Are you ready for some... dungeoncrawling?
Semifinal Fantasy is a 2-8 player mashup of fantasy sports and dice-based dungeon adventure games.
In Semifinal Fantasy you are a villager, hanging out in your local tavern, betting on which band of merry adventurers will survive each path of a dungeoncrawl. You will pick your adventurers, spend your coins to boost their stats, and then sit back and watch as the dice determine their fate in the old Bracket Dungeon. You'll also place bets on your favorite groups, trying to gain complete sets of Red, Green and Purple coins. In the end, all of your adventurers may be dead and gone, but you can still be the king of Semifinal Fantasy!
Once you get into the Dungeoncrawl phase, groups will roll dice to compete in a variety of trials. They'll compare results and the winning group scores coins, and the adventurer that contributed the most scores extra coins. These can be used to boost and bet in future rounds, or hold out for endgame scoring.
After 3 sets of trials, the game is over and the player with the most points wins.
The game consists of 9 pages that are used for each game session. Print them each time you play, or laminate them for endless replayability.
- 4 pages of player tableaus
- 4 pages of adventuring teams
- 1 page with the bracket and alternate adventurers
Plus 2 pages of rules that you will only need to print once.
You will need to provide one (or preferably two) set(s) of polyhedral dice, and something to write with.
Black and White Version
If you want to save on ink, this is the way to go. Old school and bare bones. It's just black ink on white paper, and you can print at Kinko's for like 5 cents a page or on your printer that is likely going to be out of ink any minute now.
Lite Color Version
This one has just the essentials. Colors separating the 3 types of trials (Speed, Power and Intelligence). It holds your hands and guides your eyes a little, allowing you to focus on the important things (like making sure anyone other than your brother ends up winning the game).
Full Color Version
If you actually have color ink in your printer (I don't believe you, but it was a good try), this is the full deal. Full color pages that both guide the eye and define the characters. It's an impressive layout when the entire table is covered, and feels like First Class Semifinal Fantasy.
What else is there to say?
Let's see. This game started out as a massive big box prototype at Unpub 4 back in 2014. The name was Fantasy Fantasy, perhaps the most perfect name to ever exist. From there myself and Luke Peterschmidt of FunTo11 discussed some options with the game (merging concepts with a game that he was working on) and a few publishers took a look at it. Eventually I set it aside as things for Button Shy were ramping up, and the price point was just too high. The game used almost 200 coins, and had 8-16 different tableaus. It was ambitious, but it felt right. The game was about big crunchy stats, mixed with big hinging die rolls, and deep competition mixed with an odd sense of collaboration. But it would have a $60-80 price tag, and I couldn't pull that off.
Fast forward some time and JR Honeycutt and Daryl Andrews release their game Fantasy Fantasy Baseball. The most awesome name of all time was no longer an option. I simply waited too long, and it happens. Sometimes it's crushing and other times you can turn it around into something even better, which I was able to do here.
It took a LONG time, but Semifinal Fantasy clicked one day and it clicked in a big way. I now prefer it to the original name, except it's just missing the sass of the original. But it's here and here to stay. Once the name was back in place, I was motivated to get this back on the table and featured it at the Granite Game Summit in late 2016. It was still the big massive version, and I considered just making it a con game. I'd run it at cons and it would be a great time, that nobody could afford to reproduce at home. But is that a bad thing? I'm not so sure. I still love the idea of a con only game, and this one is ripe for it. Anyway, Granite Game Summit was awesome, and the game went over very well. I was happy to get it moving again.
Come along 2017 and roll & writes are everywhere. It's a design space that I love, since you can easily get it to the table with little other than the paper, pencil and some dice. Semifinal Fantasy crossed my mind as a possibility to reduce the component count. When I actually started on it, I realized how much it fit, not only mechanically, but also in theme. Old school fantasy football drafts on paper, and classic roleplaying character sheets were a big inspiration.
That brings us to today, Black Friday 2017. What better day is there to release a football-inspired budget conscious game?
Risks and challenges
This is our first time making a roll and write game. We want to make sure the files are perfect for printing and delivered properly. As with any campaign, it's a challenge to wrangle everything (messages, comments, and fulfillment), but we've done it many times before.
All previous campaigns are fulfilled, with the exception of HeroTec which is in pre-production at this point, but is on schedule as planned.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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