About this project
Welcome to Ursa Miner where it’s time to dig into Mount Honeycomb! Mine deep into the mountain to find delicious honey and add more bears to your team. Keep an eye out for valuable royal jelly along the way - whoever mines the most will be crowned ruler of the mountain! Hurry though, because time is short, and once the mountain crumbles, it’s time to go home. You’ll need to use your equipment, navigate dangerous honey-slides, and push around other bears to rule Mount Honeycomb!
Ursa Miner is a game for 2 to 4 players, ages 8 and up, and plays in 30 minutes or less. In Ursa Miner, each player represents a team of honey-mining bears working together to explore the riches of Mount Honeycomb. Each turn, players can have each of their bears perform two actions: moving to an adjacent hex, and working together to mine adjacent tiles.
Tiles are worth honey, which are used to buy more bears and play bonus cards, or royal jelly, which are used as victory points. As bears mine deeper into the mountain, the tiles will become more valuable, but also more difficult to mine.
Players draw bonus cards at the end of each turn which can move tiles and bears around the mountain, and foil your opponents' plans. When the deck runs out, the game ends, and the player with the most royal jelly wins!
Check out the gameplay video below to listen to the rules and watch how a game of Ursa Miner plays out.
Ursa Miner comes in a beautiful box featuring original work from our artist and graphic designer. Each copy of the game contains the following components to support two to four player games:
- 36 iIllustrated outer mine tiles (brown)
- 18 illustrated middle mine tiles (gray)
- 6 illustrated inner mine tiles (black)
- 5 honey bear meeples (yellow)
- 5 brown bear meeples (brown)
- 5 black bear meeples (black)
- 5 red panda bear meeples (red)
- 20 poker-sized bonus cards
- 1 glossy rulebook
Now that we know we will be bringing Ursa Miner to you, we're excited for some stretch goals to enhance your game play experience.
$15,000 Screen Printed Bear Meeples (UNLOCKED): We know many of you are already excited to be using bear meeples; now, you can look forward to bear meeples with character! Each of the four teams of bears will come with unique, screen printed printed features to add a little personality to your team of honey-mining bears.
$16,000 Special Meeple Shapes (UNLOCKED): Each of the four types of bear meeples will have a unique shape highlighting their team's characteristics and equipment. To be honest, we really just couldn't say no to making cute red panda meeples!
$18,000 Bonus Special Effect Tiles (UNLOCKED): We'll include 4 bonus mountain tiles that can be used for special effects in the game. One side can be used to show where volcanic activity has occurred in the mountain, either covering or connecting parts of the mountain. The other side can be used for change when buying new bears!
$20,000 Player Reference Cards (UNLOCKED): Each game will include four unique backstory/reference cards in the box. How did the red pandas end up mining honey in the first place? Plus, these cards should make it even simpler to go through your first few turns, AND keep track of where all your meeples go!
We've added everything we can think of to the game, so we decided to make some last-minute goals to thank our backers!
$22,000 Livestreamed Backer Party: If we raise $22k, we will livestream a party which includes a reading of EVERY backer's name (rather than just the HONEY tier backers), and a chance to hang out and ask us any questions you can think of as we teach and play the game. We'll be working with all of you for the next several months, and would love a chance to get to know you better!
$24,000 Exclusive Stickers/Tattoos: If we hit $24k, we'll have doubled our funding goal! To celebrate, all backers who are receiving a copy of the game will receive Kickstarter-exclusive Ursa Miner tattoos or stickers. We have maybe .2oz of weight left in our domestic boxes, so this is the heaviest extra we could still give you!
"[Ursa Miner] illustrates that even in the ever-growing field of quick and casual, there’s still plenty of room for a well executed tile game that’s small on time commitment and big on flavor . . . Ursa Miner’s appeal resides just as much with an endearing theme, adorable artwork, and the age-old tactile pleasure of navigating a continually shrinking board state. If you’re seeking a sweet little half hour tile game, you can’t go wrong checking out Ursa Miner" - Ryan LaFlamme of Cardboard Republic, read the full review here!
"Ursa Miner is a neat little tile-mining game that's fun and easy to learn, got an awesome theme, and plays quickly . . . There’s a lot of variety for a small game and I can see this being a fun game to try and get people into games with more complexity or a good, solid way to start a game night." - Eric Yurko of What's Eric Playing, read the full review here!
"This is a cute family game . . . certainly we enjoyed it and [my son] Ethan has asked to play a few times." - Ed Baraf, designer of Lift Off!, in a video review below:
"Quick, thinky, charming, and strategic!" - Travis Chance, Action Phase Games, designer of Infamy and Heroes Wanted
"Very light weight tile removal game about bears mining honey from a mountain. Cards that greatly manipulate the turns you can take. I loved this game, and hope I can buy it one day." - BGG User, covering his GenCon highlights
We are proud to be working with LongPack Games to manufacture Ursa Miner - the successful manufacturers of many Kickstarters including Unfair, Planetarium and Vault Wars. Based on their quotation and timeline, we will be able to get Ursa Miner from China, to Baltimore, and out to YOU by the end of December.
For backers in the United States, we will be mailing the game to you through USPS. Single games will be shipped by first-class mail (~$5), and multiples will be sent in a flat rate medium box (~$12, but you pay only $10!) up to a max of 5 games total. Please message us for directly for retail pricing and bulk orders.
For international backers, as a result of all your encouragement and support, we have set up two flexible, international-friendly shipping options to bring the game to you: BEAR-BONES and BEARLIFT!
The BEAR-BONES tier is our cheapest option, and ships right to you from the US. Since Ursa Miner is $24, it is just under the 22 euro customs threshold, and we do not expect you will be hit with additional charges in most countries when you receive the game. If you want complete assurance that you won’t be charged custom fees, however, we recommend using the BEARLIFT tier instead. The BEARLIFT tier comes with an "international-friendly" guarantee that the game will arrive at your doorstep with no further VAT or customs charges, while the BEAR-BONES tier offers no such guarantee.
In most cases, we recommend the BEAR-BONES tier for international backers. For certain cases, we recommend choosing the BEARLIFT tier. If you are in a country like the UK, France, Greece, Sweden, Denmark or Romania which has a lower or no VAT threshold, BEARLIFT is a safer option. If you are interested in multiple copies, the value of your package is more likely to hit a VAT threshold, so we would recommend BEARLIFT for you too. Finally, if you just want to pay and remove all uncertainty, the BEARLIFT tier is a great choice!
We recognize this choice adds a little complication to your pledge, so please feel free to message us if you have any questions and we'll help you out! We are so appreciative to all of our international backers who have provided us their feedback, support and patience as we figured out shipping. We can't wait to get you a copy of Ursa Miner! Special thanks to Kim Brebach of the MONSTROUS campaign, who used a similar approach to shipping.
BEAR-BONES Shipping Fees
For backers in Canada, shipping is $10 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $5 for shipping to your order ($29 total for each additional game).
For backers in Australia and New Zealand, shipping is $12 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $6 for shipping to your order ($30 total for each additional game).
For backers in the European Union/United Kingdom, shipping will be $12 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $6 for shipping to your order ($30 total for each additional game).
For backers anywhere else in the world, shipping will be $12 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $7 for shipping to your order ($31 total for each additional game).
BEARLIFT Shipping Fees
For backers in Canada, shipping is $16 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $5 for shipping to your order ($29 total for each additional game).
For backers in Australia and New Zealand, shipping is $19 for the first game. For each additional copy of the game after the first, up to a max of 5 games total, please add $24 for the game plus $6 for shipping to your order ($30 total for each additional game).
For backers in the European Union/United Kingdom, shipping will be $19 for the first game. For a second copy of the game, please add $24 for the game plus $5 for shipping to your order ($29 total for the second game). For each additional copy of the game after the second, up to a max of 5 games total, please only add $24 for the game. Shipping for games #3-5 is free!
Room and Board Games is a collaboration between two MIT roommates turned game designers, Eli and Mike.
Eli Kosminsky is a game designer and educational game developer who now lives in San Francisco, CA. Previously, Eli ran Boston's largest group of tabletop game designers, the Game Makers Guild, to whom he owes much of the success of Ursa Miner. He was also the Executive Producer of New England's largest celebration of indie games, both physical and digital, the Boston Festival of Indie Games.
Mike Batista is a game designer and entrepreneur in Baltimore. There, he runs Quantified Care, a health care startup, and is an editor at Medgadget, a medtech blog. He runs a local team of Magic: the Gathering players.
Anthony Amato is our awesome graphic designer, who pieced together our box, cards and campaign. He is one half of Cardboard Fortress games, creators of successful Kickstarter projects including RESISTOR_ and Lazer Ryderz! Check out his portfolio here.
Michelle Ran is an illustrator who did the beautiful card, box and tile art you see here! You can find more of her work here.
We are so thankful for the community support we’ve received while making Ursa Miner. This game has been our baby since 2013, and we really appreciate you helping it grow up. Even if you can’t spare the money to back, sharing our project on social media would be a big boost for us.
Special thanks go out to Nicole Kline and Anthony Amato for providing us with love, time and housing as we shot our video. We also appreciate Aerjen Tamminga, of Aerjen Games, for his consultation leading up to the campaign. And many thanks to the people who looked over our page before it went live, including Chris Cieslik of Asmadi Games, Jon Ritter of the Dragoon team, and JR Honeycutt of SeaFall. Thanks to our close friends for getting us through the stress leading up to launch and helping wherever they could: Zinnia Xu, Julia Zhu and Griffin Milsap.
Risks and challenges
Ursa Miner has been played hundreds of times, and the artwork is nearly complete. The biggest risks at this point are manufacturing delays. We are excited to be working with an established manufacturer on this project who we expect will stay on schedule. All estimates they’ve given us suggest we’ll be able to get you your games by Christmas, which is what we aim to do, though unexpected delays could occur.
This is the first board game we’ve produced, so there may be surprises for us along the way. Fortunately, we’re surrounded by successful folk to help us out - Eli headed up the Boston Game Makers Guild, Boston’s largest group of tabletop game developers, and everyone there has been very helpful so far. In his other life, Mike has run a successful crowdfunding campaign for his start-up, so we feel up to the challenge. Our graphic designer Anthony Amato also has two successfully Kickstarted games under his belt.
No matter what, we promise you frequent, transparent updates as we progress! We love details (that’s why we make games), and are excited to share them all. We’ll keep you updated as we receive proofs, prototype copies and shipping notifications.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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