Staff Picks | Autumn Changes
"Without change, something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken." -Frank Herbert
With the approach of fall, change is in the air. Birds are taking flight, spreading their Wings and beginning their autumn migration. It’s time to put aside fears of Danger and Dive deep into Unknown Waters. Look around and see what has been Obscured from you. Roll the Dice and Forge ahead into a time of change.
And while you're at it, change up your game library with these Staff Picks!
One day, we noticed one of our new preorders had hundreds of people signing up to get notified of when it came into stock. Why were people suddenly interested in a game about birdwatching? A New York Times article was the culprit, but Wingspan definitely deserved the hype it garnered. Wingspan is Elizabeth Hargrave’s first game but the detail and accuracy she put into it caught people’s attention - and, at the end of the day, it’s just a great game.
Now an award winning game, Wingspan is a medium-heavy strategic engine building game all about ornithology. If you’re looking for a game that is more challenging than your go-to games but not too long or hefty, Wingspan is a great choice.
Danger The Game
A twist on party games like Superfight and Pitch Deck, Danger the Game pits your friends against each other to talk your way out of dangerous situations. Each round, you’ll face a Danger card, positing sketchy situations like shark infested waters or identity theft scams. Use Tools and Abilities to explain how you would escape unscathed, but your friends may throw a Plot Twist your way to ruin your plan! Danger the Game is easy to learn and encourages you to get creative with your storytelling, asking you to think on your feet and quickly change direction!
Dive deep into a push-your-luck bidding game where you bet on your depth perception! Stack transparent cards and secretly bid on how many sharks you see at each level. Bid higher on layers where you think you see other sea creatures to score extra points, but guess incorrectly and you will be forced to come up for air! Dive is a visual perception game (think Where’s Waldo) but the transparent, layered cards make it infinitely replayable.
In Uk’otoa, an enormous sea monster crashes through your ship, attacking your sailors - save them, but let your friends’ crews perish! You’ll be tasked with protecting two factions that you share with the players to your left and right. Wipe out all other factions by playing Uk’otoa attack cards and movement cards that let you push your enemies, run away, and swap places with the others onboard. Uk’otoa is semi-cooperative, incidentally teaming you up with other players but at the end of the day, it’s every person for themselves! Simple, streamlined strategy with a gorgeous game design - that’s Uk’otoa.
The Library is dangerous after night… will you escape? In Obscurio, you and your friends are wizards trying to get out of a library. One player acts as the Grimoire, a silent helper trying to guide the others through the library with images and visual clues. The others are trying to escape… except for the Traitor. The Traitor undermines the cohesion of the other wizards, maliciously misinterpreting the riddles and clues from the Grimoire. Obscurio is an interesting, asymmetric take on cooperative gameplay. If you mashed up Betrayal at House on the Hill and Mysterium, you’d get something close to Obscurio.
A deckbuilding game that allows you to upgrade your dice, Dice Forge is a unique strategy game with dice mechanics you can’t find anywhere else. You and your friends take on the roles of heroes in Ancient Greek, seeking favor from the gods and trying to rack up treasure. Bribing the gods gives you the opportunity to upgrade your dice! With loaded dice in hand, travel from sky island to sky island, fighting monsters, performing heroic feats, and collecting points. After ten rounds, whoever has the most points wins! In Dice Forge, you have the opportunity to change your luck!
Wingspan - an award-winning engine-building strategy game about ornithology
Danger the Game - a party game where you spin elaborate tales to get out of danger
Dive - a light push your luck game of visual perception
Uk’otoa - a semi-cooperative game of surviving the open seas
Obscurio - a cooperative game where one player gives silent hints and the other betrays their group
Dice Forge - a deckbuilder where you upgrade your dice to alter your luck