Momiji is a card-drafting/ set-collection game where players are collecting leaves from the imperial gardens of Japan. Each turn players will take all of the leaves of 1 type from the display. You can always use a acorn token to reveal new cards before choosing, but from the cards you take, you must place 1-2 cards into your player area. Each card has a value of 0-3 and you must place each type of leaf in a separate pile in ascending order. Once you place a 3 value on a pile, you can no longer add to that pile. If the leaf deck is empty or a player covers their 4th pile, the game ends and everyone scores points for the top-most card of each pile as well as for meeting the game’s current objective cards.
Momiji is gorgeous. The color palette and beautiful illustrations create a gentle ambiance to enjoy what looks like a fun set collection game. I suspect that much of the strategy lies within judging when to add more leaves to the piles before you draw. If you add more leaves, you’ll have more to work with, but this also adds to piles your opponents might want and speeds up the game. I like that while the player who best meets the objectives gets 10 points, all players who meet them get 3 points, so you always get a little something. Learn more about Momiji here on Kickstarter.
We recently did a Kickstarter preview for Twinkle here, but the basics are this: You are trying to build constellations in the sky by rolling dice and using them to build out from the center. Each turn you will choose 3 dice from the available dice pools and roll them, selecting 1 to add to your display. Each kind of die scores differently so you have to be strategic about what you roll and how you place in order to build a high scoring constellation.
We had a fun time with Twinkle. Considering how many different ways there are to score, it’s more challenging that it might first appear, but the game can be relatively fast to play because you have a limited amount of placements. If you like dice games with a puzzley feel then rocket on over to the Twinkle campaign here to pick yourself up a copy.
Aroma: A Game of Essence
I have never come across a game that utilized a person’s sense of smell as part of the gameplay before. Aroma not only does this once, but 4 times over! In the game you have 4 different ways to play: Discover, Survive, Revolve, and Collect. Each game challenges the player’s ability to identify smells contained in essential oil vials.
Aroma is definitely a unique game. I do worry that after a few plays you might become pretty familiar with the scents which might cut down on replayability, but I like that it focuses on a sense we rarely explore in games. If you find the idea intriguing make sure to check out the Aroma campaign here on Kickstarter.
Steven Rhodes Games
As a graphic artist and illustrator with a twisted sense of humor, you’ve probably seen Steven Rhodes reimagining’s of children’s activity books on t-shirts in your local Hot Topic. Now you can enjoy his dark retro world in the form of 3 different board games! Let’s Dig For Treasure is a push-your-luck game where players will dig through 3 different decks, trying to collect valuable cards. You can stop at any time, but if you dig up a “Skeleton” card or a 2nd “Worms” card your turn ends and you lose everything you dug up. Let’s Summon Demons is a dice game where players race to see who can summon 3 demons from their hands first. Lastly Don’t Talk to Strangers is a movement game where you must try to reach locations on the board without being kidnapped by aliens.
All three games look delightfully devilish in theme and fun for anyone who loves dark humor. They kinda remind me of Garbage Pail Kids from when I was a kid. Kick your nostalgia in gear and summon up some copies of the Steven Rhodes Games here on Kickstarter.
The Pursuit of Happiness – Big Box and Nostalgia expansion
I love games that create a narrative and The Pursuit of Happiness embodies that idea by taking you through the story of your character from your first moments of life to finding fulfillment in this wacky world. It is a euro-style worker placement game where you must balance the actions you take with your stress and health levels. If you manage to stress yourself out too much you character will die, so you need to find ways to kick back and relax on occasion. At the end of the game the person who earned the most points through their life wins.
This Kickstarter is for the big box version of The Pursuit of Happiness which comes with the Nostalgia Expansion. You can also get all of the other expansions through this campaign if you don’t already own them as well as upgraded tokens and a playmat. If you love worker placement games and storytelling then The Pursuit of Happiness might just be your jam and the big box is a great way to get a ton of fun all at once. Check out The Pursuit of Happiness Kickstarter Campaign here to learn more.
What Kickstarters are you backing this week? Let me know in the comments below and check back next week for more fun projects!