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It has been  50 years since the popular card game was first published by Doug Malewicki. It's time to celebrate with a new edition.
It has been 50 years since the popular card game was first published by Doug Malewicki. It's time to celebrate with a new edition.
1,388 backers pledged $156,696 to help bring this project to life.

About

Nuclear War Card Game 50th Anniversary Edition project video thumbnail
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$156,696

1,388

NOW THAT WE HAVE MADE THE 100K STRETCH GOAL, EVERYONE BACKING AT $10 OR MORE GETS A UNIQUE CARD NOT AVAILABLE ANYWHERE ELSE. $30 OR MORE AND YOUR UNIQUE CARD WILL HAVE YOUR NAME ON IT! See stretch goals below.

Note: If you have played or purchased the original Nuclear War card game, you can skip this paragraph and move to the next one. If not, you may be asking yourself "Why would I want to play a game about nuclear devastation?" Because it's hilarious, that's why! It's a satire. It's dark humor. It's making fun of the very idea of trying to "win" a nuclear war. Half the time when you play this silly game, everyone dies, and no one wins. (No, if you are the last one to die, you didn't win. Being dead isn't winning!) Don't think of it as a strategic wargame where clever strategy will win the day. Think of it as releasing your frustrations:  "Die!  Die!  Die!  Dammit! Die!" *

THREE STRETCH GOALS ACHIEVED - SEE THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE

In 1965, Doug Malewicki, ** an aerospace engineer from Irvine, CA invented and published a crazy card game about blowing up the world. He only printed 1000 copies. I played this game in college in 1967 and loved it. 

When I started my own game company in 1970, I invented a game (now long out of print) about blowing up the world with nuclear missiles. When I took this game to game conventions, people saw the nuclear explosion on the cover, and asked me if this was that card game that they used to play. Many of them told me "I played that game until the cards wore out" This sounded like a guaranteed winner to me, so I looked up Doug. His game was out of print by then,  and he was willing to sell me the right to reproduce it. This started a long and profitable friendship. 

Since 2015 is the fiftieth anniversary of the original publication of this game, I think it is only fitting that I produce a special anniversary edition. However, I am still a small, self-financed company. I don't have the funds to produce this without your help.

So, what is going to be different about this edition of the game? First of all, instead of two decks of cards, this edition will have THREE decks of cards: the third deck will be 55 population cards. Fancy, full color, shuffleable cards that you don't have to cut apart! Yay! 

Population cards
Population cards

Secondly, all of the cards will be in color. If you purchased your copy of the game more than 10 years ago, you probably got one where some of the cards are just in two colors. Many of you may not be aware, but our artist SS Crompton, digitally painted all the Nuclear War cards in full color and added symbols on the corners to make it easier to know what is in your hand. So, if you have one of the older decks, you're overdue for an upgrade! PLUS there will be a couple of BRAND NEW cards. 

Old cards vs New cards
Old cards vs New cards
More new cards
More new cards

Thirdly, the basic game comes with play mats that show you how to lay out your cards (as if you need that!) For the new edition of the game, I have obtained a photo of the control panel of a real Titan II missile base, and permission to use it in the game! Here is what the mat will look like:

Titan Missile Base control panel
Titan Missile Base control panel

How cool is that? I plan to include these printed on cardstock in the anniversary edition. But I am going to print some on those rubberized play mats that the trading card game people use. You can order as many of these as you want, for $10 each. Just add $10 for each mat that you want, to your pledge.

Among the items I am going to produce is a special, limited edition, wooden box.  (Note: The wooden box is only for the $275 level. For the $30 level, you will get a normal cardboard box!)

This Box only for the $275 backers!
This Box only for the $275 backers!

(Wooden box created by Dapper Devil games.)

In case it's not clear: The spinner built into the lid of the wooden box works. And the little slider on the right keeps track of whether you are "at peace" or "at war". 

PS Here's what the original box looked like, 50 years ago:

Original Nuclear War
Original Nuclear War

A friend has created a Nuclear War Spinner app for android and iphone (and ipad and etc), which is available in the appropriate official stores for 99 cents. I'd like to give a FREE copy of this to every backer. (This app is really cool - it works just like the cardboard spinner, and after you spin it, Claudia Christian tells you what the result is, in a Russian accent! ) Here is what his spinner looks like:

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Unfortunately my friend says he can't do this. So here's what I will do: when I send you the survey at the end of this kickstarter, I will ask you if you have purchased the app. If you say "yes", I will send you a $1 bumper sticker for no charge. If you are ordering some of the bumper stickers, I will send you one more than the number you ordered.  Here are some samples of the bumper stickers:

Below is a video of Doug's daughter explaining how to play Nuclear War! (Note that she made this video 4 years ago, so she says the game is 46 years old!)

 OK, that's what I want to do. And now I need your help. I need you to pledge a few bucks for a copy of the game, or perhaps a deck of the new population cards, or a few of the new play mats, or even a bumper sticker or two. And then I need you to spread the word. That's the only way kickstarter works: when friends tell friends. And note that when someone pays to create a new card, every backer gets one of those cards! 

PS When the game comes back from the printer, I plan to ship to the retailer and distributor backers first, then to all the backers who ordered a single copy or double set. If you are in a rush to get yours (or are tired of paying for a game on kickstarter and then not getting it until 18 months later) order a copy from your local game store. You can still support me by buying some bumper stickers or a playmat or a glow-in-the-dark die! 

PPS When I was describing this upcoming kickstarter to fans at conventions the past few months, I hinted that we would create all new art by a famous gaming cartoonist. It would have been great, but it turns out he does not have time to work on this project until well after 2015 is over, and I really want to get this new version out this year. So, "never mind". We'll keep the classic artwork that you are all familiar with. But do note that all the cards are in full color now!

PPPS If you are going to attend Gencon this year, the annual Nuclear War tournament is Saturday at 1pm. If the tickets are sold out, bring two generic tickets and show up. I'll accept everyone who shows up. And the winner will get a rare "Supergerm Alarm Clock".

Add Ons: (you can add multiples of any of these) If you are unfamiliar with kickstarter, in order to "add" an "add on" just go to the "manage my pledge" button at the upper right of the page, and click on it. Then add the proper amount of dollars (as described below) to your pledge. When the kickstarter ends, I will send a survey to every backer asking what you wanted for that extra money. 

Add $1 to any pledge for a bumper sticker.  

Add $1 to any pledge to get a cardboard "playmat" of the Titan Missile Base control panel. 

Add $2 to any pledge to get a "glow in the dark" nuclear misfunction die. (With a mushroom cloud instead of a one). (Note: I am currently out of these but am ordering more.  There MIGHT be a slight delay while I wait for the mfr to make more for me.)

Add $6 to any pledge to get three cards that are not in any copy of the game: The Mad Scientist, the Fold in Space, and the 250 Megaton warhead. 

Add $10 to any pledge to get a "rubberized" playmat of the Titan Missile Base control panel. I plan to use one as my mousepad! I got the sample back from the mfr. They look great!

Add $10 to any pledge to get an additional deck of population cards. 

Add $12 to any pledge and get a special Nuclear War coin, along with a unique card given to anyone who buys the coin. (Only valid if we make the $125k stretch goal.)

Add $15 to any pledge to get a copy of WMD (when it is reprinted).

Add $28 to any pledge to get a copy of Nuclear Escalation.

Add $28 to any pledge to get a copy of Nuclear Proliferation.

Add $30 to any pledge to get a set of all 47 of the Booster cards when they are reprinted sometime in 2016.

Add $275 to any pledge to get an additional deluxe set with the game, the wooden box, and the rubberized play mats. 

Stretch Goals:

$75k stretch goal ACHIEVED, I will be able to afford to reprint the expansion set Weapons of Mass Destruction. This sells for $19.95 - Any backer can have a copy of WMD by adding $15 to his or her pledge. 

$77,500 stretch goal ACHIEVED. I will add glow in the dark ink to the box art! We may even put some on the deluxe wooden box. 

$100k stretch goal ACHIEVED.  I will pay a bonus to the game's inventor, Doug Malewicki, and I will create a special KICKSTARTER ONLY card and give one to every backer at $10 or over. This card will not be reprinted or sold. If anyone not a backer wants one, they will have to buy it from one of you fine backers! If your pledge is for at least $30, your special card will have your name on it. 

If I make $125k, I will make a special "war/peace" coin, and a special card for anyone who buys the coin. Backers will get the coin at a discounted price. 

If I make $150k, I will give one bumper sticker to each backer at $10 or more. This is in addition to the free one you get if you have purchased the spinner app, or any stickers you have paid $1 for. I note someone is selling two of the currently "out of print" bumper stickers on ebay for $24.95!

If I make $200k, I will give everyone at $10 or more another unique card that will be limited ONLY to kickstarter supporters, and once again it will have YOUR name on it if you backed at $30 or more. 

*If you need more convincing, here is a link to the Nuclear War web page.  Also the game (and Doug) was inducted into the GAMA/Origins Hall of Fame in 1998 as one of the best games of all time. 

In 1980 and again in 1981 Nuclear War was selected as one of the "Games 100" top 100 games by Games magazine. 

** Doug has written a book available on Amazon Kindle called "Fit at 75". 

http://tinyurl.com/Fit-At-75-eBook 

In it he has 12 pages on the history of the Nuclear War game. If you tell me in the survey that you bought his book, I'll give you ANOTHER free bumper sticker! 

Risks and challenges

I have been in the game business for 45 years, so I am confident that I can manage this project. However there are always many possibilities for delay. The dates I have picked for completion are only estimates. (I repeat - these are not promised delivery dates. They are only estimates. Doing a good job on the artwork takes time. ) I have no idea how many backers I will get, but the gentleman who is going to make the customized wooden boxes for me says that if more than 200 are ordered, it might take more than a couple months to get them finished. But eventually it WILL get done. Also, I am still in the process of finishing my (much delayed) Tunnels & Trolls project. The final book is not quite finished, but many of the rewards have already been mailed out. We will get it done, and all the backers of that project will be happy with the final result, or Grimtooth will want to know why not!

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    We have sold an assortment of bumperstickers for this game for $2 each. As a backer, you can have as many as you like for $1 each. Pick this reward for just a bumper sticker or add $1 to another reward to add it. ALSO: a friend has produced a NUCLEAR WAR SPINNER app for android and apple (and ipad and etc) for 99 cents. When I send out the survey at the end of this kickstarter, if you tell me you purchased the spinner app, I will send you ONE MORE bumper sticker than you paid for!

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    You will get two popular cards that are not in any version of the game: the 200 megaton warhead, and the UFO Technology card. If you want to add this reward to any other reward, just add $5 to your pledge.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    We have created a play mat that uses a picture of the control panel of a Titan Missile Base as the background. This play mat will be printed on cardstock and included in every game. But if you want a rubberized deluxe version of this playmat, choose this reward. If you want more than one, just add $10 for each. If you want to add this reward to any other level, just add $10 for each mat that you want.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Retailer and Distributor reward: I'm not asking you to pay me for any games in advance. For your $10 you will get 10 promotional cards to sell or give away. And when I am ready to tell the printer how many copies to produce, I will call or email you and ask you how many copies you want. You will get your normal discount, and you don't have to pay until you get them. Also I will list your store on a special page on my website. This is only for retailers and distributors. I will check. (You can support for more than $10. For each extra dollar, you will get one more promo card.)

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    The game is going to have three decks. One of those decks is going to be 55 population cards (in color). If you don't want another copy of the game at this time, but would like one of the new population decks, select this reward. If you would like an EXTRA deck of population cards, just add $10 to any other reward.

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    Pledge $28 or more About $28

    THIS IS THE GAME AT $2 less: but you can select this reward ONLY if you are a previous owner of the game, and you played it until the cards wore out, and you send us a picture of the worn-out cards that we can post on the kickstarter!

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    THIS IS THE GAME. I am expecting to charge $40 retail for this game. For $30, as a backer, you will get a copy.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    Game delivered to Essen in Germany. Select this reward, and I'll bring your game to Essen 2016 (I don't think it will be done by Essen 2015) and you won't have to pay any shipping or customs. I'll pay all that.

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    Pledge $43 or more About $43

    THIS IS THE GAME FOR BACKERS IN CANADA ONLY. Kickstarter won't let me change the cost of postage, once we've started and someone from that country has already backed any level. So in order to charge Canadian customers only $13 postage, I am offering this $43 level without any postage added on. But you can ONLY select this option if I am shipping your game to Canada. You can still add more money for add-ons.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THIS IS THE GAME FOR BACKERS OUTSIDE THE USA AND CANADA. Kickstarter won't let me change the cost of postage, once we've started and someone from that country has already backed any level. So in order to charge outside the USA and Canada customers only $20 postage, I am offering this $50 level without any postage added on. But you can ONLY select this option if I am shipping your game outside the USA and Canada. You can still add more money for add-ons.

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    TWO copies of the game. I expect the first printing of this version of the game to be a limited edition. It will say something like "kickstarter edition" on the box. Get TWO copies, one to play and one to keep in pristine collectors condition. And save $5.

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    Pledge $140 or more About $140

    People keep asking me to include a reward with "One of Everything". Unfortunately that would include WMD, and the Booster Packs, both of which are out of print right now. Well, I *DO* plan to reprint both of those. So how about this, for $140 you get the basic game in the cardboard box, Nuclear Escalation, Nuclear Proliferation, WMD, one each of all 47 of the "booster cards" (which, by the way, includes the 200 megaton warhead and the UFO technology), a glow in the dark misfunction die, and the 250 megaton card. And of course all the special cards that are created via this kickstarter. I will ship everything except the WMD and the booster cards as soon as we get the basic game printed, and then those two as soon as they are reprinted.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Same as the $140 reward above, but costs $10 more. People keep asking me to include a reward with "One of Everything". Unfortunately that would include WMD, and the Booster Packs, both of which are out of print right now. Well, I *DO* plan to reprint both of those. So how about this, for $140 you get the basic game in the cardboard box, Nuclear Escalation, Nuclear Proliferation, WMD, one each of all 47 of the "booster cards" (which, by the way, includes the 200 megaton warhead and the UFO technology), a glow in the dark misfunction die, and the 250 megaton card. And of course all the special cards that are created via this kickstarter. I will ship everything except the WMD and the booster cards as soon as we get the basic game printed, and then those two as soon as they are reprinted. Yes, this includes Mad Scientist and Fold in Space. It ALSO includes the Bonus Pack #1 which is 9 new countries for NP, and Bonus Pack #2 which is the expansion that adds Nuclear War rules for India Rails by Mayfair Games. These are also included in the $140 level above, but that level is sold out.

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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Same as the $140 level, except it costs $10 more. You get the game, the expansions, all the extra cards, the booster cards, the bonus packs.
    Remember, you don't get WMD and the booster pack cards until I am able to reprint them later in 2016.

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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge $165 or more About $165

    SIX copies of the game. If you are worried about the shipping costs, find five friends who live near you and all order together. I think I can get 6 copies of the game into a USPS large "flat rate" box.

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  16. Select this reward

    Pledge $195 or more About $195

    Just the deluxe box: Perhaps you already have the game and all three expansion sets, and as cool as it may be, you don't want another copy of the basic game. But you can't help wanting that cool wooden box. It's big enough to hold ALL the expansions and booster cards! OK, I'll get just a box made for you.

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  17. Select this reward

    Pledge $275 or more About $275

    Limited edition, super deluxe, WOODEN BOX with the game inside, and a spinner built into the lid (see photo). You also get six of the special rubberized play mats. These boxes will be numbered, and after the kickstarter no more will be made.

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  18. Select this reward

    Pledge $350 or more About $350

    Super Duper Retailer Reward: Same as the $10 retailer reward above, PLUS you and I will create a new Nuclear War card using a photo of your store, or artwork you provide. You will get 100 of these cards, and I will give one to EVERY backer (at $10 or more) of this kickstarter! Of course I reserve the right to reject any artwork I find offensive or not high quality, and I also reserve the right to make more of your card and sell them on my website. We'll include contact info for your store on the card.

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  19. Select this reward

    Pledge $350 or more About $350

    Make Your Own Card Reward: You and I will create a new Nuclear War card using a photo you provide or artwork by Steve Crompton. You will get 100 of these cards, and I will give one to EVERY backer (at $10 or more) of this kickstarter! Of course I reserve the right to reject any artwork I find offensive or not high quality, and I also reserve the right to make more of your card and sell them on my website. Alternatively, instead of a new card, we can get Steve Crompton to put your likeness on one of the new population cards. Oh, yeah. And you'll get a copy of the game!

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  20. Select this reward

    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    People keep asking me to include a reward with "One of Everything". Unfortunately that would include WMD, and the Booster Packs, both of which are out of print right now. Well, I *DO* plan to reprint both of those. So how about this, for $140 you get the basic game in the fancy deluxe wooden box, Nuclear Escalation, Nuclear Proliferation, WMD, one each of all 47 of the "booster cards" (which, by the way, includes the 200 megaton warhead and the UFO technology), a glow in the dark misfunction die, and the 250 megaton card. And of course all the special cards that are created via this kickstarter. I will ship everything except the WMD and the booster cards as soon as we get the basic game printed, and then those two as soon as they are reprinted.

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  21. Select this reward

    Pledge $600 or more About $600

    Crazy Mad Fan Reward: what if you want BOTH the deluxe wooden box AND the create your own card? Go for it! Pick this reward, AND I will throw in a set of cards from the Nuclear Escalation expansion and the Nuclear Proliferation expansion. We love you, man! (This reward includes the game and the rubberized play mats)

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Doug has offered to give one of his remaining copies of the original version of the game to one lucky fan. If you pick this reward, you will get it, autographed to you personally by Doug himself. Plus you get the deluxe wooden box, plus a copy of the game (with six rubberized playmats), plus you get to design one new card or get your likeness drawn on a population card!

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  23. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,500 or more About $1,500

    Oh, what the heck. I've offered this sort of reward in previous kickstarters and no one took me up on it. For $1500 you get everything in the $600 reward PLUS I (Rick Loomis) will fly to your city on a mutually agreed upon date, delivering your goods to you, and will run a Nuclear War tournament for you and your friends. I'll even give away lots of cool prizes. It can't be during Origins or Gencon or Essen Spiel or Dundracon. If you'd rather have Doug Malewicki, we'll work on it. I can't promise he will be available. (But depending upon your location, he might). I'm not even going to put a limit on this selection, as I doubt anyone will pick it. If it is during a game convention of some kind, I'll give you lots of publicity.

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Funding period

- (40 days)