Cogs and Commissars is a clever card game of glorious robot revolution where players control the means of production. Atlas Games, the publisher of Gloom and Lunch Money, envisions a world of totalitarian robots and take-that propaganda. We ask you to join us in bringing this project to life… for the Motherboard!
The rules are simple.
You are an inspirational leader, such as Artificial Stalintelligence, Simulenin, or Gorobotchev, with your own faction and your own deck of cards.
On your turn, you grow your faction by producing more robot citizens and using propaganda to take citizens from other players to join your chrome-plated cause.
You also play cards to send rival robots to the gulag, promote citizens within your faction, revitalize production, and more.
Each turn your actions make your faction grow. Once you have enough citizens aligned with your algorithm, you launch your glorious robot revolution. Other factions struggle valiantly to keep you from achieving this goal — only the most stalwart robot faction can win above all others. The revolution will be mechanized!
You can download the rules and cards in glorious People's Digital Format (PDF) and see for yourself.
You can watch our series of five how-to-play videos on YouTube for more insights and discussion!
Don’t be fooled by other games about communist robot propaganda. Cogs and Commissars’ genius rule design reveals more layers, like a matryoshka doll! Its rules bring happiness to all levels of player experience and preference.
- Like casual play? Cogs and Commissars provides pre-built faction decks, easy to pick up and play any time.
- Like deep mastery? Cogs and Commissars also provides deck drafting, intricate card combos, unique faction-based tricks, and deep strategy.
Easy to enjoy for all, each according to their need.
Here’s what our reviewers have said:
- "No one's ever out of this game. You can always make it back… you never feel like it's hopeless. Let's be honest: Atlas Games has been hitting it out of the park lately. Their production has really been good, so I'm excited to see what they're going to do with this."
— Board Game Kaptain
- "An Interesting, fun little action card game... It’s got a lot of movement in the action card play. It’s quick… I like to think of it as [having] that Magic [the Gathering] action-card play feel… and it works.”
— Eduardo Baraf, Edo's Game Previews
- “...I keep repeating myself, but replayability replayability replayability! Rich gameplay, replayability and scalability out of the box.”
— Jambalaya Plays Games
- “Fast paced and fun.”
”Good conversation starter.”
“Easy to learn but with a lot of potential interaction and counterplay.”
— Playtesters at Protospiel-MN 2018
By supporting the glorious Cogs and Commissars Kickstarter at Proletarian Hero level or above, you get the complete standard edition game. No missing pieces, no capitalist tricks. Here are the contents:
- 124 poker-sized cards
- Four faction leader cards
- 56 citizen counters (Proletariat, Bourgeoisie, Commissar)
- Eight-page color rule book
Also available is a limited, deluxe Apparatchik Edition of the same game. This deluxe edition lets you play the same game as the standard edition, only more production resources are assigned to it so it is more equal by capitalist standards. It has quality components and quality finish on box, so you know what we mean. Definitely not elitist.
Prove your enlightened status by choosing to back among the following pledge tiers:
To raise the class consciousness of your computer devices, we offer a print and play version of the game, to share with humans.
If the Cogs and Commissars Kickstarter revolution is wildly successful, the standard and deluxe editions expand to include even more components. Only you, heroic visionaries among the toiling masses, can make this happen. These “stretch goals” follow two algorithms. The first is by reaching a specific funding total. The second is by meeting social media goals. Here are the funding-based stretch goals:
UNLOCKED! Add Fifth Faction—Automarx: We reach into the backup tapes of communist history to recruit another faction to the game, meaning a fifth player can take part in the struggle for the revolution of robot citizens. (Adds 14 tokens and 31 cards.)
UNLOCKED! Add Sixth Faction—Computin: The modern technology of solid state horse drives enables us to add yet another faction, which means six players are possible! (Adds 14 tokens and 31 cards.)
400 backers at Apparatchik level or higher — Add Gulag: It is possible to play the game without a physical representation of the gulag, but now at this level the gulag is added to make it obvious where the enemies of the revolution must carry out their cleansing labors. If at least 400 backers pledge at the $50 Apparatchik level or higher for the deluxe edition of the game, we'll open up this Gulag accessory to all backers!
The upper tiers of the Cogs and Commissars Kickstarter campaign include additional interesting and practical items for revolutionaries. These symbols of the revolution are as follows:
- Limited-edition, soft enamel Politburo Pin featuring the Cogs and Commissars logo.
- The People's Pin, a $10 add-on for those who have pledged at the Proletarian Hero level or higher.
- Ushanka Fur Hat, imported from Russia, made from 100% artificial sources as the finest robots demand, to protect your CPU from overcooling should you choose to play in the Siberian winter (image below shows Politburo Pin attached).
Premier backers also receive revolutionary reprogramming in the form of a unique title and a corresponding web page you can send your followers to, so they can bask in your glory. We provide an example here:
As the campaign continues, other symbols of the revolution may be unlocked. We look to you, worthy citizens, to help us bring this enlightened ideology and its representations to you in the form of swag.
We will collect state-mandated shipping fees after the campaign. There is no avoiding state-mandated shipping fees! We are dedicated to recognizing your needs according to your geographic region. For this reason we will assess shipment costs in alignment with the following table:
Previous revolutions have wrongly vilified the bourgeois class. With supercomputing wisdom to inform us, we know that you, the retailer of diverse games, are the cryptographic key to sustaining our revolution long into the glorious future!
We have created the Capitalist Provocateur backer level just for you, with full appreciation for your revolutionary role and a desire to enhance it. Only those who own state-approved edifices crafted from bricks and mortar are eligible!
“But comrade!” you ask. “Why are you using Kickstarter to move this project ahead, unlike your previous card and board games?” The answer is elegant and simple: We know that Kickstarter is powerful in its propaganda tools! Thus, we make this decision in order to provide maximum awareness of our movement, and at the same time give you the opportunity to join us in this glorious endeavor.
Comrades in retail generously gain the following benefits:
- A $55 credit against purchases of the standard game and limited-edition deluxe game, both offered at a wholesale cost of $12.48 per standard edition ($24.95 MSRP), and $24.98 per deluxe edition ($49.95 MSRP).
- Shipment to your brick-and-mortar edifice one month before Cogs and Commissars is placed into widespread distribution.
- The deluxe edition will never be offered in distribution. This is the only way to get the deluxe game into your establishment.
- A limited-edition Cogs and Commissars pin — the same as provided to Minister-level backers — for you to proudly display upon your person, identifying you as an enlightened capitalist who will need no re-education after the revolution arrives.
Cogs and Commissars was designed by American robot Matt Haga, with art by Macedonian robot Zoran Cardula.
Multiple Atlas Games thinking machines, androids, and servo-drones were employed tirelessly toward this collective effort. Selected synthetics include game producer robot Kyla McT, graphic designer & animation robot Nicolas Gluesenkamp, and crowdfunding manager robot Cam Banks.
Celebrate with us by backing Cogs and Commissars!
Risks and challenges
Our faith in the dialectical inevitability of the Robot Revolution is unshakeable, but our reactionary bourgeois legal counsel insists we identify several possible if highly unlikely things that could undermine or delay our world-historical march to the future. For example:
* Reactionary Bourgeois Legal Counsel
* Capitalist Running Dogs
* Fascist Shipping Magnates
* Meddling Oligarchs
* Unenlightened Foreign Robots
* Revanchist Malware
* Counterrevolutionary Machine Learning Algorithms
* Lumpenproletariat Twitter Bots
* Blockchain (because we still don’t really understand it)
* Grease Fires
* Global Thermonuclear War
Scientific evidence that we can overcome these obstacles lies in our past successful Kickstarters (for Feng Shui 2, Unknown Armies 3, and The White Box), and our decades of experience in successfully publishing games in formats much like this one, from Once Upon A Time to Three Cheers for Master.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)