Crossroad Games & Diversions Fall Under the Spell

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Well, that was a whirlwind tour! Thirteen stops in 25 days across 6 states! No wonder we’re tired.

crossroad-games-logoThe leaves are changing colors and there is a distinct chill in the air. It must be the approach of autumn and the time of Witches. It’s also the 12th stop on our Something Wicked Tour as we visit Crossroad Games in Standish, Maine!

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This was a quick visit on our tour as we setup The Village Crone and spent some time chatting with Lacey and Chuck about the game business while waiting for some players to finish up another game.

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Pretty soon it was game on and our players wasted no time in getting down to the business of scoring schemes. Familiars were flying and Villagers were changing to frogs and back into humans faster than you could say “Eye of Newt”!

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The next game was just as fun, with the Forge filling up with frogs and some quick scoring at the end that took everyone by surprise.

We stuck around to sign some games and visit with fans, then it was time to hit the road.

diversions-logoIt was a dark and stormy night… The 13th store visit on the 13th of October. Coincidence? We think not! But we couldn’t think of a better way to wrap up our Something Wicked Tour here in New England!

We made our way to Diversions Puzzles & Games in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and met up with the Events Coordinator, Ian, who let us have our pick of tables in their very cool play space downstairs.

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Diversions is another one of those “Tardis-esque” game stores that has a really small front window, but once you get inside it just keeps going to reveal a massive amount of clean, open space filled with well-organized games, clearly displayed and more puzzles than we’ve ever seen in one spot. The downstairs play space is really big and made for a really great place to run our last demos of the tour.

Something_Wicked_Diversions_Game_NightWe had barely set up the game when the first group gathered around and before you could say “Broomstick” we had a 6-player game up and running. As more gamers flocked to see what was happening it became clear we needed to spread the fun, so we set up a second game and ran another group through that.

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Once the first game ended we had just enough time to catch our breath and take some photos before we got our third group started. This turned into a huge battle with players getting caught in a defensive battle of trying to use Protection to stop the other players from completing their schemes. It may seem like it works on paper, but it’s a losing strategy and sure enough, both players ran out of ingredients and couldn’t recover. But minutes after finishing the game, there was nothing but discussion of new strategies and “next time” plans being made.

We’ve had a lot of fun crisscrossing New England, catching some of spooky sights, playing games with so many people, and getting to see more of the Friendly Local Game Stores that keep board gaming accessible and fun. Thanks for joining us on our journey. We hope you’ve had fun following along. Now make sure you pick up your own copy of The Village Crone and bring fun home!

Hunting Monsters and Visiting Graveyards – Spooky Schemes Scored!

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Our weary travelers have to score two more points as they wind down the Something Wicked Tour. Can they do it? Read on and find out…

1 POINT: Search for the Unexplainable – (Lake Champlain, VT) COMPLETED
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The legends of a mysterious creature that lives in Lake Champlain go back centuries. The native Americans had their stories and colonial settlers had sightings that have continued up until just a few years ago.

I FOUND CHAMP! I FOUND CHA . . . Oh wait. Nevermind.

Okay, so we “found” Champ on the edge of Lake Champlain. This monster hunting stuff is easy!

“Champ” as the beast is called, has been a mystery for years, but not anymore. We found him! Watch the video to see our brave adventure as we go for our twelfth Witches Scheme on our Something Wicked Tour. Continue reading Hunting Monsters and Visiting Graveyards – Spooky Schemes Scored!

Gamer’s Gambit and Quarterstaff Games

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Two more stops on our Something Wicked tour led us back to Connecticut for an evening and then on to Vermont.

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Gamer’s Gambit in Danbury, Connecticut is a sister store to the Dragon’s Den and it made for a great follow up visit.

The Village Crone was a popular table that night as we kept players busy casting spells and foiling plans from the minute we setup the game until closing time.

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Much like the Dragon’s Den, Gamer’s Gambit covers a lot of gaming bases from minis, rpgs, comics, and board games to retro video gaming. As Justin browsed the store during a break in the action he noticed that in addition to games, they actually sell used game systems. He even found an old Atari Lynx on the shelf, looking for a new home! Continue reading Gamer’s Gambit and Quarterstaff Games

Creepy Noises, Haunted Roads, and Eerie Echoes – Tour Schemes Completed

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Amidst a whirlwind of store visits our heroes, Anne-Marie & Justin, still managed to keep their eye on the prize and complete a few more Tour Schemes. See how many points they earned with these and learn about some of the spooky things Connecticut and New York have to offer.

Continue reading Creepy Noises, Haunted Roads, and Eerie Echoes – Tour Schemes Completed

Somewhere Uncommon, a Lab, and a Den – We Visit Them All in New York

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Last week saw a fair amount of city driving with several visits in and around New York City, and then a jog a up the Hudson Valley. In the past we’ve visited Lairs, Havens, and Taverns. The Village Crone has now taken us to us Cafes, a Lab, and a Den. Check them out!

Tea, games and coffee? We must be in the right place!
First up we had one more trip into Manhattan to The UnCommons NYC, a popular game café with a very extensive game library. There is a cover charge to get in, but you can play as many games as you want from their massive collection and stay as long as you like. Looking in their windows you can see a lot of fun games in their window displays.

Something_Wicked_UnCommons_WindowsWe unloaded our witchy goodness and got ready to cast some spells. Anne-Marie got the first group started and played with several groups of would-be witches throughout the evening. A lucky gamer got to go head-to-head with Anne-Marie in a 2-player game. It’s pretty cool to learn from the designer!

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It was a late night, but a fun one. If you find yourself in Manhattan with a jonesing for a cuppa and a board game, this your place.

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We also got to spent two pretty amazing afternoons at the Brooklyn Game Lab. It’s an after school program where kids can not only play great games but study them, and even make their own games.

The whole thing is run by a great team and Bob and his crew really do an amazing job of keeping 40+ kids focused every day. Some days it’s RPG’s, other days it’s board games and for Thursday and Friday the kids had a really special treat of getting to meet Justin and Anne-Marie while they learned Castle Panic and The Village Crone.

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The older kids were started on The Village Crone while the younger players went into the outdoor garden area and learned how to play Castle Panic. A few kids even dared to go up against the bigger foes in The Wizard’s Tower.

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After we played for a while, the kids all got to make their notes on winning strategies for the game, expansion ideas and even new components. It’s all an organized part of how the game lab staff gets the kids to really focus on the games they are playing and think about them.

After that we had a brief Q&A session where the kids got to ask Justin and Anne-Marie all about their inspirations, and what it takes to make a game go from an idea to a finished product. It’s a really unique program and we were very excited to have been a part of it.

While we had fun in the Big Apple, we were glad to leave the bustling city traffic behind.

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It was a cold and rainy afternoon as we made our way to The Dragon’s Den in Poughkeepsie but we were warmly welcomed by David and Sean as soon as we walked in. They had gone out of their way to make our event special with fancy Halloween themed tablecloths, signs, and even tasty snacks.

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No sooner had we setup than the first group of players wanted to know all about our latest release. We had two games going almost nonstop for the entire event with many new fans being made this day. One player even declared The Village Crone to be “The best game ever!” after thoroughly crushing their opponents.

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We spent a few minutes talking with the owner David about business and what it takes to run a store like this. The amount of fun stuff here is pretty amazing. Retro video games in the back, comics on the sides, board, card and minis games in between, and tons of table space. It’s a great store and the gamers in the area are lucky to have such a cool place to hangout.

We played more games than we could count and even sold out all the inventory of The Village Crone the store had before we called it a night. Our thanks to the staff at the Dragon’s Den for a great time!

What’s Next?

This week we’ve got a quick stop in Connecticut at Gamer’s Gambit and then we’re heading North to Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine! To see our remaining schedule, check out our Something Wicked Tour blog!

Magic, Mayhem, and Familiars – More Tour Schemes Completed

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There’s been so much to share with the Something Wicked Tour store visits and the launch of The Village Crone, we’ve gotten a wee bit behind on sharing the meta game Justin & Anne-Marie are playing! Here’s what they completed in the last few days in Massachusetts before heading off to New York and Connecticut (we’ll be sharing those schemes next week).

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1 Point: Conjure a Familiar – Locate a Familiar in the Cambridge Village Green (Cambridge, MA) – COMPLETED

In The Village Crone, each witch has a different Familiar. The Familiars to choose from are: Bats, Rats, Cats, Snakes, Spicers, and Crows/Ravens. Anne-Marie and Justin had to scour the Cambridge Village Green to find one of these creatures to score this point.

Things can never be easy, now can they? The Cambridge Village Green was under construction at the time of their visit, so they had to get creative to find any creatures who stuck around, and hadn’t gone into their winter dens yet.

magic-mayhem-scheme3 Points: Marry Magic & Mayhem – (Boston, MA) – COMPLETED
Three parts to this scheme include “Visiting Phineas Gage’s Skull at the Warren Anatomical Museum, Crossing Harvard Bridge, and Visiting Boston Neck Gallows“.

Phineas Gage was a railway worker in 1800s who famously survived an accident in which a large metal rod impaled his head, destroying much of his frontal lobe, but not killing him. He lived for another 12 years and has become a case study for brain and behavior for psychology and neurology enthusiasts and professionals alike. His skull is on display at the Warren Anatomical Museum.

The Harvard Bridge connects Cambridge and Boston. It is the site of a famous Harry Houdini stunt where he was shackled and jumped off the bridge into freezing water below. Spectators waited an agonizing 40 seconds before Houdini broke the surface of the water, shackle-less, to solidify his fame as a magician. Harry Houdini died on Halloween in 1926.

The Boston Neck, a narrow strip of land connecting the Boston peninsula to the mainland, was the former home of the Gallows where the first person sentenced to death for witchcraft was executed.

What’s the Score?
With the 3 points they scored previously, and the 4 points they scored above, Justin and Anne-Marie are at a total of 7 points toward the 13 they need. There’s plenty of spooky left to share, so stay tuned!

An NYC Legend, the Bermuda Triangle, and a Portal

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The Something Wicked Tour rolled along over the weekend with three more stores in two states and some crazy traffic!

sarges-logoOur visit to Sarge’s Comics and More in New London, CT was short and sweet. While setting up for the event I noticed they had this copy of the old Bermuda Triangle game. I haven’t seen that since I was a kid!

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We gave overviews of The Village Crone to several customers and made many people happy with a free piece of Silver, which came in handy as an actual coaster as well.

StratLogo2On Saturday we braved Manhattan traffic to visit legendary NYC store of The Compleat Strategist.

For years we have heard about this amazing store deep in the heart of the Big Apple. It’s known around the world as “the” place to come see if you are a gamer in New York. It lives up to its reputation.

Not only is the store absolutely packed with games of every type, style and size, the owners Mike and Danny do a great job of matching customers to the perfect game they are looking for.

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We were warmly welcomed and quickly setup right at the front of the store to show off The Village Crone. Within minutes we had people asking how to turn Villagers into Frogs, or what the binding rings did. In between giving overviews, we talked all kinds of business with Mike and Danny and learned a lot about what it takes to have run a game store since 1975!

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Before we knew it we were signing copies of games and wrapping up the night. It was a great event for us and a very cool opportunity to see one of the most unique game stores in the U.S.

portal-logoA sunny, fall Sunday in Manchester, Connecticut saw the Fireside Games minivan pull into The Portal’s parking lot and unload all our goodies. We made our way inside and grabbed a long table in the board game area to setup The Village Crone.

Sunday’s are board game day and before long it was standing room only in there and we had our first game up and running. 5 witches battled it out and we saw one of the best uses of scattering happen, sending almost every Familiar back to the Village Green! In the end it came down to just a few point spread, but we had our winner at 13 points.

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In between games we took a few minutes to explore the store. In addition to a great selection of games and a ton of play space, The Portal has a massive demo game library! Hundreds of games stacked into bookcases mean that you can come here and play anything from an old classic to a brand new release. The hardest decision will be picking which game to try!

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Our next game started up and was a quick 2-player battle that resulted in one of the most crowded Forges we’ve seen and to top it off, it gets Bound so no one can leave! The best part was that while 4 Villagers were in the Forge the other 2 had been turned into frogs, so that was all there was!

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We had a great time and met a lot of great gamers there. If you’re anywhere near the Manchester area and are craving a game, The Portal is definitely the place to go!

We’re only halfway through the Something Wicked tour, so stayed tuned for many more store visits in another 3 states!

Knight Moves Cafe, Pandemonium Books, & Compleat Strategist Boston

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Over the weekend Anne-Marie and Justin made the first two store visits for the Something Wicked Tour.

Knight-moves-cafe-logoWe have started this tour in Boston and the surrounding boroughs and our first stop was at Knight Moves Cafe in Brookline, MA. Knight Moves is a game cafe that focuses on providing a friendly hangout for gamers (both new and veteran) to have a snack, a drink, and a good time playing games together.

We arrived early and the shop was relatively quiet. That would change as the night went on when it was standing room only and we got in several games of The Village Crone and earned some new fans for the game
The owner, Devon, was very helpful and kept directing gamers to our tables as well as serving delicious drinks and snacks all night long.

Their demo library is made of multiple bookcases that are literally overflowing with games. If you want to try out a game in the Brookline area, this is the place to do it!

While they don’t sell games at Knight Moves Cafe, they do work with Eureka Puzzles & Games, a game store down the street, to promote gaming in the Brookline area.

 

pandemonium-books-logoOn Sunday evening they ventured to the Harvard University area to visit Pandemonium Books & Games in Cambridge.

We played with all the local board game night attendees, squeezing in 4 games over the night.

The first game of the night had a tremendous finish with one player scoring all three of his Witches Schemes on his last turn in an amazing combination of spellcasting!

Thanks to all who came out!

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On Tuesday night we visited the Compleat Strategist in Boston.

Unfortunately we lost the video for this event, so we only have a few photos we grabbed while we were there. Must have been some of those ghosts we met earlier on the Trolley Tour!

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We met some local gamers and showed them what it takes to become The Village Crone. They were pretty good at being witches as it turns out since Justin got trounced soundly!

Up next is our visit to Sarge’s Comics in New London, CT on Friday (6–10pm) and then we will be visiting the legendary New York store of the Compleat Strategist this Saturday from 1pm to 5pm!

Special Tour Schemes for Justin & Anne-Marie!

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Join Justin & Anne-Marie on the Something Wicked Tour, and immerse yourself in the spirit of the tour with a little meta-game.

Follow along as they try to complete their own set of Tour Schemes over the next few weeks. Similar to your goals in The Village Crone, they will have to achieve the objectives on the Scheme Cards to score those points. Will they be able to score a total of 13 points before the last tour date? Stay tuned and see as we share these little extras with you!

The first set of Schemes Justin & Anne-Marie need to complete while they are in the Boston area!
The first set of Schemes Justin & Anne-Marie need to complete while they are in the Boston area!

Up first is a series of schemes in the Boston area. If you see them out and about, say hi, but don’t distract them from their purpose, they want to WIN this tour!

Schemes on Deck:

1 Point: RIDE WITH THE DAMNED – Take the “Trolley of the Doomed” Ghost Tour

1 Point: CONJURE A FAMILIAR – Spot a Familiar in the Cambridge Village Green

2 Points: PAY RESPECTS TO THE ACCUSED – Visit the Salem Witch Trials Memorial & Visit the Salem Witch Museum

3 Points: MARRY MAGIC & MAYHEM – View Phineas Gage’s Skull, Cross Harvard Bridge, & Visit Boston Neck Gallows

They will be providing proof of their Schemes on social media with photos and videos, so watch our YouTube Channel, Facebook Page, and Twitter & Instagram accounts for details.

(For bonus points, you can play along… share your experiences with any of the events/situations on their scheme cards – or make up your own! – through social media. Tag your posts using #SomethingWicked!)

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Get ready for The Village Crone! Releasing September 30

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Best laid plans often find themselves at the mercy of fate, and a customs hold on our shipment of The Village Crone has put us a bit behind so we are sliding the release date to September 30.

We have confirmation it has been released by customs and is in the warehouse. We need some time to get it logged into inventory and prepped for outgoing shipments, but we will definitely make this new release date.

In the meantime, we invite you to view our How to Play video for The Village Crone, and put in your pre-orders with us or your Friendly Local Game Store.

You may also want to meet up with us on the road as we start the Something Wicked Tour this weekend in Brookline, MA at Eureka Puzzles & Knight Moves Cafe on September 19. You can see the entire tour schedule with dates and venues in our tour announcement blog or by viewing our Calendar.

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Don’t forget you can download the 3D printer files for the game components and make your own minis on your personal 3D printer, and if you pre-order through our website, you will get the exclusive Silver promo coaster! (Ask at your FLGS, as they may have gotten a few of these at recent retailer shows.)

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We’ll be sharing more game play videos and game reviews as they come in and stay tuned for fun updates from the Something Wicked Tour!

Something Wicked Tour for The Village Crone

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There is a crispness in the air and something whispers on the wind. Fall approaches, as does the witching hour. We invite you to join us as we bring The Village Crone to game stores across New England with the Something Wicked Tour!

Our newest game is full of spell-casting and witchy fun, and releases in September. We are hitting the road to traverse the Northeast United States, teaching new witches how to play and visiting some spooky places along the way.

Anne-Marie De Witt (designer of The Village Crone) and Justin De Witt (co-owner of Fireside Games) will be making the following stops to demo The Village Crone, talk about game design, share promos for the game, and generally be enchanting! We hope to see you along the way.

something-wicked-tour-mapSept 19    5:30-6:30PM
Eureka Puzzles & More
Brookline, MA
Signing Event Q&A

Sept 19    7-11PM
Knight Moves Cafe
Brookline, Ma
Demo night

Sept 20    6-10PM
Pandemonium Books & Games
Cambridge, MA

Sept 22    4-8PM
Compleat Strategist
Boston, MA

Sept 25    6-10PM
Sarge’s Comics & Games
New London, CT

Sept 26    2-6PM
Compleat Strategist
New York, NY

Sept 27    12-4PM
Time Machine/The Portal
Manchester, CT

Sept 30    7-11PM
The UnCommons NYC
New York, NY

the-village-crone-box-3D-left-webOct 1 & 2    2-6PM
Brooklyn Game Lab
Brooklyn, NY

Oct 3        2-6PM
Dragon’s Den
Poughkeepsie, NY

Oct 4        12-3PM
Gamer’s Gambit
Danbury, CT

Oct 6        6-10PM
Quarterstaff Games
Burlington, VT

Oct 11        1-5PM
Crossroad Games
Standish, ME

Oct 13        5-9PM
Diversions Puzzles & Games
Portsmouth, NH

DragonCon, Here We Come!

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It’s that time of year again already! Next week we will be heading to Atlanta, GA along with 70,000 other people for DragonCon.

This year the Exhibitor Space is in AmericasMart Building 2. We will be on the First Floor in Booth 1425.

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We will have copies of The Village Crone for advance sale, so you can take it home with you before it releases in stores in September. But we only have a limited supply, so be sure to come by early.

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DragonCon is a unique show and we get to see some pretty sweet costumes walk by the booth! If you are going to the show this year, stop by and say “Hi!” You can pick up the 6th Level Agranok card for The Dark Titan or an Alarm Clock for Bears!

Oh, and we’ll have these super sweet Deluxe Monster Draw Bags for Castle Panic for sale. We just got them back in stock!

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GenCon 2015: Post-Show Wrap-Up

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Another Gen Con has come to an end. We came, we played, we conquered.

This year had record attendance, according to the official count from Gen Con, and the sea of people around the booth indicated they all made it through the exhibit hall at some point. Things went very smoothly for us this year, thanks to our awesome volunteers and staff!

Our demo tables stayed full with barely a lull. Players were scrambling to get in one more round each night at closing time and were snagging chairs minutes after the hall opened each day. Many thanks to everyone who came by to play with us, you made the con such fun for us!

The calm before the storm…
The booth in full swing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Village Crone debuted at this year’s Gen Con and we are thrilled so many people came by to demo, get an overview, and take an advance copy home with them. If you missed Gen Con this year, never fear. It is now available for pre-order on our website or through your Friendly Local Game Store. If you need help finding a game store near you, check out our Store Locator Map.

Some serious spell-casting going on in The Village Crone

You can also download the special 3D printer files we created for The Village Crone components on the product information page. They are FREE to download until the end of the year, so get them now and use them later!

Anne-Marie De Witt, designer of The Village Crone, signs a couple copies for fans

We are already brainstorming about how to make next year even better and we have several new games that will be coming your way in 2016. So, go get some sleep. Recuperate and rest assured there are big things coming your way at Gen Con 2016 and we invite you to join us for the fun.

Dead Panic got a lot of love this weekend as well. Who says zombie games aren’t still popular?

What were your favorite moments from GenCon? Tell us in the comments below!

Bewitching GenCon 2015 – Booth 1949

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GenCon Indy 2015 is fast-approaching and we’re busy getting ready to offer some really fun stuff in our booth (#1949) this year!

First & foremost, we will have The Village Crone out on tables for demos all weekend, as well as Castle Panic with The Dark Titan, Dead Panic, and Bears! with Bears! Trail Mix’d.

We will also have a limited number of advance copies of The Village Crone available each day for purchase. You can get a copy SIX WEEKS in advance of it’s release in mid-September! Come to our booth (#1949) in the morning, as we will only release 100 copies each day.

As if that’s not enough reason to come by the booth, we will have promos for The Dark Titan, Bears! Trail Mix’d, and The Village Crone, so stop by and ask our booth staff. You are definitely going to want to see what we have lined up for The Village Crone!

To read more about our GenCon plans and see what show pricing and demos we will be hosting, visit our GenCon Page on our website.

We’re really excited to see you all in Indianapolis in just a few weeks! Please come by to say hi, play a game, pick up a promo, and meet some of our great volunteers in the new Torch Program!

 

Origins Game Fair ReCap

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What a way to start the summer! We returned to Origins Game Fair in Columbus, OH after a few years away and were greeted with warm smiles from eager gamers.

The quiet before the rush.

When the hall opened on Thursday morning there was a steady stream of attendees getting their first look around the hall and we even had a few beeline straight to make their Bears! Trail Mix’d purchase. This expansion to our fast-paced, dice-pairing game Bears! doesn’t officially release until June 24, but we had a stash of advance copies and people weren’t shy about snagging one of their very own.

We had a lot of interest in The Dark Titan expansion to Castle Panic and kept that demo table running regularly most of the weekend. There were many Castle Panic first-timers sitting down so they got to experience the true panic the expansion brings to the game. The ratio of wins to losses was pretty evenly matched and everyone seemed to actually enjoy the anxiety brought by the new Monsters and Agranok.

Edgar taught a 6-player group how to fend off Agranok in this Castle Panic and The Dark Titan demo.

There was a heightened interest in Dead Panic so we cracked open a copy for the second demo table and that one stayed full most of the weekend as well. We had a fantastic play through with a young gamer and her dad. She was a boss at taking out zombies with her chain saw and there were a lot of smiles in that apocalypse.

Our favorite zombie apocalypse survival team of the weekend.

The best thing about doing game conventions is all the familiar faces and the new friends we make, and this year’s Origins Game Fair was no exception. We want to thank everyone who came by the booth to say hi, pick up the latest promos, and take a copy of a game home with them.

New game promos included a 6th Level Agranok card for The Dark Titan and an Alarm Clock for Bears!

If you missed out on the 6th Level Agranok promo or the Bears! Alarm Clock, don’t worry, we’ll have them at other shows this year. Check out our Calendar for future appearances.

We hope to see many of you in July at GenCon in Indy. (We’ll have The Village Crone on the table there, as well as a special promo you’ll want to be sure to pick up.) We’ll be in booth #1949.

See You At Origins Game Fair!

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We are returning to Origins Game Fair this year! We invite you to stop by our booth (#839) to check out the latest games and promos, get in a demo, and update your game collection with our new releases.

Our in-booth demos this year will focus on Castle Panic and the brand-new expansion, The Dark Titan, and Bears! and its new expansion Trail Mix’d.

The Dark Titan released in April and has been very popular among Castle Panic fans. (Did you know you can combine it with The Wizard’s Tower as well for maximum panic?!) Bears! Trail Mix’d doesn’t actually release until late June so you can score an advance copy at the show!

We have special promos for the new games as well, so you’ll want to be sure to come to booth #839 to pick up the latest game swag to make all your friends jealous.

We look forward to seeing you in Columbus!