We've been busy since our last Kickstarter. We have a new Velociraptor Tinysaur kit (see below) and a handmade board game where Velociraptors hunt Humans!
Dinosaur Hunting Game
They're coming to eat us!
We've designed and built an asymmetric strategy game on a 9 inch handmade wood board similar to a classic tiger hunting game called Bagh Chal. Our game characters are based on our miniature skeleton kits. Of course, we also had to include a skeleton version of Edvard Munch's Scream to entertain ourselves and amuse you.
Here's how a typical game is played. The four Velociraptors are placed in each corner of the game board. The Humans begin the game by adding one piece to the board on an open diamond, and then alternating turns with the Velociraptors. The Humans may not move any game pieces until all 20 have been placed onto the board.
Meanwhile, as Humans are placed, the Velociraptors are moving one adjacent diamond at a time along board lines, unless the next diamond is occupied by a Human and the one after that is not occupied. In this instance, the Velociraptor may jump over the Human and remove it from the board. There are no double jumps like checkers, and Velociraptors may not jump other Velociraptors. Humans do not jump at all. (They're like the cacti in Chrome's dino game for the first stage of this game)
Once all 20 Humans have been played onto a diamond on the board, phase two of the game begins. The remaining Humans from the Velociraptors' aggressive eating campaign must work together to corral the four Velociraptors. Humans move one free diamond at a time along board lines, similar to the Velociraptors, but without the ability to capture or jump.
The game is won by Humans when there are no further moves available for the Velociraptors. It is generally accepted that Velociraptors will win if five Humans are eaten, but a game can be won with less than 15 Humans. However, the Humans generally concede after five are lost, so Humans must be vigilant while all 20 are being placed on the board in order to preserve the maximum number of diamonds and minimize the Velociraptors' movements. There are four Velociraptors, 20 Humans, and 25 diamonds.
Players alternate commanding the Humans and Velociraptors for subsequent games. There's plenty of opportunity to get deep into a strategy, or you can play it like speed chess. Several of our test players were unsure that Humans could win against the threat of being eaten, but quickly discovered that life, uh, finds a way.
The game board is based on Alquerque, the granddaddy of the checker/chess board. We've made several 9 inch by 9 inch folding prototypes of the boards and played them with players who are new to our game to ensure our parquetry designs are logical in game play. All the hardware that's usually brass or steel in a folding game board, such as hinges and latches, was redesigned to be entirely fabricated from wood. The interior is lined with felt to ensure the game pieces are stowed safely for travel.
The game board is made of baltic birch with a variety of parquet veneers such as fumed oak, sycamore, wenge, pear, quilted bubinga, pommele eucalyptus, and fiddleback maple. We made a similar game for a previous kickstarter with T-rex and Triceratops that was inlaid with stained wood fossil shapes. We've taken this one a step further with humor and exotic woods.
Velociraptor skeleton models
We also make laser cut miniature skeleton models for you to assemble. Our newest, of course, is the Velociraptor skeleton.
Our most requested new model at every craft show has been a blue Velociraptor. Well, at long last, here it is: a free-standing bipedal model of the tiny Mongolian creature.
This got us thinking about a future project for a series of brown skeletons, because fossilized skeletons aren't usually white. Let us know in the comments what you think.
In the meantime, we'll tally the rewards to see if you want the blue Velociraptor to survive after this Kickstarter. There's an alternate set of claws included in each laser-cut kit that resembles the popular deinonychus grip gesture to give your model some additional expressiveness.
New all-in-one boxes
We were running out of boxes and getting ready to order more. As I started to update the design to include all the new Tinysaurs since our last printing, I remembered that so many people have compliment my illustrated handmade boxes for other products. So I decided that instead of ordering 10,000 generic boxes, I'd start illustrating unique boxes for each Tinysaur. This is the first prototype. Leave a comment to let us know what you think.
The all-in-one kits come with laser-cut bones, printed instructions, tweezers, a magnifier, glue, and a glass display dome with wood base.
One Human and one Velociraptor
3D instructions online
Our skeletons are tiny, and so are the printed instructions that come with your model. For that reason, we've built step-by-step 3D instructions online to help you assemble the models more easily. Want to get a better angle? No problem. Just rotate the model with your mouse on a desktop computer, or with your finger if you're on a phone or tablet. Want to see that part a little larger to see the exact way it fits? Unpinch to zoom in! We want your experience building these tiny specimens to be fun, so we eliminated the frustration from tiny type and limited illustrations. There are also some annotations with more detailed descriptions of the bones to deepen your dinosaur discovery. Click the play button on the image above to see the Completed Velociraptor or Velociraptor Shoulders and Clavicles steps in action.
Everyone loves to get mail. If you don't want stuff, but would like to support our project, we understand. Pledge $5 and up, and we'll send you a pen-and-ink drawing on chipboard, or what ever heavy paper we're doodling on lately. Thanks!
Risks and challenges
There's always the possibility of equipment failure -- specifically the laser cutter. Other than that, this is a pretty straight forward Kickstarter for us. The rewards and timelines are reasonable to accomplish.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (26 days)