News Digest: John Wick Presents Layoffs, Big D&D Releases Finally Out, Pathfinder Playtest Updates,

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! John Wick Presents layoffs, Dungeon of the Mad Mage and Ravnica released and next setting teased, Pathfinder Playtest update, Fantasy Flight recalls offensive product, and more!
John Wick Presents announced the layoff of all of its staff save John Wick himself due to financial difficulties. In a statement to Kickstarter backers, it was announced that 7th Sea releases will slow down until such time as arrangements can be made with partner companies for further releases. The record-setting 7th Sea 2nd Edition Kickstarter was fulfilled and 7th Sea: Khitai Kickstarter for an Asian-influenced setting expansion for the system will still be released with an anticipated date of early summer 2019. The full text (with notes for further context) can be found in the link above, but it seems to indicate that JWP expanded too far too quickly, particularly with the War of the Cross board game, whose Kickstarter was canceled this past August. This announcement follows a similar round of layoffs and product release slowdown from Evil Hat Productions last month.

The new releases from Wizards of the Coast, Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage and Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica hit Wizard Play Network store shelves today. Mass-market outlets (such as Amazon, linked above) will have the books on November 20. The digital versions are also available. Get ready for a link dump. Ravnica on Fantasy Grounds (also on Steam), on Roll20, and on D&D Beyond. Mad Mage on Fantasy Grounds (also on Steam but the link was not working yet at time of writing), on Roll20, and on D&D Beyond. If you’re not sure if you want to pick up Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage or Guildmaster’s Guide to Ravnica, EN World has helpfully collected all the previews released so far at the respective links.

And if you’re going to wait for mass market stores, you may also want to keep an eye out for the Endless Quest books by Matt Forbeck, which are currently showing up in big-box stores such as Target. And if you’re looking for what’s coming next, Nathan Stewart dropped a huge teaser for next year’s release schedule. There will be a new campaign setting released…and it will not be Spelljammer. If the specific denial seems odd, Spelljammer has long been speculated as the next setting due to information in various books, including the Giff artwork evoking Spelljammer’s art style and the inclusion of a space sailing ship in a preview for Dungeon of the Mad Mage. So far, Wizards of the Coast have released books on Forgotten Realms, Eberron, and Ravenloft (through Curse of Strahd). Speculation has pointed toward Dark Sun, Planescape, and Dragonlance, but it’s really anyone’s guess (I’m going to go for the outlier and say Birthright to time a release for the final season of Game of Thrones since it’s a setting about leaders fighting over an Iron Throne to be crowned the true ruler and was created by Ed Stark…and no, no one ripped anyone else off as both the first A Song of Ice and Fire book and the first Birthright boxed set were released within months of one another).

The new version of the Pathfinder 2nd Edition playtest is out, bringing us to Version 1.6. This update includes tweaking to all the classes, which you can find summarized in the EN World coverage of the update. This update also included “When Stars Go Dark”, the final adventure of the Doomsday Dawn adventure path and explores more high-level play. However, that doesn’t mean the playtest is done, just that there’s no telling where the adventures will go from here. My personal guess is that new, original adventures will be released that are more fine-tuned for specific testing of mechanics that have been adjusted since Doomsday Dawn was printed. It’s possible, however, that Paizo won’t release any further adventures and leave it to playtesters to create their own from here out in order to get a wider view of how the game is working.

If you’re sticking with Pathfinder’s and Starfinder’s current editions, Paizo has three new releases out that…normally I would summarize for you, but I’m going to force you to click on the link solely because Ben Reece’s descriptions are better than anything I could’ve come up with and I wouldn’t dare deprive you of them. I, too, want a ghost horsey.

Fantasy Flight Games is gearing up for the release of KeyForge, a new “unique deck game” designed by Magic: The Gathering creator Richard Garfield. Its core concept is that every single deck is different and playable, with “over 104 quadrillion” possible decks available and each with its own name. And that last part is what’s caused a problem as the names were procedurally generated from a word list and, to quote the announcement there were some “unfortunate pairing of words” for some decks. These decks are being officially recalled are not being listed, but you can find out if your deck is once the registration site and mobile apps for KeyForge go live. Players with a defective deck will be given information to contact customer service for a return and replacement. The site itself does not go live and apps will not be available until November 15 and the release is not until November 22, so Fantasy Flight has made sure that they were on top of this potential controversy before release and is actively heading off any issues that may arise.

Fans of Warhammer, Warhammer 40,000, and Games Workshop in general have a lot to be happy about right now from Humble Bundle. First, there’s a bundle of licensed video games from Games Workshop properties including titles like Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Game of the Year Edition, Talisman, Blood Bowl, Space Marine Collection, Battlefleet Gothic Armada, and more. On top of that, there’s the Black Library: Voices from the Worlds of Warhammer bundle with audiobooks and audio dramas set in the worlds of Warhammer 40,000 and Warhammer: Age of Sigmar. The top tier of only $15 includes twenty-five titles with a retail value of $353, and even the $1 level gets you five audio dramas, the audiobook of Horus Rising, and a sampler of more titles. These bundles run until Tuesday, November 20, and Wednesday, November 21, respectively.

We’ve got three huge Kickstarters ending not too long from now, so let’s start with Rodney Thompson’s Spectaculars, a superhero roleplaying game. Similar to his Dusk City Outlaws, this game is also a boxed set game, this one coming with a rulebook, setting book, “series pads”, card decks for powers, identities, roles, and initiative, dice, tokens, and everything else you need to play right away. What are “series pads”? They’re 40 double-sided tear-off sheets each that feature a particular storyline themed to a specific superhero subgenre (cosmic, sorcery, SCIENCE!, and street-level vigilante) that outlines exactly what the goals and twists of an adventure are all on one side of a page. The game also uses the 100AC dice system from Dusk City Outlaws, which is a pretty fast-paced and easy to learn system even if you’re unfamiliar with it. The digital version is available for a $20 pledge, the physical boxed set for $65, and if you’d like the heist-based Dusk City Outlaws to go along with your superhero Spectaculars, both games are available for a $130 pledge. This Kickstarter is still short of its funding goal, but has until Tuesday, November 20 to cross the finish line.

Monte Cook Games’s Invisible Sun is getting a reprint that is rather close to a new edition with all the additional content. It’s still the same rules system as ever, but the Kickstarter will expand beyond the original Black Cube to include more expansions and the new Vislae Kit, a player-specific version of the core rules and replacements for the character tomes and grimoires. The game is still pricy with the Black Cube (the core set required to play the game) at $243 and even just the Vislae Kit at $43 (with a $216 level that includes all the expansions without the Black Cube for those who only have the core set, and a $593 level for the Black Cube and all expansions plus stretch goals). While the price is incredibly high just to find out if a game is for you, the components are definitely worth every penny. This Kickstarter is fully funded and unlocking more stretch goals until Friday, November 16.

Okay, let’s be real here, do I really need to explain Savage Worlds to you? The generic adventure game system that’s Fast, Furious, and Fun? I figure if you’re reading this column, you know what it is. The new edition is Savage Worlds Adventure Edition and is available for $25 in PDF, $50 in hardcover, $100 for a special collector’s edition, and $150 for the “Essentials Boxed Set” that includes all the rules plus accessories you need to play. Yes, this is much higher than the current edition, but the current edition is a digest-sized paperback while this will be a full-size hardcover. This Kickstarter is fully funded and runs until Wednesday, November 14.

That’s all from me for this week! Don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at news@enworldnews.com, and you can get more discussion of the week’s news on Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk every week. You can follow me on Twitter @Abstruse where I’ve been poking at hornet’s nests, follow me on Twitch as I finish up Dragon Age: Origins, subscribe to Gamer’s Tavern on YouTube featuring videos on gaming history and gaming Let’s Plays, 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, Humble Store, Humble Bundle, and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.
 
Darryl Mott

Comments

Dahak

Villager
Minor correction: the Savage Worlds Adventure Edition is not a "full-size hardcover", but rather a graphic novel-sized hardcover. The format is only a little bit taller than the previous Explorer's Edition books.
 

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