Hello everyone, you are most welcome here today.
Today I am going to talk to you about Dead Throne, a new Open World Roleplay/Board Game Hybrid I spotted whilst I was at the UK games Expo in the NEC in Birmingham just last weekend. As of writing, this game is seeking funding on Kickstarter, so I thought I would write a bit about it. As regulars know, I love fantasy games, I love RPG and I love boardgames. Dead Throne caught my attention and seemed to tick all the right boxes. Here is a gameplay rundown from the Dead Throne Kickstarter Page (there is also a play tester feedback video). Forgive the sound quality, it was recorded in the NEC (and from personal experience it was recorded at a “quiet” time).
So, this game can be played solo or asymmetrically with one player taking the role of Saladar – the Evil Wizard, whilst everyone else plays aspirant heroes all vying for the throne. As demonstrated in the video, gameplay is very straightforward. Roll the dice to move and interact where you stop by drawing a card. Subtract defence from attack to determine damage in combat, and replenish magical scrolls at the start of your next turn. You can win by being last character standing or ascending the throne (achievable by two possible routes). And that seems to be more or less it.
Add in that there are markets to purchase adventuring stuff, carriages to transport you from one town to another, side quests that allow your hero to achieve some DnD style objective in return for a reward and a hex tile map that can be set up in multiple configurations for replayability.
I can only really comment on the Expo prototype in regards production quality. However, that was very high. The tiles were beautiful, and I can see GMs using them as proxies for other DnD type games. However, the thing that set this game apart from any others that I have seen was the Market.
Available in the Pro edition, the box lid serves as the market where gear and stuff can be purchased. (Didn’t realise the image was as blurry or would have taken more pictures – though you can get a better look on the KS Page)And with flick of a cardboard switch, the market becomes secure for transport. I was also keen to find out that in the pro edition there is space for future expansions. Dead Throne, the core set, ships with ten tiles and after a chat with the lads behind the stall I can confirm that intended expansions will add further tiles to vary the map or increase its size. I also noted character trays, similar to Zombicide, where players can stash their gear for easy reference.
I would say, I have mentioned Pro version several times. There is a Pro Version which has the mechanical market and space for expansions and a pretty awesome insert for all the gameplay stuff. The other version does not have this and is intended for someone wanting a more compact box.
I can definitely see me playing this game with some friends around the table one Sunday afternoon as it feels quite detailed and in-depth. The lads at Sharkee Games have put a lot of thought into world building and lore, and I can appreciate that. However, the game is also intended to be played in an hour or so. Meaning if you are in the situation where you can’t commit to a roleplay campaign, then this game is probably something you should look at.
My only concern has nothing to do with production or gameplay, but rather the funding threshold. The funding threshold is very high, at £96000. If the campaign does not achieve this, then the game will not be produced which is a bit of a shame in my opinion.
I backed this project a couple of days ago as there were still Early Bird versions of the Pro box. I figure, why not. It looks good, and I lose nothing if it doesn’t fund – but I hope that won’t be the case. Check out the Kickstarter for yourself.
All the best