Category: State of the Saurus


Posted on /by Nathan McNair/in Dinosaur Island, King's Life, News, Pandasaurus Games, Red Scare, State of the Saurus, Wasteland Express Delivery Service/ 1

State of the Saurus – July 18, 2017

About a year ago this was a semi-irregular blog post that we would post on our website to let you know what we are doing, what we have going on and what you have to look forward to.  Then, like lots of good ideas it sort of fell by the wayside because the business of making board games got in the way.

This is the official relaunch of State of the Saurus.  It will likely morph into a multi-media thing over the next few weeks in the way of a video blog and may include things like interviews with our friends in the industry, designers we work with, etc.

So, what’s going on in Pandaland?  A lot actually, and we’ll start with a warning, there are going to be lots of instances of “Project I can’t talk about” in this week’s post.

A friend appears

Last Friday JR Honeycutt made the 3.5 hour drive down from Ft. Worth Texas to come hang with us.  Well, hand with us and give us the first look at one of our 2018 game releases.  We’ve heard a lot of good buzz about playtests from other publishers and game designers but had not actually seen this secret project ourselves.

Also, he brought Kolaches from Czech Stop in West, Texas (the city, not the direction).  If you have not had these, I am sorry.  It’s a rite of passage of the drive from Austin/San Antonio to the DFW metroplex.  Halfway between both cities and just North of Waco.  You can wait in-line for the confections for upwards of 30 minutes and it’s super worth it.

On Friday night Molly and I played the game ourselves while JR took notes.   Everything about this was far more amazing than I can imagine.  You are all in for a hell of a treat come next Summer.  It’s one of the most amazing experiences I’ve had playtesting one of our games.  JR and his [REDACTED] co-designer have done a hell of a job [REDACTED ENTIRE SENTENCE].

Saturday we invited some friends and family over to play through the game a few times while we took notes.  A couple of good notes that we took away and will make a few slight tweaks to the reward system for [REDACTED].  Overall, that playtest went really well.  Gamers and non-gamers alike were at the table and everyone could follow along and have fun.  We’ll show the game to [redacted] at GenCon and probably have to travel to [redacted] for final approval of everything.

Saturday night we headed up to the Emerald Tavern (a game café in North Austin) and took a look at Restoration Games’ Downforce along with Hunter from Steve Jackson Games and Brent from Studio Woe (Gruff).  The game is really something special.  Though, I think I commented that they took the best game about the best Southern sport and turned it into some kind of fancy New England/European open wheel racing.  Something lots of people don’t know about me is that I was a young red-neck child which included traveling to Talladega, Darlington and Bristol for Nascar races.  Which means, I owned and played a ton of Downforce in a previous iteration when it was called Daytona 500.  The game is very true to the feeling of that game, but has streamlined the bidding process in a way that works *really* well.  This is a game you should all be playing.

Wasteland Express Delivery Service

Wasteland Express Delivery Service finally hit our warehouse and is now starting it’s journey to customers who pre-ordered the game with us on our website.  It will be released to FLGS and OLGS day and date with GenCon, and boy do we have some fun marketing and events coming up for that.

We will communicate more later, but we will have IN STORE demos of the game the week of GenCon.  So, for all you GenCant’ers out there we’ll have something fun for you to do the week of Wasteland release.

Wasteland express is completely 100% sold-out at the publisher level, and it looks like more than a few stores are also sold out.  So, if you want a copy of the game at release you have a few options 1) Call your FLGS and make sure they have a copy with your name on it.  2) Find us at GenCon.  We have copies for sale there, but suspect we will sell out during the show.  So, come to our booth early and often.

We are going to have a re-print of WEDS hitting in October of 2017 with another smaller shipment in November of 2017.  So, if you missed out on the first printing you will be able to get it this holiday season.  We stepped out on a bit of a ledge here with this reprint (it’s larger than the first printing), so it would mean the absolute world to us if you let your FLGS and OLGS know how much you want WEDS.  We’re doing a lot of marketing on our end, but we can only do so much without the help of our fans.

Also, get ready because in early August we will have a content creation contest for Wasteland Express.  We will be putting up on dropbox *all* of our PSD file templates for the Event deck, Raider Deck, Ally Deck, 3 factiond decks and priority-first-class-contract decks.  We may even put up files for the creation of new Truckers.  This will allow the Wasteland Express community to create original content for the game that looks as good as the existing in-game assets.  We will be selecting winners to get a free copy of Wasteland Express for their work, so get to brain storming what you would like to see in the world of Wasteland Express.

Also, if you haven’t been keeping up, some of the early WEDS reviews are in.  Geek and Sundry, Ars Technica, Bleeding Cool and Man Vs Meeple have all fallen in love with Wasteland Express.  Charlie and Raf of G&S and Ars have both named it to their top 5 games of the year to this point.  It’s always great seeing the early reaction to a product be as good as you thought it would be.  After years of blood, sweat and tears going into this game, it’s really validating.

Other things

Lots of other stuff this week.

  • We got final-final confirmation that Red Scare and King’s Life will make GenCon and hit retail in September after that.
  • We are about to get proofs of Dino Island plastic bits, which is really really exciting and once we confirm everything looks good we’ll have a better idea on pinning down when the game will ship.
  • We got our final 2017 game off to the printers. I can’t talk about it till GenCon, but oh man this is something really cool and very very unique.  Should have a mass-produced copy at GenCon as well to show off on camera.

I think that is it for this week’s State of the Saurus!  Thanks for checking it out, and be sure to come back next week where I’ll spend some time talking about games that we’ve been playing (I could have spent a lot more space here about a great Scythe playthrough, Great Western Trail or Flipships).

Till next week,

  • Nathan

 

Posted on /by Molly Wardlaw/in Machi Koro, Reviews, State of the Saurus, Tammany Hall/ 1

BBQ, White Pants and Machi Update

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This State of the Saurus will focus mainly on Bar-B-Que. Because…Labor Day. Also, the millions and millions of white pants that will no longer be worn—except in Miami where the dress code calls for only white pants, all the time, all year long.

All right, let’s begin… JUST KIDDING. We know y’all want to know about the status of one Machi Koro. So, let’s get on it:

Good news! The shiny, new, bootiful print run is ON A BOAT. (Happy dance!) And because we love you so much, we’ve got some picks of the final print run to share with you below:

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Machi was delayed due to some production issues. They were not major, but we here at Pandasaurus pride ourselves on quality. And anything below the very best is just not good enough. We hated this being delayed. We hated even more how many of y’all were pretty darn bummed because of the delay, and to you we want to say THANK YOU! Thanks for your patience, for your loyalty as a Panda S customer, and for your boundless love of this tiny little game. You guys have really gotten the word out, given the world Machi fever, and seriously rock.

In other Machi news, Geek Dad (the famed blog previously of Wired fame) wrote a full, fantastic review of our little game in which he implores readers to “pay a visit to lovely Machi Koro” (it was mentioned in his Best of Gen Con, but an actual review is now here). Some choice gems from Jonathan Liu:

~”What I love about Machi Koro is that it’s so simple to learn, and even though there’s a lot of luck involved, much of the gameplay is about deciding how to take advantage of the odds.”

~”Since Machi Koro was one of the few games I picked up during Gen Con, I got a head start learning it and playing it, and my kids have really enjoyed playing it with me… It’s all about turning your town into a powerful economic engine.”

~”You’ll have to wait a couple weeks before it’s available in the US, but keep an eye out for Machi Koro. It may be a small town, but it’s definitely worth a visit.”

But that’s enough of that for now, because we’ve got some other tricks up our sleeves. On the same boat is a reprint of something near and dear to our heart, the one and only game of political backstabbing and corruption and our first game ever, TAMMANY HALL! It’ll be here soon, the box will look a little different, but it’s the same great game y’all love. Be sure to ask your FLGS about it.

Also hitting the same time is Kill Shakespeare. It’s the Battle of the Bard, IDW’s first foray into games based on their hit comic book series by the same name. Kill Shakespeare was designed by Thomas and Wolfe, the gents behind Yedo, so we’ve got a feeling you hardcore gamers out there are gunna like this one.

PANDA S SEAL OF APPROVAL TIME: We’d also like to report on the game we played at NYEEK, our local game night, this week. This was one of N’s prized scores from Gen Con and we can’t do enough cheerleading (with handstands!) for Sheriff of Nottingham. The game is duplicitous in all the right ways. If you’re in the mood for one heck of a bluffing game (we’re talking layer upon layer upon layer of deceit) nab this one IMMEDITATELY. We were in stitches.

Until next time friends, happy gaming and don’t let anyone ANY ONE give you flack for wearing that Spiderman onesie to bed… Like someone I know…

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Posted on /by Molly Wardlaw/in Machi Koro, Machi Koro Harbor Expansion, Reviews, State of the Saurus

Life After Gen Con

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It’s been a crazy post-Gen Con week here at Pandasaurus HQ, and I must say that while the coffee in our lives may have indeed improved vastly, we are missing the hell out of all of y’all. There’s no better feeling than that of being around the good, like-minded peeps that are proud to call themselves board game geeks!

Speaking of which, Forbes just reported that there were more than 56,000 of you lovelies there; double the number of Gen Con attendees just five years ago. That’s crazytime, y’all! Table top gaming is growing, big time. And nothing could be better for the world than more Agricola and Sherriff of Nottingham and less Monopoly and Sorry. Sorry, Sorry.

I should also note that in addition to all of you, N also misses Pizza Hut (they don’t have them in NYC). Sad, I know. We’re surrounded by delicious, big-slice pizza, yet not a drop of the Hut for him to drink…

But back to the State of the ‘Saurus! We’ve got some stuffs to say!

First off, we know y’all are clamoring for a little piece of Machi Koro, and we hear ya loud and clear—we want nothing more than to get it into your paws! Sadly, there have been some completely unforeseen production delays. We wanted to make 100 percent sure that the final copies were completely up to our high production standards. Nothing but the best. BUT it will be out in a few weeks. So soon! And in the meantime some additional cool Machi-things happened this week, like:

-The beloved blog Geek Dad calling it out as one of the few games he actually got the chance to play at Gen Con. Jonathan Liu dubbed it “a delightful surprise” and revealed an upcoming review. We agree. But it’s not a surprise for us. Not sure where that leaves us… NEXT!

-The upstanding Canadians behind Watch It Played posted not one, but two Machi vids. Here’s the How to Play vid—which is super awesome if you’re wanting to learn. Rodney provides the best step-by-step guide we’ve come across heretofore.

Next up is their play through. Again, super helpful if you’re learning. Also, that family is insanely cute—good luck in Japan, Andrea! And because they’re so stinking cute, we’ll just maybe forgive them for calling Mr. Pandasaurus a “Pegasaurus.”

And once you’re done checking out the base game with that vid, check N and I on BGG’s Gen Con 2014 coverage where we show off the shiny, new Machi Koro Harbor Expansion!! Warning: I am shy and am cursed with the sad affliction known as RBF—DON’T JUDGE ME!

Check it out here, action (or in my case, inaction) starts at 2:00.

For videos where both people actually talk on camera, check out this BGG clip of the Great Kevin Wilson speaking with N about his upcoming X-Files game. Best moment: Beth Heile geeking out about X-Files parties in college. Check it out here, action starts at 5:30.

And that’s it for this week’s installment of the State of the ‘Saurus. Tonight there will be lots of beer and Sheriff of Nottingham at our local game night. The gods are good.

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*Photo courtesy of Geek Dad