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Forlorn is a "Survival, Battle Arena" that is diverse and tactical yet brutal!
Forlorn is a "Survival, Battle Arena" that is diverse and tactical yet brutal!
187 backers pledged $16,640 to help bring this project to life.

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$16,640

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Forlorn is a "Survival, Team Strategy Board Game" that is diverse and tactical yet brutal.  Enter "The Guédé" a dark and unforgiving archipelago in the Western Atlantic. Control a small team of Islanders to compete in 1 of 4 different game modes including King of the Hill and Regicide.

Forlorn has been developed and tested for over 2 years with 100+ game testers.  Beta testing boards were shipped all over the country to different board game groups.  The groups submitted feedback, ideas and data for updates.  Through blind public tests and steady groups Forlorn underwent 8 major gameplay updates and 200+ minor balances.

Testers have consistently enjoyed:

  • Unique and savage gameplay that accelerates as the game progresses.
  • The strategic depth of each game.
  • The simplicity of the game not requiring dice, rulers and many calculations.
  • The variety of game modes, from the chaos of Last Man Standing supporting 8 players, to Team Capture the Flagon being dense in strategy.
  • Over 4000 different team compositions allowing for massive replay ability.

Discover lore, gameplay videos, tutorials and more information at ForlornTheGame.com

Survivors Kingfisher, Brad and Gavve trapped on the islands.
Survivors Kingfisher, Brad and Gavve trapped on the islands.
All of the components in one set of Forlorn.  The box in the bottom image is 1 ft. x 1.4 ft. for scale
All of the components in one set of Forlorn. The box in the bottom image is 1 ft. x 1.4 ft. for scale
Some of Forlorn's awesome testers playing games
Some of Forlorn's awesome testers playing games
Several of the Islanders so far.  As stretch goals are unlocked, more Islanders will be added to each game set!
Several of the Islanders so far. As stretch goals are unlocked, more Islanders will be added to each game set!

Here's a preview of Forlorn from Nick Meenachan at Board Game Brawl

 I interviewed board game enthusiast and Dice Tower Contributor, Rob Oren.

 Learn how to play Forlorn in this video.  Filmed and edited by Daniel Alexander and music by Simon Lacey

  • 1 - 24x28in (711x610mm) Hexagonal Playing Board. 250 gsm art paper laminated on 2mm grayboard (600gsm) 4C lamination
  • 32 - 5.4in x 3.5in (137x 90mm) Islander cards on 300gsm C2S art paper with 4C/1C varnish on both sides
  • 12 - 2.65n x 3.5in (67x 90mm) Sailor cards on 300gsm C2S art paper with 4C/1C varnish on both sides
  • 1 - 16 page full color rule book on gloss letter paper
  • 4 - Letter size Islander reference sheets on full color 250gsm cardstock
  • 88 - 0.9in (23mm) hexagonal tiles on 250 gsm cardstock + 600 gsm gray board (1.6mm thickness) matte finish
  • 1 - 87mm x 25mm diameter 3 minute hourglass with black caps

 Jane is Forlorn's 'Backer Exclusive Islander' and will only be in backers copies of Forlorn!  She is my way of thanking you for supporting Forlorn.

If you donate $1,000 to Forlorn I will turn you into an Islander.  Your character will be added to all game sets.  I would need a picture of you and a 1 page blurb about interests you have, so I can tailor your Islander.

I turned my friend Drew into a Islander for his guidance and outstanding feedback on Forlorn.
I turned my friend Drew into a Islander for his guidance and outstanding feedback on Forlorn.

Forlorn was originally conceived in a coffee shop in January of 2014.  Myself (Simon Lacey) and my friend Jack Stransky wanted a game that could have diverse brutal strategy and loads of replay ability.  We met several times in a period of two weeks and sketched out a number of ideas on letter paper that used savage strategy with an air of silliness.  This was the seed that became Forlorn.

After a long childhood of Warhammer and video games, I wanted a game that implemented skirmish strategy and a number of different game modes that I enjoyed.  I lived in Leadville, CO for a short time and was inspired by "Boom Days" a festival where a number of uranium miners blow up large rocks and get extremely rowdy. Forlorn's original name was "Boom Coast" named after the Boom Days.

I wanted Forlorn's artwork to be rougher than several of my last projects while still maintaining a memorable graphical quality. I ended up drawing and tracing the outlines of the characters with felt tip markers on rough paper to gain the edges that I was looking for.

The original drawing of "Flint" the marksmen
The original drawing of "Flint" the marksmen

 I then scanned these rougher images into my computer and colored the pictures in a cell style leading to the light hearted feel of the game.

Flint's final card image.  Find out more about him at ForlornTheGame.com
Flint's final card image. Find out more about him at ForlornTheGame.com

 As I was developing the artwork for Forlorn, Alpha testing had begun.  Forlorn's first game took around 5 hours went through five turns and basically nothing was accomplished.  With the mentality of "I'm glad this is happening now and not later" I began working on updates.  The first version of the game had dice, a monetary system, ambush creatures, different play style, rechargeable brine, everyone had two abilities etc...  It represented a video game more than a board game, it was clunky and difficult to manage.

This is a image of Marcus changing through several of the large updates to Forlorn.
This is a image of Marcus changing through several of the large updates to Forlorn.

 It wasn't until version 6 that I removed currency, dice and secondary abilities.  These changes made the game simpler and much more enjoyable.  Game times, and confusion decreased as satisfaction rose.  After several games on V.6 of Forlorn I finally realized that the game was coming into its potential.

I knew that I needed unbiased feedback to improve Forlorn.  I contacted members of the board game community, to ask if I could enlist their help. 

I began receiving emails from groups that were interested and excited to help in the development of Forlorn.  I began to hand cut, spray mount and ship boards to groups all over the county.  On top of the groups emailing me feedback I began to have open test nights at a local game shop "All About Games" in Boise.  I would set up and invite strangers to come play the game and receive their feedback.

It has been through the Alpha and Beta testers that the game has been developed and the best Ideas have come around.  The best tester has been Jen Roundtree, my partner, who at this point has put up with me through the whole process and played over 100 games. So to her and all my testers I have infinite gratitude and I dedicate this game!

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

Jen Roundtree, Drew Lorona, Dan Jacobsen, Jack Stransky, and my parents Martin and Jennifer Lacey

THANKS TO TESTERS:

Katie Pond, Jesse Carpenter, Sarah Jarczeck, Reid Frahm, Andy Dorr, Vivi Roesler, Eric Diamond, Suzie Walter, Caroline Rowley, Colin Courtney, Matt Koob, Amy Russell, Carly Baker, Tawny Asher, Jonathon Proue, Johnnie Naylor, Sam Johnson, Andy and Linda Roundtree, Carina Smith, Drew Long, Christopher Davis, Samuel Raasch, Colby Smith, Ryan Peterson, Paige Kercher, Alex Satterlee, Amy and Scott Peterson, Alex Lacey, Martin and Jennifer Lacey, Jack Stransky, Daniel Alexander, Nathan Feild, Nico Scott, Antony Brian Crosthwaite, Ellis Nanney, Karl Lungren, Daniel Jacobsen, Drew Lorona, Emily Struss, Justin Walker, To everyone who played in one of the Beta groups that isn’t mentioned, Everyone that played at ‘All About Games’ during open test nights, and my best friend Jen Roundtree

And thank you to all of my friends that have no idea why I play games but supported and inspired me along the way!

Building several of the Beta boards that were shipped all over the country.
Building several of the Beta boards that were shipped all over the country.
A couple tutorials that I have posted on forlorn's blog on how to draw Islanders
A couple tutorials that I have posted on forlorn's blog on how to draw Islanders

I was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia and moved around Canada as child.  It was not until my parents settled in London, Ontario that I began to grow and develop a friend group.  I loved games as a child, and began to mow lawns and spend all of my money on Warhammer and video games.  My friends and I made up dozens of games involving cap guns and running around the neighborhood to occupy ourselves during the summers.

When I was 14 my parents moved to Minnesota where I went from a school class of 14 kids that I had grown up with, to 600 kids in my grade.  It was a jarring move and I sunk into a depression.  I had low focus for school but did find solace in games and artwork.

At the end of high school I began to realize what I actually enjoyed in life.  Creating things and being challenged. If I was not being challenged I would not apply myself.  After graduating high school, I went to college at UW - Stout for Industrial Design.  

I worked my ass off for my major throughout college. I also love rock climbing and other high intensity activities so for my first senior project I worked to develope a new rock climbing camming device that I tested and was able to patent # 23598 through Wisys.  I graduated college in 2012.  At that time, the average Industrial Design related job received 200-600 applicants.

After applying to dozens of jobs with no avail, I moved to Kentucky to rock climb in the Red River Gorge. In addition I worked on building a house as side job.  I lived in a tent, climbed 5 out of 7 days, and ate out of dumpsters for around 6 months.  All good things must come to an end. I ended up crushing my finger in a wood planar (ouch!) and was done climbing for a while.

It was during this time that I moved to Leadville CO, and began to race long boards in the Mineral Belts.  I black topped a few driveways with some friends for cash, and crashed on couches. I also crashed a long board, shattering my wrist so that was the end of that!

When my stay was up in Colorado on couches, I moved into a horse pasture south of Jackson in Wyoming.  After waking up one morning in my summer sleeping bag in October, freezing, broke and with a thick cake of frost on my nose I tucked my tail and moved back in with my parents.

After two weeks I realized I did not enjoy living with my parents and moved in with a friend and got a job as a rock climbing coach.  I developed the curriculum for a team of climbers ages 12-18 who had learning disabilities.  Our team name was the Platypi after the patchwork animal.  Rather than having a regimented practice, the kids played fun team games I had invented that got them excited to climb and teach each other.  The team was a massive success, sending young kids to regional climbing tournaments where they competed in lead climbing and bouldering events.

It was during this time I became interested in "bodies of work" after obsessing over Brian Eno, and classical architects.  My first massive game project was Kandrite, which you can find on my Kickstarter profile.  After developing 30 species, 300+ drawings, and two years of work the game was unsuccessful in Kickstarter.

I slumped again and moved to Idaho chasing a Harlet who turned out to be engaged without telling me.  I ended up getting a job as a wilderness field guide, working 2 weeks camping with disgruntled youth and two weeks of freedom.

It was during this time that I met a funny girl named Jen Roundtree, who was a avid mountaineer and rock climber with a bizarre sense of humor.  I don't know how I swayed her, maybe it was my halloween costume (Seth Gecko from "Dusk till Dawn" with a fully operational Stake Jack hammer) or my odd personality, but somehow I wooed her. 

It was Jen, my schedule, my friends, and my testers that made Forlorn even remotely possible.  I write this in Boise with only a few days until my first game convention and launch party.

Thank you for reading!

Simon

 Stand for trees is a community of people who are taking action to protect forests and combat climate change.  I love stand for trees, and if Forlorn is successful I will be donating a portion of the proceeds to them to help counter act the production of the boards.

Filming, editing and testing by Daniel Alexander.

Music by NIN  "3 Ghosts I" , "18 Ghosts II"

Game development, artwork, animated portions of the film and music on the tutorial and gameplay by Simon Lacey.

http://kickingitforward.org

Risks and challenges

Currently I have two board game manufacturers lined up with quotes that are able to produce the games. I have four Manufacturing Liaisons that can assist me with needs through the Idaho Chamber of Commerce. I know several programmers within Boise that can program the Forlorn Islander Tracker application. I have a barcode and SKU ready to go for shipping with Amazon Fulfillment over several countries. Additionally, I have the support of friends and family who are helping along the way.

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    For $1000 I will turn you into an Islander trapped on the Guédé and your character will be added to all sets of Forlorn!

    Send me a picture and I will draw an Islander to your likeness and immortalize you as an Ogun on the Forlorn Archipelago. Additionally you will get a copy of Forlorn with all stretch goals.

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Funding period

- (31 days)