Let’s start exploring today’s numerous entries with our PnP pick of the week: Torch & Blade, an old-school, black-and-white, paper-and-pencil, fur-slip and horned-helmet solo RPG, in which you can play throughout a long campaign that will see your character raising in power (and probably find a more protective adventure gear).
Since we are discussing helmet styles, we may ask what our Viking friends have to say about it, unless they are too busy saving the Christmas holidays in Giftbringer, a roll-and-write from Awaken Realms Lite (which means it will probably be live on Gamefound at some point in time). The original thing about it (besides the glorious theme, that is) is that, according to the BGG description, “The results of the roll determines which results all players can use that round.” Pretty neat, right?
I’m not done with alternate history yet: Worldbreakers: Advent of the Khanate offers to revisit the 13th century Mongolia, in which Princess Khutulun, empowered by the mysterious substance known as mythium, attempts to reunite the scattered tribes of the fallen Mongolian Empire. It’s a customizable card game, with one-time events and longer-lasting followers competing for locations and the so-coveted mythium.
Now we sail further eastwards to Japan in which your cowardice might grant you the fearsome Mask of Shame as you fight monsters in a sinister tower. If you reach the summit, you become ruler of all ninjas, which apparently is a title very much worth your risks. Your weapons of choice are color cards, that you play to match the monsters’ symbols. But as your hand is shrinking (which is truly a terrifying sight), you become less and less potent as you climb up the perilous levels of the tower.
Still about nightmarish buildings in Japan, a new game from Pawn, a designer we like here at Solitaire Times (at least Cadet Stimpy and I do), better known for Shephy. The game is published in Japanese by Domina, which means in the distant future, there is good chance that Japanime Games might do an English localization out of it. It’s called Lemures and you try to escape unknown beings (yet very much threatening) in a castle full of haunted souls.
Speaking of dim, ghostly things, Orange Nebula (Vindication, Unsettled) has apparently a new game in the works called Spirit Fire, a solitaire-oriented game for once, in which you explore a realm as a hero and their familiar. You can also join a friend and venture together into your own realm, hinting at a very much sand-boxy experience. Besides these vague statements, absolutely nothing can be inferred about it on the BGG page.
Finally, we can leave the Fantasy realm for the Sci-Fi one. And we are not alone in this journey as this is the path taken by Aeon’s End, that’s going to space with a new line of deck-building, boss-battling games, Astro Knights.
After Sci-Fi, the most obvious step is what may lead to it one day: the fascinating world of present-day industry. Still a bit sci-fi-ish, Maglev Metro, a game where you build metro lines (but they levitate thanks to magnetic fields!) is granted an expansion, Mechs & Monorails, featuring two brand new maps on which you can play flying choo-choos.
And of course, all these are nothing without the computer-based infrastructure to support them. An infrastructure that you are offered to hack in White Hat, a trick-taking game with a dedicated solo mode in which you navigate a maze of servers in search of the Critical Asset, whatever that is! Showing your skill is the true prize here! This is getting published by Dragon Dawn Productions, the Finnish board games publisher that brought you Perdition’s Mouth and Maeshowe.
I have other games in store for you, but I keep them for next time! You’ll get games tied to plenty of original and creative themes such as nature sightseeing, car races, kids liking candies, and Renaissance merchants!
All images taken from the respective game's pages on BGG, except where noted.