Thoughts on the New Year 2017

January 09, 2017

3dbox 2017 is where it is at, folks! Big things are coming, and I'm excited! The big, big thing is obviously the upcoming release of Gloomhaven in a month or so. It's already in the hands of a few reviewers, and it's hard not to get swept up in their enthusiasm, as well. The bottom line, though, is that it is just hard to predict exactly what's going to happen once the game arrives. The next two months are like this heavy fog that is obscuring anything beyond that, making it difficult to talk about the rest of the year. I'm going with optimism, though. Let's just assume that everyone loves the game and the retail copies sell out very quickly. We'll see it rocket up the BGG rankings and there will be a lot more people clamoring to get their hands on copies that no longer exist. I think one of the craziest things anyone has said so far is that Drive Thru Review predicted Gloomhaven will reach #1 on BGG by 2018. And while I would love to see that happen, to get to those higher spots, not only do you need good ratings, but you need a lot of ratings - far more ratings that 10,000 copies will get you. Now, my goal isn't necessarily #1 - that seems a little presumptuous - but it is my goal to have Gloomhaven become a well-respected member of the board game pantheon. An "evergreen" title, if you will. One that people will still be playing and talking about 10 years from now. I think it has the power, but, in the short term, I think a lot of that is going to come down to getting a reprint going as soon as possible and getting the game into the hands of everyone who wants it. So what I am saying is that doing a reprint of Gloomhaven will likely be a big priority in 2017. I'm struggling with how to do it exactly, though. I'm already gearing up for the Kickstarter for the next game, Founders of Gloomhaven, and a reprint of Gloomhaven, due to the high cost of manufacturing, will require a Kickstarter as well. Do I combine the Kickstarters? Do I run separate Kickstarters? I'm not quite sure at this point, but I'm hoping that things will get a little clearer in the coming months. One way or the other, Founders of Gloomhaven is coming, and I'm very excited about that as well. It's just a simple Euro game - no Legacy aspects or mega-boxes - but I think that it, too, will make a lot of people happy. Also it will be a nice palette cleanser after this two-year journey with Gloomhaven. I'm expecting to get it developed, Kickstarted, and released in time for Gen Con. We'll see if I achieve that goal, but still, it's a small project and shouldn't take that much time. The second half of the year, though, is like trying to see a mile away through the fog. There is an expansion to Gloomhaven that I am working on, but I will really just have to play it by ear in terms of when I make that available through a platform like Kickstarter. As I've said before, I want to give people plenty of time to explore the Gloomhaven box, which is itself like a game plus many expansions, before I release another big campaign. So we'll just have to gauge the pace that people are playing through the game, and when the clamor for additional content becomes deafening, well, then we'll start working towards that. I've also talked before about a mini-expansion that would be a collection of additional content that I and other players have created as PDFs on BGG. I could take that content and officially print it so that those who are less DYI-inclined can experience it as well. That's still an idea, and we'll just have to see what the community reaction to the game is before entertaining the idea further. I also have many other ideas bouncing around in my head, including the area control deck-builder that I was really focused on back in 2014. It needs some work, but I'm looking forward to retheming it to the Gloomhaven universe and refining some of the game play. I don't think it will quite see the light of day in the coming year, but I'm sure I'll work on it and other ideas. And then there are conventions, which I talked more about last time. I'm looking forward to hanging out with all my favorite people at Geekway to the West, Origins, and BGG Con. I'm slightly less looking forward to working a booth at Gen Con and Essen, but I'm sure they will still be good experiences. And lastly, I am out-of-my-mind excited to be going to a cabin in the woods in Virginia in March to play games for four days straight with Blue Peg, Pink Peg and friends at RobbCon. This is my favorite group of guys to hang out with at conventions, and I cannot express how happy I was to be invited this year. And thats about all I can say about the new year. Every year, things keep getting better for Cephalofair Games, and I have a feeling that 2017 will be no exception. Onto greater and more wonderful things!

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