If GK is going to start a new series for the holidays, so am I. Objection, Relevance is going to be a series for us to talk about things not entirely relevant to 40k, but something we think our readers might be interested in. Every site needs a category for its authors random rantings, this might as well be ours! So in today’s episode of Objection, Relevance, I wanted to give everyone a look at one of the other games out there that has found its way not only into the list of games I’m watching, but also into my wallet thanks to a very successful kickstarter campaign – Kingdom Death: Monster
Why talk about games that aren’t 40k on this 40k blog? Well, simply put, there are a lot of good games out there. Dust. Malifaux. Infinity. Warmachine. The list goes on. I’m not here to debate which is the better system. Like 40k, they all have their strengths and weaknesses. Any particular strength or weakness aside, I think most of us don’t relish the prospect of venturing into a new system because this is an expensive hobby! Whether you’re a 40k player or a warmachins player or a flames of war player, or whatever the case may be, you’ve probably made a significant investment of time and money in the game(s) you play. The cost of entry into another system is one big reason people don’t venture out into other games, and that’s an entirely justifiable response. And we haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of the vast array of tabletop games that aren’t listbuilding wargames. But the sometimes high cost of entry (even stand-alone tabletop games often ain’t cheap) doesn’t mean other games aren’t worth looking into. It doesn’t mean they can’t be appreciated for what they are. All of them are created by people like us. Gamers. People that love this hobby. People that love tabletop gaming.
The first one I wanted to mention was Kingdom Death: Monster, which as a kickstarter campaign going (find it here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/poots/kingdom-death-monster?ref=live), and has amassed pledges of over $700k, which is incredibly impressive considering its original goal was $35k. The game has gathered a huge following thanks in large part to the tireless efforts of its creator, a dauntless gamer-turned-gamemaker who’s devoted tremendous amounts of his life and personal resources to getting this project off the ground.
What Is It?
For those of you like GK who haven’t caught on to the kickstarter phenomenon yet, or for those of you who already love kickstarter and just missed this one, Kingdom Death: Monster is a cooperative board game for 1-6 players. You play as a survivor in a world where humans are the bottom of the food chain, trying desperately not to be wiped out. You go on hunts, level up your settlement, craft gear, and try to make it to the games final monster. The players get to make the major decisions for their settlement, and gear their characters as the game goes on. Each fight is random; the monsters have a random AI deck, and the survivors move themselves and make D10 rolls to determine success/failure. After each successful fight, you gather materials from your slain foe to make into weapons or innovations for your settlement.
Why Do I Like It?
Cooperative tabletop gaming with a meta-game aspect? Hell yes. I love board games, but competitive games carry their own curse. While it can be fun to stomp your buddies into the ground in a competitive game, sometimes you want to work WITH your friends. A good strategy game goes a long way, and early impressions make this look like a HARD game that will take several gaming sessions. Then there is a high level of re playability. Too often games are too easy, or too short; not worth the price of entry. Many games designed for “everyone” are easily devoured by competitive gamers, their mechanics broken down and min/maxed, and the game dominated in a single sitting. I have high hopes that this game won’t be so easy to chew up and spit out.
And the game is set in a wonderfully crafted, dark and horrific fictional universe. The creator describes it as, “Nightmare Boutique”, and the game is definitely mature. People will die horribly. It will be difficult to survive. Fantastic. The creator obviously cares a lot about his game, and he is a one man show. He’s not EA, he is not GW, he is just trying to get his vision out and hopefully we’ll reap the benefits of his labor of love with an awesome game.
How Does It Look?
Fantastic. Go to the Kingdom Death page and check out some of those minis (avoid the Wet Nurse at first…trust me). They are incredibly detailed. In fact, most of the minis on the site have nothing to do with the game (though some have been added as stretch goals), but these minis helped fund the creator to the point where he could start this Kickstarter. Some are horrible monsters, some are over-sexualized pinups. That is a great combo, if you ask me.
Either way, these are some of the coolest minis I have seen, and a definite step up from some of the quality I have seen.
My biggest fear is that I am nowhere near good enough a painter to do the models justice!
How Does It Play?
This will have to wait until GK and I can get our grubby mitts on the game. The KS page has a gameplay video, and there is supposed to be another one soon, but with a year till release, right now we can just hope.