Time flies by, and we are deep into the play-testing of the 5th expansion for Terraforming Mars. That was just a tease, we’re not going to say anything more about the Turmoil expansion now. Oh, did I say that out loud? Oh well, now you know. Turmoil will probably be the only addition to Terraforming Mars in 2019, as we have more projects in our pipeline that need some love. 2 of them will be briefly described in our second newsletter, which will be sent out in a week or so, so please subscribe if you haven’t done so yet.
In Essen, we released the third extra character for After the Virus, our zombie card game. It is now available as a printable pdf in the side menu of its After the Virus game page but here it is in all its glory:
Starting with the tunnel in play, Bill can make really good use of persons in the deck. Saving survivors is a thrill, almost too easy. But having all those persons in play means your deck is quickly running out, and will soon be overrun by zombies which you’d rather have outside the tunnel. As stated, this is the third new character for After the Virus, the other two being Angela and Mac (also available from the game page). With a total of 7 characters, you’ll have many hours of joyful zombie-maiming action and desperate escapes as you complete the campaign with each one. Which one do you prefer? Which one is the best? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this.
Thank you for this year, we hope you’ll continue to follow us as we enter 2019. But first, let’s take a long and jolly Christmas break to play some games with friends and family 🙂
Terraforming Mars is very much about colonization, futuristic technologies and settings, but we also believe people will bring society into the solar system, and the Colonies expansion gives us another chance to include mundane ideas that nevertheless are bound to follow humanity wherever we go. For example, species that are introduced on Mars will be chosen for their usefulness, resulting in a different ecosystem than those on Earth. Some animals that are quite common here, like horses, will be rare on Mars, even exotic! So why not ship some exotic animals to Mars to show them off for money in a Zoo? Having good connections on Earth will allow you to use taxpayer money to fund this and other projects. Your increased influence might even be enough to appoint the Luna Governor, with the power to get you through all the red tape of shipping animals.
The Zoo is giving animals a new role on Terraforming Mars as cash-cows. This will give the player new ways to consider Earth cards which are usually best to play as early as possible. But now you’d like to get the Zoo out first, but that requires a couple of cities in play…
It also gives you a new interesting option for animal shipment cards such as Large Convoy: do you save them for late game animal points, or do you send them to the Zoo as soon as possible to enhance your engine?
One thing is for sure – corporate monkey business has never been so profitable!
Terraforming Mars app is live!
The PC version of Terraforming Mars is live on Steam now. We are very thrilled to be able to play the game with each other, even though we all live in different Swedish cities. In fact, we’ll start one right away. Cheers!
With a focus on trade and colonization of small worlds throughout the solar system, the Colonies expansion for Terraforming Mars naturally features some titanium-producing cards. Not only can titanium be used for lauching your trade fleet, it is also highly useful for building all space infrastructure. Triton is therefore sure to get attention when in play. Trade with it before the competition takes the bounty – or establish a colony to leech off of them even when they beat you to it!
Titanium can also be found on Saturn’s moon Titan, where your shuttles can lift it into orbit, or deliver it to various atmospheric projects.
But you don’t have to go that far though to find titanium. Suitable ship-building materials are found right here on Earth, but are just too expensive to get into orbit in larger quantities. Building a Space Elevator on Earth might change that, and even though some consider the challenges too great, the rewards are more than worth it. The whole of humanity will thank you!
Considerably cheaper, but less glorious, would be to mine the moon.
Making Lunar Mining efficient will require some Earth tags, but in our next update you’ll be happy to meet the man for the job: the Luna Governor…
In the Colonies expansion for Terraforming Mars, players can send their trade fleet to distant worlds and bring home valuable goods. The colonies of Titan specialize in producing floating infrastructure – floaters! So what are floaters used for? If you’re familiar with the Venus Next expansion, you’ll know that floaters are indispensible for colonizing the clouds there, making for excellent interaction between these expansions. But Colonies is also ripe with floater cards. Titan has a suitably dense atmosphere, but so do Jupiter and Saturn, and the Jupiter Floating Station is just begging for some help in its construction and expansion so that it can yield a good profit.
There’s just one catch – you need some serious technological advancement in order to colonize Jupiter itself, what with the strong radiation and violent storms (and no place to land). The best way to solve this issue is of course to develop Floater Technology, both supplying the know-how (science tag), and floaters if the Titan colonies are not available to do it!
Of course, these are just ways to get the Floating Station going, but it can just as well be used to support other floater projects in the outer solar system, such as the Jovian Lanterns. It is also one of the cheapest Jovian-tagged cards at only 9 M€, making it extra valuable in combination with one of the Jovian-scoring cards from the base game.
We are already working hard to get all details ready for the international games fair Spiel’18 in Essen, Germany, which is at the end of October. We hope to see you there! Our booth number is 3-O103, close to where we’ve been all these 7 years since we started FryxGames. Our new items this year are of course the 2 latest expansions for Terraforming Mars: Prelude and Colonies. We will also sell the promo pack, containing all 10 promo cards released thus far for the game, including the 3 corporations from the BoardGameGeek contest.
This is the price list for Essen this year:
Terraforming Mars: 55€
TM: Hellas & Elysium: 20€
TM: Venus Next: 25€
TM: Prelude: 20€
TM: Colonies: 30€
TM: Promo pack (10 promos): 8€
After the Virus: 25€
Fleets (few left): 50€
Space Station: 20€
Brawling Barons: 5€ / deck
All items can be pre-ordered for pick-up at Essen. Just e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org, give us your name and the items you want to pre-order.
We have set up an e-mail list for our newsletter, which we aim to send out every three months. We want to send the first newsletter this week, so be sure to subscribe to it by clicking here.
Terraforming Mars Digital App
Soon you will be able to play Terraforming Mars on your digital devices! Although the launch has been postponed to late September or early October, things are falling into place and we look forward to the full release with great anticipation! To learn more, visit the app on Steam by clicking here.
The image used on the Colonies box. Image by Isaac Fryxelius.
Prelude has arrived from the factory, and will begin to sell shortly. We have just enough time to pre-release it in the cities in Sweden where we live, THIS WEEKEND. So here comes some short information about the whereabouts of the pre-release events.
In Trelleborg, Enoch hosts the event at Seriecentrum (address Hedvägen 155). The event starts at 14:00 on Saturday, July 28th.
In Stockholm, Jacob hosts the event at Dragon’s Lair (Sveavägen) on Sunday at 14:00.
In Karlstad, Jonathan hosts the event at Karlstad University, House 12 at 15:00, also Sunday.
In Linköping, Daniel hosts the event in the Studiefrämjandet premises (address Platensgatan 25) on Monday at 18:00.
The events should be long enough for visitors to try the game with Prelude. We will have discounts for expansion packages and will also have the promo cards for sale.
The upcoming Prelude expansion to Terraforming Mars gives the corporation a substantial starting boost, but it also comes with 5 brand new corporations to play! In the early days of Martian colonization, Point Luna had a perfect situation to leverage – the largest space port on Luna. By offering efficient resource relocation from Earth to Mars, they could partner up in a variety of terraforming projects. This is simulated by their ability to draw cards whenever they play an Earth tag. You may not have much control of what you draw, but the variety of cards you’ll be sure to get will offer many interesting opportunities for you. In order to do well, though, you’ll need to play multiple Earth projects. Many of them are the space events that Point Luna specializes on – shipping resources to Mars, using the titanium from their Lunar mining operations.
Another early competitor is Robinson Industries. Being founded by early terraforming pioneers, Robinson Industries works with a variety of projects, and has a holistic view of the process, involving every aspect of the colonization. In the game, they have a really cool ability to reflect this: once per generation, you can pay 4 MegaCredits to increase your lowest production! This is a good deal for any resource, but really excellent for titanium and plants. As Robinson Industries, you can start off by increasing one of those, or energy or steel if that is needed more. You have great flexibility, but also have to use some strategy to maximize this ability in the long run…
Then we have Arklight, a species preservation organization that offers much needed diversification of the emerging Martian ecosystem. With sponsors at their back (MC production), they gain a VP for every pair of animal or plant tags they play. But wait – that is not the Prelude icon on the side of the card! Oops, it seems we just spoiled a card from the upcoming Colonies expansion as well.
For anyone interested in the digital app for Terraforming Mars, Asmodee Digital has released a teaser trailer for it on youtube, which we present below:
We greatly look forward to the release of the app.
Meanwhile, we’d better put our heads together to survive the zombie apocalypse in Jacob’s new game After the Virus. If you haven’t played it yet, make sure to check it out here and on BoardGameGeek, and if you want to see it played, Jacob has been recording some play-throughs to help people get into the game. If cooperative games aren’t really your thing, make sure to stay tuned for next week’s update, where we introduce a new game mode for After the Virus 🙂
The next expansion for Terraforming Mars is Prelude, scheduled for release summer 2018, with a pre-release at Origins.
Prelude is a small expansion that lets you kickstart your terraforming! It focuses on the early stages of Mars colonization and tells the background story of the corporations. When choosing corporation and starting hand, each player also draws 4 Prelude cards, and chooses 2 of them to boost their corporation. The expansion opens up powerful starting combos and increases player asymmetry.
During this last fall, FryxGames and BoardGameGeek held a joint contest where BGG users could submit ideas for new corporations in Terraforming Mars. We had not anticipated that more than 300 entries would come in! After many considerations, 3 winners were selected and playtested in the BGG community. After some modifications and refinements, we are now able to present our final winning corporations!