Publisher Portrait Table Top

Table Top Publisher Portraits: Awaken Realms

This is a new series that I started a couple of weeks ago when I talked about Mythic Games. Today we are moving onto another bit Kickstarter company, Awaken Realms whom I really love as well. In fact, I might give some of their games and edge over some of the Mythic Games that I’ve played. But let’s take a look at the company.

Publisher Portraits: Awaken Realms

Awaken Realms was originally founded as a game that made minis. This is pretty apparent if you look at the board games that they have put out. Granted, not so much with the first one they put out, This War of Mine. That game was based off of the popular video game. From there, they have branched out into a lot of other genres of game with Cyber punk in Lords of Hellas, grim dark Arthurian legend with Tainted Grail, ancient China with Great Wall, dreams with Etherfields, and most recently space with ISS Vanguard.

What Are Their Games Like?

Awaken Realms prides itself in making games that have great theme in them as well as amazing components. This really comes across in all of their games that I have played. They also try and give you an unique experience in all of their games. This can be pushing the story element or it can be creating interesting mechanics.

Image Source: Board Game Geek/Awaken Realms

When I did my different types of gamer article, found here, Awaken Realms very much creates those experience games. Great Wall is basically a euro game, but it has minis and tries to immerse you in the theme. But Tainted Grail, the combat is a very interesting puzzle, but the story element just has you exploring and discovering so much in this huge world. This is really a hallmark of what Awaken Realms does. The knock can be that their games can be a little rough around the edges, but that adds into the immersion and the experience of the game most of the time.

Board Game Spotlight

Tainted Grail

I’ve talked about it some already up on what type of games they make, but Tainted Grail is an immersive story driven game. It really takes you on an adventure as you fight monsters, try and survive and deal with this grim dark Arthurian legend. This isn’t about nights in shining armor, it is about surviving and seeing if you can save the lands of Avalon. The game is really driven by the exploration and the story that you play through in 15 different chapters, but the combat and diplomacy mechanics are interesting as well. I like the card puzzle that you are given when fighting someone and trying to figure out how you can optimize it. I’ve done a lot of videos on Tainted Grail that you can see below.

This War Of Mine

This is the only Awakens Realm game based on an IP (Intellectual Property) that I can think of. Another survival game, this one I have picked up but haven’t played yet. You are trying to survive in a war torn land, build things, go out and find food, and survive another night as fighting can break out at any time. It’s a very depressing game, from what I’ve heard, but has a solo mode which is why I picked it up. Rolling Solo has a video that goes over the rules and how a day works in the game.

Lords of Hellas

Lords of Hellas is a little bit like a ton of other games but also like no other game I’ve ever played. In Lords of Hellas you get a hero from Greek lore and are fighting to complete various objectives to win the game. But how the game plays is just wild, you can win by conquering lands, building and controlling temples, fighting and killing monsters, and more. And each hero that you can play is different and you unlock other things that make you even more different as the game goes on. Plus, you are building minis in this game, there are towers that you end up building and those minis are amazing looking. This game really highlights that Awaken Realms is good at minis. The Dice Tower has a great play through of the game.

Flick of Faith

Now, for something completely different. Awaken Realms also has a line of lighter games. This is one of them. I haven’t played, but I really want to, because it seems like a ton of fun. You are flicking discs onto a board and trying to get them to stop in different areas to score you points. Now, the concept isn’t the most unique, but there are discs of different sizes and values. And there are special rules each round that the players can vote on which one they want. The game seems like a lot of fun, and when Man vs Meeple played it, well, you can see for yourself.

Final Thoughts on Awaken Realms

Like Mythic Games, whenever Awaken Realms puts out a game on Kickstarter, or now on their own Crowdfunding platform GameFound, I am going to be interested. The experience of playing an Awaken Realms game is truly hard to describe. There is something that makes it unique every time. Whether it be the story that they create, or the mechanics that they put together, it works. Now, I haven’t backed everything of theirs, I did skip their worker placement in Great Wall, but even that has more theme than most worker placements. If you want a game that will have interesting mechanics and be dripping with theme, Awaken Realms does that so well.

Which Awaken Realms game interests you the most? Or do you have a favorite already that you’ve played?

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