Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
Rise to power in the King's council. Weave your political web. Spread rumors. Get your archrival beheaded! It's been a good day!
Rise to power in the King's council. Weave your political web. Spread rumors. Get your archrival beheaded! It's been a good day!
413 backers pledged $27,961 to help bring this project to life.
Last updated

About

Council of Blackthorn - Power Grabs, Rumors, Beheadings! project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

Council of Blackthorn - Power Grabs, Rumors, Beheadings!

$27,961

413

See full review links below.
See full review links below.

The shipping rates for international backers has been reduced!  Please check out the new "International" pledge levels.

Council of Blackthorn is a board game for 2-6 players that plays in 45-90 minutes.  Players assume the role of a member of the king's council. Each player must build influence with the kingdom's four political factions by utilizing ally and building cards.  However, grabs for power may seem like treasonous acts to a suspicious king. Players will gain hidden treason points as they gain power. The most treasonous council member is beheaded! The remaining player that is the most influential member of the council wins the game.

Why choose Council of Blackthorn?

1. It has a unique game mechanic that requires players to build influence in one political faction so that cards played in a different political faction have increased powers and abilities. Simple mechanic - Deep strategy.

2. Players do not know who has scored the most influence points until the end of the game. Keeps everyone in the game!

3. One player gets beheaded for Treason at the end of the game. No one knows for sure who will get beheaded until the last dramatic moment of the game!

4. Scales from 2 - 6 players.

5. Beautiful high end art and graphic design.

6. Six different characters to play, each with unique powers that change your game-play experience.

Council of Blackthorn box
Council of Blackthorn box

You must use your influence with the nobles to help control the legion.  Your strength with the legions will secure your clout with the peasants and clergy.  You will leverage your popularity with the peasants to pressure the guilds.  And use your sway with the guilds to control the flow of gold to persuade the nobles.  All while deflecting whispers of treason from your fellow council members.

Example cards from the four factions
Example cards from the four factions

A game of Council of Blackthorn features long term planning as well as opportunities for tactical decision making.  It offers variable player powers for each of the council members and custom dice that represent the changing sympathy of the factions.  All of this combines to make a strategic balancing act that is different every time you play.

Council of Blackthorn components: 4 custom dice, 184 cards, 165 tokens, game board & more
Council of Blackthorn components: 4 custom dice, 184 cards, 165 tokens, game board & more

Pledge now to get Council of Blackthorn at a discounted price and to unlock extras not available in the retail version.

Council of Blackthorn is easy to play.  At the beginning of each round the faction dice are rolled.  Then each player takes a turn by:

  • Taking an Action (optional)
  • Playing a Card
  • Drawing up to their hand size
  • Scoring for Control

Here's an example of a card play:

After each player completes a turn the round is complete and a new one begins.

For more detailed information on how to play check out the rulebook here:

Or watch this great overview done by the Game Boy Geek, Dan King:

What are people saying about Council of Blackthorn?

The beheading mechanic is "freaking awesome!"  and the gameplay is "extremely simple" - NVS Gameplay

"This is a game that just totally hits on all the cylinders that I enjoy. The game looks absolutely beautiful. It is a game of negotiation... and setting traps. It is a very, very fun game." - Undead Viking

See his full review below:

"Council of Blackthorn has expertly captured the ups and downs of court intrigue and streamlined it in a game that plays surprisingly fast and takes no prisoners. I loved it and you might, too, if you don’t mind putting your neck on the line." - Father Geek

Read the full review here: Council of Blackthorn is Father Geek approved!

Council of Blackthorn is Father Geek Approved!
Council of Blackthorn is Father Geek Approved!

Check out the thoughts from Nick of Board Game Brawl starting at the 7:22 mark:

"Overall I really enjoyed Council of Blackthorn. It's a very simple... straightforward, streamlined game. But there's a good amount of bite with this game. You can never truly be sure who's head is on the chopping block and it provides this great sense of tension.  A fantastic game, one I highly recommend checking out." - Bower's Board Game Corner

Check out the full review here:

Still not convinced?  Why not try it out for yourself?  You can create a Print-and-Play copy of the game here:

Council of Blackthorn will retail for $50.  Your $40 pledge for the game will give you a 20% discount off MSRP as well as the game shipped to your door.  In addition, you will receive the stretch goals that are unlocked during the campaign that will not be in the base game box!

Add-Ons

+$10 Metal Right Hand of the King coin

Add $10 to your pledge and get a custom made metal Right Hand of the King token.  The 1.5" (38mm) coin will have an antique gold finish and the image of the ring printed on it. (Included in the Banker and Cavalry levels)

Right Hand of the King metal coin
Right Hand of the King metal coin

+$20 T-Shirt Add-On

Add $20 to your pledge and get a Great Northern Games t-shirt.  Available in adult sizes small, medium, large and extra large.  Vote on the design in a future update.

T-shirt design concept
T-shirt design concept

+$35 Extra Game Add-on

Add up to 3 more copies of the game for $35 each in the US or Canada.  Add up to 3 more copies of the game for $45 each in the UK or $55 each for EU countries or the rest of the world.

More add-ons are possible, but only with a large number of backers.  Stay tuned for updates.

Shipping

Your $40 pledge includes a portion for shipping and handling costs. For US and Canadian backers this means your shipping is completely included in your pledge.  For EU and backers from the rest of the world, KS will charge you extra for shipping when you make your pledge.

United States: Your copy will ship from the US. Free shipping is included.

Canada: Your copy will ship from Canada. Free Shipping is included.

United Kingdom: Your copy will ship from the UK. Add $20 for a single copy Earl or Banker level or $30 for the Cavalry level.

European Union: Your copy will ship from the UK.  Add $25 for a single copy Earl or Banker level or $40 for the Cavalry level.

Rest of the World: Your copy will ship from Canada.  Add $25 for a single copy Earl or Banker level or $40 for the Cavalry level.

At $20,000 we will send the game to printers to start manufacturing Council of Blackthorn. But why stop there?

 If we reach $25,000, all backers will get the Council of Blackthorn - Council Member Expansion Pack.  This includes 2 new characters and their tokens.  Backing on Kickstarter is the only way to ensure you get these characters.

Please note that all stretch goals may be mailed separately at a later date to avoid delays to manufacturing the base game.

Follow the project on Kicktraq
Follow the project on Kicktraq

Need an avatar for social media, Kickstarter and BoardGameGeek to help get the word out?  Here you go:

Risks and challenges

This is the 2nd kickstarter for Great Northern Games. Our first campaign for Noble Treachery was a success and we have a good understanding of the challenges and risks for completing this project.

As with any production process there is the chance the project timeline is delayed. However, we are mitigating this as best we can and we are highly motivated to get this game to you as quickly as possible. The game design is complete and the art and graphics are 99% complete. We are working with an experienced board game manufacturer who we have worked with before and are confident they will do a great job again. We may also ship the stretch goals separately to avoid any delays.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1

    Woodcutter

    Thank you for your support. You will be kept up to date with the project.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    21 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    Mercenary

    1 Great Northern Games t-shirt. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    5 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 40 or more About US$ 40

    Earl

    1 Copy of Council of Blackthorn and all stretch goals. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    197 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 40 or more About US$ 40

    Earl - International

    1 Copy of Council of Blackthorn and all stretch goals. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    37 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Banker

    1 Copy of Council of Blackthorn and all stretch goals. Plus 1 Right Hand of the King Token. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    107 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Banker - International

    1 Copy of Council of Blackthorn and all stretch goals. Plus 1 Right Hand of the King Token. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    25 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 90 or more About US$ 90

    Cavalry

    2 Copies of Council of Blackthorn and all stretch goals. Plus 2 Right Hand of the King Tokens. Shipping included for US and Canada.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    17 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (28 days)