About this project
Become the wealthiest merchant prince or princess in all of Araby by establishing an entourage of merchants and allies, teaching virtues, summoning djinni, making shrewd caravan investments, and negotiating frequently.
During your turn, you'll start a caravan and then perform as many actions as you like or can afford. You'll add merchants and allies to your entourage, you'll teach virtues to your opponents, and you'll summon djinn for powerful effects.
You'll also be doing a lot of negotiating. Simply stated, everything in Merchants of Araby is negotiable for everything. You can trade gold for camel placement, cards for products, actions for promised actions, camel placement for ally tasking, cards from entourage to entourage, cards from hand to hand, something for nothing. The list is nearly endless. If you can strike a deal, then feel free to do so.
Caravans are the primary source of income and the main reason for negotiations. Each space on the caravan will hold one camel carrying a particular product and each caravan represents a journey to a distant Araby city to sell those valuable products. Player participation, bandits, and market fluctuations will affect each caravan’s payout and you do not want to miss out on getting your share of the profits.
Add camels to caravans by tasking merchants, playing a djinn card, or negotiating with other players to generate the products you need or to add their camels to your caravan. An opponent may not add a camel to your caravan without negotiating for your permission, but unless you complete at least one full row or column on the caravan card, you're not going to earn anything! When your turn ends, your caravan becomes locked to you and you may not add more of your camels to it unless the active player grants you permission to do so through some negotiation.
Your caravans depart at the start of your next turn, but be wary of bandits out to steal your goods as bandits tend to target the camels in the most lucrative caravan positions.
There are 6 card types in Merchants of Araby: Merchants, Allies, Virtues, Djinn, Caravans and Backs.
Merchants are played to your entourage, the collection of merchants and allies that you use throughout the game to get stuff done. When you task a merchant you generate a product that you can use to add a camel to a caravan, reduce the cost to play other cards, or offer up as your end of some negotiated deal.
Virtues are life lessons that show the benefits of living a life of purpose. Invoking Generosity, Cooperation, Frugality and more will bring you rewards and you may share many of those rewards with the players who have been helpful to you.
Djinn are powerful magical beings that can be leveraged to generate products, refresh allies, grant cards, and sneak your camels into caravans they're not supposed to be in...if you cross their palms with a bit of silver.
Allies are the people you surround yourself with to grease the wheels, smooth the bumps and, when they work together in subtle combos you'll be thrilled with what they can accomplish. The more allies you have, the more flexible your strategies can be.
On the back of all the cards, you'll find some very important information you'll need to resolve your caravans. Lay a card face down next to your caravan as it departs and you'll see which camel gets ambushed by the bandits and how much each remaining camel will earn depending on its location. Every card back is different and you won't know your results beforehand.
And finally there are the caravan cards, themselves. Each shows the products needed in the nine camel positions. It's your job to get as many of those positions filled as possible before your next turn. Only complete columns and complete rows pay off though, so be careful where you place your camels.
After four complete rounds, all of the players receive a final resolution card for their caravan and all the money is totaled up to see who is the wealthiest merchant in all of Araby.
- 86 Game Cards
- 4 Player Merchant Cards
- 4 Player Tents
- 4 Reference Cards
- 60 Coin Tokens (30 1’s, 20 5’s, 10 10’s)
- 20 Camel Tokens (5 in each player color)
- 1 Rulebook
- 1 Beautifully Illustrated Box
- 1 Functionally Designed insert
- 1 Cunningly Engineered Game Board
Kickstarter Limited Exclusive Card*:
- 1 Djinn "Tribute" Card
Jon Gets Games
Full Playthrough with Jon Gets Games
If you'd like to add-on additional copies of Merchants of Araby, first complete your single-copy pledge, then click the blue "Manage" button to adjust your pledge. Add $39 to your total for each additional copy. This amount is slightly higher than a standard pledge to cover the additional shipping required to sent out the larger heavier packages.
ManaSurge and Valeria: Card Kingdoms are both available now in retail stores and we urge you to buy them locally or at an online retailer. If your favorite store does not carry products from Daily Magic Games, we encourage you to ask your retailer to order these games from Peachstate Hobby or Alliance Distribution in the USA, or Esdevium Distribution in the EU.
We like to support game stores around the world by offering the Kickstarter versions of the game to retailers during the campaign. We treat retailer backers just like other backers in that they receive their rewards before we release regular retail games into distribution. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you're a retailer with a USA address or a USA freight forwarder and you're interested in getting Merchants of Araby at wholesale pricing for your store.
Every game we create is a discrete project with its own development schedule and it's own budget of production and marketing expenses. We bring each project to Kickstarter when it's ready to give you, our fans and supporters, the opportunity to help us put the final touches on the game and to reserve your copies at the time it will do the game the most good, both financially and creatively.
Some say that a creator should not launch a new project until their previous project is completed and delivered. That system might work for a designer who is self-publishing a game, but for an up-and-coming company like Daily Magic Games, that system is not viable. At any point in time we are working on a dozen projects in various stages of completion. Right now, for example...
- Villages of Valeria is at the printer.
- Quests of Valeria is at the printer.
- Merchants of Araby is on Kickstarter
- Go Nuts for Donuts is out to game reviewers
- 10 Minute Heist is having reviewer prototypes created
- VCK Flames & Frost is finishing art and beta-testing
- Kitten Klash is getting artwork started
- Food Truck Champions is getting art descriptions written
- Horizons is getting art descriptions written
- Spaceways is in beta-testing
- Thrones of Valeria is in alpha-testing
- Knights of Valeria is in alpha-testing
In order to plan releases for the summer of 2017, we have to run the Kickstarter projects on a specific schedule and be sure all of the final files are to the printer ASAP. To accomplish that, our crowdfunding and release plans for the rest of 2016 looks something like this...
- Merchants of Araby: Kickstarter Aug 16 to Sep 13, Release June 2017
- Go Nuts for Donuts: Kickstarter Sep 20 to Sep 30, Release July 2017
- 10 Minute Heist: Kickstarter Oct 4 to Oct 14, Release July 2017
- VCK Flames & Frost: Kickstarter Oct 18 to Nov 15, Release August 2017
- Swinging Jivecat Voodoo Lounge delivered one month late in December 2015 and is nearly sold out.
- Valeria: Card Kingdoms delivered on time in January 2016. The first print run sold out and the second print run was delivered to our warehouse in June 2016.
- ManaSurge delivered one month late in June 2016.
- Villages of Valeria is at the printer and, after a couple of delays that occurred because we changed printers in mid-stream for quality control issues, is scheduled to deliver two months late in November 2016.
- Quests of Valeria is at the printer and looks to be on-track for delivery in February 2017.
Daily Magic Games is a designer-friendly and customer-focused publisher specializing in casual tabletop games that are easy to learn and play, yet layered with strategy and depth.
- Isaias Vallejo, Wizard-in-Chief, Game Designer, and Developer
- David MacKenzie, Conjurer and Game Developer
- Levi Mote, Alchemist, Game Designer, and Developer
- Sarah Sharp, Enchantress and Convention Event Planner
- Dylan Pharaoh-Whitney, Sorcerer and Graphic Designer
- Claire Donaldson, Illusionist, Illustrator, and Graphic Designer
We are focused on listening to what our customers have to say and making sure that we are producing the type of games you want at the high quality you demand. We are actively involved in the Comments section of each Kickstarter and keep backers up to date with plenty of updates post-Kickstarter.
We like to make casual and gateway games in an effort to get more people to the table. Our games are easy to learn to help new players get in to the game faster, but they're also layered with strategy for the more seasoned players.
We're based out of Seattle, Washington and like to focus on the growth and promotion of game design in the Pacific Northwest. We've even started a playtesting event network called playtestNW to help local designers meet each other and engage with playtesters on a regular basis. Our hope is that we're helping designers build better games.
Risks and challenges
Daily Magic Games is committed to delivering quality products on time. We realize that the publication of a board game can be complicated and, no matter how experienced the project creators and mangers are, some problems may occur. In an effort to reduce the likelihood of delays and mistakes, we have taken several steps to prepare for success:
1. This game project, as well as the Kickstarter campaign itself, are in the hands of two well-seasoned professionals. David MacKenzie has been running Kickstarter projects since 2010 (Alien Frontiers, Sunrise City, Swinging Jivecat Voodoo Lounge, Valeria: Card Kingdoms, ManaSurge, Villages of Valeria, Quests of Valeria), and Isaias Vallejo comes from a digital games background as production and studio director at Big Fish Games and has designed several successful board games: Sunrise City, Valeria: Card Kingdoms, Villages of Valeria, and Quests of Valeria.
2. We are dedicated to backer communication and feedback. Throughout every campaign, we are as transparent about the process and as open to feedback as possible without jeopardizing production and delivery timelines.
3. We have done significant pre-production. All the art and graphic design for Merchants of Araby are completed with the exception of stretch goals content. The art and design for the stretch goals content has been sketched out and is ready to push forward as soon as each goal is achieved.
4. We have our manufacturer lined up and ready to begin the pre-press process as soon as the campaign ends. We hope that everything goes as planned, but if something falls through the cracks, we are ready and willing to employ every tool at our disposal to get the project back on track and running smoothly.
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