Recently, IDW Media Holdings (which owns IDW games) announced that it would exit the board gaming business. See here for official announcement. They were in the middle of fulfilling a few Kickstarters, but they did say they would finish those Kickstarters, so as not to leave their customers high and dry.
Although Vasel’s Law says that “a good game will always be reprinted”, here’s a list of some cooperative games you might want to pick up before IDW Games disappear forever. EDIT: Was Top 5, just added another to make a Top 6.
1.Batman: The Animated Series. Gotham City Under Siege
Batman: The Animated Series. Gotham City Under Siege is a cooperative dice game for 1-5 people. It made the 2nd place list on our Top 10 Cooperative Dice Games as well as our Top 10 Cooperative Superhero Games. It’s a dice game by Richard Lanius (of Arkham Horror fame) and Michael Guigliano. It has a real nice table presence with little cardboard buildings (see below) and some mechanics for going from buildings to the city.
Each player takes the role of some hero in the game (Batman, Robin, Batgirl, Commissioner Gordon), and each character has very different powers involved with the dice. It’s not just adding up dice, but activating special powers each turn to keep the crime under control. The game has been popular enough to spawn some expansions as well: Batman: Gotham City Under Siege – Masterminds and Mayhem Expansion (which adds more missions and a few new mechanics):
If you only pick up one game from IDW before they disappear, this is the one I would get! It’s thematic and fun! (Oh, pick up the expansion too!) [[ NOTE: There is also another game in this same universe called Rogue’s Gallery, but it’s not cooperative ]]
2. Batman: The Animated Series Adventures. Shadow of the Bat
We have to be careful here: Batman: The Animated Series Adventures. Shadow of the Bat (here) is a different game than Gotham City Under Siege (described above). Although they are both cooperative dice games, The Animated Series Adventures puts a little more emphasis on the adventure part of the game, and the game is a little more complex.
The game also comes with 2 modes: a one-vs-many mode (the 3-5 player game) and a fully cooperative mode(for 1-4).
This is one of those games that is still in the middle of Kickstarting! It was supposed to fulfill earlier this year, but as of the time of this writing, it still hasn’t made it to backers yet. Some online places, like Miniatures Market and CoolStuffInc have this available for preorder, so you might still be able to pick them up. You might as well pick up the Arkham Asylum expansion (see below) when you do (it’s going to disappear as well):
There were quite a number of expansions from the Kickstarter, but only the Arkham Asylum expansion seems widely available on major online sites.
Kevin Wilson (one of the designers of Shadow of the Bat) was a co-designer of Arkham Horror with Richard Lanius (one of the designers of Gotham City Under Siege). I guess to work on a cooperative Batman game, you had to work on Arkham Horror too?
3. Escape From 100 Million BC
This is a cooperative pick-up and deliver game by Kevin Wilson. It didn’t do that well when it came out, but me and my friends enjoyed our plays of it. It’s a cooperative exploration game in the jungles of the prehistoric age!
There’s some fun exploration mechanics as you run away or fight dinosaurs in this prehistoric world. It doesn’t look great on the table, but don’t let its looks deceive you! It’s pretty fun.
4. Planet of the Apes
This is Richard Lanius design (I am noticing a trend here: Richard Lanius or Kevin Wilson). It’s a wonky game (based on the reviews I have seen) and it supposedly tends to be on rails (following the plot of the movie), but there’s some really neat ideas here. Check out the Dice Tower review for more discussion. It’s a weird little game you should check out before it disappears forever.
Honestly, I just ordered it from Amazon! I have seen the reviews and have been wanting to pick it up for some time! I figure I’d better order it while I still can …
5. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
I freely admit I have never played this game and the theme does nothing for me. BUT, people really seem to like this game! Check out the coopboardgames review here! There is a ton of content for this game! There’s a Kickstarter bundle you can find on Amazon as well as “City Fall” (a standalone expansion) as well as tons of other stuff!
This game (also a Kevin Wilson game), is one-vs-many or fully cooperative (like Shadow of the Bat). Be careful not to confuse this game with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past, as Shadows of the Past is NOT a fully cooperative game! (It’s a one-vs-many only).
This one makes Honorable Mention because I just found out it’s an IDW game!! This cooperative game has always called to me: I love the art, that comic-book feel, and just the way it looks. I have seen some good reviews on it. I just never picked it up. I struggled to find this: I looked at all the main places: CoolStuffInc, MiniaturesMarket, FunAgain, and GameNerdz and no one had it. I finally got it for a decent price on Amazon and just ordered it about an hour ago. Don’t wait too long if this one interests you…