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garpaGARPA – GrogHeads Advanced Research on Projects Advisory

by Dan Pinkham and Lloyd Sabin

Doing their part to stimulate the economy, the boys from GARPA bring you another list of games you just can’t live without.

Boardgames, Cardgames, and Miniatures


Lock ‘n Load: Band of Heroes 2nd Edition by Mark H. Walker

Pre-order now!

Missed out on the 2nd edition of Mark H. Walker’s Lock ‘n Load: Band of Heroes? Well here is your chance to pre-order the game at a discounted price and help get the game sent to the printers for Round 3. Set in and amongst the hedgerows of Normandy this squad-based tactical game brings to vivid life World War II combat. The scenarios’ random events and impulse driven turns not only make for a great two player game but lend themselves to solo play as well. The reprint of the Second Edition of the game brings you haloless maps, Version 3 rules and for those who pre-order, two extra scenarios. If you want in on some of the action, head over to Lock ‘n Load Games’ website and pre-order your copy.



Medieval Village for 28mm Gamers by Renee Launer and Renaissance Miniatures

$23,187 of a $12,800 goal funding ending November 4th.

The one thing that every miniature gamer needs after painting up their armies is terrain to fight over. Enter Renaissance Miniatures’ full line of modular medieval village buildings. The project includes pledge levels that reward you with a simple cart or gallows all the way up to a fully decked out medieval village. What makes these buildings even better are they come fully painted and assemble quickly. But wait there’s more! Some of the buildings can be disassembled and combined to create even more building options. Beyond the buildings, plenty of village details are included in the project. These include carts, wagons, a well, fences, gallows and benches. So whether you need a nice back drop for a medieval battle or some place for your marauding Orcs or Vikings to pillage, these are the buildings for you. Miniature gamers should keep your wallets close as you head over to the project’s Kickstarter page.



Storm the Castle! By Rich Nelson

$35,538 of a $12,000 goal funding ending November 25th.

With almost a month until the end of project funding, Storm the Castle! has made and surpassed its desired goal but there are still plenty of pledge rewards to get in on. The game is a 1-4 player game which can be played cooperatively, but only if you want to. Taking the role of the “marauding Dark Forces” the players must select their strategy from the number of choices available in the game. Managing your gold and magic, figuring out what to buy and how to use your forces are just a few of the choices available. But watch out for your friends, for those you once thought were your allies could be in it only for themselves. Sound interesting? If so gather your minions and head over to the game’s Kickstarter page.



Legend’s Gauntlet – A Lost Worlds Project by Jill Leonardi and Firelight Game Company

$1,115 of a $38,000 goal funding ending November 14th.

Using the diceless combat system from the original Lost Worlds RPG books, Legend’s Gauntlet reintroduces this action packed game with two books, Sherwood Forest and Nottingham. These books pit Robin Hood, Maid Marian, Guy of Gisborne and the Sheriff of Nottingham against one another. Each of the books will contain two characters both of which are compatible with pervious character books in the Lost Worlds System. These new books will up the ante in the art department making the game even more visually stimulating. Boasting “120 full page illustrations” between the two books, Legend’s Gauntlet features the art from veteran illustrator Doug Shuler. If you would like to help breathe life into an RPG classic, check out the project’s page on Kickstarter.



YOU are the Maniac! By Mythos Labs

$19,209 of a $15,000 goal funding ending November 14th.

Billing itself as “the horror movie card game” and “a campy social slasher to enjoy with your twisted friends,” You are the Maniac! looks to be a dark humor game for Horror flick fans. Designed for two to four players, this game cast the players as the maniac in search of victims. Not just any victims but the best of Horror movie stereotypes. The players play through three “movies” each trying to capture and kills as many victims in order to achieve the highest body count by the end of the game. Think you have what it takes to bring down the athlete, the bimbo or the obvious suspect? If so head over to their Kickstarter project page.



Video and Computer Game Projects


Forced by BetaDwarf from Copenhagen, Denmark

$9,356 pledged of $40,000 goal, funding ends Saturday, December 1

forcedDeveloped for: PC, Mac, Linux, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3

Appearing on Steam’s Project Greenlight as well as Kickstarter, Forced is billed as a Gauntlet-like cooperative play combat game where teams battle through multiple fantasy and sci-fi inspired combat arenas. Players are awarded for working together, and combined attacks can result in different results every time. Game environments include a variety of obstacles and traps to make things more interesting as well as a “Spirit Mentor” that players control together to combat enemies.

There are 30 planned levels with literally millions of fighting combos, as well as unlockable skill sets. Online, LAN, and local co-op play are planned, and up to four players will be able to play at the same computer or game console.



Nexus 2: The Gods Awaken by Most Wanted Entertainment, Miami, FL

$156,763 of $650,000 goal, funding ends Sunday October 28

nexusDeveloped for: PC

Admittedly it does not look like this project is going to happen, with only a paltry amount of time left for ¾ of the investment needed. With the love that Nexus: The Jupiter Incident has received in the GrogHeads forums, I can only speculate that this second iteration of Nexus has not had enough word of mouth marketing and publicity to be successful.

At the risk of posting info on Nexus 2 for nothing, here are some more details. Nexus 2 promises to be a ‘game for admirals, not project managers’ with the focus on capital ship combat, not resource gathering or production. Nexus 2 will take place 25 years after the original game’s story, with a new focus on highly evolved humans with psychic ability. Even the presence of just one of these individuals can turn the tide of a battle, and the corporations that control space are coming to blows over controlling them.

Sounds good so far, eh? Sorry for that. Did I mention Nexus 2 will also be using the Unreal engine? No? Good. I don’t want to build up anyone’s hopes only to have them dashed in three days.

With little hope of meeting its financial goal I almost feel guilty of bringing Nexus 2 to your attention.



Ars Magica: Years of Conquest by Black Chicken Studios, San Diego, CA

$32,537 of $290,000 goal, funding ends on Sunday, November 18

arsDeveloped for: PC

I don’t think Ars Magica has anything to do with the creepy, subterranean RPG Arx Fatalis from about 10 years ago…I just like to bring that latter game up whenever I can. Ars Magica is however a remake of Atlas Games’ card game series from about 25 years ago.

Set in an alternate version of England around the time of the Norman conquests in the 11th century, Ars Magica will be a single player campaign- and turn-based strategy game. The twist here is that the world of medieval warfare will also be coupled with angels, faeries, druids, demons, and magic. Excited? Me too.

Players will take on the role of a mage and command armies of both natural and supernatural beings. Character-creation will also be offered along with alternate storylines, family dynasties, secret agents, and environmental influences on the turn based combat. Black Chicken Studios have set the bar very high for this ambitious release.

Previous games from Black Chicken include Academagia: The Making of Mages and 1931: Scheherazade at the Library of Pergamum.


Well, that’s what we unearthed this fortnight. Check back with us for more developments as we canvas the world of crowd-funded games for more gems.

Discuss it in our forums >>

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