Kerberos Productions – creators of the Sword of the Stars 4X strategy series – may have a slightly patchy track record, but they’re a studio that’s never short on heart. This month, they’ve been Kickstarting funds to start a board games division, adapting their universes into dice-and-cardboard form. Possibly hedging their bets, they also released a prototype of their upcoming Sword of The Stars: The Pit board game as a mod for Tabletop Simulator today, letting folks try it for free.
Based on Kerberos’ spinoff roguelike Sword of The Stars: The Pit, the board game is a very dice-heavy game of squad combat and resource management that is designed to be played cooperatively, or you can enjoy it entirely solo if you see fit. The Tabletop Simulator version of the game is entirely free (assuming you own Tabletop Sim), making it a great way to demo it. It’s an interesting decision to make this digital adaptation free, while other companies have sold their Tabletop Sim modules, but it’s nice that they’ve done it this way.
Kerberos are also cool with the idea of people customising the game as they see fit, and have even released the 3D models for the miniatures. Those lucky enough to have access to a 3D printer can tweak, tune and make their own miniatures. By default the game only includes four player-character figures, but the models are included to print your own set of monsters to make combat look a little more three-dimensional on the board. Plus, you can re-use them in your next sci-fi tabletop RPG session.
As an aside, the roguelike version of The Pit is well worth a look, even if you may have bounced off it at first. While the initial release of the game was a little wonky and threadbare, a pile of DLC (now collated in the Osmium Edition of the game) went a long way to bulking up its systems. Now it’s probably the closest we have to a System Shock roguelike, and one where you can play as a tentacled, psychic space-dolphin to boot.
The Kickstarter for Sword of The Stars: The Pit: The Board Game is in its final week, and is just shy of its funding goal at the time of writing. If you want the board game itself, it’ll cost you a not-insignificant CA$65 (approximately £37), but it is a big chunky box filled with miniatures and dice. Shipping is included in the price-tag, which makes it a pretty reasonable price all told.