This Week’s Crowdfunding Spotlight 12/9/22

Hey folks! Here’s this week’s crowdfunding games that caught my eye.

Arabella – A 18XX Roll-And-Write

Ok, I’m sure you all are going to call me out for being convinced to check this one out because it has a kitten on the cover… and you’re right, but it also looks like a fun roll and write. Arabella is a 18XX game (a game that recreate the building of railroad corporations during the 19th century) where players are trying to build train routes across Estonia. You gain points by building tracks, buying trains and shares, and earning income. Each turn you’ll be rolling dice into a pool that the players will draw from to take actions. The trains and shares are represented by tiles that you can add to your player sheet. Once the last value 6 train has been claimed or one player has reached the end of their money track, the end of the game is triggered. Whoever has the most points at the end wins!

Arabella is meant to be a lighter, faster version of a 18XX style game and to represent the softer nature of the game 2D6.EE Games put a kitten on the cover. I find it a little deceptive as their are no kittens in the game, but the lure worked and here I am looking at a route building game I might have otherwise not noticed. If you are intrigued by these style games but looking for a more streamlined experience then you  should check out Arabella on Gamefound here.

Robot Roll and Write game

Continuing on the path of roll and writes, Marco Salogni has designed Robot Roll and Write which is a robot building game. Each turn you will roll dice and use them to choose a card. The card will show you what components you can draw on your robot. You can manipulate your dice using special actions, but they will cause you to take penalties at the end of the game. The goal of the game is create closed circuits within the robot by connecting the start spot to all the other parts of the robot. At the end of the 12th turn, each player turns on their robot and sees if their circuit has been closed. If you have any circuits that are not connected you have to check off a penalty. If you reach the maximum penalties you automatically lose the game. Add up all your points earned from connected parts and components and the player with the most points wins!

I love a good roll and write. There’s something satisfying to actually drawing on your game and puzzling out your path from your available choices. Robot Roll and Write looks like it will be a fun time and I can’t get over how “over it” the robot actually looks. If you are a fan of roll and writes, head on over to Kickstarter and check out Robot Roll and Write.

Shake That City from AEG

Shake that City feels like its spiritually connected to roll and writes, but instead of rolling dice, you are shaking a box that will output a 3×3 selection of colored cubes. You’ll select a color and place tiles matching that color and pattern of the cubes onto your player board to begin building your city. Each color represents different parts of a city such as roads, shops, or parks. These types of tiles all have different placement requirements for scoring so you’ll have to choose wisely when taking tiles and figuring out where to put them. You gain points from the tile placement and also for completing sections of your city. Whoever has the most points at the end, wins!

The Cube Shaker box is really cleverly designed and the tile placement puzzle looks like a fun challenge. I can easily see this as being a fun family night addition because it seems pretty easy to teach and has that wow factor of the shaker that will keep everyone engaged. You can get your hands on Shake that City on Kickstarter here.

Mycelium: A Mushling Game

Ok enough with the rolling writing and or placing. Let’s change things up with some adorable mushroom creatures! In Mycelium: A Mushling Game you are racing against your opponents to be the first to gather 10 Nutrients. Each turn you will be flipping over a nutrient card which acts as an event card. Then you’ll be able to play action cards, build paths, or attack other player’s paths. Once you’ve taken your actions you can gather nutrients and spore tokens from the hexes you have connected to your spore cave with a path and collect up your workers. At the end of your turn you can reassign your workers at any of the resource spaces. You’ll have to try to anticipate where the next batch of nutrients will pop up so planning 1 step ahead is key to winning the game.

While Mycelium: A Mushling Game looks cute on the outside, there seems to be a bit of a cut-throat nature to the way the mushlings attack each other’s paths. The game has a delightfully unique theme and look and the puzzle of figuring out where the nutrients will appear adds a nice challenge.  Learn more about Mycelium: A Mushling Game on Kickstarter here.

Cube Monster

Cube Monster is a engine building game where players are racing to reach the top of Mount Kubia. On their way to the top they will be feeding the monster, building structures, and sacrificing cubes. The structures you build offer you opportunities to collect more cubes, swap cubes, protect you from the monster, gain rewards, and boost your production. Having more cubes allows you to ascend the mountain faster and ensures you will have what you need to feed the monster and avoid its wrath, but while you are building up your engine another player might be rushing towards the top, speeding towards the end of the game. Finding the balance between building and climbing can net you the win. Whoever gets to the top of the mountain first wins the game.

I like that Cube Monster is all about anticipating your opponents and trying to see how far you can push your engine before you have to make a break for the top. The design looks really slick and at higher backer levels you can get some really neat 3D boards to enhance the experience. Take on the challenge of Cube Monster by backing today on Kickstarter.

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

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