Pre-order Highlights - September 2019

With approximately 300 titles now available for pre-order on our site, customers are now spoilt for choice when shopping for upcoming games. But this mountain of new games that become available for pre-order every month can sometimes be hard to parse, especially for those who have limited time or a light wallet.

This monthly column aims to take some of the stress out of your shopping experience by showcasing a smattering of the upcoming games that have us the most excited here at Mission: Fun & Games. Have a read and see if any of them pique your interest as well…

Azul: Summer Pavilion

Price: CAD $42.49
Players: 2-4
Ages: 10+
Playtime: 30-45 Min
Estimated Release Date: TBA

Azul was probably our favourite abstract board game from 2017. Its combination of colourful tiles, intuitive gameplay, and a relatively breezy 45 min playtime made it an excellent addition to our collection. Its accessibility set it apart from a host of other complex and opaque, abstract games.

Azul: Summer Pavilion is a spin-off game that adds a new twist on the old formula with very different player boards and placement scoring mechanics than the original game Charged with completing the summer pavilion commissioned by King Manuel I, players must draft coloured tiles from the factories, balancing the need to get the tiles they want whilst avoiding wasting resources. Players can then place the tiles on their individual boards, trying to place them in a way that accumulates the most points. Completely surrounding a pillar, statue, or window, earns a player some coveted bonus points. The player who earns the most points over the course of the game wins.

Chances are that if you enjoyed the original Azul, like us, Summer Pavilion will come as a welcome remix on the old formula. Azul: Summer Pavilion is currently part of our employee pricing promotion.

The Aquicorn Cove

Price: CAD $28.01
Players: 2-4
Ages: 10+
Playtime: 30-60 Min
Estimated Release Date: November 2019

Based off of the graphic novel of the same name, The Aquicorn Cove is a bright and colourful game in which player’s take on the role of residents in a seaside village struggling to survive while maintaining a balance with the natural world around them. Luckily, they have the help of the aquicorns - magical aquatic creatures committed to protecting the ecosystem of the reef near the village.

As a cooperative game, players will have to work together to rebuild their storm-ravaged village while also keeping the reef safe. These themes of sustainability and responsibility are one of the key reasons that this game piqued our interest this month. A strong thematic throughline often gives us a reason to return to a title repeatedly, and The Aquicorn Cove promises to present players with an intriguing dilemma to explore through gameplay.

And of course, if you are a regular reader our pre-order recommendation columns, you know we are a sucker for beautiful and original art design in board games - and in this regard, The Aquicorn Cove is a stand out. The game boasts art by Katie O’neill, the artist of the original graphic novel (for more examples of her art in board games, check out the adorable card game Tea Dragon Society) and the vibrant colours of the box art and components immediately promise the player a fun and wholesome experience. We look forward to cracking this one open.

The Aquicorn Cove  is currently part of our employee pricing promotion.

Dominations: Road to Civilization

Price: CAD $41.97
Players: 2-4
Ages: 13+
Playtime: 60-120 Min
Estimated Release Date: TBA

As far as game components go, there are few that are more venerable than the humble domino. There’s something satisfying about the weight of a domino in your hand and the clack as it hits the table. Dominations: Road to Civilization takes this classic component and gives it a new twist.

In this civilization building game, the triangular dominoes act as the tiles that make up the game board. Players take turns placing dominoes, constructing a web of societal development along which their respective civilizations will develop. Develop your knowledge in order to master new skills and build up your cities. Earn points along the way; earn the most to become the winner.

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Dominations’ primary appeal is its component design. Besides the triangular dominoes, the stackable city and monument tokens add dimension in the game, each stack a visual reminder of your success in building them. Not enough games take advantage of 3D space in their design, and a game like Dominations is a treat to behold when a session is in full swing.

Dominations: Road to Civilization is currently part of our employee pricing promotion.

Sleeping Gods

Price: CAD $87.95
Players: 1-4
Ages: 13+
Playtime: 60-120 Min
Estimated Release Date: February 2020

"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" ("In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits dreaming.").

Oh boy! Do we love ourselves some good old eldritch abominations. Board gaming and Lovecraftian horror have been steadfast fellows for many a decade, and if one were to look at the host of Lovecraft inspired games available today, they could not be blamed for assuming that every aspect of the cosmic horror genre has been done to death.

“Not so,” says Sleeping Gods

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As members of the crew of the Manticore, players must make their way across a strange land under unfamiliar stars, searching for totems of the gods that will get you home. A narrative game in the same vein as Red Raven’s other games, Near & Far and Above & Below, Sleeping Gods is filled with encounters, characters, and monsters for the characters to encounter. Moving around the map on their steamship, each island in this strange world holds secrets to discover.

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Sleeping Gods is also a campaign game, meaning that your game carries over from session to session. At the end of each session, you record your position and progression on your log sheet. Play for as long or as short as you want until you and your friends reach the end of the game. Can you and your ship find your way home, or will you and your crew sink beneath the waves like so many before you?

And feel free to check out the rest of our available pre-orders here.

(Note: The prices listed in this article reflect the price of each pre-order at the time of publishing, and may be subject to change. All release dates are estimates based on publisher information.)

Alex, Editor Errant
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