When I played, I was with two people who had played several board games before, and one member of the group was a relative newbie, and everyone was evenly matched. 

The game requires little set up, and scoring is a breeze. The game also lends itself well to bluffing and secrecy. 

Overall, this would be an excellent addition to anyones growing board game collection.