GARPA 43 – GrogHeads Advanced Research on Projects Advisory

frontier wars 728x90 KS

This week’s GARPA gives you real history, alt-history, and we-hope-it-never-becomes-history.


G43EmpireEnd of Empire (Compass Games)
Preorder at $75, save $24

A complex game of a complex time, End of Empire covers the run-up to the French and Indian War all the way through the end of the American War of Independence. Where previous games have treated these conflicts separately, End of Empire covers the entire 40-year period that saw the French, British, and Spanish empires ejected from the bulk of North America as a brand new nation rose to take their places. Thirteen scenarios (natch!) and a host of countersheets to accompany 2 large maps fill out an impressive box of gaming goodness. It’s bordering on monster-size, but that’s because it covers a monster conflict that literally reshaped global history. Check out Compass Games’ preorder page to place your order, and remember that preordering at Compass also gets you a discount on an in-stock game, too.


Doom & Bloom’s SURVIVAL! (Joseph Alton, M.D./Amy Alton, A.R.N.P.)
$21k of $19k, ends 14 May 2014

It’s a post-apocalyptic survival game. Yawn, right? Nope. This one is heavily defined by what’s not there. No zombies. No sci-fi “power goes out” stuff. No post-nuclear mutant wasteland. It’s a realistic post-pandemic setting that forces you to survive in today’s world, not some sci-fi disaster-author’s fever dream. You’ve got to move, scavenge, find security, shelter, and food. Stay alive and rebuild. And it’s looks-a-darn-GUDE, too! Check out the Kickstarter page and get your survival training going around the tabletop. Who knows when you might need it?


Storium (Storium / Stephen Hood)
$85k of $25, ends 8 May 2014

Storium is hard to describe. It’s storytelling, but it’s online. It’s a “game” but it’s more cooperative than competitive and doesn’t even really have an AI ‘nemesis’. There’s a GM-like narrator, and everyone else playing characters in the story, but without the oppositional conflict mechanics in traditional role-playing games. It’s a bit of an online sandbox for you to include visuals and references, and it’s got a variety of preset ‘world’ info to help get you started. It’s more than just an asynchronous storytelling forum; it provides some idea scaffolding to help get you started. Your best bet is to check out the Kickstarter page, watch the video, and see what you think. It might not be for everyone, but if it’s for you, you’re going to love it.



Heavy Steam (Greenbrier Games)
$32k of $55k, ends 13 May 2014

What’s cooler than oversized ‘mechs in minis combat? What’s niftier than a steampunk-themed tactical battles game? How about a steampunk-themed tactical minis game of battling ‘mechs! Heavy steam is a combination tactical battlefield and resource management game. You need to kill the other guy, but you have to be careful how you go about doing it, so you don’t blow all your resources and whomped the next turn. It’s a chess-like board that should help newbies ease into the game, and the minis are available as their own pledge level in case you’re just gaga for cool toys. Plunk your pledge down on Kickstarter and start meching your way through some steampunky battlefield goodness.



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