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Pirate Den is a pirate-themed bluffing game by Gamesmith for 3 to 5 players that plays in under 30 mins. Fun, elegant, and beautiful!
Pirate Den is a pirate-themed bluffing game by Gamesmith for 3 to 5 players that plays in under 30 mins. Fun, elegant, and beautiful!
697 backers pledged $39,352 to help bring this project to life.

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$39,352

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ABSTRACT

Pirate Den is a pirate-themed bluffing game for 3 to 5 players ages 14 and up that plays in less than 30 minutes. It's ideal for casual gamers looking for a fun time as well as deeper strategy players looking for a quick filler. Adding rum to the mix makes for a great evening of gaming with a truly fun and engaging pirate theme!

It's the golden age of sail and each player takes on the role of legendary pirate captains plundering the seas. The British East Indies Company, the Dutch East Indies Company, and the Spanish-Portuguese Empire are sailing the high seas heavily laden with cash from their colonies. They're easy pickings for a famous and daring pirate like yourself! The trick is that while pirates can plunder ships at sea, they can also steal from other pirates. This exciting dynamic makes Pirate Den an addicting game of greed and betrayal.

Attack merchant ships and take more than just their rum!
Attack merchant ships and take more than just their rum!
Bury your treasure before your friends find your loot!
Bury your treasure before your friends find your loot!
Just like in real life, the pirate with the most treasure wins!
Just like in real life, the pirate with the most treasure wins!
The five legendary pirate captains assemble.
The five legendary pirate captains assemble.

SO MANY BONUS MEDIA INTERVIEWS

GeekOn Radio talking about finding the right game for players.

Boardgame Babylon podcast discussing the game development process.

Going Last podcast discussing the different promo captain levels.

Shane Tyree hangout discussing the beautiful art style of Pirate Den.

The Young Turks interview general introduction to tabletop gaming.

DFW Nerd Nighters Back It interview full Kickstarter campaign walk through.

CritsHappen Critical Preview full game play demonstration of Pirate Den.

Happy Mitten podcast has a full in-depth personality interview with me.

GAME PLAY OVERVIEW

The best way to learn how to play Pirate Den is by watching the tutorial video that Ennie-award winning CritsHappen blogger Tox and I made at SXSW the other day. It is a full gameplay video from start to finish that actually shows all the rules of play including final scoring. Enjoy!

You can download a copy of Pirate Den from my dropbox now and learn to play for yourself (read Update #3 for set up instructions). Until then, here's the player aid to show you basically all the rules of play plus a simple rules write up: 

Pirate Den player mat with rules summary.
Pirate Den player mat with rules summary.

Give every player a player mat, the matching pirate deck, plus five random treasure tokens. Draw out a number of random treasure tokens (18, 21, or 25) depending on the number of players (3, 4, or 5 respectively). Simultaneously select an action card and play it face down. When everyone is ready, reveal the cards and resolve all the actions according to their initiative value on the card (0, 1, 2, etc.). If players take from the same pool of treasure, they split the reward evenly (remainders stay). Important: remember to resolve played action cards in order. The action card played is not available again until that player buries their treasure and that player returns all actions to their hand. The game ends when any player has at least five buried treasure at the end of the turn. Each buried treasure counts as 10 points and each treasure token counts as 1 point. The pirate with the most points wins. Pirate Den has an elegant game design, provides lots of fun all the way to the end, and has a beautiful and rich theme that will engage your gaming group!

CREATIVE TEAM

Designer: Pirate Den is based on the original design Stones, created by Richard James (Mr. Card Game) and was developed by Boyan Radakovich (TableTop). Pirate Den uses a clever game theory application that has multiple players all vying for common resources with core game design mechanics being simultaneous play, bluffing to conceal your intentions, risk management, and hand management.

Richard is famous for his work on the Kingdom of Loathing card game.
Richard is famous for his work on the Kingdom of Loathing card game.

Illustrator: Pirate Den is beautifully rendered by Tod Harris (Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw). Conveying a fun and whimsical pirate theme, Tod's illustrations are comical, full of expression, and embody a wonderful attention to detail. The illustrations are complemented by the graphic design of Thomas Deeny (Nightfall). You'll be very proud to share this game with your friends and family.

Tod's beautiful illustrations are some of the best in the industry.
Tod's beautiful illustrations are some of the best in the industry.

Publisher: Pirate Den is produced by me and follows my Gamesmith mantra of bringing together elegant game design, beautiful illustrations, and the highest production value. I tried to leverage my industry contacts to bring together another all-star team to make Pirate Den successful. Gamesmith has run two previous successful Kickstarter projects with 12 Days and Camden. Pirate Den is my third (and hopefully also successful) Kickstarter project.

Me talking about the golden age of tabletop gaming.
Me talking about the golden age of tabletop gaming.

BASIC GAME COMPONENTS

Pirate Den will be produced using the highest quality components. Each game will come in a beautifully illustrated durable box, with the following components fitting nicely inside:

  • 55 linen-finished playing cards (standard pirate deck)
  • 5 linen-finished two-sided player mats (includes translations)
  • 120 two-sided chipboard treasure tokens (cash and points)
  • 20 chipboard buried treasure chests (victory points)
  • 6-page rules booklet (rules)
Pirate Den Cover (not final art)
Pirate Den Cover (not final art)
Pirate Den Captain Arnoult Player Mat (sample)
Pirate Den Captain Arnoult Player Mat (sample)
Pirate Den Action Card (sample)
Pirate Den Action Card (sample)

PLEDGE LEVELS

We will be adding new pledge levels as the campaign continues. Here are the basics. Find the level that's right for you and please back me today!

PIRATE DEN [$25]: A shiny copy of Pirate Den to call all your own, plus free domestic shipping. Nice and simple. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

DELUXE PIRATE DEN [$50]: Upgrade your Pirate Den experience by adding the following Kickstarter-exclusive upgrades -- one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promotional pirate captain player mats, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus your favorite promotional pirate deck added to your set. Also, free domestic shipping. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

PROMO DELUXE PIRATE DEN [$75]: Pirate Den with all the awesome deluxe Kickstarter-exclusive upgrades -- one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promotional pirate captain player mats, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus ALL of the promotional pirate decks -- Dread Crew, Musical Geekery, League of STEAM, Super Friends, and any more that are unlocked. As we announce and unlock more promo captains, your deluxe upgrade continues to grow without any additional costs. Also, free domestic shipping. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

FLGS PIRATE DEN [$85]: Six copies of the base game Pirate Den with an official poster for your favorite local game store (FLGS). Restricted to retailers with resale license. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

SUPER PREMIUM COLLECTOR'S PIRATE DEN [$165]: For the collector in all of us! One copy of Pirate Den with all the normal Kickstarter-exclusive upgrades -- a custom bag, 120 gemstones, all promotional pirate captain player mats, and all of the promotional pirate decks, plus a custom Pirate Den challenge coin -- with three amazing upgrades. 1) All of your promotional pirate captain player mats will be AUTOGRAPHED by our captains. 2) And to make this the ultimate collectors experience, a customized PIRATE CHEST to keep Pirate Den safe from plunder. 3) As if that were not amazing enough, I'm adding an extremely limited edition official IRON DRAB, one of the currencies from Pat Rothfuss' The Name of the Wind series to your collection. Only 1,000 of these were made, and you get to have one for backing Pirate Den today.  Free domestic shipping only. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

PERSONALIZED SUPER PREMIUM COLLECTOR'S PIRATE DEN [$295]: What could be better than getting super premium autographed collector's edition of Pirate Den in your own custom pirate chest and limited edition iron drab? Having your very own personalized character to join the celebs to play in the game!! Use a picture of yourself in pirate garb or maybe a funny image of your cat to let your friends know you're cooler than they are. Make an illustration of your own creation or a professional photo of your loved ones to make an amazing personalized gift. I will make the deck and player mat just for you and ship it with your copy of super premium collector's edition Pirate Den. In fact, you also get to translate the rules sheet into whatever language you want. Klingon pirates sound pretty cool to me, but it's your choice. This is the ultimate customization and personalization experience. Estimated delivery is October 2014.

PROMOTIONAL CAPTAIN DECKS

With each deluxe pledge and higher, backers will be able to select one of the following promotional captain decks to add to their selection. Backers at the promo deluxe level and higher will receive all of them (I know, I'm super excited for them too!!). Here are the promo captain decks:

The Dread Crew of Oddwood Deck includes a badass set of your favorite mahogany crushing performers 

The League of STEAM Deck with your favorite steampunk ladies and gents  because not much goes better with pirates than steampunk

The Musical Geekery Deck with many of your favorite geeky musicians like The Doubleclicks, Paul & Storm, and Molly Lewis 

The Super Friends Deck with Pat Rothfuss, Bonnie Burton, Veronica Belmont, Grant Imahara and Scott Lynch's Zamira Drakasha.

If we are fortunate enough to unlock more than Pat's Super Friends deck, I will try to do a pirate pin-up deck and perhaps some other cool backer favorite selections. Check update #5 for some extremely rough comps of what promo decks might look like pre-illustration and graphic design work.

STRETCH GOALS

With your help, we can make Pirate Den super awesome by including lots of additional promotional player mats. Promo player mats of all announced promotional pirate captains are included in all deluxe and higher level rewards. Additionally, promotional pirate decks from your favorite internet celebs, upgraded components, and lots more as we unlock the first set of stretch goals. More stretch goals will be added, so let's make Pirate Den happen!

$30,000 Illustrated Dread Crew Deck

  • If you love pirates and you love metal, you will love my favorite metal pirate band, The Dread Crew of Oddwood. Download their music and have your own soundtrack for your games of Pirate Den. Choose the Dread Crew as your deluxe promotional pirate captain deck. Same great game, twice the badassitude!

$35,000 Illustrated Musical Geekery Deck 

  • If you love cute and nerdy folk comedy duos singing about velociraptors, Dungeons & Dragons, and crushing on Mr. Darcy, you will absolutely love The Doubleclicks. Aubrey plays cello and Angela sings, but they both love pirates something fierce. Both musicians are already expert players at Pirate Den and have their illustrated characters ready! 
  • If somehow you don't know who the folk comedy duo Paul and Storm are, take the time and listen to their song below. They're awesome. Go ahead, I'll still be here. Now, your w00tstock and JoCo Crazy Cruise experience cannot be complete without being able to play your Paul and Storm deck against them at your favorite convention. This promo is so meta even this add-on! 
  • And rounding out the musical geekery deck is the lovely and talented Molly Lewis, famous for her witty lyrics and bringing the ukelele front and center in the nerd folk movement. Molly has played many gigs with the other promotional captains in the Musical Geekery deck, so chances are you'll be able to get all your player mats signed at one concert, or convention, or convention-based concert. You get what I'm saying. Five talented musicians, one super awesome promotional deck of pirates!

$40,000 Illustrated League of STEAM Deck

  • What could go better with pirates than steampunk? My amazingly talented friends at The League of STEAM would get their own promo deck of captains if we hit this level! In fact, the League is such a fan of gaming, that I might just have to make their own separate League game if we hit this reward level. And you know that everyone wants more future games! 

$50,000 Illustrated Patrick Rothfuss Super Friends Deck

  • If we are fortunate enough to hit $50k, I'll make a promotional captain for one of my favorite authors today and a dear personal friend and fan favorite, Patrick Rothfuss. Joining Pat's Super Friends deck are fan-favorites Veronica Belmont (Sword & Laser), Grant Imahara (Mythbusters), and Bonnie Burton (CNET)! So much awesome all packed into one deck of my incredibly talented friends. It's a true honor to be able to promote such amazing people with my game Pirate Den
  • Pat and I have worked closely together on other projects, and it's about time he has his own player mat and pirate deck in Pirate Den. Let's make this the start of a long and beautiful working relationship between Pat and Gamesmith (hint hint hint). Not only could you get an autographed Rothfuss player mat, but you'd be enabling even more future collaboration. This is the first major milestone for Pirate Den, so please help me make it by supporting today!!
The Super Friends deck includes the incredibly talented fan-favorites Patrick Rothfuss, Veronica Belmont, Grant Imahara, and Bonnie Burton!!
The Super Friends deck includes the incredibly talented fan-favorites Patrick Rothfuss, Veronica Belmont, Grant Imahara, and Bonnie Burton!!

GAMESMITH GAMES ADD-ONS

Gamesmith has successfully produced two other games in addition to Pirate Den. Perhaps you'd like to add those other awesome games to your support of this current awesome game while you're here:

  • $15 per copy of our smash hit trick-taking game 12 Days 
  • $25 per additional copy of Pirate Den (no limit add-on) 
  • $35 per copy of our awesome tile-laying game Camden 
  • $45 per additional copy of Deluxe Pirate Den
12 Days and Camden round out the Gamesmith trifecta!
12 Days and Camden round out the Gamesmith trifecta!

 No additional shipping charges are required for add-ons. Yes, even to international backers. I know, it's pretty amazing. Just be sure to message me here saying that you want to make some add-ons to your order and I'll follow up afterwards to fulfill your request. 

Please share this message and help us make Pirate Den happen!

CREDITS

Special thanks to:

Clockwork Couture for helping with the filming location and for gathering all our friends in costume. And special shoutout to Alyssa and Brian for letting us film on their beautiful pirate set. What a fun excuse to dress up and play games. We should do this more often! I'm sensing a pirate-themed party on the last day of this Kickstarter!

Steve Grubel for all the help in editing the video footage into a wonderful little Kickstarter video that is compelling and fun, and also Lee Russell for his incredible photography skill in capturing all the fun of our photoshoot. I cannot recommend their services highly enough. They are true professionals and some of the best in the business! 

This Kickstarter video would never have happened without all of their dedication and support. Thank you!

And to all of YOU in the Kickstarter community, thank you for letting me share my passion for tabletop gaming with you!!

Here's a fun video of me and my buddy Paul Peterson working on our next game and hopefully Gamesmith's 4th successful tabletop game (codename: Jammer Six). Look, if archeology needs a whip and fedora, game design needs fast cars and lots of running and jumping. Enjoy!

Gamesmith logo
Gamesmith logo

Risks and challenges

Gamesmith has successfully funded and delivered two previous Kickstarter-supported tabletop games and Pirate Den is the third. I've learned a lot through the process; however, the production of tabletop games has a lot of inherent risks and challenges. Below are some typical risks and my strategy for success.

DESIGN RISKS. Pirate Den has been both designed and developed by professionals and the game has been play tested well over a hundred times ensuring balanced and fun game play. There is incredibly low risk that Pirate Den would need to be redesigned, since the game play is quite strong and well tested among different groups.

PRODUCTION RISKS. Pirate Den has finished the game design, development, art, and print buying portions with print ready files mostly good to go as soon as the Kickstarter funding comes through. I'll do my best to accommodate your stretch goal wishes while still staying on budget.

LOGISTICS RISKS. Sometimes shipping physical games can be a challenge. Fortunately, I have a very professional fulfillment and logistics solution that ships my packages and I keep tracking numbers for all the orders.

LEGAL RISKS. All the game design and art are clearly protected under contract and there are no known parties being infringed upon. It is extremely unlikely to have any legal risks associated with Pirate Den.

My risks and challenges section may be longer than you've seen on other projects, but that's because I want to be certain that your mind is at ease. I've delivered my last two projects and I'm even more committed to the process now that Gamesmith is just me.

I hope you'll consider backing Pirate Den today! Please tell your friends about it and thank you for your support!!

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    (EARLY BIRD) DELUXE PIRATE DEN. One copy of the base game with deluxe upgrades and free domestic shipping. Limited offer.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    DELUXE PIRATE DEN. One copy of the base game, one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promo pirate captain player mats, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus your favorite promotional pirate deck added to your set. Includes free domestic shipping.

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    PROMO DELUXE PIRATE DEN. One copy of the base game, one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promo pirate captain player mats, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus ALL of the promotional pirate decks added to your set. Includes free domestic shipping.

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    PIRATE DEN FLGS LEVEL. Six copies of the base game plus official poster. Restricted to retail store owners only.

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    Pledge $165 or more About $165

    SUPER PREMIUM COLLECTORS PIRATE DEN. One copy of the base game, one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promo pirate captain player mats AUTOGRAPHED, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus all of the promo pirate decks and a custom PIRATE CHEST to keep it secret; keep it safe.

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    Pledge $295 or more About $295

    PERSONALIZED SUPER PREMIUM PIRATE DEN. One copy of the base game, one custom bag, 120 gemstones, all of the promo pirate captain player mats AUTOGRAPHED, a custom Pirate Den challenge coin, plus all of the promo pirate decks and a custom PIRATE CHEST to keep it all secret (keep it safe), plus a personalized pirate deck with YOUR PHOTO as captain, your own captain name, and language translation of choice for the player mat for the ultimate customized gameplay experience!

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Funding period

- (31 days)