Valley Games' Supernova

Here, we can see the program for Valley Games’ upcoming space game, Supernova, by Oliver Harrison and Mike Roy. In this game, players use a type of income each turn to place tiles to expand their control in space and fortify held territories. Players get VPs in a number of ways – mostly related to the area in space they hold.

Card backs

For the look, I chose a very techie feel with simple high contrast iconic graphics. White is a nice scientific color which is used purposefully here. Battle cards have a diagramatic graphic feel to them which certainly separates from other space games currently being released. In this way, the strong graphic look has a nice contemporary styling. The more powerful the battle card, the larger the flagship pictured. Research cards retain this techie feel with lovely crisp icons. Card backs contrast the fronts with images, but again are high style with black and white against a colored bar.

Board with pieces. Moons and planet pieces are missing but this gives the general impression.

The board is very simple but effective. Dots are placed at the corners of all the hexes connected with subtle gray lines for definition. It's sort of a constellation look. By varying the star sizes the appearance seems more random then it is. This dot graphic then serves not only to provide atmosphere but also highlights the board’s structure. The board reminds me a little of Ingenious with its simple background, black and a bright colored symbol on the hex shaped pieces. The board fills up with pieces really quickly, so it is not of much use to focus on much detail here which could take away from the scanning. Besides this, the simple, straightforward graphic look is in line with other components and has a modern look to it.

Battle Cards, each with a unique ship diagram. Ship names to the right are simply for flavor.

Battle Cards – special weapons. There are only 3 special weapons cards with very straightforward effects. Simple enough to quickly understand and supplimented with an icon in the lower left. Some might initially complain of the text running up the side, but, as said with only 3 simple choices, it's easier to look at the icon once you know what the choices are. The vertical type then graphically supports the vertically formatted projectiles.

Players may attack an opponent’s space using battle cards (pictured above). Basically, for battles, cards are played either in suit or in different suits, adding the total (along with modifiers) to determine who gets that space. The gray cards are sort of wild (with some restrictions) and then there are 3 special cards.

Research cards. Simple technical looking icons serve to set the mood on these cards.

A few of the aliens. These will be pure flavor added to the player screens, most likely.

The player’s screens will have different aliens on them. These few are the humoids. Painted very realistically, they are crisp and clean and complement the high contrast cards and other iconic graphics.

– Mike

Valley Games' Municipium

Here, we have a cover for the new midweight Knizia game, Municipium, from Valley Games. While I enjoy the abstract nature of the previous cover version, I am very, very fond of this one as well. The previous design had roots seen in many contemporary arenas including some covers of New Yorker and a number of high style products I have seen. Here we have a softer, gentler touch with bright, friendly colors. Still retaining an abstract quality, this cover lends itself to the highly abstracted game of provincial Roman family politics.

Most of my covers in past have been quite serious to go with the heavier nature of the games, so it is nice to have something lighter here for this somewhat lighter game. In this way, I see a connection to the Big City cover, which also is abstract and fun.

– Mike