iOS Board Games

Among the best things in life is playing printed games in person with family and close friends. When those are not convenient we like iOS Board Games. News, reviews, previews, and opinions about board gaming on iPhones, iPads, iPods and even Android devices. (iPhone board games, iPad board games, iPod board games, Android board games)

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App News: Playdek Servers Shutting Down (For Maintenance), Ogre Coming to PC, and Catan Gets an Update

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Playdek Shutting Down Servers Today
Ever since Twilight Struggle was released for iPad last month my friends keep telling me that I'm spending way too much time playing it. They're probably communists. Then again, they might be right. Earlier this week I had a dream in which Nikita Khrushchev banged his shoe on a desk but then a nude Eisenhower leapt through the window on the back of a unicorn (also nude) and pulled me to safety. It got weird after that.

Lucky for us (me?), Playdek has my back and will be curtailing my Cold War activities today. They're moving their servers and they'll be going offline for most of the day. Here's the official announcement:

Playdek wrote:
All Playdek game servers will be offline for most of the day on
Wednesday, July 20th as we will be migrating them to the cloud. Some
servers will come down starting this evening (July 19th PST) while
others will go offline in the morning (July 20th PST).

Account Services (new account creation and password reset) will be
unavailable starting today at 12 noon Pacific.

Further updates will be provided as servers come back online starting
Wednesday evening.

Seems simple enough, and I can always get my Cold War fix by going to sleep and having that recurring Yuri Andropov/Ronald Reagan mudwrestling dream. Hmmm. Maybe I should just play Lords of Waterdeep or Agricola.

Steve Jackson Bringing Ogre to PC
In the biggest news for ogres since Shrek the Third, today we received word that Steve Jackson Games would be bringing their classic tank battler, Ogre to digital with a PC version that's to be released in 2017.

The game is being developed by Auroch Digital who you guys might remember from the digital port of the classic solitaire game Chainsaw Warrior.

Not a lot of other info at this point, but we'll stay on top of things and keep you in the know as it moves forward.

Digital Version of Catan Gets Hefty Update
It's easy to think of digital board games and look at the newer and shinier ones that seem to be coming out every month and forget that the grandaddy of all these euros also has a home on the App Store. I'm talking about Catan, and the digital version just received a fairly major update.

I'd love to figure out a way to be witty about all this, but I'm writing this very late at night and I have that Yuri Andropov dream to get to, so let's blurb this:

USM wrote:
Catan 4.6.0 brings many improvements and new features. As a special thank you, the Seafarers scenario “Heading for new Shores” is now available for all players.
Now available: Mysterious, uncharted lands await you. Accept the challenge and explore varied random scenarios from the “The Islands” scenario pack!

Further news and changes:
- Fixed possible “dead end” in the tutorial
- Various smaller performance enhancements and optimizations

Catan is available for iPhone, iPad, and Android but this latest update only appears to be for the iOS versions for now.

- Catan for iPhone, $5
- Catan HD for iPad, $5
- Catan for Android, $4
- Catan for Kindle, $4
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Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:00 pm
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App News: Sushi Go Coming to Mobile, Heroes of Normandie for iOS Dated, Castles of Mad King Ludwig Updated and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Sushi Go! Coming to iOS
The most incredible thing about Sushi Go! is that it's not the first game I've played with raw fish as a theme. Who'd have thunk that yummy, delicious sushi could have it's own section here on BGG? While the theme is interesting, the best news about Sushi Go! is that, while it's currently only a card game, it will soon be making the journey to digital.

Sushi Go! will be coming to iOS late summer/early fall of this year from Lummox Labs, a new developer made up of devs from Button Mash Games Inc. who brought us the excellent ports of Forbidden Island and Forbidden Desert. If Sushi Go! can even get close to the quality of those apps, I think we're going to be very happy.

The digital version of Sushi Go! will be for iOS Universal and will have both solo play vs. AI and online multiplayer using Game Center. It will also have cute animations, which is 98% of why I play digital board games.

Sushi Go is currently in beta and Lummox Labs are looking for testers. If you want to sign up and help bring a more polished Sushi Go! to the App Store, you can head over here and give it a go.

We should be getting more information--and hopefully more screenshots or videos--as we near release and we'll pass them along to you guys. Until then, take a gander at these early shots.

Heroes of Normandie for iOS Gets Dated
Heroes of Normandie arrived for PC last year and it was warmly received with the exception that the game's action cards weren't available in the digital game. That all changed this May when the action cards landed via a mega-update and Heroes of Normandie became one of the best board game ports on Steam. Still, the question remained when the long-awaited iOS version would be landing. Turns out we won't have to wait much longer.

Last week Slitherine Software and developer Cat Rabbit announced that the iOS version of HoN would be landing on the App Store on July 28th.

The iOS version will be Universal and should be a full port of the PC adaptation. Slitherine also hinted at more news upcoming, which sounds very much like expansions are in the works. We'll have to wait and see.

- Heroes of Normandie for PC, $30

Castles of Mad King Ludwig Updates to Version 1.1
One of 2016's best board game ports is the digital version of Castles of Mad King Ludwig from Ted Alspach and Bézier Games, Inc.. Early this morning we learned that a fairly major update landed for the game, bringing it to version 1.1.

Version 1.1 does what most updates do: fixes bugs. It also brings two new levels to the solo campaign: Waldeck and Sauerburg. Here's the update's full blurb:

Jeremiah Maher wrote:
• Two New Hidden "Bonus" Campaign Levels: Waldeck and Sauerburg
• Resolved issue with disappearing Corridors on restored levels
• Resolved issue with Pass button being shown when switching back from viewing another player's castle
• Other bug fixes and enhancements

The update is available right now on both iOS and Android.

- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for iOS Universal, $7
- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for Android, $7
- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for Kindle, $5

Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal Gets Major Update
We don't talk too much about wargames here on the blog, but Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal is a pretty good one from a one-man developer that deserves your attention. It's a solo wargame that puts you in charge of the US Pacific fleet against a rather ruthless AI-driven Japanese Navy during World War 2.

Last week, the game received a major update which fixed bugs and added some new functionality. A previous update also added a new scenario: the Battle of the Bismarck Sea.

Full blurb:

Cyril Jarnot wrote:
Custom search patterns
New launch icon
Better CAP management at sunset
Night landing is more severe on airfields

Bug fixes:
- the Japanese were using torpedoes to attack ground targets
- Air to ground air attacks were less effective than expected by the rules

If you're a wargamer and having a complex solitaire wargame on your touchscreen gives you warm fuzzies, you should give Carrier Battles a try. This is not an entry level wargame, but will take time for grognards to figure out. Luckily, there's about a million tutorials to walk you through every part of the game but, even with the tutorials, the game is hard to get into for wargaming newbies. I know this from first hand experience.

- Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal for iPad, $5
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Mon Jul 18, 2016 4:45 pm
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App News: Smash Up Headed to Mobile and Police Precinct Released

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Nomad Games Ready to Unleash Smash Up on Mobile This Autumn
We all know and love Nomad Games Ltd (II) for their detailed and polished take on the venerable Talisman: Digital Edition, one of the finest board game ports you'll find on the App Store. Later this year, however, they'll be branching out into an entirely new franchise, Smash Up from Alderac Entertainment Group.

That's right, soon you'll be able to pit your zombie pirates against your friends' robot ninjas or dinosaur wizards. Smash up will be coming this autumn for iOS, Android, and PC/Mac via Steam.

Nomad Games wrote:
When the game begins, players take turns drafting one of several faction decks. Once each player has two decks, they shuffle them together, combining their distinct abilities into a unique 40-card deck. Players then deal out a number of Base cards, and play their decks to attempt to have the most power on a base when it is scored.

It may sound simple, but how simple is it when your opponent’s Zombie-Ninja Assassinate your minions then create an Outbreak, loading the Base with minions from their discard pile? Or when their Pirate-Dinosaurs Full Sail onto the base with the mighty King Rex, whose massive power dwarfs that of other minions?

Smash Up will offer both solo play vs. AI as well as multiplayer for up to four via either pass-and-play or online. As for factions, the game will launch with eight. Don't worry, though, as Nomad has stated that the cardboard expansions will be coming to digital via DLC.

As usual, we'll pass along any new information as we get it.

Police Precinct Available for iOS Universal
This may come as a shock to you, but Brad and I occasionally [often -ed.] miss things happening in the digital game world. Oh, sorry, I probably should have warned you to sit down before I broke such a shocking story. It happened [again -ed.] just this week when we were informed by you guys about a recent iOS release, Police Precinct: ONLINE.

Police Precinct: Online is the digital port of popular cooperative title Police Precinct from Common Man Games. In the game, players are tasked with solving a murder while also maintaining order on the streets.

The digital version is from A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. Games and that's where the blurb comes in:

A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. Games wrote:
-Online multiplayer (First ever online cooperative mobile board game)
-Pass and play mode
-Solo play mode
-Play and save multiple games at the same time
-Supports 1 to 6 players
-Choose from 16 cops (Contains real officers for characters)
-Invite friends to play
-In-game chat
-Board game comes to life with HD graphics, moving game pieces and various SFX
-Easy to set up, and learn the game while you play!

I think the guys from Handelabra Games might take issue with the whole "first ever online cooperative board game" part but, then again, Sentinels of the Multiverse, is a card game so, technically, they're correct.

Police Precinct is available for iOS Universal and runs $9 with no IAP in sight.

- Police Precinct for iOS Universal, $9

Hat tip: Eric Herman
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Wed Jul 13, 2016 2:02 pm
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App News: Huge Pathfinder Update Lands, 7 Wonders News(?), Boardnaut Releases Maquis and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Huge Update for Pathfinder Adventures Finally Lands
We've spent the last couple weeks covering smaller updates for games like XenoShyft and Twilight Struggle, but the update everyone has been waiting for is for Obsidian Entertainment's excellent port of Paizo Publishing's card-based RPG, Pathfinder Adventures. As luck would have it, it appeared on the App Store this morning and it's a doozy.

The update is numbered and the list of updates, fixes, and new stuff is huge. Take a gander:

Obsidian wrote:
-Over 30 new boosters added!
-Card frames are now color coded to make it easier to tell rarities apart.
-Previously, players would gain a free chest upon their first successful login. This has been changed to be granted after first successful completion of Brigandoom.
-Gold now scales based on party size and difficulty in Quest Mode and Story Mode Legendary scenarios.
-Treasure and Gold pages revamped
o Ten chests no longer grants a bonus chest; price unchanged
o Forty Chests upped to Fifty Chests; Bonus chests no longer included
-Augury: Fixed a progression break when you cancelled Augury.
-Character: Harsk: Gaining Reconnaissance, Track and Survivalist no longer causes a progression break.
-Location Close: Fixed a progression break when you cancelled a close attempt at a location that required a Banish.
-Location Close: A crash that occurred when rolling for items/weapons at the General Store/Goblin Fortress has been resolved
-Location: Warrens: Fixed a progression break when force closing the app during the villain cutscene
-Loot Rewards: Fixed a possible progression break when acquiring Loot rewards if a character in the party had already acquired the rewards in a previous instance
-Quest Mode: A Progression break is fixed when encountering Goblins at the Shrine to Lamashtu when the Goblin Difficulty Increase power is active
-Quest Mode: A Progression break when Encountering Rogors Craesby with the Summon Ancient Skeletons on Undead Encounter power is fixed
-Tutorial: Fixed a progression break that could occur in the tutorial if messages with confirmation windows were clobbered
-Haunt Cutscenes in Foul Misgivings now have unique audio.
-Dogslicer now has unique audio when rolling 1s.
-Barl Breakbones: The ghosts of characters defeated by Barl's first check no longer hang around to fight the second check.
-Blessing of Zarongel: Now has the Zarongel trait
-Cape of Escape: Now correctly usable outside of an encounter.
-Goblin Warchanter, Hags: Before You Act text has been rewritten to better communicate the implementation of the cards.
-Impaler of Thorns: Now correctly penalizes non-proficient characters.
-Orb of Firestorm (Booster): Fixed an issue where you could discard it instead of burying it.
-Rat Swarm: No longer shuffles into the deck when summoned and not beaten by 12 or more.
-Wand of Scorching Ray: Now correctly has the Arcane and Attack traits.
-Loot: Fixed an issue where Loot cards wouldn't always show under the correct filters
-Kyra: Using Heal then a location's exploration power no longer renders her unable to explore
-Kyra: Incorporeal monsters can now be properly defeated with Enemy Lore: Undead
-Skill Panel: Combat is now split into Melee and Strength and can be chosen at will. There are some outstanding functionality issues.
-Into the Mountains: No longer incorrectly deals damage when the Full Packs of Painful Memories wildcards are in play and activate.
-Characters: You can now have a maximum of 24 experienced characters in each mode, up from 20.
-Daily gold: Fixed an issue when Daily gold wouldn't remove itself after the timer expired
-PnP: Fixed a possible progression break if an offturn character played Cape of Escape
-PnP:Fixed an issue where an encountered card would visually disappear when requesting aid
-A number of problem scenario powers have been removed.
-Black Magga is no longer available as a villain.
-Fixed an issue where a character could die and level up but not receive their rewards.
-Ezren's Evoker specialization now correctly shows his hand size of 9 in the store.
-Effects Panel: Fixed a minor issue where the effects panel wouldn't close if it was open when opening the settings menu
-Card Selection: Fixed a minor issue where cards usable on the last turn of a scenario would retain the 'playable' highlight when performing post-scenario deck management
-Gallery: Unobtainable boosters that were incorrectly viewable in the gallery have been removed.

Curiously, I don't see a fix for the issue that some were having with Black Magga's scenario locking up, but you can check out the full patch notes and see that it has been taken care of.

One thing that hasn't been taken care of is the lack of new content. I think we all assumed that the next adventure pack, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Fortress of the Stone Giants Adventure Deck 4, would be included in the next update. No such luck, so those of us who have already unraveled the Hook Mountain Massacre have to wait a bit to try out those new skills we earned at the end of that adventure deck.

The update is now available for both iOS and Android. We'll let you know when the new content manages to see the light of day.

- Pathfinder Adventures for iPad (iPad 3 and up), free
- Pathfinder Adventures for Android, free

7 Wonders Resurfaces
Hey guys, it's Brad popping in to add something that happened just moments ago: So I woke this morning to a notification that there was a new update to the 7 Wonders beta. The last update was in September of last year. I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but it is uplifting to see a build appear again. Let's see what happens next!

Solitaire title, Maquis, Released for iOS and Android
Boardnaut Studios arrived on the scene earlier this year with Land 6. Turns out Land 6 wasn't their first digital port. Earlier last year they released another print-and-play title, Maquis, on Android. Today they also released it for iOS.

Boardnaut wrote:
Maquis is a solitaire worker-placement game with variable goals. The player places his resistance agents on spaces around town to achieve his goals (blowing up trains, publishing underground newspapers, aiding spies etc.). At the same time collaborators and soldiers patrol the area. Agents who can't make it back to the safe house at the end of the day are arrested, and never seen again.

Maquis has nine different missions to play and six different difficulty levels.

- Maquis for iOS Universal, $3
- Maquis for Android, $3

Atacama Lands on the App Store
From the I-have-no-idea-what-I'm-talking-about-files comes a digital port of a little known title, Atacama. The game's title on the App Store is Atacama - The Mining Conflict, so at least now we have a theme.

The game comes from developer ycyclop games and has both pass-and-play multiplayer as well as 4 levels of AI for solo play. The biggest question is just what the hell Atacama is:

ycyclop games wrote:
Excitement in the Atacama! Valuable mineral resources — gold, silver and copper — have been found in the 1,200 km long desert in Chile and Peru along the coast of the Pacific Ocean. Several companies are already busy prospecting by erecting huge drilling rigs as the resources are deep under the surface. Due to security reasons, the drilling rigs cannot be installed too close to one another, so each new rig limits the possibilities for erecting new ones in the surrounding areas.

What’s more, the mining rights have been limited by the government. The companies have received a concession for only two of the three commodities – and extracting the “wrong” type of commodity will result in penalties. Becoming rich is a difficult business, but the stakes are worthwhile.

Sounds good, and it's also an area control game which are usually in my wheelhouse. Even better, it's only $1 so it won't screw up your budget if you give it a go. On the downside, the app isn't Universal so be prepared to play it in 2x mode on your iPad.

- Atacama - The Mining Conflict for iPhone, $1
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Tue Jul 12, 2016 2:00 pm
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App News: Armello Gets Major Update, Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft Update and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Armello Updates to Version 1.4
Armello has been live for PC/Mac on Steam for so long now that it's hard to remember that, yes, it is coming to mobile devices someday. When it does land on mobile, it's going to be incredibly polished as the Steam version was just updated for the fourth time with an update dubbed Battle Tides.

If you're not familiar with Armello, developer League of Geeks has created an original board game that looks like furry heaven. Players control one of four anthropomorphic animals all vying to become king now that the king (a lion, of course) has gone mad and is dying due to something called Rot. The game has combat, exploration, strategy, and some very clever card play and is actually quite awesome.

Version 1.4 brings a slew of new to the game including combat system improvements and new cards, as well as fixing up some lingering issues and tweaking the balance of this and that. If you want to take a peek at the entire list of changes, check out the patch notes.

If memory serves, we shouldn't expect to see Armello on our tablets until 2017. Until then, you can play it on your PC/Mac.

- Armello for PC/Mac via Steam, $20

Hat tip: Esteban Vasquez

Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft Get Updates
We usually don't talk about app updates unless they're whoppers or bring some new content to the game. That said, Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft are two of the best board game ports you'll find on the App Store, so today we're making an exception.

Twilight Struggle was just released a couple weeks ago, and this is already the second update showing that Playdek is staying on top of things. It's a short patch list, but here goes:

Playdek wrote:
- fixed removing influence with Cuban Missile Crisis
- fixed available space race attempt indicator lights
- fixed action round display during end of turn
- adjusted AI handling of 3 or more scoring cards in hand

In other Twilight Struggle news, Playdek also released a Kickstarter update yesterday indicating the troubles they're having distributing iOS codes to backers. This isn't a Playdek issue, but instead revolves around the iron fist with which Apple controls the App Store. There just aren't any good methods of getting iOS codes to backers. As such, they are offering the following for backers who have not yet received their codes:

Playdek wrote:
We have a plan to address the unfortunate inconvenience and will cover the options below. These options relate to the $15 Tier and all Tiers $30 and up (except for the $25 Digital PC Tier and the $35 Digital Sony Tier):

Backers at the $15 Tier who have not yet received their iOS copy and have not already switched platforms may choose one of the following options:

-Select one of these platforms to replace iOS: Android, PC or Mac
-Request a refund of $15

Backers at the $30 and up Tiers who chose iOS as their platform, have not yet received their iOS copy and have not already switched platforms may choose one of the following options:

-Select one of these platforms to replace iOS: Android, PC or Mac
-Request a cash rebate of $15

Backers at the $15 Tier and above who purchased the Mobile Add-on and selected iOS as your add-on platform:

-Request a cash rebate of $5

You can find more information and instructions on how to do all this over at the Kickstarter page.

Let's move onto XenoShyft now. When it comes to board game ports, I can't think of another one that gets as many regular updates as XenoShyft. Cool Mini Or Not has been stellar in adding new content, addressing issues, and tweaking the UI. It's hard to imagine now, but when XenoShyft first launched last summer, it was nigh unplayable. Now, it has a permanent spot on my iPad's home screen.

Last night saw the latest update come XenoShyft's way. No additions or expansions in this one, but they did manage to do something cool, shrinking the download and footprint size of the app by optimizing the hell out of it.

Cool Mini or Not wrote:
-Installation and download sizes for the game should be much smaller now, thanks to some nifty optimizations
-Game now waits for players to be ready after a Fight step resolves
-Wrap-up phase will no longer be auto-skipped if you have any troops in lane(s)
-UI will no longer briefly show the "ERROR" dialog when quitting a finished game
-Grave Titan Tarantula ability and its ilk will now properly highlight the burned cards on clients
-Fixed an issue with Division cards ending up in the wrong place during Solo Play
-Fixed an issue with some Hive buffs being removed before they should
-Under the hood rules engine improvements

You can pick up Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft at the following:

- Twilight Struggle for iPad, $10
- Twilight Struggle for PC/Mac, $15
- XenoShyft for iOS Universal, $5
- XenoShyft for Android, $5
- XenoShyft for PC/Mac, $10

inkle Studios Discusses Sorcery! Part 4
According to the byline on their blog, inkle Studios released this new info about the upcoming Steve Jackson's Sorcery! finale back in early June. Somehow I missed it. I say somehow because there are few titles that I'm anticipating more than the digital version of Sorcery! Book 4: The Crown of Kings and I thought I had been staying on top of any new news coming from the inkle camp. As I say as least 26 times a day, I was wrong.

Many of you are probably aware of inkle from their globe trotting adventure, 80 Days, which is understandable. It's a fantastic title and one of the best pieces of interactive fiction ever created. That said, inkle stole my heart with their take on the Sorcery! gamebooks from the early 80's and I consider the existing three volumes to be their magnum opus. It's only going to get better when the final piece is put into place and we can bring an adventurer all the way from Analand to Mampang to complete their quest.

Last month's update delves into where they currently are with part 4 of the series. The writing is complete, but they're not ruling out adding or tweaking more as the beta wears on:

inkle wrote:
Writing on the game has now finished, again. That means we've done our first pass, fleshing out all the rooms, encounters, characters, secrets, jokes, puzzles, hidden endings. And we've also done our second pass, playing through everything, smoothing it, checking for logic and story consistency, and getting the pacing as slick as we can.

We're now embarking on the long process of beta-testing - gathering feedback from early players, and hunting down all the strange nooks and crannies of the story-flow. A lot of the details can and will still change at this point - good ideas are never thrown away, even close to release - but if we had to put down our pens tomorrow, we could, and the game would work.

Of course, writing the text is only one step. They still need to add audio and other visuals. For the first time, they'll be using 3D miniatures on the maps and are also busy creating an epilogue for those of us who bring our adventurer all the way from Analand.

This will also be the first time that they're releasing the title for all platforms simultaneously.

inkle wrote:
For the first time, we're planning to launch the game on the App Store, Amazon Store, Play Store, Steam, Humble and Green Man Gaming all on the same day. You can buy the game on any platform to continue your adventure - cloud saves work from one device to another. (Just remember to write them down somewhere!)

Unfortunately, they still aren't giving a definite release date other than "later this year". It's going to be a long wait.

If you haven't played any of the previous Sorcery! titles and are a fan of interactive fiction, you're missing out. I really cannot recommend them highly enough.

- Sorcery! Part 1 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 1 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 1 for Kindle, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for Kindle, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for Kindle, $5

- Sorcery! Parts 1 and 2 for PC/Mac, $10
- Sorcery! Part 3 for PC/Mac, $10
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Fri Jul 8, 2016 4:34 pm
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App News: Steam Looks For Beta Testers, Out There Gets Wordy, Star Realms Expands and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Steam: Rails to Riches Looking for Multiplayer Beta Testers
When Steam: Rails To Riches launched last autumn, it had pretty much everything we could hope for. Great graphics, good UI, and an AI that could hold its own. The only real downside of the endeavor was a lack of online multiplayer. Luckily, these dark times are coming to an end as we now know that Acram Digital is busy working on adding online multiplayer in an upcoming update. How busy? Well, busy enough that they just opened up beta signups if you want to help get Steam multiplayer off the ground.

The beta appears to be for both iOS and Android devices, so feel free to sign up regardless of what flavor touchscreen you have at home. The signup form can be found right here. As usual, we'll let you know when things advance beyond the beta stage.

- Steam: Rails to Riches for iOS Universal, $3
- Steam: Rails to Riches for Android, $3
- Steam: Rails to Riches for Kindle, $5

Star Realms Gets Heroes Expansion
After last month's release of Cthulhu Realms you'd be forgiven if you haven't picked up its sci-fi forebear, Star Realms in a bit. That said, you might want to give it another gander today. Yesterday, White Wizard Games updated the app with access to another expansion: Star Realms: Crisis – Heroes.

This new expansion offers up a new card type. I'll give you three guesses if you can figure out what new card type a Heroes expansion might offer up. That's right, heroes.

White Wizard Games wrote:
Heroes are cards that go directly into play when you acquire them, and they stay there until they are ready to activate an unused ally ability.

Seems simple enough. The expansion is available via a $2 IAP which also unlocks Chapter 7 of the single player campaign.

- Star Realms for iOS Universal, free
- Star Realms for Android, free
- Star Realms for PC/Mac, free

Out There Chronicles Brings Out There Universe to Interactive Fiction
If you haven't played the original Out There from 2014, you really owe it to yourself to give it a shot. It's a roguelike game that manages to bring a sense of utter loneliness and desolation to life better than just about any other video game I can think of. Oh, and it's harder than all get-out.

In the two years since its release, Mi-Clos Studio has revamped the game and added a ton of new content via the Omega Edition. Today they didn't expand the game, but have expanded the in-game universe by releasing Out There Chronicles.

Rather than putting you in a ship in the middle of nowhere, Chronicles instead begins millions of years before the incidents of the original Out There:

Mi-Clos wrote:
After a slumber of a million years, you wake up on America, a planet colonized by humans who fled planet Earth. In your quest to find your people, you’ll set off on a galactic adventure where you’ll meet a host of colorful characters and visit unimaginable locations.

Out There Chronicles is a unique adventure set several million years before Out There. Where do the Arks come from? What are the Cubes? Fans of the original game will find answers to some questions, but others will remain a mystery.
You’ll also meet various alien races and get the opportunity to learn more about their people… If you can master their language, of course.

In this universe that is so far from your own in distance and in time, a sharp mind and an instinct for survival are your only weapons. Friendships can be forged and ancient rivalries re-emerge through your encounters with almost-human and less-human races. Will you be able to distinguish friend from foe?
As in the original game, a single human is unable to face the forces of the universe alone. Achieve your goals by exercising diplomacy when needed, and seizing opportunities when they present themselves.

The book is available for iOS and Android and will cost you $3 on either.

- Out There Chronicles for iOS Universal, $3
- Out There Chronicles for Android, $3

Large Visible Machine Bringing Doomstar to Life
In the past, we've brought you news of Large Visible Machine via their port of the super fun WW2 card game, The Battle for Hill 218. They're also working on its sequel, The Battle for Sector 219, and are getting very near to releasing it for mobile (you can already snag it for PC/Mac via Steam).

Today, however, we bring you news of Doomstar. What the hell is Doomstar, I can hear you asking. Well, we don't know much at this point, but we do know that it's designed by Lewis Pulsipher of Britannia fame, so we're more than excited to see what it's all about.

The only thing we know at this point is that it uses a hidden unit mechanism and that it will ship with asynchronous online multiplayer on board. We also know that the game is currently in beta and you can buy it now for beta access. If you spend at least $5 on the beta you'll also get a Steam Key for the aforementioned Battle for Sector 219. Everybody wins.

We'll let you know more as Doomstar gets closer to release as well as when Battle for Sector 219 lands on our touchscreens.

Battlefleet Gothic: Leviathan Lands on iOS
Considering that there are approximately four million Warhammer titles on the App Store, you'd be forgiven for not noticing another one making its way to mobile. Battlefleet Gothic: Leviathan, however, is a direct port of a tabletop miniatures title, so it might be worth a bit more worthy of our attention.

Considering that my Warhammer knowledge would fit into a thimble, I'm thinking it's blurb time:

Grand Cauldron wrote:
Dive into Battlefleet Gothic with the epic void battles of the Shield of Baal campaign, from Warhammer 40,000. Control the devastating fleets of the Imperial Navy and the brutal hard-hitting Space Marines to repulse the dreadful and voracious Tyranids! Use strategy to manage your warships through the Cryptus system, protect the galaxy, improve your gigantic fleets and annihilate the invader before it's too late.

And if you think you’re up for more of a challenge, compete against other players around the world!

Battlefleet Gothic: Leviathan is the digital version of the famous tabletop miniatures game, Battlefleet Gothic, set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. This turn based strategy game, themed on spaceships battles, takes place during the 40k Shield of Baal campaign.

• Play the faithful version of the turn based strategy game Battlefleet Gothic from Games Workshop
• Enact immense space battles in the grim darkness of the 41st millenium
• Take command of formidable spaceships from the Imperial Navy, the Space Marines Blood Angels or the Tyranids
• Manage your mighty fleets in the campaign mode to defend the human Imperium
• Fight the merciless Tyranids and repel the xenos threat out of the system
• Progress with your officer and fleet by earning new skills and ships
• Compete against players from around the world in multiplayer mode
• Play local multiplayer in the Hot seat mode
• New content and playable races coming soon

I don't know what much of that means, but it still sounds cool enough that I might just give it a go. Leviathan is available for iOS Universal and there's no mention of an Android version in any of their press materials. Doesn't mean it's not happening, but at this point it looks like it's iOS only.

- Battlefleet Gothic: Leviathan for iOS Universal, $6

Online Game Age of Rivals Now in Open Beta
I was first told about Age of Rivals by one of it's designers, Vijay Myneni. He pitched it as Through the Ages meets 7 Wonders, and it's playable in 15 minutes. I answered by asking him to pinch me so I could be sure I wasn't dreaming. He hasn't returned any of my calls since then.

Anyway, Age of Rivals is playable right now in your browser and it promises everything I mentioned above. It's currently in open beta, so anyone can head over and start a game. It offers both 2-player online multiplayer as well as solo play vs. an AI.

I haven't had a chance to give it a go myself (you might have noticed that I've been absent for a bit), but it's free to try so it wouldn't hurt to head over and give it a go.
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Thu Jul 7, 2016 7:23 pm
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App News: Tokaido Hands On Video, Galaxy of Trian Released, Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest Updated, and more

Brad Cummings
United States
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Tokaido at the BGG Booth
While at Origins, W. Eric Martin was kind enough to get us a quick demo of the Tokaido app. You can check out the video here:

Galaxy of Trian Released, Fix on the Way
As we announced two weeks ago, Galaxy of Trian has been released on iOS. They’ve reached out to let us know that there is a bug in multiplayer, but they are working on a fix now.

I haven’t had a chance to check it out, but we will have a review up once we do.

Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest Launches Oath of the Gatewatch
Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest was one of our surprises from last year. It is a fun puzzle game that uses the Magic IP in a great way. It has now been updated with a new card set called Oath of the Gatewatch. On top of that, they’ve introduced a brand new PVE mode where you can play to earn rewards each week. It is a little gem that seems to keep getting better.

You can get Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest on iOS and Android.

Out There Chronicles Coming July 7th
Mi Clos is at it again with further adventures in the world of Out There. If you didn’t originally play Out There, you can think of it as the thinking man’s FTL.

Over There Chronicles is a graphic novel based on the award-winning game series. It looks like it will be released this Thursday. This is definitely one to keep an eye on. Check out the trailer below:

Pokemon Go Out-ish
Ok, so this is not a board game, but if this doesn’t at least make you curious as a mobile device fan, then I can’t help you. Niantic, the team behind Ingress, has released Pokemon Go. This augmented reality game has capturing Pokemon from the world around you.

The game is out now in the US on Android, and in AU and NZ on iOS. Hopefully we’ll see it in the US soon!

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Wed Jul 6, 2016 4:28 am
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App News: Twilight Struggle Gets Update and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Twilight Struggle Updated and More
Considering that the release of Twilight Struggle is probably the biggest thing to happen around here since a certain someone started tracking days without a digital 7 Wonders, it's no surprise that we're going to talk about it. A lot.

Let's get the big news out of the way: an update landed for TS yesterday. This update deals with some major bugs that slipped though, mainly a bug that caused the tutorial to lock up and another bug that caused the AI to lose by holding scoring cards. While I'm glad to see the bugs get fixed, Playdek just took away my only chance of victory against the AI. Did I mention that I suck?

Here's a full list of fixes:

Playdek wrote:
- fixed AI player failing to play scoring cards before end of turn
- fixed minor bug with DEFCON warning determination
- fixed using Undo button during tutorial game
- fixed influence marker animation when Nasser is played
- fixed 90 minute timer
- fixed win/loss display in online profile
- added Chinese flag as an avatar

While Playdek has been busy squashing bugs, GMT Games has been busy handling other issues with the launch. On Friday they posted an update detailing how the Kickstarter pledges were being handed out. They also announced that, while currently iPad only, TS will be making its way to iPhones as well. The UI will need some modifications to make that work, however, and they also stated that their next priority is getting the game out there for Android and Linux.

GMT Games wrote:
We’d like to clarify a few more details on the roll out. As you now know, the current release is for iPad only but we are happy to announce that it will be coming to iPhone as well! For the iPhone release, Playdek will need to do an iPhone version that has some UI modifications unique for iPhone. The final release will still be universal for iPad and iPhone so no additional purchase will be necessary. We will update you later as to the timing of this release.

Now that the iOS version has been released, Playdek’s next platform priority will be bringing the game to Android and Linux. For Android, both tablets and phones will be supported. This work is under way and we hope to have a release timing update in the next few weeks. We will also then follow with instructions on how to get your copy on those platforms.

Yesterday, GMT hit the airwaves again with another update. This time detailing the issue of TS not being supported on non-retina devices:

GMT Games wrote:
iPad2 and iPad Mini: As stated in Friday’s update due to platform limitations, Playdek is not officially supporting Second Generation iPads and devices without Retina display. That being said, they have run and tested the game on iPad2s and apart from a few minor stability issues, the game appears to run okay. If you are operating on either of these platforms and receive your code, go ahead and unlock it on your device. Playdek is actively working on these stability issues.

They also mention that the iPhone version might be closer than previously thought:

GMT Games wrote:
iPhone Release: Playdek assures us they are actively working to release the iPhone version. Unfortunately, they cannot provide a specific release date, however they do not anticipate it will be too much longer. We should have a more solid update for you in the upcoming weeks.

We'll be posting about TS whenever new news pops up, so expect more TS goodness over the coming weeks and months.

- Twilight Struggle for iPad, $8
- Twilight Struggle for PC/Mac, $9
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Tue Jun 28, 2016 4:05 pm
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App News: All Creatures Big & Small on the Way, Baseball Highlights 2045 Gets AI, Galaxy of Trian Next Week and more...

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
App News

Agricola: All Creatures Big & Small Coming to Mobile
If you spot a game designed by Uwe Rosenberg that's for 2-players only, there's a pretty good chance it's coming to mobile via the fine folks at DIGIDICED. They've already released both Le Havre: The Inland Port and Patchwork The Game and today announced that they're also bringing Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small to both iOS and Android devices.

I don't get to play 2-player games very often (and when I do, it's the aforementioned Twilight Struggle), so I haven't played A:ACB&S. Let's take a look at what DIGIDICED has to say:

In Agricola: All Creatures Big & Small, each player has three workers that are sent to a nearby village market to acquire resources/livestock. Each of the 16 locations in the market serve a unique purpose -- raising livestock, producing resources, or allowing the player to purchase structures. Players take turns placing their workers throughout the market, with each location only capable of supporting one worker per round.

Before players can start breeding animals, they will first need to make sure pastures are fenced. (No one wants their animals to escape!) Once fenced, each pasture can support two animals; special structures (such as a trough or stalls) can be purchased from the village market to increase the amount of animals each pasture can hold. Players can also buy additional plots of land to expand their ranch. At breeding time, all that’s left is to place two animals of the same species in the same pasture -- and they’ll take care of the rest

Like both Patchwork and Le Havre: The Inland Port, All Creatures Big & Small will have cross-platform online multiplayer. If that's not your thing they'll also have an AI for solo play.

The only date we have for this one is "Summer", so I guess it could happen at any time. When it does, we'll let you know. For now, check out their previous outings:

- Le Havre: The Inland Port for iOS Universal, $5
- Le Havre: The Inland Port for Android, $5
- Patchwork The Game for iOS Universal, $3
- Patchwork The Game for Android, $3

Baseball Highlights: 2045 Gets AI and Comes to iPhone
2016 has been a pretty great year so far for digital board games with one of the standouts being Peter Kossit's port of Mike Fitzgerald's latest Baseball Highlights: 2045. Upon release it was a fairly barebones port with only the solitaire variant available. Yesterday, however, the app was updated (the Android version was updated last week) to include both an AI and to make the app Universal so it now works on both your iPad and iPhone.

The solo play vs. AI mode includes a three game season followed by a best of seven World Series. Whichever team wins more games in the season will be granted home field advantage for the Series. Each team will begin with one of the standard teams and build it one free agent at a time between games.

Baseball Highlights: 2045 is available for both Android and iOS Universal for $6.

- Baseball Highlights: 2045 for iOS Universal, $6
- Baseball Highlights: 2045 for Android, $6

Galaxy of Trian Making Way to iOS Next Week
I know absolutely nothing about the board game Galaxy of Trian other than it's all spacey and who doesn't like that? It was created via a Kickstarter campaign back in 2014 and a digital version has been talked about for a bit. Apparently the developer is done talking because today they announced that it's going live next week on June 30.

Galaxy of Trian will include both solo play vs. AI and multiplayer of both the hotseat and online variety. Other than that, we know it will be $6 when it hits the App Store. No mention of an Android version in the press release we received today, but we'll try and track down if it's coming to both platforms or only Apple.

Super Tribes Gets a New Tribe and a New Name
Trigger Warning: The following post talks about something other than a board game.

One of my favorite games of 2016 thus far is a little 4X title called Super Tribes. Don't get excited thinking it's a Civilization V clone. Super Tribes is a super boiled-down 4X game that has just enough complexity to offer some awesome decisions and still finish a full game in about 15 minutes. Yesterday the app was updated with a new tribe, the Vengir, as well as major UI improvements and more. The name of the app changed as well, instead of Super Tribes it's now called The Battle for Polytopia.

Super Tribes (some habits die hard) is a 4X game in which you'll begin with a city and have 1-3 other tribes somewhere in the world. Your goal is to unlock new technologies on the tech tree (web?), found new cities, build up your cities, and conquer your opponents. It's pretty much everything you'd want in a 4X game, but you're limited to 30 turns. The goal is to get a high score and end up on the leaderboards. Even if you can't do that, the game still gives a great 4x experience in a really short timeframe and it's perfect for mobile. Since it's launch they've added another victory condition which has no time limit, but forces you to destroy all the other tribes on the map. I prefer the former.

The game is completely free to download and is completely playable without dropping a dime. If you want to send a few bucks the dev's way, however, you can purchase new tribes for $1 each. Each new tribe has a different starting technology and feels different than the rest. The new tribe, the Vengir, has smithing researched off the bat and begins the game with a swordsman.

Super Tribes was launched back in January and has already received several major updates with nothing indicating that new updates are going to halt any time soon.

- The Battle for Polytopia for iOS Universal, free

Days of Wonder, Handelabra, and Nomad Games Put Apps on Sale
It's the Steam Summer Sale which currently means you can nab a ton of great PC/Mac games for super cheap. This year the savings are extending to the App Store as well for many much-loved board game ports. We already mentioned that the PC/Mac version of Twilight Struggle is currently on sale, but we have a few others that you might be interested in.

First up is Nomad Games Ltd (II). We mentioned a new expansion for their latest, Talisman: The Horus Heresy earlier in the week. Now it, and the original Talisman are on sale.

- Talisman: Digital Edition for iOS Universal, now only $3
- Talisman: Digital Edition for Android, now only $2.50
- Talisman: Digital Edition for Kindle, now only $3
- Talisman: Digital Edition for PC/Mac, now only $4.50

- Talisman: Horus Heresy for iOS Universal, now only $3
- Talisman: Horus Heresy for Android, now only $2.50
- Talisman: Horus Heresy for PC/Mac, now only $10

Next up are the fine folks at Handelabra Games. The mobile version of Sentinels of the Multiverse isn't going on sale at all, but the PC/Mac version on Steam is:

Handelabra wrote:
Sentinels of the Multiverse: 70% off ($2.99)
5-Pack: 65% off ($2.79 per copy)
Full Expansions: 10% off ($4.49)
Mini-Packs: 10% off ($1.79)
Soundtracks: 50% off ($2.49)
Season Pass 1: 10% off current price, 30% off full price ($17.99)

Of course, if you want it on your tablet (and you should) you can still pick it up for full price:

- Sentinels of the Multiverse for iPad, $10
- Sentinels of the Multiverse for Android, $10
- Sentinels of the Multiverse for Kindle, $10

That leaves us with our last entrant, Days of Wonder. Both the Steam and mobile versions of their games are on sale and, if you are on Steam, you can even get the expansions for 50% off (no such luck on mobile).

- Splendor for iOS Universal, now only $2
- Splendor for Android, now only $2
- Splendor for Kindle, $7
- Splendor for PC/Mac, $3

- Small World 2 for iPad, now only $2
- Small World 2 for Android, $2
- Small World 2 for Kindle, $7
- Small World 2 for PC/Mac, $3

- Ticket to Ride for iOS Universal, now only $2
- Ticket to Ride for Android, $2
- Ticket to Ride for Kindle, $7
- Ticket to Ride for PC/Mac, $3
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Fri Jun 24, 2016 1:52 pm
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App Release: Twilight Struggle

David Neumann
United States
Whitefish Bay
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In life you have to do a lot of things you don't f*cking want to do. Many times, that's what the f*ck life is... one vile f*cking task after another.
Twilight Struggle

The Stats:

Compatibility: iPad
Current Price: $8
Developer/Publisher:Playdek/GMT Games
Version: 1.0.3
Size: 280 MB
Multiplayer: Yes, online both asynchronous or real-time
AI: Yes
iTunes Link: Twilight Struggle
BGG Link: Twilight Struggle
VGG Link: Twilight Struggle

Well, here's something awesome. In the dark of night, Playdek has released what might be the most anticipated board game port of the last few years, Twilight Struggle. It's for iPad only and the Android version doesn't appear to be available yet, but woohoo!

Let's blurb it up:

Playdek wrote:
Twilight Struggle puts the player at the center of the Cold War, the political and economic struggle between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R that spanned 5 decades from the 1950's to the 1990's. Designed by award winning creators Ananda Gupta and Jason Matthews, players control one of the two modern superpowers, as they work to spread their dominance throughout the world via political influence and coup attempts. But if either side triggers nuclear war, it's game over!

The event cards in the game are based on actual historical events from the Cold War era. Through the playing of these events, players exert their superpower's influence as they attempt to gain allies and regional control of the globe. From the early days of De-Stalinization, to the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Vietnam War and beyond, players are immersed in the actual events of the struggle between these two nations to be the dominant superpower in the world!

Hone your skill and strategy as a world leader against an A.I. opponent, and then take your game global with matches against other players via asynchronous online game play.

•A.I. Opponent
•In-game Tutorial
•Pass-and-Play Multiplayer
•Asynchronous or Real-time Online Play
•Invite Playdek Friends
•Online Profile and Stats
•Customized Online Game Clock
•Player Rating System

If you were wondering if your iPad can handle TS, check this out:

Playdek wrote:
AN iPad WITH RETINA DISPLAY (iPad mini with Retina Display, iPad 3 or newer) IS REQUIRED FOR USE. Generation 1 iPad, iPad 2, and the original iPad mini (without Retina Display) are not supported.

If you're a Kickstarter backer and wondering where your copy might be, Playdek posted this update on the Kickstarter site early this morning:

GMT Games wrote:
Please note that due to the logistics of obtaining multiple copies from Apple, Playdek will need additional time to work through getting these copies to you and will do so as quickly as possible.

Playdek will be fulfilling Backer copies in the following order: US Backers who selected iOS only, followed by international Backers who also selected iOS only. They will then go through and distribute copies to PC and Mac Backers who ordered an additional iOS version.

Once processed, you will receive an e-mail from either Apple or Playdek, with directions on how to obtain your copy. Backers will start receiving these e-mails from today onward, as they are rolled out.

Please understand that we are as excited to see the copies get distributed to you as you are to receive them. It has been a pleasure bringing this game to full digital release and your support has been invaluable.

If you have any questions regarding the iOS release, please contact Playdek at As the roll out continues, we will keep everyone updated via additional KickStarter updates.

If you're more of a PC/Mac gamer, Twilight Struggle has been available on that platform since April. It's on sale right now as well, so you can pick it up there for only $9.

- Twilight Struggle for iPad, $8
- Twilight Struggle for PC/Mac on Steam, $9
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Fri Jun 24, 2016 1:44 pm
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