Hey, gang! This week’s Kickstarter Game of the Week is Arkon by Hill Gaming!
Arkon is a fantastic looking small-box game and is Hill Gaming’s first foray into Kickstarter. I was initially quite impressed by the slick video and phenomenal artwork, but once I dug into the gameplay, I can honestly say that I can’t wait to get ahold of this game. Arkon has a tightness about the design that I love – with just 52 cards in the deck, this is a game you can take anywhere. Plus, Arkon’s unique bidding mechanics open up those 52 cards to a game with limitless potential.
Each player is trying to win clans by cleverly playing their cards during an action phase, or by winning an interactive bidding phase in-between action phases. This is where the magic of Arkon really reveals itself – each card is multi-use. Not only do the cards perform various actions when played, they also have an “influence” value which allows players to win bids. It’s a tricky tradeoff, because you may want to keep a card for its tactical advantage in the action phase, but you may also want to play it during a bidding phase to gain influence and win a bid.
The bidding itself is handled quite interestingly as well. Only a single clan card is played face-up at the start of a bid – the other cards which are used to bid are played face-down. I am a huge fan of this type of ‘silent auction’ or secretive style bidding, because it relies on social dynamics like bluffing and reading tells and cues from other players. It makes for a much more interesting (and replayable!) game than a pure strategy game.
Of course, Arkon is also a beautifully crafted game as well. Just check out the progress shots of some of the art above – again, it’s obvious that a lot of love and hard work went into creating Arkon!
Be sure to check out Arkon on Kickstarter! As of writing this, there’s just 10 days left in the campaign. Until next time, gang. Keep it plucky,