AWE: Faction Deck Profiles

Dear gamers and friends & fans of AWE and CCGs in general!

While the AWE-Kickstarter has been more or less stagnant for days now, I am far from throwing in the towel and instead will give it my all until the (bitter?) end! So as some have asked for it I am going to bring to you today a rahter lengthy article about the four AWE faction decks, four Deck Profiles taking a detailed look at the different strategies involved in all four. So let’s get started right  away!

Atlantean Deck Header

What sets the Atlantean apart from the others is the fact that it contains cards of all four resource types, so Barracks and Factory as well as Wilderness and Mage’s Guild cards. The Atlanteans are masterful builders and expert architects so they have lots of cards that let you put additional buildings into play, that let you search your deck for a certain resource to be added to your Building Row and that manipulate your Buildings (resources) in various ways. So in order to get all the resource types you need, in order for a four resource types deck to work, the Atlanteans have cards that let you search for specific resource cards and on the other hand, the Atlantean faction has a ton of ways to draw additional cards as well as to manipulate the deck, so that you will draw into just the right resources and other cards you need in order to win! For instance, have a look at Hermes Trismegistos, the God of the Atlanteans. His ongoing effect (Godly Power) lets you draw an additional card each turn, which is pretty powerful and if you use his one-time flip effect (Divine Intervention) you get to draw a fresh hand of 7 cards right away. All you need to do is keep an eye on  the excessive card draw so as to not die to “decking”, as you’ll lose once  your deck runs out of cards and you can’t draw anymore. So the Atlaneans are somewhat “Jacks of all Kinds” and are very flexible and versatile in what their cards do. The massive card draw the wise Atlantean scholars provide is great for cycling throuh the deck quickly to find just the resources, events or units you need in any situation during a game of AWE. Besides builders, sages and scholars, the Atlanteans possess a tightly organized military, from Infantry like Lancers and Archers, over swift cavarly on their bird mounts to heavy artillery units attacking at long range. Furthermore, the Atlanteans have the behemoths of the deeps at their command and can summon Kraken, Sea Serpents and Leviathans to either attack the opponent in unit form or to unleash mighty events like Tidal Waves that can wipe out whole opponent armies. Overall the Altantean Deck may not be the easiest to pilote among the four preconstructed decks coming in your AWE base pack, as you really need to pay attention to how you play your resources to support all four building types and must always be careful not to run yourself out of cards but it can be very rewarding to play being very versatile and flexible doing all kinds of awesome/nasty things!

Muan Deck Header

The Muans are a tribal civilization dwelling on the island realm of Mu in the Pacific Ocean, that is covered by a dense tropical forest inhabited by the great lizards and other prehistoric beasts. The Muan Deck consists of Wilderness and Mage’s Guild cards, so as compared to the Atlantean deck which has four, you have to manage just two different resource types, which means the deck is somewhat easier to handle and more consistant resource-wise. The Muan tribal society is rather cruel and celebrates death and decay as parts of the natural order of things. Muans have sinister powers like necromancy and raising the dead from their graves. This is reflected by the effects of many of the cards in the Muan Deck. You will find Necromancers like the Muan Deathcaller who has the power to reanimate a fallen unit from the graveyard, as well as many other graveyard-based effects and abilities. For instance the Muan Gravedigger lets you put cards direclty from your deck to the graveyard so as to set up for summoning those as zombified units from there. There are also an array of terrible dinosaur warbeasts with the ability to resurrect from the grave like the Resurrecting Razormaw in the above card samples. The Muans are fearsome tribal warriors which is reflected in their worship of Oro, the Immortal Warrior. Oro reduces the costs of all Wilderness units in your hand by 1 and gives a Power boost to all your wounded Wilderness untis and when you flip him, he will become the “Avatar of War” and incarnate on the battlefield in the form of one of your fallen units to wreak havoc there. The array of different, fantastic units in the Muan army is dazzling: Besides fearsome Spiritwarriors and Raptor Riders, the Muans send terrible great lizard warbeasts into battle while pterodactyl-riding Muan Skyharriers rule the clouds. If you want powerful units that grow stronger when wounded or resurrect from the grave to terrorize your opponents or want to harness the sinister powers of black magic to manipulate your graveyard and such, then the Muan Deck may just be right for you!

Lemurian Deck Header

 

Quite unlike the Muans, who abhor technology and rather embrace magic and shamanism, the Lemurian civilization located in today’s Indian Ocean are technolgoically highly advanced and have harnessed the nowadays forgotten powers of Vril to construct a huge fleet of advanced Vimana aircraft of various types and sizes. The Lemurian preconstructed deck features three “colors” or resource types: Factories produce the various types of Viamana aircraft as well as other machinery such as equally advanced war walkers for instance. At the Barracks the Lemurian Infantry Units as well as commanders and generals are recruited, such as the Lemurian Sky Captain seen above. Among the most feared Lemurian infantry units are the elite Thunderrod-Wielders, who are equipped with staves able to unleash bursts of lightning on their terrified foes. At Mage’s Guilds, various priests, wisemen and scientists are trained, who even meddle with the very fabric of space and time, giving you effects that gain you extra turns among man other things. The God of the Lemurians is Krisha, the Heavenly Prince who boosts the power of all your Aeriel Units, and there are a ton of those in the Lemurian Deck, for as long as he remains face up on the field. However Krishna can be flipped to unleash the Brahamastra mentioned in ancient and sacred Hindu texts that allows you to flexibly choose to either destroy a whole Building Stack, a unit or a guardian of your choice in the blink of an eye. So the Lemurian Deck contains a huge airforce of Viamana craft of various sizes and types, from small Sky Chariots as seen above over swift Vimana Warhawks up to heavy bomber type craft that are able to destroy opponent buildings. Futhermore the deck features lots of engineers and technicians as well as commanders and generals and other ground untis that support your Vimana Fleet with various abilities that grant them boosts in power and/or additional useful abilities. This deck can be a bit tricky to play as well because many of your units will be aerial, and as per the rules aerial untis can destroy guardians but cannot dethrone a god themselves. So this means you need to cleverly plan your strategy so as to blast open a path for your ground-type infantry and other units with your Vimana airfleet, for only your non-flying units can deal the final blow to your opponents’ gods!

Hyperborean Deck Header

The Hyperborean society is built on gunpowder and steam, and this is of course reflected in the Hyperborean Deck coming in the AWE base game box. This Deck has only two resource types among its cards, namely Wilderness and Factory. The Hyperboreans dwell on the snow-covered, volcanic island continent of Hyperborea far to the north of Iceland, which acts as a Hyperborean outpost, and their army consists of a huge variety of different unti types, from tamed Ice Age megafauna beasts such as War Mammoths and Rhinos, over various warriors and infantry units such as the feared Steamgunner Squads, wielding steam-powered MGs similar to Gattling Guns up to also steam-driven iron carriages and juggernauts. The weakness of the armed-to-the-teeth Hyperborean fighting forces is their aerial units. There is only one of that type, however that single airborne unti type is pretty powerful: The Hyperborean Dragonrider – tamed firebreathing dragons that have their native homes in the volcanic wastelands of Hyperborea. The Hyperborean God is Heimdall, the Guardian of Asgaard. Heimdall supports the wondrous Hyperborean war machinery by reducing the costs of all your Factory units by 1 for as long as he is face-up  on the field. You may flip him anytime to bring the “Götterdämmerung”, the terrible Ragnarök, upon which will wipe out all Units on the filed, yours and your opponents’. The Hyperborean Deck features many powerful units, many of which love to go berserk when wounded, lots of machinery and support cards for that as well as resource destruction and effects that deal damage to units directly, reflecting the fiery environment of their volcanic island home Hyperborea. If you want a powerful unit rush deck with plenty of ways to destroy your opponents units by flame as well as to annoy the heck out of them by decimating their resources, you will surely enjoy playing the Hyperborean Deck!

 

So there you have it, the Deck Profiles of the four preconstructed Faction Decks coming in your basic pack of AWE, which you can pre-order by pledging on the ongoing AWE Kickstarter! Please note that you can easily upgrade your AWE experience to a fully customizable one with plenty of options for tweaking the pre-built decks or knocking yourselves out with buidling lots and lots of differnet decks from scratch by pledging for the AWE-Champion deal. Please do check it out on Kickstarter!

Thank you for being a reader and

GAME ON!!

Yours,

Andi

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AWE – Antediluvian Wars: Extermination on KICKSTARTER – The Story of AWE!

Dear readers and friends of AWE and Customizable Card Games in general!

I am exceedingly pleased to announce that my new game project “AWE – Antediluvian Wars: Extermination” went live on Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter just yesterday! Tonight we are nearing the $1000 USD mark and I would like to seize the opportunity and thank all backers and supporters from the bottom of my heart!! You guys are AWE-some!

AWE on KS fb

So, folks, let me recount the story of AWE and about the events that lead to this latest of my Kickstarter projects in an anecdotal manner.

The Story of AWE:

It all started when my good friend and business partner Widodo Pangarso from Indonesia, who had worked with me before doing fantastic artwork for one of my other games, Elemental Clash, among others, approached me, cautiously, with a request. “How about we make a game together?” Widodo asked and instantly was all in for such a collaborative project, not at the least as Widodo offered to provide part of the artwork needed prior to funding at no cost for me whatsoever. So I seized this unique opportunity right away and thus AWE was born!

The first thing we had on our to-do list was a kickass theme! As it happened, I had one on my mind that I wanted to incorporate in a tabletop game of sorts for quite some while and after some convincing, my partner Widodo was in for it as well, on the condition that I would be designing a second game after AWE with Widodo’s theme of choice, which is actually in the making under the working title “Ghost Hunter”. So it was a deal and I was free to knock myself out on the theme for our soon to be born game!

And knock myself out, at least thematically, is just waht I did. The theme I had in mind and that was implemented in AWE is quite an amazing one that allows for lots of creative and seldom-seen stuff. So the full name of the game is Antediluvian Wars: Extermination. For those not aware of it: “Antediluvian” means “before the flood” in a literal translation but is also commonly used for describing anything prehistoric. So the basic premise is this: In a not-quite historically accurate prehistory, at the end of the last great ice age about 12,000 years ago, four ancient and highly advanced civilizations that are nowadays lost and almost forgotten, a matter of myths and legends, are waging grand wars on each other, with one supreme goal: extermination! Hence the name of the game!

AWE Warrior Concepts

The four civilizations mentioend are all based on real-world mythology and all four located on mythical continents that are said to have sunk into the sea long ago. There is the widely known Atlantis in the Atlantic Ocean as well as three lesser known civilizations of myht, namely Hyberborea in the arctic regions to the North of Iceland, Lemuria in the Indian Ocean and Mu in the Pacific.

So with this unique theme mixing elements from many genres such as fantasy and sci-fi with real world mythology, a whole universe of creative possibilities opened up to me as the lead-game designer. In AWE, pretty much anything goes, thematically, so we have a lot going on, including a fantastic array of creatures and characters, from dinosaur riders over war mammoths and steampunky Steamgunners up to downright crazy stuff like resurrecting Zombie T-Rexes and advanced Vimana aircraft!

After Widodo and I had settled for the theme, the two of us started to create the first visuals for our new project, as I for one are quite the visual type when it comes to the early design process. So what I did was personally draw a lot of first character and creature sketches like this one here…

Hyperborean War Mammoth small

…and Widodo did some character concepts based on my sketches as the ones seen above for example. My Indonesian partner was very happy that I provided these sketches so he had a starting point for his later illustrations and got a good idea of the visuals of the word of AWE I had in mind.

Whilst we were working on the first visuals for AWE, I started to brainstorm the key mechanics and rules for our soon-to-be game project. It may sound terribly, terribly unprofessional to most as I am aware, but I do not make a secret out of the way my game designing undertakings actually work, and for me this approach does work and has worked astoundingly well time and time again, but I came up with the basic rules and mechanics for AWE over the course of one or two intense afternoons of brainstorming. I call this approach that seems like a mad man’s way of designing something as complex as a game like AWE, “speed design” and many of my games that proved to be quite well-designed and received great feedback from fellow game designers and gamers alike came to be that way. Here I would like to give mention and give credit to my good Bavarian friend, fellow game designer and vendor of fine wines Tobias Strunz from Bavaria, Germany, who kindly allowed me to borrow a mechanic idea of his that would soon turn out to be the central part of the AWE rules set, but more on that later!

The next step for me was to come up with a card layout design and after that a first list of prototype cards with all their different stats and card effects. This is the most fun part for me when designing a game and my intuition rarely fails me on that part of the design process either so after a few days the preliminary card list, about 20 different ones per faction, so 80 cards in total, was done as well.

What followed was the creation of the actual card layout which was handled by my “layout specialist” among many other things, Enggar Adirasa, also from Indonesia. Then Widodo on his part was ready to do some first card artwork. You can see a sample of layout and artwork below – I think Enggar and Widodo did an outstanding job on the layout and artwork respectively!

Hyperborean War Mammoth small

That being said, I have to note that I see no problem in having artwork created for a largely untested prototype-state game early on. I see it like this: I as the designer know which kinds of creatures and characters will be in the game for sure, so as soon as at least the general layout of the cards for instance is finalized, first art can be commissioned and created as the wording and stats etc of the actual card can always be fixed and tweaked without abandoning the character/creature and cutting it from the game itself. So being aware and making use of this, the design process can be accelerated to some degree – PLUS: I mentioned I am a very visual type of designer so early artwork motivates and inspires me to push on with the theoretical aspects of  the design process.

Once the layout, some art, as well as the rules and protype cards list were all done, I was ready to put a quite nicely looking prototype together and upload to my trutsted printing partner http://www.thegamecrafter.com and order my copy and some copies to be sent out to a crafty lot of playtesters! Here is the neat looking AWE protoype box – You see it is a game that is highlty portable – “The Wars of Ancient Gods – Straight out of your pocket!!”

Holding AWE box

And oh how well-received AWE was with the playtesters  – quite to my joy and relief! My good friend and long time supporter Rob Seater of Cambridge Games Factory enjoyed it in particular and gave a ton of useful feedback to spot some, but not many, mechanics and rules flaws which were thoroughly eradicated in due time…

Well, dear gamers, that is part of the story how AWE was born and came about! I hope this article was interesting and insightful to you to some degree and if you haven’t done so yet and are curious, I would like to invite you to check out the AWE Kickstarter at

and maybe join in if you can and think it is worth your hard-earned money or at least help to spread the news in order to show your support. Any and all help is most appreciated and much needed in order to make AWE a reality! Let’s do this!

Game on!!

Yours,

Andi

 

P.S.: Our “AWE Ambassador” in the US, Nathan Moore, will be taking AWE to Gencon this year, so if you’d like to try out the game with him, that can be arranged! Just mail me at andreas.propst31@gmail.com in case of interest! Thanks!!

AWE: First, Brief Playtesting Session Report

Dear readers!

Today, the long-anticipated day had finally come for me to try out the Antediluvian Wars: Extermination (AWE for short) prototype which I have had lying around untested and unplayed for far too long.

Awe web banner small cropped

It was quite tormenting to read and hear about the quite enthusiastic and for the very most part very positive experiences some of my (American) playtesters had reported about AWE and I myself simply not having ANY opportunity at all to get the first AWE prototype version 0.1 to the table.

Yesterday however was the day and the long overdue initial testing of what could be a truly AWE-some game eventually actually came to be, when my good gamer buddy Robin paid me a visit to, well, play some games.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

We played only two games since a ton of other games also begged to be played and I must say, after the initial test runs, that I am mighty pleased not only about how nicely the game mechanics, which I had seemingly thrown together in a rather fast and random fashion, seemed to fall into place as well as about the overall balance of the individual cards, with some exceptions obviously, and the balance of the decks against each other in general.

We played only two games, so not every possible match-up was properly tested (but we will see to that soon, probably on this very weekend already when Robin, my current playtesting “victim” number one will visit again) but we at least did try each one of the four decks at least once.

We played with 3 of Rob’s (my good friend Rob Seater of CGF) initial rules tweaks / suggestions:

  • Second player starts with 4 guardians (a pretty obvious change if you think about it)
  • Aeriel Units (flyers) cannot dethrone a god
  • The topmost resource card in a stack determines the resource type, unlike in Elemental Clash where the bottommost does

One observation on the general layout of the game: While the game is really compact and all when in the box, you need considerable table space to actually lay it all out, with basically 5 different rows, namely your front row, support row, resource row, guardians and your god. This makes the game, while you can bring it along anywhere in your very pocket, somewhat less playable just anywhere as it needs relatively much space to be laid out and played. As you can see in the photos, my table was barely fit to support the whole game (due to a ton of other card games and random stuff lying around as I have to note).

 

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Our first game was Lemurians (me) vs Muans (Robin) and I was stomped into the ground by such foul things as 5 Power Resurrecting Razormaws (so basically Zombie T-Rexes) and supporting black magic of Mu whilst trying to get out some powerful, airborne Lemurian Vimana aircraft, for which I had drawn and played a ton of support cards. But what good are support cards if you don’t draw any actual Vimana to support with the former? Anyways eventually the game ended closer than I had initially expected but one thing was clearly demonstrated: Even against superior technology (Lemurians), magic can still win out in the end (as demonstrated by Robin’s Muans in our very first game of AWE).

I have to note that we did have a bit of a hard time wrapping our heads around the non-Elemental Clash style resource system where you still have stacks of resources but instead of the bottommost card in a stack determining its type, the topmost card determines the resource type, which means you have to really carefully plan ahead and also the resource type of a stack can change any turn. Also it was kinda funny how we had to turn around the cards all the time to read what their “Event sides” actually do. It will certainly help a lot once we have unique artwork for all the different cards, as you’ll remember sooner or later, to a certain degree, what each card does once you can associate one particular image or card artwork with it. But hell, I have seen worse looking very first prototypes!!

In the second game, Hyperborans (me) were pitted against Atlanteans (Robin) and the second game ended the same way as the first, with me shamefully losing at my own creation (which I do not mind at all), but this time it was VERY close, as Robin just barely won with his Atlantean army with no guardians left. Overall I think the Atlantean deck is the hardest one to pilot, due to the fact that it is a “rainbow deck” including all four colors / resource types. Robin did a good job though and although my Heimdall’s Zealot, which is far too good at 4 Power whilst Heimdall, the Hyperborean god is unflipped (face-up) on the field, at the mere unit cost of 1, wreaked havoc on him. Heimdall’s Zealot was the only card which we came across in our two games that is definitely far too powerful, especially early on, although of course a lot of cards may need some comparatively minor tweaks as well. It was only when I unleashed Ragnarök, the “Divine Intervention” or flip ability of Heimdall, that the Zealot’s power was broken – well I got to slay (destroy) 3 or 4 of Robin’s Atlantean units by doing so – and I was really astonished that he did win in the end, very closely and with just 2 or 3 cards left in his deck.

Overall I must say we both enjoyed the game, even in its present, very raw state, a lot. It turned out to be really fast-paced, with games taking us about 20 – 30 minutes each even without being very familiar with the rules and individual cards and all the mechanics seemed to fall into place really well. The game’s core engine is really close to being finished already I think as everything more or less worked like a charm.

Obviously, a lot more testing will have to show which cards need fixing and how these should be fixed. I am looking forward to the weekend and coming playtest sessions beyond that, which will enable me and us to make AWE a truly AWE-some gaming experience!

Game on!

Yours,

Andi

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TGC Prototype Loot – Photostory Part 1: AWE

Dear readers of this here my blog on games and general geekness! Fellow gamers and game designers!

After a long spell of silence on here, which resulted from a rush of endlessly flowing artistic mojo (I am an artist working in traditional media mostly as well in case that is news for you), from a productive week when it comes to doing artwork, the mailman tore me out of my artistic “trip” delivering an already very much anticipated package from the United States of America, from The Game Crafter LLC, my print-on-demand games provider of trust and choice, to be more precise.

The contents of the package was two prototypes of my two most recent designs/games, which I was dying to lay my greedy, game designer’s paws on ever since I came up with the games, did the prototyping and ordered a while ago.

Here you can see the overjoyed but in this picture, more than usually, somewhat hobotastic looking designer of both games:

Andi with AWE & EC HEX

 

The two games I am holding in hands are

Antediluvian Wars – Extermination

(Official Website at http://www.awetcg.com)

(just call it “AWE”, as in awe-some and awe-inspiring and also awe-ful for Thor’s sake! :D) which would be the remarkably small one on the left and

Elemental Clash HEX (TGC 2-Player “Tribal Wars” Edition)

which would be the significantly bigger, colorful box on the right side.

In this two part post I want to introduce you to both of those two, which I would consider my “hottest” games in the workings/prototypes currently, in the form of little photo-stories, without explaining much about how they actually work, just giving my initial thoughts on my  first impressions when unboxing (and trying to some extent in the case of EC HEX).

I will start it off with this one and follow up with a similar post on the other shortly (probably right after I finished the first):

Holding AWE box

If you have read about AWE before, you will know it is a 2-4 players game with tons of tactical/strategic options and potentially high replay value, so yeah, I too am amazed that THAT (see above) is basically it. Four entire antediluvian armies packed in one small, neat looking box. And I must say that I am quite  pleased with the look of what is the first protoype, both about my humble photoshop-job and about the quality of the box (thumbs up TGC!!). I almost like it so much that I consider to keep the design and release it with a box like that eventually. And on a side-note: Maybe you recognize the mysterious “Piri Reis Map” I used for the background (just google for it, you will be amazed).

After having seen it for myself and having laid my hands on it, I must say, without wanting to brag about my own genius and praise my own humble design work, I must say, overall this game feels like something compared to a good “Schnaps” (Austrian-style booze) where the essence of many good things is distilled into one very small amount of liquid – in one neat little box just like the one I was holding and looking at. I mean this game offers enough for endless hours of fun (well hopefully the finished product will) for up to four people, without the need of any further components besides the cards like dice, life counters or similar stuff.

I mean just look at this: It fits easily in one of my pockets (well unless said pocket contains a pack of cigs as usual):

AWE fits in pocket

(Apologies for the blurry picture)

The fact that the game is small, portable, literally fitting in your pocket has so many benefits and is cheap to manufacture, which would make a (invitable?) Kickstarter very  much attractive to many people as they’d get quite some value for the small buck!

And I can see the slogans right before me already: “The Epic Wars of Ancient Gods – in your Pocket!”. Same goes for the title. If I do my handywork right and well, people could get an “AWE-some gaming experience” from this and reviewers could call it “AWE-inspiring” but I am going a little over the top with my overly enthusiastic ramblings here now. There’s still a lot of work ahead of us, my hand-picked, crafty, elitist inner circle of playtesters (Thank you Rob, Michael, Brian, Jeff and Hank!!) and I, but I for one will do my very best to make this one deserve such honorations.

So pressing onwards, here the contents of the box: 4 decks of 30 cards each – one for each of the four factions:

AWE unboxed

 

The game’s official web url will mislead you maybe. “TCG” stands for “Tactical Card Game” and not for what it usually stands for – Trading Card Game. I would eat my own underpants if I ever was foolish enough to attempt to create “the next big thing” in Trading Card Games. There are a few established ones and their fans are too dedicated to buy into a new one. So this can simply be the delusion of an utter beginner (which I wouldnt blame them for) or of someone who had lost their mind. So tactical card game it is in the case of AWE. However, this  means not that AWE will never be customizable, as it is a very much EXPANDABLE game. While the initial set will contain only 4 pre-constructed decks without the option to customize, there is always the possibility of expansions adding new cards to each of the factions, turning the initially non-customizable (and many people see that as a quality not a shortcoming in a game) game into a fully customizable one. Note: Even in case of disinterest and failure on KS or whatever, I will probably work on and release expansions, “ars gratia artist” – art for the cause of art!

And here is what one player needs to get the action started. A quite slim deck of exaclty 30 standard poker-size cards:

AWE 1 deck in hand

 

Next have a look at what all four decks look like next to each other, with the gods, each being associated with one of the faction decks and acting as your representation, your “avatar” in the game, whom you must protect from opponent attacks at all costs, in order to prevent him from being “dethroned” as the lose condition in the game is called. And yes I ripped the gods artworks straight out of Elemental Clash (save for Lord Krishna, whom I nicked from the internets) just for prototype purposes and as a matter of course the finished game will feature terrific original artworks for each of the god-cards.

The factions are the following from top left to bottom right: Lemurian, Atleantean, Hyperborean and Muan.

AWE 4 decks plus gods

The four civilizations are actually taken straight out of the legends and mythology of real human cultures and the game features many real-world mythological references, whilst being not exactly historically accurate, especially when it comes to the 10.000 B.C. dino riders and Vimana aircraft! But that is what is great about this particular theme: Everything goes in AWE! 😀

And lastly a close-up of one of the cards:

AWE card closeup

 

I solemnly swear to explain all the icons and meanings of the card layout in a seperate post dedicated to this aspect of the AWE Tactical Card Game, but only that much: AWE features a quite extraordinary concept which works so well on so many levels and which I call the “Three-Way-Play” mechanic. You see the upper name, icons and text box are the Unit (Creature, Monster, whatever) part of the card. You can play it upright and it will act as a Creature that will usually attack or defend and/or have certain special abilities. Then on the bottom of the card we have inverted name, icons and text. The meaning of this is that you can play the card upside-down as an Event (Spell, Effect, whatever) which will usually just have a one-time effect on the game. Thirdly, you can play the card rotated 90 degrees to the left or to the right into your Resource Row so that it will act as a resource of its type. Resources are needed to pay for Units and Events by the way. You see, as I said, the game is a tight, little package similar to a well distilled Schnaps, as I remarked initally.

Well this concludes part one of the TGC prototype loot photo-stories article. I will follow up with part two, which will deal with a “madness”, as my honored friend Rob Seater of Cambridge Games Factory quite aptly named it, I have come up with very recently:

ELEMENTAL CLASH HEX

So thanks for reading and see you soon with some visual teasers of the aforementioned!

Yours,

Andi

 

 

AWE: About the Civilizations & A New Artist on the Team

Dear readers!

Today I am going to present you with a small update on my latest game project in the making:

The AWE Tactical Card Game.

For those who missed the initial AWE-announcement post, AWE stands for “Antediluvian Wars – Extermination” and is a game I am developing at the moment in collaboration with my Indonesian friend and talented artist Widodo Pangarso.

As our plan is to leak a little bit of information every now and then, I would like to do just that now by telling you a bit more about the factions to be featured in the game. There will be 4 of these factions, each inspired by real world mythology about ancient, long-lost civilizations who were said to be, albeit ancient, highly advanced in science and technology. Please take a look at the warrior concepts Widodo drew based on my very own sketches, each representing one of the 4 lost civilizations to be featured in the AWE Tactical Card Game:

AWE Warrior Concepts

Let me share some information on each of the four grand civilizations from left to right:

  • About the civilization of Mu:

The Muans are the ancestors of the Hawaiian and Polynesian people and look similar to them. While they abhor technology, they have great magical capabilities and they are a spiritualistic people of shamans, wizards and necromancers, among other things, closely bound to nature.  The Muans dress themselves in wooden armor, leather and other materials found in nature. While Muans are not very advanced when it comes to technology, they have powerful magic at their command and can summon, communicate with and control wild animals. Thus the Muan army includes among other things the “great lizards”, which live in the tropical regions where Mu is located. Some Muan soldiers for instance ride on Raptors and some even take to the skies on flying lizards. The Muans worship and are ruled by their God Oro.

  • About the civilization of Lemuria:

The Lemurians are slightly dark skinned similar to the people of present day Southern India and have curly, black hair. They are the forefathers of the Mesopotamian and Indian cultures. The Lemurians are the most advanced people when it comes to technology and have invented many powerful war machines, most notably the flying Vimana War Ships which harness the power of Vril – a knowledge that is lost nowadays. Their soldiers are dressed in precious and ornate silver armor and are equipped with “Thunderrods” which are ranged weapons, staffs that shoot lightning. They are great engineers and artificers and have many powerful weapons at their disposal such as the Brahamastra, the ultimate weapon similar to the modern day atom bomb. When it comes to magic, the Lemurians are not as skilled as the other civilizations which makes them equal to the others even though they are by far superior when it comes to technology. The Lemurian society is ruled by a caste of high priests who serve their God Krishna, The Prince of the Heavens.

  • About the civilization of Atlantis:

The Atlanteans are a fair, tall and white skinned race of seafarers and inventive scientists. They control a huge sea empire and are ruled by their God Hermes Trismegistos, who is said to have come down from the stars. After Atlantis sank into the sea, the Atlanteans fathered many cultures such as the Egyptian and South American civilizations of old. The Atlantean clothing style resembles that of ancient Egypt. The Atlanteans are masterful astronomers and researchers and have invented many advanced technologies. They have a very well organized army with infantry and cavalry. Their magical abilities are mediocre but they are closely bonded to the creatures of the sea so they can summon the denizens of the deep such as the dreaded Sea Serpent or the Kraken.

  • About the civilization of Hyperborea:

The Hyperboreans are the ancestors of Icelandic, Scandinavian and other Northern European Cultures and the mythologies of that cultures were inspired by the ancient Hyperboreans, which lived in a snowy, cold but volcanically active continent to the north of where Iceland is located today. The Hyperboreans are short and stout in stature, like to wear long beards and dress themselves in furs and pelts, their warriors wearing iron armor.They are expert engineers and master blacksmiths and have managed to harness the power of steam and gun-powder. One of their most feared warriors are the Steamgunner Squads which wield automatic guns powered by steam as their name suggests. The Hyperboreans also mastered taming the creatures that live in their homeland such as polar bears, woolly rhinos, mammoths and also dragons.  The ruler and God of the Hyperborean people is Heimdall.

So much for a brief overview of the four great civilizations in the (historically not accurate) world of AWE.

As the second part of this small update on the AWE Tactical Card Game, I would like to welcome

Dennis Saputra

to the AWE art team. Dennis is from Indonesia as well, just like Widodo, and some my know him from previous posts about other of my projects as he has worked on some before, most notably Elemental Clash, and has proven to be not only reliable, fast and affordable, but also great to work with. Widodo and I hired Dennis to help out with the initial, “pre-Kickstarter” viusals of the AWE Tactical Card Game and he could hardly be stopped from getting started!

Below a little card preview featuring great art by Dennis Saputra, based on a sketch I did myself:

Hyperborean Heavy Cavalry small

 

And here’s the card with Dennis’ art:

Hyperborean Heavy Cavalry Sample

 

Alright this is it for today’s AWE-some update!

Stay tuned as more is bound to come soon.

Game on!

Yours,

Andi

AWE-some News: Announcing the AWE Tactical Card Game!

Dear readers!

I am very proud and pleased to announce here and now my new collaboration game project

AW logo

which I am going to realize over the course of the year with my good friend and highly talented artist

Widodo Pangarso

from Indonesia, who has already shown his skills to great extent as illustrator contributing to my games Elemental Clash and Space Clash.

Widodo recently approached me with a proposition which came unexpected and is something like every game designer’s dream come-true: Widodo offered to do a game together with me, me coming up with a game and he kindly providing the artwork for the game I would develop. Of course I accepted the unique offer and thus “Antediluvian Wars – Extermination”, or “AWE” for short, was born.

(I had to promise Widodo to work on a “ghost hunter” themed game in the future and I hereby solemnly swear to do keep my word regarding that matter!)

So the logo is already AWE-some so to say, but what will make this game stand out from the crowd and make it really an AWE-some gaming experience? I won’t say too much in this first, really brief announcment, but these things you will be able to look forward to in AWE, the Tactical Card Game:

  • AWE-some Theme:

It is the end of the last Great Ice Age, roughly 12.000 years before our time and the world is at war. Four highly-advanced but nowadays almost forgotten, prehistoric civilizations dwelling on the four lost continents of legend and myth – Atlantis in the Atlantic Ocean, Lemuria in the Indian Ocean, Hyperborea in the arctic regions of the high north and Mu in the Pacific – wage war against each other, vying for world domination. In this historically not really accurate prehistory, where magic and technology co-exist, you will be the god of one of those grand, nowadays lost civilizations, their highest political and spiritual leader and authority, and will be marshalling a fantastic array of military units in order to dethrone the opponent god(s) before they can overcome you. With the unique and exciting theme and setting of Antediluvian Wars – Extermination, pretty much anything goes. Expect truly AWE-some units such as Muan Raptor Riders (see below), Zombie T-Rexes brought back to life through black magic, steampunky Hyperborean Steamgunners and War Mammoths, Atlantean Stargazers and Lemurian Vimana Flying Machines and much, much more. So don’t be surprised what fantastic things we are going to present you with over the course of the next few months as more and more visual previews and insights on AWE – The Tactical Card Game will be revealed gradually!

  • AWE-some Art:

My project partner Widodo is, as mentioned before, a highly gifted artist and illustrator and while I will be providing artistic guidance in the form of concept sketches and other instructions and input, he will bring the game to life!

And here for your visual pleasure, the first art & card preview for AWE:

Muan Raptor Rider Sample

What the actual keywords mean and how the card “works” will be detailed in a later post! Don’t want to tell you too much just now!

  • AWE-some Mechanics:

In AWE, some truly amazing new concepts and mechanics for your gaming pleasures, will be introduced. While the rules stand pretty much right now, I will not give away everything right now, but would instead like to showcase two of the core mechanics / concepts which are going to be featured in the game:

Firstly, THE core mechanic in AWE, which actually arose from a problem we were facing. Since Widodo is just one guy and has to work on paid jobs as well, the number of artworks he can produce in a limited time is… well… limited. So I remembered a concept my good friend, fellow game designer and vendor of fine wines, Tobias Strunz from Germany (Please do check out his own epic game project at http://www.godsandminions.com) , mentioned.

So in AWE, you will be able to use each card in three different ways, in three modes so to say. Please have a look at the graphics below, which will explain this AWE-some concept, which not only saves us a ton of art but also offers a ton of interesting in-game decisions that actually matter (which i regard as one of the key factors which all “good” games have in common):

How to play a card

The second concept makes a differentiation between “Wounded” and “Un-Wounded” Units. It basically goes like this:

A Unit comes into play Un-Wounded, or healty you may say, and is placed upright. When it would receive what would in similar card games be “lethal damage” it is not destroyed but instead turned sideways, rotated 90° to the left and now counts as wounded. If the Unit would receive “lethal damage” again, it is “slain”, defeated and sent to the discard pile.

The cool thing is that a Wounded Unit’s Combat Value (“Power”) can be changed when in Wounded state and the Unit may gain special abilities and/or other bonuses when Wounded. Just imagine a Warrior who is heavily injured going berserk in battle.

Also have a look at the graphics below to get a better idea how the “Wounded-Unwounded Concept” works:

Wounded - Unwounded

Alright I think I have given away more than enough info already for this very first announcement of the AWE TCG (Tactical Card Game). So I hope I was able to demonstrate that this game will be thrice AWE-some, featuring amazing art from a talented illustrator, an epic and rarely seen theme in which anything, from War Mammoths over Steamgunners and Vimana aircraft to reanimated Zombie T-Rexes, is possible as well as an innovative and exciting mix of mechanics!

I will post more previews and additional information on the rules and mechanics as well as about pretty much anything related to this game in the making on a regular basis on this here blog. So if you are interested after having read this first announcement, please subscribe to this blog so as not to miss anything AWE-some!

We will also have a facebook page where regular updates, news and previews will be posted. As soon as I have the link, you might as well join us there!

Well thank you for your time and attention, hopefully you liked what you saw and read, and please check back regularly for the latest news on Antediluvian Wars – Extermination!

So stay tuned and game on!

Sincerely yours,

Andi and Widodo

 

Update: Here is the official facebook page for AWE: www.facebook.com/awetacticalcardgame