GTM #197 - Hit Z Road
by Asmodee

My family and I just went on the most amazing road trip of all time! Dad said we would follow historic Route 66 all the way to Los Angeles. I’d never been to the West Coast before, so I was really excited!

~ Chicago ~

We packed up the van with all our stuff and our dog, Sparky. Mom and Dad planned to leave Sparky with our friend Mrs. Palmer, but when we got to her house, we noticed something really strange.

The Palmers’ door was unlocked, and a light was flickering on and off in the living room. The Palmers’ cat was dead, lying in a pool of blood — but that wasn’t the worst part. Mrs. Palmer raced into the living room and lunged at us! There was something wrong with her face. It was all gray, and half of her cheek was falling down. Dad knocked her back, and we all ran out to the van.

As Dad started the engine, we saw that the whole neighborhood was just like Mrs. Palmer, and they were all rushing toward us. Dad hit the gas hard, and I heard him say a bad word. Then we were racing off at top speed!  (I think we might have knocked down one or two of Mrs. Palmer’s neighbors with our van along the way.)

~ St. Louis ~

I met my new friend Timmy in St. Louis, while we were checking out the Gateway Arch. It looked really cool, and we wanted to take more photos, but the sick, gray people kept getting in the way.

Mom says they’re called zombies and, once they get the zombie sickness, they’re not actually people anymore. That’s why it was okay to break into the gun store and get guns and ammunition to shoot the zombies when they tried to get us. Anyway, Timmy had gone through some really tough times. His mom and dad had turned into zombies, so he had to run away. We decided he could come with us to L.A.

~ Amarillo ~

After driving for a long time and having to shoot some zombies when we stopped for gas in Tulsa, we made it to Texas. There’s a big Cadillac ranch in Amarillo, where the cars all stick out of the ground, and Mom and Dad wanted to stretch their legs, so we decided to visit.

That turned out to be a bad idea — the place was full of zombies! Mom and Dad ran out of bullets, and we had to fight them with Dad’s golf clubs. We almost got away, but one of them got Timmy. I tried to help, but I couldn’t. I miss Timmy.

~ Albuquerque ~

The further we drove, the more zombies we came across. Plus, there were thick green clouds in the air. I thought we would never see real people again! When we got to Albuquerque, though, we found a whole bunch of people that were happy we weren’t zombies either!

One of them was Emily. She was really pretty, except for a bite mark on her arm. We talked a lot while our families ate dinner together. I thought that Albuquerque would be the best place ever, but then Emily’s eyes turned milky white and she started snarling and biting at me, so we had to hit the road again.

~ Flagstaff ~

We were all pretty tired by the time we got to Flagstaff. To make things worse, our van was breaking down. Mom and Dad said we had a lot of desert ahead of us, and the zombies were getting worse than ever, so we needed a new ride. Luckily, after looking high and low, we found the best ride ever — an armored school bus! I decided to call it the Executor.

~ L.A. ~

After scavenging for more food and bullets in Kingman and Barstow — and fighting off more zombies — we finally made it to L.A.! All I can say is, “Wow!” I’d never seen the ocean before, and it’s really amazing. It’s so blue — well, aside from the part that we made red with zombie blood. But the rest of it is all blue, like, forever.

We met up with other survivors, like Tom, who’s teaching us how to make bullets. In between learning survival skills, I’m enjoying the rest of my summer break, relaxing on the beach. Plus, we had such a crazy adventure getting here that I’ve decided to make a game out of it...

~ About Hit Z Road ~

In Hit Z Road, the competitive zombie survival game by Martin Wallace, you and your friends race to reach the West Coast alive.  It’s everyone for themselves as players bid each round to determine the order in which they choose a path through adventure cards of increasing difficulty, while also managing resources — adrenaline, ammunition, and gas — to overcome the challenges ahead. In the end, you don’t have to be faster than the zombies — you just have to be faster than your friends!

GTM #196 - Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Organized Play
by WizKids/NECA

Civil War breaks out in Marvel HeroClix starting in June 2016! The Superhuman Registration Act has divided the heroes (and villains) of the Marvel Universe — whose side will you be on when you face off against your friends and former allies in the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play (OP) Event Series?

Marvel HeroClix: Civil War is a four-month Storyline Organized Play Event series— featuring all-new and unique content based upon the Marvel Comics Civil War storyline— that will both divide and unite HeroClix players around the world as they choose to fight alongside Iron Man and other Pro-Registration heroes or join forces with Captain America and his band of Anti-Registration vigilantes.

Each month, players build teams using Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Booster Packs and compete to win limited edition Marvel HeroClix: Civil War figures—in addition to drafting the figures that are pulled from the booster packs and played during the event. The first three months of the event series will be structured as individual 4-player “Battle Royale” games with the last month being structured as a 3-round, head-to-head Swiss pairing tournament. At the end of the event series, players will draft based on their overall event standing from a selection of exclusive, limited edition Marvel HeroClix: Civil War figures.

The Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series brings a new play experience to HeroClix Storyline Organized Play as well as some new features from previous HeroClix Storyline OP Event series— below is a quick synopsis of what is new and different in the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series:

  • Battle Royales — the first three months of the event series are structured so that the tournament games are run as 4-player, free-for-all, “Battle Royale” games
  • Faction Drafting — players choose to be on the Pro- or Anti-Registration faction and will draft figures of their faction to play
  • Support Packs — each Marvel HeroClix: Civil War booster brick includes a Support Pack that contains all required organized play material instead of a separate Organized Play (OP) kit
  • Monthly Prize Packs — Players compete to try and win/draft a Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Prize Pack packaged in a blind foil pack which contains a random Limited Edition Prize Figure from a slate of six different Limited Edition Prize Figures
  • Bounty Cards — Bounty Cards can be used for a global game play mechanic that can affect other games in the tournament to help promote a community event feel – Bounty Cards provide a bonus for the player and other players in their faction if they can KO their “Bounty”
  • Grand Prize Draft — instead of one large Grand Prize, the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series offers a selection of exclusive Limited Edition Prize Figures so stores can prize much deeper into their participating player base— in most cases, every player will walk away with a prize!

Each Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Booster Brick contains eight (8) Marvel HeroClix: Civil War 5-figure booster packs as well as one (1) Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Support Pack. Each case of the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Booster Bricks will support 16 players for both the Battle Royale and Standard Swiss formats. The Marvel HeroClix: Civil War booster packs each contain five (5) figures configured as follows:

  • two (2) Pro-Registration figures (on red HeroClix bases)
  • two (2) Anti-Registration figures (on blue HeroClix bases)
  • one (1) Neutral figure (on standard black HeroClix bases)

Each Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Support Pack contains:

  • two (2) single-figure foil Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Prize Packs with one of six different Limited Edition figures— packaged randomly
  • eight (8) Bounty cards
  • two (2) double-sided HeroClix maps specifically designed to be used as either a standard 2’ x 3’ map or a 2’ x 2’ Battle Royale map

Stores selected to host the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series (speak to your sales representative to see if your store was selected) will be able to schedule their events on the WizKids Information Network (“WIN”) using the official template so players wishing to play in Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Events will be able to find the host stores local to them.

Quantities are limited and the program will only be offered while supplies last!  Order your Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Booster Bricks today to ensure you are ready for the most exciting organized play event of the year! All Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play product, including boosters and prizes, is covered by the WizKids Promotional Product Licensing Agreement and are marked “NOT FOR RESALE” and may only be used to support in-store play.

If your store is selected as a host and you are looking for ways to promote the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series in your store, there are standees available through your distributor and posters will be added to the Marketing Resources page in the More+ tab of the WIN.

With that said, we would like to continue previews of the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Booster Brick with the Anti-Registration leader, Captain America #001!

To read more about the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series, visit the Marvel HeroClix: Civil War Storyline Organized Play Event series webpage at www.heroclix.com/civilwar.

GTM #195 - Agricola: Planting the Seeds for a New Crop of Fun in 2016!
by Mayfair Games

The new and improved Agricola arrives May 19th and Mayfair is pulling out all the stops to make launch weekend an event you won’t want to miss!

Last issue we talked about the three-pronged rollout for the game. Designed for 1-4 players with a price point of $60, the Agricola core game is a revised edition of Uwe Rosenberg’s celebrated classic. It features improved, all-wood components and card selections from the original base game as well as its expansions, revised and updated for this edition. The 5-6 player extension will build on the Agricola base game, with components for two additional players as well as more cards, again revised and expanded by Uwe Rosenberg.

Last, but certainly not least, there is the Agricola Family Edition. This version is also for 1-4 players and is the perfect gateway product to Agricola. The game features no cards, is designed for a more streamlined play experience, and retails at a substantially reduced price, making the decision to jump on board easier than ever. In general, we’re attempting to lower the barrier to entry and get folks who have yet to try this enduring classic to find out what all the hype is about. The core version of Agricola debuts on May 19th, with the other two products in the line to follow later in 2016.

Now, let’s take a look at what’s inside the box and give further details about the Organized Play Kit, along with full details of the release date. The revised edition of Agricola features a complete refresh on the board art and cards, making the game look better than ever. Taking the game to 1-4 players allowed us to keep the price a reasonable $60 USD, while the upcoming 5-6 player extension will accommodate up to six players for the first time. In addition to sprucing up the art, the cards have been hand selected from the previous base game and its many expansions, and rewritten for clarity by designer Uwe Rosenberg. The game also features a new wooden component: a farmer token!

Additionally, the rulebook has been revised and expanded. First, there’s an extended almanac that explains how various cards work in tandem, illustrating how the game is played and hopefully preventing any confusion or misunderstandings that might arise during play. The rulebook also contains some exciting variants that are new to this version of Agricola, adding variety and excellent replay value. For example, the card draft allows players to keep some of their initial hand while passing the remaining cards to the left, continuing this until they have a complete hand of cards.

There are also variants for team play, “living” card hands, and, most exciting of all, campaigns, which allow players to keep score over multiple games and turn a stand-alone game into an epic weekend with bragging rights on the line. There are even rules for solo campaigns. The rulebook provides guidance on how to use these variants, as many make the game more challenging, while others simply add depth to the core game. Plus, there’s a section on ‘house rules’, and who doesn’t need more house rules in their life?

  • Component List: (1) game board, (4) farmyard boards, (1) supply board, (2) game board extensions, (2) variant tiles, (1) “side job” action space tile, (73) room/field wood tiles, (16) clay/stone rooms, (36) “1 food” markers, (8) “5 food” markers, (3) suggestion markers, (10) good tiles, 120 cards (improvements, occupations, action spaces), a scoring pad, a rulebook, and an appendix.
  • Wooden Component List: (18) sheep, (15) wild boars, (13) cattle, (30) wood, (24) clay, (14) reed, (16) stone, (24) grain, (18) vegetables, (1) starting player token, (60) fences, (16) stables, and (20) people.

Check with your friendly neighborhood game store about pre-ordering this reworked edition of the acclaimed strategy game and ask if they’re going to host an in-store event! The game launches on Thursday, May 19th, and Organized Play Kits containing all sorts of cool promotional items will be made available to retailers running events that weekend.

Hopefully, by now, you’re as excited for the future of Agricola as we are. But, there’s even more on the horizon, including the Agricola World Championship – US Qualifier tournaments are coming to America for the first time at both Origins and Gen Con this summer, with the winner at Gen Con 2016 representing the US at the World Championship tournament in Vienna, Austria this November!

So, keep your eye on Agricola as we move forward — we’re going to have a full slate of expansions and additions to the game throughout the year. The 17th century wasn’t an easy time to be a farmer, but 2016 is going to be a great time to be an Agricola fan and harvest fun!

About Agricola: Agricola was designed by Uwe Rosenberg for 1-4 players ages 12 and up. Games take between 30 and 120-minutes to play (30-minutes per player).