In the pilot episode of TNT’s Falling Skies, Noah Wyle’s character is on the run from aliens. He has to travel light. When you’re on the lam from aliens, you can’t pack a lot. In fact, you can only bring one book. So Noah Wyle’s character soulfully considers whether to bring Jules Verne or Charles Dickens. The show was so awful that I don’t remember which one he chose.
But I know that me and my colleague Bruce Geryk would totally choose Verne, because there’s never going to be a good solitaire boardgame based on a Dickens novel. Geryk and I adore — yes, adore — Chris Taylor’s Nemo’s War, based on 20,000 Leagues under the Sea. We prove it on this podcast with Taylor. We adore it so much that we don’t mind it’s lack of aesthetic appeal or its rough edges or the fact that you can’t play competitively, so it’s not a really good candidate for a Tom vs Bruce article.
And now publisher Victory Point Games has announced Nemo’s War will be getting better production values and refined gameplay under the rubric of their Gold Banner series, which revisits their more popular titles. From their latest newsletter:
By popular demand, Nemo’s War will be first on the Gold Banner playtest table, with [Victory Point Games] boardgames producer, Josh Neiman, heading this second edition project, ably assisted by the game’s original developer, Alan Emrich and VPG co-founder, Stephanie Newland. Chris [Taylor] will be communicating his notes and thoughts to us to charge forward with and we will get the job done with Chris in the loop every step of the way and commenting his thoughts to us as his schedule allows. Expect us to round off some of the wargame edginess in this game’s presentation to make it more friendly and accessible to a broader market, but the great narrative and tension-filled solitaire gameplay will remain, of course!
The Gold Banner version of Nemo’s War will be out not soon enough.