Sat. Sep 18th, 2021
Board Game: DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince: Summertime

• Designers Omari Akil and Hamu Dennis run their own publishing studio, Board Game Brothas, but in addition to releasing their own titles, they also pitch designs to others, and in July 2021 U.S. publisher WizKids will release one of those designs — Summertime, a quick-playing card game based on the DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince song from 1991.

Yes, thirty years old, but still popping! We’ll get to the game in a sec, but first:

As for the game, which is for 2-4 players and due out in July 2021, here’s how it works:

Quote:

It’s summertime, and DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince have invited you to hang with them at the hottest spots in Philly. You will cruise, groove, and unwind across town, trying to vibe with them to prove you’re the coolest in the crew. Do you have the energy to keep up with everyone else who has their eyes on the crown?

In the game, players have to outwit each other with a series of tricky decisions. First, reveal a “spot” card — something like a block party, car show, or family reunion — each with one of five different vibes. Players then pick an action card, an energy card, and potentially a boost card to play all at once. Actions can give you boosts and cancel your opponents’. Energy cards have a variety of values and give you boosts if they match the spot’s vibe, but you can use each energy card only once!

Board Game: DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince: Summertime

Once players have taken their actions, and energy has been counted, whoever has the most wins the spot! Spots are worth points on their own, but are worth extra points if they are collected as a set, or match a player’s personal vibe.

Board Game: Turbo Sleuth

• Another July 2021 release from WizKids is Turbo Sleuth from newcomer Daniel Lee Yingjie, a 2-8 player game that from this description resembles a combination of Spot it! and a logic puzzle, with players trying to decipher who committed the murder with which weapon:

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A murder most foul has been committed! Old Miser McGreedy’s body hasn’t even been laid to rest, and the murder suspects are already seeking to divide up his fortune. Was it his wastrel of a son? The nervous maid? The shady business partner? Or the oddly nonchalent butler? Can you nab the culprit before time runs out?

Turbo Sleuth is a puzzly speed-solving game in which players compete simultaneously to find the solution to the round’s challenge. Choose one of five cases to solve, with dozens of possible solutions depending on which cards are drawn. Search quickly for the right clues, some of which might look right at first glance, but will lead you astray…

Board Game: Turbo Sleuth

Sample cards

Only the first few players may attempt to solve the case, but rush to a hasty wrong judgment, and the murderer will up the ante for the next round!

Board Game: Dungeons & Dragons: Dungeon Scrawlers – Heroes of Undermountain

• In October 2021, WizKids will release a title from another pair of designers — Dungeons & Dragons: Dungeon Scrawlers – Heroes of Undermountain from Vangelis Bagiartakis and Konstantinos Karagiannis.

This 2-4 player game is a real-time racing game in which you want to kill and collect as much as possible. In more detail:

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In Dungeon Scrawlers: Heroes of Undermountain, you and other adventurers are drawn together to delve into Undermountain, an immense underground of dungeons created by the Mad Mage, Halaster Blackcloak. Use your markers to trace your path, defeating monsters, casting spells, connecting artifact fragments, and collecting shiny treasure on the way! The round ends when one player defeats that dungeon’s mighty boss, so you have only a few minutes to collect as much loot as possible. The player with the most points after exploring three dungeons wins!

At the beginning of each game, players pick one of five characters, each with a thematic ability that helps them collect one type of points more easily as they draw their line through the maze. Normally monsters or treasure need to be entirely covered with marker to be collected, but rogues need only to touch treasure, while barbarians need only to fill in the monsters’ heads to defeat them! While anyone can cast a spell by tracing an intricate pattern, a wizard needs only to draw a small circle!

Board Game: Dungeons & Dragons: Dungeon Scrawlers – Heroes of Undermountain

Dungeon Scrawlers contains ten unique mazes of increasing complexity, introducing new challenges as you go. These include portals, locked doors, multiple bosses, time limits, and more! With multiple paths through each maze, and over one hundred different three-maze combinations, you’ll never have to stop scrawling!

• We’ll wrap this WizKids round-up with an introduction to a project that designer Mike Fitzgerald has been working on for years — years, I tell ya!

Fitzgerald is the designer of the Mystery Rummy series of card games based on infamous characters and mysterious stories, games that feature rummy-style gameplay with twists related to the story. He’s been working on a campaign game in this line for a long time, and WizKids has now announced a November 2021 release date for Detective Rummy, which is co-designed with Ralph H. Anderson. Here’s an overview

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Detective Rummy is a rummy-style card game with a storytelling element revealed in a series of seven different cases. Players take the roles of detectives vying to solve the cases and gain fame.

Board Game: Detective Rummy

Non-final box graphics

The story begins at the legendary Rummy Detective Agency, and each case takes you to various locations to solve a crime, including the diner with the best doughnuts in town, the cozy “Quarter to 3 Bar”, a ritzy fashion emporium, the circus, the most elite jazz nightclub in town, and more.

The cases in Detective Rummy can be played in two different ways: Campaign Mode and Case Mode. In Campaign Mode, you play all seven cases in order. In Case Mode, you can play cases 2 to 6 as standalone Detective Rummy games one at a time. Since new “Game Changer” cards are discovered in each case in different orders (if at all) each time you play, cases will never resolve the same way twice. You can play both the campaign mode or the individual cases as many times as you like.

Board Game: Detective Rummy

Board Game: Detective Rummy

Non-final components