Royal Cup presents Icebreaker and Firemaker — the first social card games designed to forge and develop deeper friendships with a promise of non-stop laughter and a lifetime of memories. It’s a game that’s four years in the making, test played in over 10 countries across three continents, and responsible for over 70 hours of tear-inducing laughs. Whether you’re a spirited firecracker or a social wallflower, expand your comfort zone with the game that was designed entirely with one overarching question in mind: does this help break the ice?
There are two versions of the game: Icebreaker and Firemaker (the adult, NSFW version).
The games are available in four languages as of launch: English, German, Spanish, and Persian. With your support, we plan to add French, Italian, Portuguese and more as part of our stretch goals.
The result? 58 beautifully illustrated rules/challenges in each deck-- all designed to make you laugh, connect, and learn more about each other.
What's it about? The objective of the game is not to win the game for bragging rights, but to genuinely have fun. Our test-players overwhelmingly said that what they liked about the game the most is that it didn't matter if they won it or not; they were having so much fun that they just wanted to keep playing. It will result in many memorable, unforgettable stories you'll be telling for a long time. (:
The game was created by Aryo Winterblack (Berkeley, California), Julia Posch (Graz, Austria) and the illustrations were done by Sahar Shams (Tehran, Iran). If you are into light-hearted banter, silly shenanigans, laughing till you can't breathe, wearing other people's clothing and/or just getting to know your friends on a deeper level, I'm sure you'll love this game as much as we loved creating it. If you don't, Aryo will eat an entire jalapeño (and film/share it with you all here)!
Why should I support you?
Honestly, because we can't do it without you. We are passionate young people: writers, poets, travelers, skiers, illustrators, singers, musicians, scuba divers, runners, dancers, cooks, party-goers and board-game lovers. We have a dream of getting this game out into the world, and in order to realize this dream, we need your help. Also, as a token of our appreciation to our Kickstarter backers, we are rewarding all who back us on Kickstarter with pledge-rewards that will never be available anywhere else. These rewards include, but are not limited to: receiving the game at a greater discount than they'll ever be available anywhere else, really thick, high-quality gilded (gold foil on the edges) cards that are coated with a special glossy UV coat to make them water resistant, and if we reach our stretch goals, all boxes will be upgraded to a sound-module box that will play a magical sound each time you open the box.
Why should I trust you?
We have partnered with some of the leading names in card and board-game manufacturing industry in the world to bring you the highest quality cards and boxes. The cards themselves are coated with high quality glossy UV coating to them water-resistant. They are also printed on really high-quality 400 gsm (thick) white-core, gilded (gold foil on edges) cards.
Who are you again?
Aryo is the president and founder of Young Americans Club in Austria, Julia is a kindergarten teacher, and Sahar is the owner of Shams Studio as well as the creator of Michka, a game app that empowers children, especially those who have been at the forefront and victims of sexual abuse and violence. Aryo met Julia at a Halloween party in 2013 and soon after started developing the game. Aryo met Sahar during a fundraiser for the app she created. Beyond the game, the team dreams to foster greater inclusion and help people socialize better, especially now that we live in the age of social media and smartphones constantly vying for our attention.
Our story is better told by watching our "Story" video.
Royal Cup started four years ago during a winter trip to Lake Tahoe, Nevada. We were eight friends in two cars, none of which were equipped to handle the massive snowstorm we got stuck in.
Eight hours later we arrived at our cabin soaking wet, freezing and exhausted just to find out that electricity was knocked-out as well. Luckily for us we had candles, a gas stove, drinks, a standard set of cards and a sharpe marker.
After we ate a hot meal, we decided to play a game but we couldn't agree on which one; everyone wanted to play a different game. Some wanted to play King's Cup, the German girls wanted to play Busfahrer, the Argentine wanted to play truth or dare and the Dutch, the South African didn't want to play any drinking games and I wanted to play a plethora of other games I will not mention.
We ended up taking the best aspects of a bunch of games, but changing the rules, twisting them or making up completely new rules to change them. Despite all the "calamities" that befell us, that night is one of the most memorable, most hilarious and most wonderful nights of my life. The idea to turn that game I created that night into a standalone game slowly took root in my mind.
The first versions of the game were oh-so-terrible. The idea was to afford people the choice of drinking—although lowered inhibitions do help fun along—without turning it into a drinking game. We wanted to make a game where people could have fun, laugh a lot and make new (or deepen their already-existing) friendships, without having to drink copious amounts (or any at all) of alcohol to do it. Which is why we say "This is not (necessarily) a drinking game!" It could be, if you wanted to be, or it could not. You could drink water for all that matters; the premise of this game is about breaking down barriers that so often stop us from having fun and showing our human side to others. The crown jewels of this game are the hilarious rules, the story topics and the goofy questions we've come up.
Development Over the course of the next four years, I traveled to over 15 countries across four continents, playing the game with people from all walks of life and all backgrounds as often as I could. The feedback I received was overwhelmingly positive, and everyone absolutely loved it. This encouraged me even more to publish the game, against my own inclination otherwise. Around that time, Julia started helping with the game and brought a much-needed, delicate feminine touch to the whole project.
Glimmer of Hope
Soon after that, Exploding Kittens came out on Kickstarter and made waves all over the world and we absolutely loved it! Inspired by their unprecedented and unrivaled success, we decided to share our own game with the world. After this our headaches started. I always say "all of my problems started when Exploding Kittens launched on Kickstarter" because this was the moment we knew we owed it to ourselves to see this project through, and that we would never forgive ourselves if we didn't.
When I was looking for potential illustrators and artists for the project, I met Sahar. While at Sahar's office, Sahar drew a sketch of what she imagined the Licktator would look like and I whole-heartedly loved it. It had been exactly how I imagined him: fat, goofy, overly-excited, short, balding and a little gross. In that moment, I knew I didn't need to attend any more interviews because Sahar's art was incredible and intricate, and even though she drives me bat-**** crazy and working with her—aside from being a pleasure and a privilege—is a very scary, we were able to push through and make it work (seriously, never anger this woman, it'll be the last thing you do)! And thus, our little team was born! (:
HELP US MAKE THIS GAME A REALITY
If you like goofy royalty, laughing your socks off while pumping your arms up and down like a crazy person, being a DICKtator, wearing other people's clothing, cat orgies and a creepy kitty named Gernot (also known as Joaquin or Jessy), then help us share our secret rules with the world through this game; we promise you won't be disappointed, or, as mentioned before, Aryo will eat an entire jalapeño!
Kickstarter is the fastest way for us to bring you this game while allowing us the luxury of incorporating your feedback into the game. Since this is a social card game, it sits well with Kickstarter and its strong emphasis on community-based and people-oriented grassroots, organic crowfunding. We have always supported other Kickstarter projects and we're hoping to remain contributing and helpful members of this community for as long as we live. If you have any ideas, useful tips or rules of your own that you think will make this game better, please let us know—WE LISTEN!
Risks and challenges
As this is just a card game, there are no risks-- although there are many challenges. If we reach our fundraising goal, you WILL receive your game on-time, if not sooner.
As we mentioned before, we have partnered with some of the leading names in card and board-game manufacturing industry in the world to bring you the highest quality cards and boxes.
We have done our homework and spent a lot of money on talented graduates from some of the most-renowned universities in the world with work experience at some of the world's leading companies to conduct research for us. Together we rigidly planned everything from logistics, marketing, advertising, giveaways, social media, Kickstarter and fulfillment.
My team members and I have exchanged at least 1000 emails and 7,000 messages by now in our over eight months of correspondence, weathering every storm and dodging every bullet, making sure that we've thought of everything.
Art is 100% done. We have several prototypes, we have test-played the game more than 50 times in over 10 countries across three continents.
Having said all of this, we're excited to get these in production and we've lined up all the pieces to make this happen. Now, all we need is your help to reach our goal of completing production and getting the product in your hands by November—it could be September, it could be October or latest by November—but what I can ASSURE you is that there will not be any delays.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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