Casual Game Crowdfunding: Pirates, Wizards, Witches, and Microgames | Casual Game Revolution

Casual Game Crowdfunding: Pirates, Wizards, Witches, and Microgames

Dead Man's Draw

Great games seem to come out of the woodwork around the time of Gen Con, and this month is no exception. This month's roundup brings several great looking casual games, including a tabletop card game originally created for iOS and a new line of games that easily fit into your pocket.

Pack O Game

Pack O Game (Chris Handy) – This campaign is designed to launch a new line of micro games; all pocket sized and containing exactly 30 cards. Four games will be released with the funding of the campaign, while more games in the Pack O Game line can be unlocked as stretch goals. The four games are Hue, a tile laying game in which players build up sections of colors and at the end of the game score the three colors shown on their last remaining card; TKO, a two player boxing game; Gem, an auction game for 2-4 players; and Fly, a dexterity game where players drop fly-swatter cards onto tile cards and attempt to swat flies of the same colors or symbols.

Dead Man's Draw

Dead Man's Draw (Mayday Games) – Bringing a digital card game to the tabletop is Dead Man's Draw, a press your luck card game for 2 to 4 players. On your turn draw a card and either add a new card to the play area or collect the cards in the play area into your hand. If you draw a new card to the play area and it's of the same suit as a card already drawn, you bust and do not get to add any cards to your hand. This was Kickstarted previously by the game studio who created it for iOS, but now that an experienced tabletop publisher has picked it up, it's bound to see more success.

The Institute for Magical Arts

The Institute for Magical Arts (Dr. Finn's Games) – The head master of The Institute for Magical Arts has died. Vie to take his place in this two player game. Use magical tools and gain the trust of colleagues in order to win the vacancy. Players compete for institute cards, which are divided into two types: characters and tools. Both types of cards have victory points, but tools also include special powers to help you in your quest for promotion.

Nautilus Industries

Nautilus Industries (Lamp Light Games) – Take on the role of a deep-sea business owner in the world of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. Players send down mining machines into the ocean to mine for resources. Players may choose to only benefit themselves or take actions that mess with the plans of their opponents. Resources may be held or taken to market to be sold. When resources are sold, the price of that commodity goes down, but the stock of the company using the resource increases. When a company's stock value reaches the highest point, the game ends.

New Salem

New Salem (Overworld Games) – A new town is to be founded, New Salem. Hopefully, it will be witch-free. Players take on a hidden role as one of the founders, either as a puritan or a witch. Witches attempt to build businesses and buildings that will add a large amount of despair to the town, while the puritans try to add only a little or remove despair altogether. You secretly choose which buildings to play, passing the rest to another player. At the end of the round the buildings chosen are revealed. Knowing what buildings passed to you by your opponent gives you clues as to their true identity. Players also collect hope throughout the game and at the end of the round you can give your hope to a player you trust, who can use it to help your side. Hopefully, they really are on your side.


Fidelitas (Green Couch Games) – Players gain the trust of influential citizens, hoping to prove their worth as future leader of the city in this 2-4 player card game. Players attempt to complete hidden objectives, wield influence and maneuver citizens. The first player with a certain amount of victory points or the most points at the end of game wins.

Rogues to Riches

Rogues to Riches (Sam Fraser) – Players are given tool cards that they use to steal valuables. They can use the tool cards in any way they want, building up elaborate plans for heists, but they have to be able to convince their opponents that their plan is going to work. The valuables are stored in different locations, all of which have different obstacles and traps between you and your goal that you have to find ways around. Plus, the campaign has a very entertaining Kickstarter video.

Full disclosure: unless otherwise noted, we have not seen or played any of the above games. Our assessment of each is based on the information given on the crowdfunding project page.