The region’s game design community isn’t all about video games — there’s actually a good number of tabletop and board game designers too. Fifteen of them are getting together this Saturday, April 29 at the Powelton Village location of Redcap’s Corner to celebrate International Tabletop Day.
The day, which was started in 2013 from entertainment website Geek & Sundry and its Will Wheaton-produced video series “TableTop,” is a time for people all around the world to sit down and play your favorite tabletop or board game.
While you could have another unfinished go at Monopoly with your friends and family, we encourage you to be adventurous and learn how to play a new game. People like Nicole Kline, who designs games with her husband Anthony Amato in their company Cardboard Fortress Games, will be one of the 15 local game designers at Redcap’s to teach people how to play some unreleased and unpublished prototypes of games they’ve made.
Kline, who is hosting Saturday’s event, will be showing off prototypes for games like Tanks!, Kobolds! and Spin Me Right Round! (They are very exclamatory.) If you can’t make it to Redcap’s, you could play their first game RESISTOR_, a “two-player card game where you play as two supercomputers in charge of your country’s thermonuclear warheads,” Kline said in an email. (Although, you had to have been a backer of the game’s Kickstarter since the game hasn’t seen a public release yet.)
In June, Kline and Amato will be releasing their second game, Lazer Ryderz!, being published by St. Louis, Mo.-based Greater Than Games. The game combines tabletop strategy and racing, and among other things, it screams ‘80s nostalgia with its own original soundtrack and being contained in a box shaped like a collector’s case of VHS tapes.
Here’s a video (shot in a classic ‘80s style) of the duo showing off the game in action:
Here are a few other Philly-made tabletop games you can play soon, with quick explanations from their designers:
- Merchants of Araby by Jay Treat — “Become the wealthiest merchant prince or princess in all of Araby by establishing an entourage of merchants and allies, teaching virtues, summoning djinni, making shrewd caravan investments, and negotiating frequently.”
- Maximum Apocalypse by Mike Gnade of Delaware’s Rock Manor Games — “‘Maximum Apocalypse’ is a cooperative adventure game for 1-6 players. Civilization has already fallen. Survivors must explore, sneak, scavenge and kill dangerous roaming threats to survive the apocalypse. The game board is randomly generated so that it’s different every time that you play.”
- We’re Going to Eat You by Shawn Pierre of OriGaminc and Woody Fentress — “It’s a real time, tile based, rogue-like board game. You’re flipping over tiles and rolling dice, and working with others trying to find the exit. The game is inspired by Spelunky, a digital game which involves, well, spelunking. Woody and I wanted to create a game that could capture it’s emotion. I love playing and making these games because it relies on quick thinking, improvisation, and a higher level of teamwork.”
And as for why Pierre, who made These French Fries Are Terrible Hot Dogs, takes part in Tabletop Day?
“Tabletop Day is great for just sharing a bunch of projects with other people,” Pierre said in an email. “Similar to a food festival. There’s going to be something that people like, which starts their descent into the deep caves of tabletop games. And they won’t leave because it’s a great place to be.”-30-