Jess’s Fave Five Kickstarters of the Week 1/17/20

Thank the gaming gods that it’s Friday. Lets slough off our troubles and dive into the depths of tabletop Kickstarters.

Return to Dark Tower

I frequently get excited about games on Kickstarter, but few titles have been as highly anticipated as Return to Dark Tower. It’s based on the 1981 Milton Bradley game, Dark Tower, in which players needed to collect 3 keys to enter the tower and defeat the evil lurking there. This new reimagining of the game has a bigger, more foreboding tower, an app that runs the game for you, and beautifully sculpted minis. Taken together, Return to Dark Tower has a powerful table presence.

The object of the game is similar to the original. The players must complete key quests to open the tower and then defeat the overlord, but now they are faced with a mechanized tower that spews corruption across the land. The heroes must be vigilant about cleansing the corruption when they can, for if a location becomes overwhelmed, the players will lose the game. I had a chance to play the game a few months ago and had an amazing time. You can get my full preview here. I highly recommend checking out Return to Dark Tower on Kickstarter here.

School of Sorcery

If you’ve never played a Dr. Finn game, you should seek to rectify the situation. His games quickly became some of our favorites and have a shelf of their own in the Gameosity collection. School of Sorcery is a newly revised version of Dr Finn’s previous game, Institute for Magical Arts, that includes new rules, more art, upgraded components, and a new promo packs.

In the game, players will compete to win magical items and characters by creating majorities in different locations. Each location shows a die face and on your turn you will roll your dice and assign your crystals to the results. You action cards can manipulate the dice, giving you more control over where you can place. School of Sorcery looks like a fantastic upgrade to the original game. Let it cast a spell on your wallet, by visiting the School of Sorcery Kickstarter page here.

Oath: Chronicles of Empire and Exile


Oath is a game about the ever changing face of control over an empire. One player will start out as the Chancellor, trying to maintain their control over the land, while the rest of the players begin as exiles from the empire and must defeat the Chancellor or fulfill their vision to win. As they adventure across the land they will build up their followers, meet interesting characters, and discover secrets. The Chancellor can lure the other players into joining the empire by offering them the chance to become citizens; thus strengthening the Chancellor’s position, but also giving the players a chance to subvert them from the inside.

I find Oath really interesting as it uses a “Chronicle” system to keep track of what has happened in previous games. In this way, decisions the players make in one game will be reflected in the next and eventually tell the story of the empire over the ages. Oath doesn’t have a legacy element though, so no ripping up cards or applying stickers. You can always reset the game and play from the beginning anytime. You can explore Oath more on Kickstarter here.


Pacific Rails Inc

Pacific Rails Inc is a worker-placement/ route-building game where players are trying to build a railroad from one side of the board to the other. To do this, players will need to assign their workers to lobby Congress for funding and gather resources to spend on hiring specialists and manufacturing tracks, train stations, and telegraph posts. The locations where workers can be placed are actually between action and resource nodes, so when a worker is placed or removed they will activate whatever spaces they are between. You also will get a bonus if another of your workers are next to a spot you are activating. This could lead to some interesting tactics and cascades of bonus actions.


I think Pacific Rails Inc will be a thinky and highly strategic worker placement game. The art design is nice and the I love the train minis. If you want to learn more, head on over to the Pacific Rails Inc Kickstarter here.


Foundations of Rome

Foundations of Rome is a city-building game of epic proportions. Each player is an architect looking to build structures and claim fame and glory with their amazing designs. Each turn you’ll be either purchasing lots, building a structure, or collecting income. You gain Glory Points at the end of each round for the population and commerce you have added to the city and for any civic buildings that score.


What’s neat in Foundations of Rome is that the players share the city and some of their structures will score points for themselves as well as their opponent’s structures. The game also looks mini-tastic as all of the buildings are gorgeously- rendered minis. You get 96 of them so you can count on this being a big box game, but thankfully Arcane Wonders has created a box with drawers to make organizing everything easier. Check out Foundations of Rome on Kickstarter here for more info.

What Kickstarters are you backing this week? Let me know in the comments below and check back next week for more fun projects!

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