Shadows of Brimstone is one of my all-time favorite board games. I've written quite a bit about it in the past, and even though I played it so much that I began to lose interest, the release of excellent content for it this year has renewed my interest in the game system significantly. While there is still a plethora of content on the horizon for Shadows of Brimstone, Flying Frog Productions has gone back to Kickstarter for Shadows of Brimstone: Forbidden Fortress.
Set in feudal Japan, Forbidden Fortress is really interesting in that it is a fully standalone game, but is also compatible with all of the other Shadows of Brimstone products. For people who are already invested in the system, Forbidden Fortress can be viewed almost as a super-mega expansion. For anyone who hasn't gotten into the system yet, Forbidden Fortress is going to be an awesome place to jump in, especially if you weren't all that interested in the Old West theme of the two existing core sets.
At the time of this writing, the campaign isn't even 24 hours old, but over $500,000 have already been pledged toward it, meaning the game is already well past its funding goal and numerous stretch goals have already been unlocked. The pledge levels most people will be interested in are the $100 base game Sumo pledge that comes with the game and many stretch goals, and the $300 Shogun pledge that promises the game, a deluxe expansion, and even more stretch goals. While the pledges aren't as generous (read: insane) as those offered during the original Shadows of Brimstone Kickstarter, there is a ton of content offered for both pledge levels, although if you want everything, you are really going to want to pony up for the Shogun level, which, based on the current growth rate of the number of pledges and the total earned, is going to end up being a great value.
There isn't an all-in pledge that contains the original games, although that really isn't too much of a surprise. There is so much content already available, or in the works, for Shadows of Brimstone that offering an "everything" pledge would be both cost prohibitive and a logistical nightmare. Due to how long the original campaign has taken to deliver fully though, I think it's a good thing that Flying Frog is staying more focused this time around.
Shipping is going to be charged at the end of the campaign, although the estimates listed on the page seem fairly reasonable. The delivery date for the game is March 2018, so, like many Kickstarter projects, you will need to bide your time from the when the campaign finishes until you have the product in your hands, but if the improving quality of the Shadows of Brimstone releases is any indication, Forbidden Fortress should be a high-quality product that is worth the wait. Flying Frog seems keen to keep this project more manageable than the original Kickstarter, and at this point they are very experienced with turnaround times, so all signs point to this campaign running smoothly and being delivered on time.
If you want to know specifics about how Shadows of Brimstone plays, and what we think about it, be sure to check out our numerous reviews and articles. If you are interested in cooperative games, there are very few better options that the Shadows of Brimstone system, and, having pledged at the Sumo level, I can't wait to get my hands on even more content for this awesome game system. The only question will be whether I add this to my already unwieldy, table devouring pile of Shadows of Brimstone stuff, or do I keep it separate so that my group can have a more focused experience?
Who am I kidding? I'm going to pile it all together and send my Preacher through Japanese Castles and Temples, and saunter down the middle of a dusty Frontier Town with my Samurai.
What do you think about Forbidden Fortress? Are you going to pledge? Have you been interested in Shadows of Brimstone but were waiting for a different theme? Let us know in the comments below.