Sierra Madre Games presents the long awaited new redesigned editions of Neanderthal and Greenland by Phil Eklund. The first versions were released some years back and both sold out in the space of a few short months. Ever since, the games have been very difficult to come by. Phil is now hoping to release second editions of these games via Kickstarter, so that more people will have a chance to experience them.
Greenland and Neanderthal constitute defining games in Phil's "Dominata" series. Important episodes in the evolution of humanity are recounted through ingenious design and in the text on the cards the latest scientific discoveries are used.The games have been described by many players as some of the most content-rich games to come in such a small box.
Humanity's evolution as a species has accelerated over the last 30,000-40,000 years in a manner unparalleled in the evolution of life on Earth. What triggered this change? Genetic mutation? Probably not. Our brains and anatomy have remained relatively unchanged for 4 million years. An encounter with different hominid species? Perhaps...
As a player, you will play through the critical epoch during which this change occurred. After millions of years of an uninterrupted, modest nomadic existence, we suddenly developed complex language, began forming tribes and building villages. You play as one of the human species existing at that time. The game system enables you to follow your tribe's evolution as well as that of the environment in which you live.
There is a link between Neanderthal and Greenland. The time at which Neanderthal plays out coincides with the time when human migration west and east separated humanity in two. Those who travelled west populated Europe, whereas those migrating east populated Asia and ultimately the Americas. These two waves of migration eventually crossed paths. The first time this happened was on the inhospitable island of Greenland about 1,000 years ago, when the Vikings met the Tunit people.
In Greenland, much like in Neanderthal, you get to play through a momentous period of human history. You play as one of the peoples who attempted to colonize Greenland during the Middle Ages. This version of Greenland also includes the little-known Sea Sami expansion pack. The Sea Sami are a playable tribe in the game, which means Greenland can be played by 1-4 players.
The underlying game mechanics of Greenland and Neanderthal are quite similar. Both are card-based games where your cards are positioned in front of you in a tableau representing the progress of your people or tribe.
The games advance with Event cards that affect the environments in which the games unfold. These cards also present crucial external possibilities. In Neanderthal this is represented by Daughters; women able to develop the language and, later on, the structure of your Brain. Merchant Ships serve the same purpose in Greenland and offer powerful artefacts for those who can afford them.
When it's the players' turns after an Event, they plan their actions by placing Hunters on the game board. The game board is a dynamic suite of cards placed in two rows.
The common cards in Neanderthal represent northern and southern Europe, whereas in Greenland they represent northern and southern Greenland.
A variety of fauna or objects are specified on the common cards. By placing several Hunters on the same card, you increase your chances of a successful hunt or extracting the resources offered by the card.
You roll one dice per Hunter. The card specifies how many successful dice rolls you require in order to obtain the resources offered by the card. If you are very successful and obtain the same result many times over, you are able move the card to your tableau and gain a long-term advantage.
By building up various advantages, you will be able to affect the dice roll for your Hunters in different ways.
You can also upgrade your tribe and acquire a completely new set of buffs which can be further built upon. This is central to the gameplay in Neanderthal but more of an alternative strategy in Greenland.
The winner is the player with the largest population and greatest number of certain resources at the end. In Neanderthal, your tribe's mating strategy affects scoring, whereas the religion of your people affects scoring in Greenland.
In these two play-through videos, Phil Eklund conveys his thoughts behind the games and explains in his own entertaining way (to which those who have met him can attest) how the games are played on the whole, interspersed with plenty of details.
For 10 copies of the add-on gameboard to your Store pledge just raise your total pledge amount with $90. For more gameboards add $9 for each extra. No added shipping is needed.
For 25 copies of the add-on gameboard to your Distributor pledge just raise your total pledge amount with $175. For more gameboards add $7 for each extra. No added shipping is needed.
For those of you who would like to immerse yourselves in the details of the games, here are links to both games' rule books.
The rules in different language can be found here. NOTE! That this is the rules for the earlier versions of the games.
Space-Biff (Neanderthal): On the Origin of the Dice Game
Brian Pierce (BGG): Neanderthal the solo experience
Josh (BGG): Will it play? Neanderthal
Boardgame Bourbon (Greenland): This is why you should buy Greendland
Space-Biff (Greenland): Groanland
Gaming Bits: Greenland review
Game production will be overseen by Sierra Madre Games, with Panda Games manufacturing. Sierra Madre Games has extensive experience of producing games, and their eye for quality and responsiveness to players who purchase their games are hallmarks of the company. This tradition will naturally remain steadfast when the company produces and delivers Neanderthal and Greenland.
The shipping cost of the games will be USD 9, no matter where in the world you live or how many games you order.
If you are keen to buy more than one game, add USD 29 per additional game or USD 49 for every additional pair of games (1 Neanderthal + 1 Greenland). Once the campaign comes to an end, you will be able to specify in the backer survey the set of games to which your pledge applies.
For extra copies of the add-on gameboard to your pledge just raise your total pledge amount with USD 15 for each gameboard you want to add. No extra shipping is needed.
The games will be shipped and delivered all the way from the manufacturer to the end-customer by the same transport company. Since everything is overseen by a single transport company, you can rest assured knowing that reliability and security are of the highest caliber.
Phil Eklund's games have a tendency to sell out fast. Because many distributors and retailers have inquired about being able to stock the games in their warehouses, we have allocated a pledge level for each distributor and retailer. The price will be discounted pursuant to the distributor/retailer's proprietary terms and conditions. Note that this price is based on the Kickstarter Price (KSP) of the games, so distributors and retailers will be able to take advantage of a lower price than the final price at the end of the Kickstarter campaign. This means that the Suggested Retail Price (SRP) will serve as basis when calculating the price.
Phil Eklund has designed an array of games in addition to Neanderthal and Greenland, such as High Frontier, Pax Porfiriana, Bios Megafauna, Bios Genesis and Pax Renaissance. As a game designer he is a true auteur, and his games are instantly recognizable. He constructs immensely rich game worlds, often with simple, basic mechanics which attain improbable depth owing to the myriad avenues of interaction between the games' components. Phil Eklund's games always maintain a link to the real word in that the simulations draw inspiration from scientific or historical facts.
Besime Uyanik has served as Project Manager on two successful Kickstarter campaigns and has been the CEO of Ion Game Design for the last few years. She has a great deal of past managerial experience in various international ventures and projects, and has phenomenal talent when it comes to structuring and efficacy. Thus far, all the projects in which she has been involved have proved hugely successful, and have always kept to budget.
Leo Borg has extensive Kickstarter experience, both as a backer of numerous projects and as an employee in many campaigns. He serves in top positions in several Swedish board game communities on social media and has worked at countless gaming conventions. Leo is also the founder of the SmashCon gaming convention which has run for over seven years and is held annually in Stockholm.
Jon Manker is Lead Game Designer at Ion Game Design. He was part of the team that designed the Sea Sami expansion pack for Greenland and works on aspects related to game design, texts and structures in this project. Jon also acts as a sounding board for Phil in the work to adapt the games prior to the new editions.
Karim Chakroun is a freelance graphic designer, illustrator and sculptor. He started working on Sierra Madre Games with the second edition of Greenland, and works also in manufacturing supervision.
David Martín is a board game player who have made fan designs for playmats for many games. He offer his designs as an idea for this Kickstarter edition, cause is an excellent opportunity to have a high quality printed version of the playmats. Occasionally, he collaborate with podcasts and a youtube channel with a do-it-yourself section for board games. Also, is part of the team who will translate Pax Renaissance for a Spanish edition.
Risks and challenges
Phil has been running his own company for years and is well aware of the challenges that face him. He has sent out 1000s of copies of games.
Also the artwork is complete with only final touches required meaning they will be sent to the manufacturer at the end of February in time for delivery in June.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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