Please Note: The videos show prototype components. Art for ship mats, player mats, and cards is being updated - and ship miniatures will be painted - for the actual game. The pictures on this page are easy to update with the new art as it is completed. The videos, not so much.
I absolutely believe in this game and know that it will succeed if enough people hear about it. Please help spread the word through your favorite social networks (online or not) and Corsairs will not only succeed, but grow and improve to unimagined levels.
There have been a few changes (new box art, more miniatures, some rule tweaks) since these videos were made but they still provide an excellent overview of what you can expect from Shadowstar Corsairs.
"It is an absolutely fantastic space game, full of everything I want... "
~ Lance Myxter (Undead Viking)
"This is a game that has a lot going for it."
~ Ryan Metzler (Dice Tower)
"If you're missing a miniatures 4X space game in your collection I really think Shadowstar Corsairs is an excellent purchase."
~ Daniel Zayas (The Meeple Mechanic)
If you'd like to learn more about myself (Ryan Wolfe) and some of the thoughts behind the game, check out this written interview at iSlayTheDragon.com.
And here NVS Gameplays takes at look at the print and play version of the game:
$1 Digital Bonus Content: To thank everyone willing to join the campaign, even if it's just to watch, I will periodically provide links to free issues of "Future Armada" and my other digital products that detail the ships in the game. They were created with role-players in mind but should still be interesting to anyone who wants a look at the origins of the Shadowstar fleet. A link to an extra bundle of documents will be part of every reward when Shadowstar Corsairs is successfully funded.
$16 Just the Ships - Plastic: WinGo is going to make some extra ship sets just like what goes into the game box. These are injection molded grey plastic miniatures and they will be painted like the ones in the box, or you can get them unpainted if you prefer. The set will include one of each player ship: so either 6 or 8 miniatures. It does not include flight stands or ship mats, though clear acrylic hexagon stands are available as an add-on..
$64 The Game - Standard Edition: This is what it's all about! For this pledge you get one copy of the game, including all unlocked stretch goals, and my eternal gratitude for making this dream a reality.
$84 The Game - Exclusive Edition: This reward level is the Standard Edition described above, with the following additions:
Because I need some extra stock for replacements and returns, a very small quantity of these may eventually be available from me personally, but will never be available through distribution. The cards are a limited, but "normal" promotional item that may later be available for sale at conventions or through special outlets.
$160 Founder: All Founders get the Exclusive Edition of the game and can specify a name for me to use on the A side of a sector board (the B sides will have different art and my names). This could be a planet, star, etc.. . I reserve the right to refuse things that are too silly, trademarked, obscene, or that just plain won't work with the setting. You will also be listed in the rule book accordingly. If stretch goals unlock new ships and sectors, additional Founder and Captain levels may be added.
$200 Just the Ships - Resin: These are resin miniatures hand cast either by myself or the folks at Trollforged Miniatures. They are made from the same masters as the game pieces but resin is much harder (less rubbery) and holds detail better. These are also hand poured and cast rather than mass produced by a giant machine; then they are professionally painted to "showcase" quality by the artists at PaintedFigs.
No matter what stretch goals we hit, this pledge level will include all 8 possible player ships as well as the exclusive Tachikaze interceptor and the ConFederation Cruiser (10 miniatures total). All will be hand painted (if you prefer unpainted, contact me). Clear acrylic hex flight stands are included.
Below are samples of some of the ships, with more pictures in the PaintedFigs Gallery. I may adjust some colors or details, but these are representative of the quality.
$210 Captain: This is just like the Founder option listed above except that a Captain can name a ship!
I've set up Backerkit for pledge management once the campaign ends. Here in Kickstarter, pledge for whatever you like the most and then add money to cover any add-ons you want. A couple of weeks after the campaign ends, I'll send out the invites to Backerkit where you'll be able to specify exactly what the extra money was for (you can even add more if you want).
These are the add-ons that will be available to choose from in Backerkit:
- $64 - Standard Game
- $84 - Exclusive Game
- $16 - Just the Ships - Plastic
- $10 - Set of 10 clear hex flight stands for the plastic ships
- $3 - An extra pair of combat dice
- $200 - Painted resin miniatures (10)
- $100 - Unpainted resin miniatures (10)
Like the pledge, the plastic ship set will include all 8 player ships, plus a Cruiser and Alien Scout when we unlock that stretch goal. You will have the choice of which color scheme you want (the top or bottom rows in the Stretch Goal image) or you can get them unpainted. If you pledge for an Exclusive Edition of the game and add on a set of plastic ships, your set will include another Tachikaze miniature.
What about shipping costs for Add-Ons?
The games are shipped from China and have the shipping cost listed in the game pledge levels (free to US/UK/Germany/Canada, $15 to EU, $30 elsewhere). Up to three games can share shipping.
All of the other items ship from my house here in Pittsburgh and have the same shipping cost as the non-game pledge levels (Free to the US, $15 elsewhere). Up to six sets of non-game items can share shipping.
Note that if you live in the U.S. then you don't need to worry about this as there is no extra shipping cost for either games or miniatures. I know this is complex so please contact me or post a comment if you have any questions.
Shadowstar Corsairs combines quick tactical engagements, both in space and on the ground, with long term planning in a game of area control, resource management, combat, and diplomacy. A variety of ships is provided to support different strategies; mix and match to fit your goals. Each can be customized and loaded with crew, cargo, and heavy ordinance. Crew can also hold resource-generating locations on the board. The resources buy ships, supplies, and cards with powerful effects. Demonstrating technical savvy and political clout through the use of these cards and contracts increases your reputation, which earns commendations and victory.
During your turn you can move your ships and load cargo as desired. You choose from a set of predefined actions like enlisting recruits, negotiating for political favor, or buying new stuff; then you have the option of attacking any adjacent rivals. Combat is resolved with no more than a single card & die roll on each side and ships can usually survive an attack or two – giving you a chance to retreat, repair, or reinforce. If you do manage to lose your only ship, you’ll be given a replacement; but that’s not going to help your reputation any.
For more on mechanics, the 24 page rule book and single page reference sheet are available, both on my site and from the Shadowstar Corsairs page on BoardGameGeek. I've also put together a Print & Play version of the game, though it would be a herculean task to cut out all of those cards and tokens!
Shadowstar Corsairs is different in that it provides tactical engagements with a purpose in a larger context. These starships have more important jobs to do than simply destroying the other guy's ships - though that can certainly be a means to an ends. The game provides a rich and vibrant environment, and a variety of ships and situations, leading to interesting and dramatic outcomes. There is all the fun of tactical maneuvering, but with more depth and importance because it must be done within a larger strategic framework. You'll need to keep the bigger picture in mind to gain ultimate victory.
This is a half-hour long video I made to demonstrate the game, followed by a two minute wrap-up. Note that these are prototype components. I'll warn you that after watching the pros above, my video, while informative, is not quite as exciting. Maybe I need theme music...
Post-playthrough wrap up, quickly touching upon what wasn't covered above.
What About Shipping?
I will be using Amazon and a handful of other companies to get the games to where they need to be. Because Amazon has centers in Canada, the UK, and Germany, it is cheaper to ship to those countries.
I will be mailing the "Just the Ships" pledges myself, from home, using USPS First Class mail. That is why they have a different shipping price for international backers.
Why Back now?
- Shadowstar Corsairs will cost $74 for non-backers and won't be made available for at least a month after backers start getting their copies. That is for the Standard Edition and doesn't include any shipping. The Exclusive Edition won't ever be offered for sale through distribution or retail web sites.
- Backing right now is what gets the game made and it also helps unlock stretch goals for an even better experience. I can't do it without you!
Money Back Guarantee
If you don’t like it for any reason, you can return the game within 30 days of receiving it and I’ll refund you $64 or $84. You’ll need to provide the return postage (by whatever means you wish) so please take that into consideration, particularly if you are an international backer.
This really was a “one man project”, at least up until play testing and editing. I’m not a big company (I’m barely even a small company :) and there simply is no other way this game can be made. It’s been a long road – sometimes difficult, but always fun. This is my first game and it is truly the game I’d want to play. It’s not designed to maximize profit and the production costs are too high for retail distribution margins. You, the backer, are as important to this undertaking as I am and I am extremely grateful that you have taken the time to consider (and hopefully join!) this campaign.
Risks and challenges
I realize that it's always risky to bet on a designer's first game. I am hoping that my decades in the video and RPG game industries will help alleviate some of those fears (see my portfolio linked from 0-hr.com for details), while the provided rule book and play through videos will allay others. And if you change your mind, there is a money back guarantee.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (28 days)