News Digest: D&D Beyond Pricing, Spiel des Jahres Winners, Privateer Press Mini-Box Subscription, an

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! D&D Beyond launch date and pricing information finally announced (and it’s not that bad all things considered), this year’s Spiel des Jahres winners announced, Privateer Press launches a new miniature subscription box service, WizKids steps on the toes of Penny Arcade, and more!

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D&D Beyond will officially launch on August 15 and the full price details have been announced. As previously announced, there will be multiple tiers for players and dungeonmasters. A free ad-supported version will allow you to create and save up to six characters, with the paid tiers removing all ads. The Hero Tier is $3/month and will allow unlimited characters and homebrew content from other users. The Master Tier allows you to share your content and view characters from accounts that permit you. Rules supplements and adventures will be available for one-time purchases, specifically announced are Volo’s Guide to Monsters at $30 and Curse of Strahd for $25. Subscriptions are not required for purchases, and you don’t have to maintain a subscription in order to access material you’ve purchased. In addition, Master Tier accounts can share any books they have purchased with up to 12 other accounts. All current Wizards of the Coast releases will be included at launch, and the website still has all the Beta Test rules live if you want to kick the tires before the official launch.

Spiel des Jahres winners were announced in all three categories. The winner of Spiel des Jahres (Game of the Year) is Kingdomino, a tile-laying terrain-based version of dominoes, from designer Bruno Cathala and released by Gigamic Games. The winner of Kennerspiel des Jahres (Connoisseur Game of the Year) is EXIT, a home escape room party game, from Kosmos. The winner of Kinderspiel des Jahres (Children/Family Game of the Year) is Ice Cool, a dexterity “flicking” game with weighted pieces, from Brain Games.

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Speaking of awards, voting for the 2017 ENnie Awards closes tomorrow. So if you want to get your vote in for any of the categories or help choose next year’s judges, make sure to get your vote in now! Don’t forget, the voting is ranked instant runoff, so you don’t have to pick just one game per category. Each vote is weighted based on what you choose, so any vote (even a bottom-ranking) can potentially help a game that’s in a neck-and-neck race. You’ve only got until 11 PM Eastern to get those votes in, so go vote now! Or, well, finish reading the column first then go vote. Or vote then come back would work too. Just make sure to go and make your voice heard!


Privateer Press announced a new subscription box, MiniCrate. The new program will include a different curated selection of limited edition miniatures every month starting this October. The subscription will be $16.99 per month in the United States (plus sales tax if applicable), or $18.99 per month for customers in the United Kingdom or European Union (other international options will be announced soon according to the website). There is also a VIP tier that lasts for six months with one free bonus miniature exclusive with your first order for $98.99 (or $112.99 for UK/EU). The miniatures will be scaled for and include rules for Privateer Press’s Warmachine and Hordes. And in case you had doubts as to the exclusive nature of these miniatures, Privateer has promised to upload a monthly video to YouTube following shipment of them destroyed the molds of that month’s offerings in “spectacular fashion”. Pre-orders are available now.

Speaking of miniatures, WizKids announced a new miniature line featuring fantasy adventurer pre-painted minis for fantasy games. The original name of this miniature line was “Thistleguard”, but this seemed a bit too close for comfort for Penny Arcade’s Jerry Holkins to their storytelling board game/roleplaying game Thornwatch due out later this year. Lone Shark Games president Mike Selinker announced on Twitter that an agreement was made with WizKids over the title. According to a statement, the line will still be released but will have a name change and new logo in order to sufficiently differentiate it.


Shadowrun fans will be excited to know The Shadowcasters Network is running a 36-hour mega-marathon this weekend on Twitch. Featuring participants from Complex Action, The Arcology Podcast, The Neo-Anarchist Podcast, Violent Life, Sixth World Podcast, and Twitch channel Join the Anarchy along with special guests, the stream will start at 4 PM Eastern Time tomorrow, July 21, and run until 4 AM Eastern Time on the morning of Sunday, July 23. Shows will include Shadowrun (obviously), Shadowrun Anarchy, Paranoia (because most Shadowrun games seem to end up a Paranoia game at some point), Overwatch, and video games from the Shadowrun Returns series. The stream is raising funds in order to officially launch The Shadowcasters Network as a full-featured channel for all things Shadowrun.


If you want to know more about what this Shadowrun podcasting thing is all about, Complex Action is a good place to start. Not only does it have an Actual Play podcast, but there’s also the GM Screen video series that explains various Shadowrun rules that might seem complicated at first. There’s also the Ask Bobby series where host Bobby Frankenberger answers your questions about Shadowrun. For $1 per month, you get access to “Bobby Blurbs”, which are short vlogs recorded from anywhere and everywhere the mood strikes, $2 gets access to the GM notes every month from the actual play sessions including NPCs, maps, outlines, and more. $5 lets you join in the bimonthly Google Hangouts and gets you a vote on where the story will go in the actual play shows. There are many other options as well that include rewards like behind the scenes videos, a guest spot on one of the shows, and monthly custom dice.


I want it on the record that I was a good boy. I had to re-write this Kickstarter’s copy four times before I managed to do it without slipping up and including a single curse word. Because Misspent Youth is a gloriously punk rock roleplaying game that just begs you to scream “#&$* THE SYSTEM” with two middle fingers high in the air. This NSFW game (seriously, the tagline for the game drops an f-bomb) puts you in the role of the Youthful Offenders (YOs), designated as such by The Authority. The rules are very story-focused as you create both your own personal version of The Authority for your characters to challenge while you also create your YOs together as a group. The game’s been feature in a two-part episode of Geek & Sundry’s Tabletop this past season, and the Kickstarter is raising funds for a proper print run of the game and additional supplements. Oh, and as if this game didn’t push my buttons hard enough already, each pledge tier has a quote from a different punk song. The $15 Bad Religion level gets you the core rulebook and the Sell Out with Me supplement in PDF, the $25 Anti-Flag gets you print copies of the core rulebook, the $25 Bikini Kill gets you the supplement in print, and the $45 Dead Kennedys gets you everything in PDF and print. This Kickstarter is fully funded and runs until Thursday, July 27.

One of the pieces of writing advice you’ll see constantly when you start researching how to become an author is that there’s no such thing as “writer’s block”. Well, someone turned that idea into a game called WritersBloxx. The idea is pretty simple. You have six colored 20-sided dice that each aligns to a different column on a table for Timing, Genre, Object, Setting, Character, and Event. Everyone then constructs a story that involves the items the dice randomly selected for them. There are three different rules: Solo writer, writers group, and party game. There are also different PromptGrid expansions that focus on a particular genre like science fiction, horror, mystery, or romance. For $25, you get your choice between the Standard and Kids editions of the game, for $35 you can get a Deluxe edition that includes two extra columns and rules for plot twists introduced in the middle of writing, and for $75 you can get the Ultimate edition that includes eight additional PromptGrids. This project is fully funded and, if you want to hone your writing skills, make sure to back before Monday, July 31.

Founders of Gloomhaven is a city-building tile laying/resource management game from Isaac Childres. Set in the same world as Gloomhaven, this stand-alone game puts 2-4 players against one another as they build and upgrade resources, trade with one another, and attempt to score enough points to win. The trick is that one resource alone isn’t enough, and you will have to work with your opponents in order to get the resources you need to get access to more advanced resources. What pledge level should you go for? There’s only one, $49 for the game. This Kickstarter is already through a huge number of stretch goals and runs until Thursday, August 10.

That’s all from me for this week! Find more gaming crowdfunding news at the EN World RPG Kickstarter News website, and don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you even more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at news@enworldnews.com. You can follow me on Twitter @Abstruse where I may start announcing periodic live streams of my own, or you can listen to the archives of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast. Until next time, may all your hits be crits! Note: Links to Amazon and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.
 
Darryl Mott

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