In this week’s crowdfunding offering I humbly introduce you to a cartoon drawing tabletop game, a cinematic novel that takes you deep inside Norse mythology, and the second volume to the popular sci-fi fantasy series Hex11.

Cartooner: A Comic Drawing Game

Cartooner is a fast-paced tabletop game based on American comic styles and trends.

Game designers Jason Thompson (VIZ manga editor) and Jumana (Jay) Al Hashal teamed up with concept artist Konstantin to bring us the comic drawing card game Cartooner. Cartooner is a tabletop game that can be played solo or  up-to eight players. Players draw comics on pre-printed panels in four timed rounds of five minutes each. The game is recommended for players ages 12 and up but can be played by those younger with some help from parents.

Cartooner works by combining Theme and Trend Cards to tell funny, weird and inventive stories. At the end of each timed-round, players are awarded Fame Tokens (naturally) based on the rulebook. Thompson says he and his wife worked together to make sure the game was accessible to everyone. That’s why points aren’t awarded based on who draws the best or who writes the best story.

Mock-up of Theme Cards

Additional rounds of the game are based on the use of Trend Cards. If a player chooses are particular trend like “Funny Animals” they will have to inject the use of that trend into their comic panel.

With 52 Trend cards in each game, each bringing different victory conditions, each game is different. Each round brings more Panels to draw and Trends to chase than the round before. Since you’re never judged on how well you can draw, it’s not about who’s the best artist… it’s about how you play the game! When the final round ends, the winner is the one with the most Fame Tokens, but every player ends the game with a comic of their own creation. — Jason Thompson
Mock-up of Trend Cards
Cartooner builds on their previous comic drawing game, Mangaka. Where Mangaka is focused on Japanese anime and manga, Cartooner is based on American themes and trends. Thompson tells me Cartooner can be played as a stand-alone game or as an expansion to Mangaka. The rules for Cartooner have been streamlined and simplified based on two years of playtesting. The Cartooner Kickstarter campaign will run through December 18, 2017.
Here’s a look at what the game will come with:
  • 64 pre-printed Comic Pages
  • 136 Theme Cards
  • 52 illustrated Trend Cards
  • 200 Fame Tokens
  • The rulebook
Cartooner box mock-up via Kickstarter

 

Fall of Gods – The Nomad

Fall of Gods – the Nomad is 11.7 x 8.7″, 144 pages.

Fall of Gods is set inside the world of Norse mythology and is presented to readers using large format images and text. It reminds me of the picture book stories of my childhood, except you know, for adults.

The illustrated fantasy book from Copenhagen-based design agency MOOD is nothing short of beautiful. I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder but I think you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who couldn’t appreciate the art and layout of the Fall of Gods series.

Here’s a synopsis of The Nomad:

The Eldest have awakened from their age-old slumber and Midgard and Jotunheim are at the brink of war. When Vali learns of a legendary Jotun witch who can bring back his wife from the dead, he travels North, across a realm torn by fear and xenophobia. But he soon finds himself on a collision course with Rolf Krake, Midgard’s cunning and war-mongering high chieftain, who may hold the key to Vali’s dark past – and the truth about the demon who dwells inside him.

Planned layout and format of Fall of Gods: The Nomad.
Planned layout and format of Fall of Gods: The Nomad.

The Nomad is a sequel to Fall of Gods: She is Gone, successfully crowdfunded in 2014. MOOD founder and art director Rasmus Berggreen and writer of Hitman Michael Vogt are behind the Fall of Gods project which is currently planed as a trilogy. The team has changed the format of the book for the second volume after incorporating feedback from backers of the first book.

Character detail from Fall of Gods: The Nomad

So if you’re a lover of Norse mythology, this project is worth checking out. There’s a variety of pledge tiers rewards available for newcomers to the series which allow backers to access the first volume of Fall of Gods as well as the epic dark fantasy Brimstone. This Kickstarter campaign runs through December 16, 2017.

HEX11: Volume Two

Hex11 is a sci-fi fantasy offering from independent comic publisher HexComix in Los Angeles. HexComix showcases non-traditional voices and aims to tell stories often left out of mainstream comics. Written by Kelly Sue Milano with art from Lisa K. Weber, the series is edited and produced by Lynly Forrest. Volume one of Hex11 was nominated for the Dwayne McDuffie Award for Diversity and is currently in its second printing.

Hex11 is the epic story of a future where magic has been discovered as a new technology. Elanor, a young witch-in-training, navigates the urban underworld known as the Hex; facing corporate conspiracies, demon mercenaries, black market magic dealers, and extra-dimensional body snatchers, all while trying to complete her apprenticeship to an eccentric oracle named Vera.

Preview of Volume 2 of Hex11 by HexComix

The team’s back on Kickstarter and has collected the second arc (issues #7-12) of the series into a volume. HexComix has spent the last two years on issues #7-12 and plans on having volume two of the series ready for printing in January. Though the team does note there’s always a possibility of delay when it comes to printing and publishing. This Kickstarter campaign runs through December 20, 2017.

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