It has dinosaurs!
Dinosaur Island is a brand new board game released today on Kickstarter by Pandasaurus Games. Created by the designers behind Dead of Winter and Titans of Industry comes this new worker placement game centered around dinosaurs! With a striking Technicolor 90s theme this game is out to turn some heads. The game can last between 60-150 minutes but the length is scalable regardless of player count. The game can be played by 1-4 players which means this awesome looking game will also be playable solo. Perhaps this will mean it will hit the table a lot more.
Update: Since the original publication of this article this Kickstarter has skyrocketed! It’s currently sitting at $205,000 with 19 days to go. The creators have added a huge number of really cool stretch goals and say they still have more to add if the pledge amount keeps increasing. The increase in pledges seems to have slowed somewhat but with 19 days to go and the end of campaign surge still to come I wouldn’t be surprised if this project jumps up even higher!
Dinosaur Island Board Game
Dinosaur Island requires players to collect and research DNA. Once fully researched it can be combined in the correct sequence to bring the dinosaurs to life. Once the attractions are in place players must work towards creating the most thrilling park for each season and attracting the most guests. Care must be taken though, guest safety is a priority and dinosaurs have a tendency to escape and eat everything in sight. So make sure enclosures are big enough and that there is enough security!
As play continues players can upgrade aspects of their park. A variety of choices are available from upgrading the dinosaur creation process to make it more efficient to opening new rides to keep visitors interested in your park when they aren’t looking at dinosaurs. Players are promised an overwhelming sense of pressure from season to season. The need to keep guests safe while still turning a profit every season will make for some interesting and difficult decisions in the game.
In addition to a completely scalable game length regardless of players, Dinosaur Island also boasts what is being called the Plot-Twist mechanic. At the beginning of every game 2 plot-twist cards are drawn which break the standard rules in a variety of different ways. This is designed to ensure that there is no way to memorise an optimal strategy and will help to keep the game fresh. Also it should help newer players to stay competitive against more experienced players.
It would be impossible to discuss this game without mentioning the artwork. It is incredibly striking! Personally I think it looks fantastic and it’s a big part of the reason I want this game so badly. However I have certainly seen some negativity towards the artwork already. The negativity seems to be from people who confess that they prefer more traditional art styles. The designers state on their Kickstarter page that they were aiming for something very non traditional. Specifically they name a comic called Paper Girls as a large part of the inspiration. It also invokes a lot of memories of Far Cry: Blood Dragon.
The Dinosaur Island Kickstarter smashed its goal of $15,000 in less than 4 hours! So with 30 days left to go at the time of writing if you want to pick up this game you can feel safe in doing so. Additionally all but one stretch goal has been reached, but that looks set to be reached within the next few hours. Only 2 pledge levels are available, normal and deluxe. The deluxe edition includes a handful of upgraded components along with a limited edition numbered box with metallic lettering. When the final stretch goal is met then there will also be dinosaur meeples included with the deluxe edition only! But the normal edition comes with a huge number of pieces already.
Pandasaurus Games are hoping to get the game out to backers by August this year. However they acknowledge that they will always choose quality over timeliness so if you are thinking about backing then be sure to head over to the Kickstarter page and read through the risks section. The game is fully designed and artwork is in place ready for production. However they still need to do some proof prints.
I am beyond excited for this game. I couldn’t back this fast enough! The artwork and colour palette have completely blown me away and I cannot wait to get my copy. The $25 shipping to the UK was a bit of a hard pill to swallow but a price I’m willing to play for what looks to be an epic game. Thoughts from early playtesters seem to be extremely positive so far so heres hoping August comes quick!
Be sure to let us know of any other cool Kickstarters or games we haven’t heard about or you’d like us to cover in the comments down below.