News Collider - Board Game News 28th August

News Collider Board Game News HASBRO buy Entertainment One In Focus Monopoly Socialism Ludii Project LOKI

Welcome to the Hasbro edition of the News Collider where we can share with you all the exciting and stupid things HASBRO are doing like gaining the rights to Ghostbusters, Pepper Pig and The Walking Dead.  Releasing what could potentially could become the most despised edition of Monopoly and becoming the custodians of the Dr Dre/ Death Row Records back library.

In non-HASBRO news there's a really interesting and super geeky board game based avenue of archaeology for future generations to want to be when they grow up and Board Game Geek launches a new advertorial video series.

The Ludii Project

News Collider Board Game News The Ludii Project archaeoludology.png Ancient Rules

Cameron Browne is heading-up a new, exciting and highly interesting field of study in the world of archeology, or rather, archaeoludology, which is the recovery, study and understanding of ancient games. Based at the Maastricht University in the Netherlands, Browne is the principal investigator of the Digital Ludeme Project which uses a system named Ludii to help reconstruct rules for games uncovered.

The system first requires that all the components of each game are broken down into individual pieces of ‘data’ called “Ludemes”.  This can be a board, a playing piece or a known rule.  The system is then also fed cultural information about the origin of the game to help devise potential rulesets and play styles. In this way each piece of data is more like a piece of computer programming than an abstracted knight or soldier, allowing the computer to assess in terms of its function.  

Following this, modern AI techniques are used to test the algorithmically generated rulesets for elements that are known to make games “work”, or in other words test if the rules work and that the game is “fun”.

The Digital Ludeme Project has a beta version of an app online that will allow you to try out a large selection of ancient games.

IELLO Launch Loki Games

News Collider Board Game News IELLO Launch Loki Games

IELLO have launched a new publishing house, Loki, specializing in games for younger gamers, designed to spark kids’ creativity and imagination through playing games.  Key to this mission is games that have an engaging and accessible story, and are easy to learn with clear graphics.

As you might expect, themes include Dinosaurs, Farms and Pirates...which, come to think of it, doesn’t differ too wildly from my own collection…Since Loki is a part of IELLO, rest assured you can also expect these games to have fantastic production quality and wonderfully cutesy artwork.

With a present giving event on the not-too-distant-horizon, bookmark this page if you need some suggestions later on this year. 

HASBRO buy Entertainment One for $4 Billion

News Collider Board Game News HASBRO buy Entertainment One for 4 Billion

Despite having to make “organizational steps” back in October , HASBRO was able to stump up four million US dollars to buy the Canadian TV, Music and film company, Entertainment One in an all-cash transaction last week.

The reasons are plentiful and obvious with tie-ins and crossovers between the two platforms, one of which owns IPs like Peppa Pig, PJ Masks and Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom and the other makes toys and games for kids.  Quite frankly it’s a no brainer. 

Yes, this also means that the Walking Dead and Death Row Records are now owned by the same company that makes My Little Pony and Mr. Potato Head.    

Not content with that milestone, Hasbro also managed to strike a deal with Sony Picture Consumer Products to now be the “master worldwide toy licensee” for Ghostbusters.

Board Game Geek In Focus

News Collider Board Game News Board Game Geek Launches In Focus

Board Game Geek launches In Focus, a new service to help publishers advertise their games in short videos.  These videos will have high-end production and will be presented by board game luminaries such as Rodney Smith and the recently signed, Nick and Mike Murphy of the Brothers Murph.

For the publisher, this service starts at one-thousand rips, with videos featuring on the BGG YouTube channel.  Make no mistake, these are 100% paid for advertisements which marks a potentially exciting turning point in our hobby and it will be interesting to see how this evolves.

Monopoly Socialism

News Collider Board Game News Monopoly Socialism

The latest Monopoly iteration, Monopoly Socialism is meant as a parody of the socialist model, but apparently misses the mark entirely and has pissed pretty much everyone off.  

The box features a rather dramatic red on black Mr Monopoly giving away a hat filled with money, which really should tell you enough about the game’s version of ‘socialism’ in itself.  It is still a roll-and-move game, of course, but now when you pass Go you’ll only pick up $50 and there’s a pile of cash in the middle of the board that you can borrow from to help buy things but only gets replenished voluntarily by players.

The cards take a pop at all manner of things that designers and developers have deemed “socialist” such as voting and being vegan…

In short, and to quote Andy Lewis: It’s shit. 
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