If you’re a dedicated gamer, and a dedicated Browncoat , you may want to make sure you have a little extra cash set aside. Two games based on Firefly are coming out, and they’re both debuting at GenCon this August 15-18 in Indianapolis, Indiana. A third is coming for summer of 2014.
Firefly: The Game
The first one’s a high end board game, with cool miniatures, character cards and a trip around the galaxy. In Firefly: The Game from Gale Force Nine (GF9), players captain their own Firefly-class transport ship, traveling the ‘Verse with a handpicked crew of fighters, mechanics and other travelers. As a captain desperate for work, players are compelled to take on any job — so long as it pays. Double-dealing employers, heavy-handed Alliance patrols and marauding Reavers are all in a day’s work for a ship’s captain at the edge of the ‘Verse.
We spoke to Robert Villnave of the U.S. division of GF9 briefly: “It encompasses cards and miniatures in the game mechanics. Get back to your home base with your ship intact, profits and losses are compared and whoever does the best, wins. It’s about who makes the best captain. All the original characters are accounted for, and figure in the gameplay mechanics.” Firefly: The Game is a high-end thematic tabletop board game from Gale Force Nine (GF9). It will be the first in a series of tabletop hobby boardgames and miniatures games from GF9 set in the Firefly Universe – and since GF9 is known as much for its gaming accessories as its games, it’s bound to be an ongoing temptation for Browncoat gamers.
This isn’t GF9’s first foray into table top gaming by any means. They started publishing their own titles in 2005 with Flames of War, and followed it up with Spartacus: Game of Blood & Treachery and its Serpent and the Wolf expansion pack, then produced Operation: Bagration and Operation: Market Garden. GF9’s strong background in tabletop gaming and gaming accessories suggests that Firefly: The Game will be a good solid game with well engineered game play mechanics and a lot of nice features and add-ons to go with it.
Firefly: The Game will make its debut at GenCon, with games running through much of the four days. A limited quantity of them will be available for purchase, but probably no more than a thousand. Keep your eyes peeled and your wallet ready, and you just may get your own copy. Shiny.
Our verdict? Definitely Joss.
If you like tabletop gaming a little less, and RPG’s a little more, your prayers have been answered. From Margaret Weis Productions comes the Firefly RPG. This is a rulebook, art directed by Daniel Solis with contributors from all over fandom. There’s an anthology of gaming goodies for the Firefly RPG universe called Gaming in the ‘Verse available now for pre-order prior to GenCon. They’ll be running the Shooting Fish and Wedding Planners adventures at GenCon. The events are already sold out for GenCon, but if you want to you can go over to Games On Demand and ask for Rob Wieland, who’ll be running Shooting Fish there. Games there will be first come, first serve, so be sure to get there quickly.
You can get a copy of the Firefly
- Limited Number Of Copies — We are *only* releasing 200 softcover copies of the Exclusive per day at GenCon. The final page count was 268 of full color, awesome fun. If you want to pre-order a copy, I recommend that you do, otherwise we cannot guarantee you will get one. This game book will not be available through distribution.
- Firefly RPG Game Events — SOLD OUT! We will be running both Shooting Fish and Wedding Planners at GenCon. These adventures are the first two official Firefly RPG scenarios; we’ve been in contact with our friends at GenCon and it’s our understanding they’ll replace the descriptions that are in the program book.
- Games On Demand — Since the events are sold out, you can head over to Games On Demand and ask for Rob Wieland,
There are three ways to order the Exclusive. You do not have to attend GenCon in order to pick this up.
- Pick up Gaming in the ‘Verse at Gen Con (includes PDF)
- Get Gaming in the ‘Verse shipped to you after Gen Con (includes PDF)
- Pre-order the digital version, available the day of Gen Con
Considering MWP’s reputation for making great games, and the care and attention being paid to this one, we think it’ll be a winner.
Joss or not? Definately Joss.
This one had us excited at first, until we read the description from Fox: “a multi-user, social online role-playing game that will initially be available for smartphones and tablets, including those based on iOS and Android operating systems.”
And that sets it apart from a quadrillion other multi-user social online role-playing games for smart phones and tablets in what particular way again? Is there even any Firefly in it? The trailer for it includes no gameplay, gives no suggestion of what the game might actually be like, and the computer animation is cheesy. Given the Fox pitch, it sounds like Farmville in a wig and a dress.
Firefly Online is being developed by Spark Plug Games. Some of their previous games have been Dairy Queen Tycoon and Plight of the Zombie. The game will be out next year, and you can sign up here. Watch www.keepflying.com for news and updates.
Joss or not? So far, it doesn’t sound thrilling, Fox. Surprise us. We beg you.
What We Think
We can’t help but notice that the first two games are obviously being done by game companies who really understand gaming. The last one is being done under contract to Fox, by a game company that knows how to make good phone games – but this one is being directed by suits at Fox, not gamers. There’s a huge difference in the vibe these three games are giving off, and that vibe can make or break a game before anybody even sees it.
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