There’s something intrinsically rewarding about taking a pile of disparate materials and working them into a brand new item. Building things isn’t uniquely a human trait, but it is something we do an awful lot of, from the very simple to the incredibly complex. Whether it’s building an office to work in, a road to travel on, or a toy to play with, we are quite content to shape the world around us in order to suit our own needs and desires. And over the centuries, it’s something we’ve gotten really, really good at.
When it comes to crafting with a board game, however, it can sometimes be difficult to truly encapsulate that visceral pleasure of making something with your own hands. Games that involve moving and stacking physical pieces foster this feeling but tend to remain mostly abstract in nature. By contrast, most strategy-focused games about forging, building, crafting, and assembling tend to remain two-dimensional. These games can be challenging, thematic, and flavorful, but they don’t necessarily always capture the sentiment of creating a tangible, physical item. This is hardly a strike against the worthiness of those games. Rather, it’s more of a limitation of the nature of board games themselves. After all, how would you possibly even go about making a game with a solid strategy component that focuses on – and results in – a physical 3D object when you’re finished?
Well, that’s a question we’re going to have to ask Adam’s Apple Games. Because that’s precisely what they’ve done.
In the weapon forging game Swordcrafters, 1-5 aspiring blacksmiths are asked to re-forge a famous, all-important sword of the realm that was shattered at the end of the last war. Only the best sword will do, and it’s up to each player over the course of a half hour to create the strongest, most magical sword in the land.
Over the course of several rounds, a series of sword tiles are displayed on the board. Then, using the “I Cut, You Choose” mechanic, each player makes a single cut into this grid of tiles, segmenting them along a single axis. Tiles come in a variety of types, including different gem colors, magic runes, and metal qualities. Once every player has demonstrated their ability to split these items up, you take turns selecting and adding one pile of titles to the sword you are building.
The thing is, with Swordcrafters you’re not adding these tiles to some random pile or to your tableau: in this game, you are actually building a three-dimensional sword in the process.
You only start the game with a hilt, but over several rounds, tiles are added to one of the sword’s four sides in an effort to increase its length and value. Where you add specific tiles is important to your score, which depends on set bonuses based on tile arrangement, the size of the sword itself, and other VP-based rewards. When the game ends, each person will have their very own sword of champions they can brandish about in a demonstration of their forge skills, and one of them will even earn the praise of the king himself.
Swordcrafters is quick, light, original, and boasts incredible table presence, as any great weapon should.
So stoke those fires and polish those anvils, because we have some weapons to make, and the king wants them done pronto!
We understand that not everyone will have complete access to a full functioning forge (though you really are missing out), and so going about your own smelting operation could pose a challenge. To that end, we’d like to at least help train you up on the process a bit by raffling off a copy of Swordcrafters. In fact, let’s make that two copies. Because a good smith is hard enough to find as it is.
The second place winner will therefore receive one copy will be the standard Sworcrafters game. First place will instead receive the Expanded Edition version of the game, which includes three expansion modules that you can mix into your sword-making gameplay.
From now until November 11th you can check the contest out on our Facebook page, or by entering below. Just follow the entry form and proceed with the contest. The more you do, even if just one, you still have a better chance than not entering at all. Of course you’re welcome to do that too. But your odds of winning drop to zero. No pressure or anything.
The Fine Print: The Cardboard Republic, in conjunction with Adam’s Apple Games is giving this game away strictly for entertainment purposes. This act is not a paid endorsement by Adam’s Apple Games or any other entity. This contest is open to individuals only. Staff members of The Cardboard Republic and Adam’s Apple Games are not eligible to participate. For winners outside of the Continental US, the publisher reserves the right to request they cover part or all of the shipping costs.