Another round of thanks to our Backers, and for the nice email feedback!
The boxed game is on the way!
Final day of the KS :) A special thank you to all those who have backed Ortus Regni!
Backers of this campaign will be offered the game both for less and sooner (and with some extra love!) than anyone else. That will all be locked-in going forward, even “if” we don’t officially get funded today. Thanks (!)
>> Our first 3rd party review is out :) <<
>> Our first 3rd party unboxing video is out :) <<
Hi, my name is Jon Sudbury and I created the first prototype of Ortus Regni nearly a decade ago.
Playing Ortus Regni over the years—adding here, changing there—became my primary gaming activity. After several years my friends and I realized something important. We still wanted to play more Ortus Regni. Growing up as gamers we had, of course, played a nearly endless array of games, so when we noticed that we continued to find Ortus Regni fresh and challenging, year after year, we realized we were onto something good.
We expect to start shipping boxes off to supporters in SEPTEMBER!
Like all game designers I created this game to satisfy my own and my friends’ interest in gaming. I strongly encourage everyone with any interest in games to try their hand at making a homemade game. The journey and the process is incredibly rewarding. You will find that you enjoy the entire process, making the rules, fixing the rules, balancing and play-testing, everything. Do it!
Welcome to the Ortus Regni Kickstarter campaign!
(The boxed Ortus Regni card game is already in production!)
Players are great Earls vying to survive and ultimately control a kingdom that will become England.
The most unusual feature of Ortus Regni is its playing cards. There are 15 unique Earl deck cards. Each card has no text, no symbols, and no numbers. In fact, all of the cards in Ortus Regni are simply iconographic art. Our commitment to the look and feel of the game runs throughout its design. Earl cards operate in ways that are mated to their nature. For example, a Champion, a Market Town, or a Treachery card, just to name a few, each operate in ways that are tightly woven into their nature.
Despite Ortus Regni’s sophistication, this game plays quite fast and is straightforward to understand and play.
An iOS iPad Ortus Regni app is already in development. The core game engine has ALREADY been built on the Unity 3D engine. We are now integrating network functionality for multiplayer games. We will then polish the interface to meet the standard that we are setting for all Ortus Regni products. This is all being done by a professional app development house in Cambridge, Mass, with many successful apps under their belt.
This Kickstarter campaign is designed to help us recompile and PORT this Unity 3D Ortus Regni game engine into a DESKTOP app for Windows PCs and for Macs!
Because Unity 3D is a cross-platform development environment, such a port is well within reach and primarily requires some network and interface alterations. Help us bring Ortus Regni to these platforms:
The Late Anglo-Saxon era in English history is a time of warring Earls. Minor kings all, they claim whatever lands they can. They establish fiefs, cultivate powerful vassals, and fight and engage in endless political struggles. All the while, the Vikings roam not just the sea, but the land.
It is truly a Dark Age. Or is it?
This is Ortus Regni, “the birth of the kingdom.”
Lasting for 600 years, until the Norman Conquest of 1066, the Anglo-Saxon era decides the future of a great kingdom that will be called England.
The ancient world is dead. The world is reborn. Anyone can become a king through politics and diplomacy—or by the blade. And it is always, in the end, by the blade. Will it be you?
Ortus Regni is a unique closed-deck, deck-design strategy card game. Each player has a complete set of 15 unique Earl deck cards—with 6 of each card available to them—to build their gameplay deck of 24 cards.
The cards of Ortus Regni are governed by the same rules if you play a two-player duel, or a full six-player epic.
Who are your opponents, how do they typically play? How many other Earls are there in the game? Are you going to play for speed and strength? Are you going to wait for an opportune moment to use political suasion to win the game? Perhaps you might try to simply outlive your opponents, or maybe you will try to conspire with the Viking horde to vanquish your rivals?
Anticipating your opponents’ strategies when building your deck can lead to victory. However, events on the table sometimes take an unexpected turn. Fate may give you a lucky break or foil your early plans.
Ortus Regni can be rich in strategic depth, but the gameplay is also fast-paced, with moments of vulnerability (or opportunity!) arising from beginning to end. A game can end decisively very quickly, while a more epic struggle can play out over forty-five minutes, or longer. And then it is time to make a brand new deck, and win again :)
Ortus Regni was born on the tabletop, and that is truly its native environment, but we have also been hard at work making an Ortus Regni application. Currently the game’s core engine is functioning nicely in a beta iPad iOS app. We are aiming to faithfully echo the tabletop experience in the digital world.
The app—whether on iOS or the desktop—includes not only a faithful reproduction of the game but an easy and quick deck builder. You will be able to save your favorite deck styles. You will also be able to play in real time, or play a game of Ortus Regni like a long-term Chess match with friends, over several days!
(This video shows a beta of the game engine, using a "hot seat" play mode.)
Ortus Regni can, at first glance, appear daunting. But the game is straightforward in practice, while retaining a great deal of strategic and tactical depth. Once you familiarize yourself with the 15 unique Earl cards you are well on your way to playing Ortus Regni with the best of them :)
We designed the main rulebook to be an echo of the illuminated medieval manuscripts that inspired the game's look and feel.
Pages 14 and 15, from the Ortus Regni rulebook.
Pages 20 and 21, from the Ortus Regni rulebook.
Pages 32 and 33, from the Ortus Regni rulebook.
The Ortus Regni: Instant Earl Card Guide —-> Free Ortus Regni game aid app for your iPhone!
Not only does the Instant Earl Card Guide give you finger-tip access to a full “cheat sheet” glossary of all 15 Earl deck cards in Ortus Regni, but it also includes an instant Earl card scanner, through your iOS device’s camera!
Activate the scanner and move your iPhone in front of any Ortus Regni Earl card and it will instantly show you its entry in the glossary. No one has Ortus Regni cards yet, of course, but you can see it work quite nicely by downloading the free PDF of the Ortus Regni rulebook. Go to any page in the rulebook’s Earl Card Glossary (zoom into the page) and place your iPhone in front of a card on your computer’s screen. And it will work!
Of course it works best on our actual cards, but the scanner also works on the printed rulebook and, really, anywhere that you see an Ortus Regni Earl card (this version only supports the iPhone, but an iPad version is already in the approval process).
Ortus Regni is coming to the iPad, and because we are building our iOS app on the wonderful cross-platform Unity 3D engine, we realized that we should take advantage of that fact and port the game to a desktop application. The game already runs on a desktop, within the Unity 3D programming environment, and that is half the battle. Additionally, as we add polish to the user experience on the iPad, much of that love will translate directly to the desktop recompile! The same is true of all the work we are doing on the server side to support multiplayer networked play. Bringing Ortus Regni to more game spaces and environments is an opportunity that we do not want to miss.
Help us do this!
As an added incentive we are releasing a limited number of the debut printing of the boxed game of Ortus Regni to supporters. If we have enough support on this Kickstarter we can even pull more boxes off the factory line, to offer to more backers here! As we are currently in production.
The special debut retail price of Ortus Regni is meant to be enticing. The pledge levels here are even LOWER:
The desktop application will RETAIL for $9.95, but supporters of this campaign can secure their copy (on either Windows or OS X) for a pledge of $7.
The core Ortus Regni box, with two full Earl sets (2 players), all rules documents, and all game components, will RETAIL for the special debut printing price of $49.95. Supporters of this campaign can claim their copy of the core box for a pledge of $45, and that pledge level also includes a copy of the desktop software when it ships!
Both Ortus Regni boxed Expansions are also available at several pledge levels. Each Expansion box adds everything you need for two additional Earls (players). Ortus Regni Expansion boxes will RETAIL for a special debut printing price of $39.95. Supporters of this campaign can claim their copies for an additional pledge of $35.
We plan to release the desktop applications of Ortus Regni in November. This is what you will be officially supporting in this campaign.
We currently plan to ship boxes of the physical Ortus Regni card game to supporters of this campaign in September, less than three months after this campaign closes at the end of June. The boxed game is already in production!
Thank you for visiting our Kickstarter campaign! We hope you like what you see and pledge to support this project.
From the start we wanted Ortus Regni to live in both the tabletop and digital realms. It is nice to have a game that you like at your fingertips, digitally. This allows you to play the game with friends miles or continents away, or over an entire week without monopolizing the kitchen table! Not only that but there are positive synergies when both the boxed game and its digital offspring are developed and released together. We made a bold choice to do both, and you, as gamers, will now get a chance to see the results of our two efforts.
Thank you for your interest in Ortus Regni :)
- Jon Sudbury
Risks and challenges
Ortus Regni is a unique game. Our biggest risk was in making the choice that such a game would be appealing to you. While software development is not easy and has many inherent risks and stumbling blocks, the good news here is that the game's engine has already been built for use in our own (separate) iOS iPad app release.
That is to say that, the heart of the game is already functional, and we have a solid beta in Unity 3D. However, polishing a game's user interface is more art than science, and delays can occur. That said, we are committed to our iOS release, and the desktop app proposed here benefits from a good deal of synergy with that project.
The main unknown, in relation to all digital versions of Ortus Regni, resides on the server side. That is, how much added community, ladder, tournament, or game "timer" features, can we build into the game in 2014. These are extras, though, and we will build in as many as we can. However, networked play is what the server side is really for, and that will be included in any release.
If your main concern is with the reward levels that include a boxed (physical) copy of Ortus Regni (core or expansions) the good news is that this game is already in production. We have already passed through the snafus that are inherent to that process, and we've told the factory to "turn on the tap." True, even there, production errors can occur and shipping containers from China can add unexpected delays, but having Ortus Regni already in production takes some of the uncertainty out of the equation.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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