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A fun, quick card game. Build giant robots, deploy clever gadgets & use shifting alliances to be the last mad scientist standing!
A fun, quick card game. Build giant robots, deploy clever gadgets & use shifting alliances to be the last mad scientist standing!
Miss the Kickstarter? Click below to pre-order ROBOT RISE!
A fun, quick card game. Build giant robots, deploy clever gadgets & use shifting alliances to be the last mad scientist standing! Miss the Kickstarter? Click below to pre-order ROBOT RISE!
368 backers pledged $10,280 to help bring this project to life.

About

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ROBOT RISE! Embrace Your Inner Mad Scientist

$10,280

368

ROBOT RISE! is the card game of mad scientists battling for domination. In the game, you are a mad scientist trying to destroy the secret lairs of your opponents before they destroy yours. Build giant robots and use a variety of fiendish weapons and amazing technology to attack and defend. In a pinch, you can even form a temporary alliance with another player to help take out a common opponent.

 Backstory

The Ministry of Discord, a secret alliance of arch-villains and scoundrels who strive to terrorize humanity and take over the world, is recruiting! Following the unfortunate (and messy) demise of its founder, Professor Heinrich von Untergang (who “accidentally” fell into his own giant vat of acid), the organization just announced it has an opening for one new member. Each player is a freelance mad scientist hoping and scheming to claim that coveted seat at The Ministry of Discord by eliminating all the rival mad scientists (players) in the game…by any means necessary.

The Mad Scientist Identity cards will add a fun, new component to ROBOT RISE! and we're really hoping we can generate the funding to squeeze them into the game. In a nutshell, these cards will represent players' secret identities during a game of ROBOT RISE!. Each card will have the name, image, and bio of a mad scientist and will include the special ability for that identity. The special ability will be an action the player can take once per game upon revealing their mad scientist identity.    

Here's how it works: At the beginning of the game, the 8 cards will be shuffled. Each player will receive a random card, face down. After reading their cards, players will keep them next to them, face down, until they wish to reveal their identities and activate the special abilities. Here are the concepts for the 8 Mad Scientist Identity cards.

Click to download a larger image.
Click to download a larger image.

The ROBOT RISE! box contains 108 cards -- 18 secret lair cards and a 90-card play deck (see cards below) -- a full-color rulebook, and organizer insert.

Cards will be US poker-sized (2.5" x 3.5") and high quality. Production box will be roughly 6.5" x 4.5" x 1.4"; the design shown is preliminary and may change in size and/or to incorporate additional illustrations, certifications, extraterrestrial declarations of war, barcodes, etc.

ROBOT RISE! T-Shirts

Those who pledge at either the Mad Scientist's Masterpiece or the Vile Villain's Vendetta levels will receive a limited-edition ROBOT RISE! t-shirt. We'll collect shirt color and size preference information from you at the end of the campaign. Here are the available options. 

Watch our how-to-play video, read through a summary of gameplay, or download the full rulebook and print & play below. Or do all three!

Gameplay Summary

ROBOT RISE! begins with each player having three secret lairs and a hand of cards. Each player’s turn consists of taking one action (playing a card or set of cards) and executing the effects of that action. A player's turn ends by drawing a card (or cards) to replenish their hand, with play then moving to the left. The last player to have any secret lairs remaining wins the game.

Actions consist of lethal attacks, which can destroy opponents' lairs, nuisance attacks, which don't, and playing utility cards, which help players in unique and valuable ways. When a player is attacked in any way, a defense card can be played to avoid the attack's harmful effects. If a player is subjected to a lethal attack and cannot (or chooses not to) use one of the various defense cards, one of the player's secret lairs is destroyed (the card is flipped over). Once a player's third secret lair is destroyed, the player is out of the game (this tends to happen late in the game, so downtime is minimal).

Giant robots are constructed in players' hands of Head, Body & Legs cards and deployed only when needed. A fully armed and operational giant robot can be used to lethally attack another player or as defense against another player's attack. Once used, giant robots retire to the discard pile.

If a player has at least two of the three parts needed to form a giant robot (e.g., Head and Legs cards), a temporary alliance can be requested to secure the third part. In this example, a player would request an alliance to supply the missing Body card. Other players who have the requested card can choose to offer it up. If theirs is selected, they draw a replacement card and the player who owns the now fully formed giant robot can send it off to attack any other player in the game. Alliances are available whenever there are at least three players in the game.

Event cards affect the player (or all players, depending on the event) as soon as they are drawn. Check out the rulebook for complete rules.

 

Note that this Print&Play is full-color, but low-resolution. If you'd like the high-quality version, simply back the campaign at any pledge level.

And not exactly a review per se, but Craig was interviewed by Carla of Weird Giraffe Games. We discussed the origin of ROBOT RISE! and a variety of other related topics. Check it out when you get a chance.

New to Kickstarter? Not sure what to do next? No worries!

Backing this project to get your very own copy of ROBOT RISE! is actually pretty easy and takes just a few quick steps:

  • Step 1. Scroll up to the top of the page and look for the big green button that says "Back this project" and click it. That will take you to the "Support this project" page.
  • Step 2. On the "Support this project" page, click on the pledge level you're comfortable with (e.g., One copy of ROBOT RISE! for $19). 
  • Step 3. Choose your destination country -- where you want the game to be shipped. Your total pledge amount should be updated automatically.
  • Step 4. Click the green button that says "Continue".
  • Step 5. On the next page, enter your email address and click the green button that says "Continue as guest".
  • Step 6. On the final page, enter in your payment information and click the green button that says "Pledge".

There...you're done! Pretty simple, eh? 

What does "friendly" shipping mean for this project? Backers in those countries or regions should expect to receive their games without having to pay additional taxes, tariffs, or fees. Backers in Canada will be receiving their copies from abroad, but we will do what we can to minimize the taxes due upon arrival.

We love all the friendly local game stores who put their faith in Kickstarter projects and try to bring new games to their customers as quickly as possible, so we want to offer some truly compelling options for you.

  • The SMALL BUNDLE includes 6 copies of ROBOT RISE! -- 5 for re-sale plus one FREE demo copy -- for $50 + shipping. 
  • The BIG BUNDLE includes 12 copies of ROBOT RISE! -- 11 for re-sale plus one FREE demo copy -- for $99 + shipping.

To secure your access to one of these bundles, back at the $1 level and then contact us to verify your status. Retail copies of ROBOT RISE! will be identical to those received by individual backers. 

Both bundles offer sizable discounts off the $19 MSRP and will be available to verified brick-and-mortar retailers in the US, the EU, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Amounts pledged here in the campaign will be credited towards your future order, which will be handled directly closer to product availability in early 2018. 

Please email us at retail@happyharpygames.com. We want to help you make your customers as happy as possible.

Connect with us on these fine social media platforms:

And if you want to share this project with your friends and family, scroll to the top of the page and look for the familiar icons. You'll have our undying gratitude! :-D

A Brief History of ROBOT RISE!  We started working on the game that would become ROBOT RISE! in late 2015. Inspired by those old children’s board books where you could make different combinations of types of people (for example, the legs of a nurse with the body of a firefighter and the head of a clown), the basic concept of building up giant robots a piece at a time was conceived. 

Quickly, we placed it in the context of mad scientists battling each other and the core game was born. Imagine a malevolent, crazy-haired inventor putting the last touches on a giant automaton death machine, standing back, throwing her arms in the air, and yelling "Robot...RISE!"

Over the next 18 months and many, MANY structured rounds of development and playtesting with over 150 different people, we refined the rules, added interesting new cards, and shaped it into a truly delightful and enjoyable game. 

And that is what we hope you will back via this campaign.

Look, we understand. Happy Harpy Games is a pretty new name in the board game space, so you might not know what to expect when it comes to our games. We want you to be confident in your support of this campaign, so we are publicly announcing today a policy we've been telling backers about individually for some time now.  

If you back this campaign and, after receiving a copy of ROBOT RISE! and playing it a few times, you are sincerely unhappy with it, we'll take it back.  

To be clear on how this works, if you pledge at a level where you receive at least one physical copy of the game, receive the game, and are truly dissatisfied (hey, we get it...not everybody likes every game), send the game back to us in a condition such that we can donate it (e.g., to a school, library, hospital, charity, etc.) and we'll refund the cost of the game PLUS any extra shipping you may have had to add to your pledge.  

If you receive a damaged copy of the game, we'll correct it.  

Sometimes stuff gets damaged in the mail...it happens. We're working with GamesQuest, one of the best game fulfillment companies on the planet, and we're confident you'll get tidily packaged copies of ROBOT RISE! But, if the packaging doesn't protect it enough, we will make things right by you.

Happy Harpy Games is a family company that designs, develops, and publishes great board and card games for consumers and educational simulation games for institutions. We're located in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. Happy Harpy Games consists of:

  • Craig Froehle, PhD has long enjoyed playing games of every sort, from RPGs to social card games. As a university research professor with degrees in engineering and business, he spends a lot of his time figuring out puzzles of all kinds. Craig leads game design, development, and takes care of pretty much every other aspect of the business.  
  • Sam Froehle (12) is a big fan of family and party games, especially Sushi Go!, Guillotine, trivia games, Scrabble, and Dixit. When she's not playing or doing homework, she's probably practicing guitar or drawing. Sam is primarily involved in game design.  
  • Colin Froehle (9) loves games, both board and video. His favorites (so far) include Mancala, Mars 04:45, Monopoly, and Mario Kart (except the blue shells!). Practicing taekwondo and playing soccer keep him from sitting too long. Colin engages in game design.  
  • Lori Aronson, MD prefers non-confrontational games, abstracts, and word games, but most of her time is spent taking care of sick kids as a pediatric anesthesiologist. Lori provides game design input and helps keep the rest of us from going too far down the wrong paths.  

Due much credit and appreciation:

Finally, even though our part in the intro video above is short, filming it generated a ridiculous amount of blooper footage. Feel free to check out this short compilation, which is mostly just the kids laughing at Craig.

Happy Harpy Games is a proud member of the IGA
Happy Harpy Games is a proud member of the IGA
Track this project from its beginning on Kicktraq!
Track this project from its beginning on Kicktraq!

Risks and challenges

Happy Harpy Games is wholly committed to completing this project and delivering an excellent game into the hands of its backers. To that end, we believe we have several advantages:
• All the artwork for ROBOT RISE! is done
• The rulebook is complete
• The box layout will be finished before the campaign ends
• Production, logistics & distribution arrangements are in place and ready to get started as soon as the campaign is completed
• Our team has decades of business experience with a variety of service- and goods-producing industries

While this is not our first successful game, it is our first Kickstarter-funded project. However, after backing nearly 100 Kickstarter projects over the past 5 years, we’ve watched a lot of successes (and nearly as many failures) and we’ve learned a lot about how to communicate effectively and deliver a great game for you, our backers. That said, as with any complicated endeavor, risks still exist. We could make a mistake and factors outside our control, such as production problems, logistical delays, or delivery snafus, could still happen, and we’ll be working to minimize those wherever possible. And if one happens we can’t work around, we’ll be sure to let you, our backers, know as soon as we do. We remain confident, however, that our timeline and production plans are reasonable and feasible. And, if stretch goals are introduced that impact the planned delivery dates, we’ll let you know that in advance.

Thank you for backing this project. If you have any concerns or questions, please leave a comment or email us at robotrise@happyharpygames.com.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $3 or more About $3

    HQ Digital Print & Play File (PDF)

    Choose this if you prefer to print out the cards and rulebook for ROBOT RISE! on your own. This is a purely digital reward.

    If you want an actual copy of the game shipped to you, select one of the pledge levels below.

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    Pledge $19 or more About $19

    ROBOT RISE! - The Actual Game

    US$19 ~€16 ~£14 ~CA$24 ~AU$24

    Receive ONE (1) glorious physical copy of ROBOT RISE! including any stretch goals introduced and unlocked during this Kickstarter campaign.

    If you want TWO (2) copies, increase your pledge by the amount of the game ($19) PLUS the shipping cost for your country or region for the additional copy of the game (see shipping costs table in project description). Or, go for THREE copies (and save more money) by checking out the Thrifty 3-Pack pledge level below.

    This pledge level includes the HQ Print & Play file (PDF) delivered digitally.

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    Pledge $54 or more About $54

    ROBOT RISE! - Thrifty 3-Pack

    US$54 ~€46 ~£41 ~CA$67 ~AU$68

    Receive THREE (3) glorious physical copies of ROBOT RISE! including any stretch goals introduced and unlocked during this Kickstarter campaign.

    Give two copies as gifts and keep one for yourself (and save money)!

    This pledge level includes the HQ Print & Play file (PDF) delivered digitally.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    The Vile Villain's Vendetta

    Backers at this level will receive two (2) glorious physical copies of ROBOT RISE! and a limited-edition ROBOT RISE! t-shirt in your choice of color (see campaign page for more info).

    Oh, and FREE shipping!

    We'll contact you to specify your shirt size and color preference after the campaign ends.

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    Pledge $99 or more About $99

    The Mad Scientist's Masterpiece

    Achieve the goal of every evil genius and leave your enduring mark upon the world!

    Backers at this level will get to name* one of the 15 giant robots in ROBOT RISE!, used whenever the robots' names are featured (e.g., on our website, in the rules, etc.).

    You will also receive a limited-edition ROBOT RISE! t-shirt, just like the one Craig is wearing in the intro video (except, uh, new). We'll contact you to specify your shirt size after the campaign ends.

    Of course, you will receive one (1) physical copy of the ROBOT RISE! game. And, if you wish, the design team at Happy Harpy Games will be delighted to autograph it for you.

    Oh, and FREE SHIPPING!!

    This pledge level is available only to backers located in the US.

    *We retain the right to veto proposed names if we deem them offensive or inappropriate or they risk conflicting with intellectual property owned by others. And we know you can do better than Botty McBotface. We'll work with you on this.

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Funding period

- (30 days)