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Unlikely Heroes Set Printings Are Shipping!

If you don’t know what the hubbub is about, click here.

This was going to be all creative and interesting to ready. But my juices have all been devoted to getting sets packed up and in the mail for you guys. We’re going to do bullet points instead.

  • I am exhausted.
  • Cards are here. They’re stunning. I don’t know how everyone else’s prints turned out, but these are the best looking Destiny cards so far, and that includes FFG ones.
  • The majority of sets have hit the mail. There are a few stragglers that require special attention that should go tomorrow.
  • The foil Mace has been held up in shipping, so I will be sending those out separately.
  • Just to make sure we all have a very Merry Christmas (or whatever holiday you’re celebrating), I’ve upgraded every full set that’s destined for inside the US to Priority Mail shipping. You should have your cards in just a couple of days.

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Unlikely Heroes is Live!

Thanks to a sneaky early reveal of the set, I was able to hop to on getting the cards put into our little site here, so they’re up and ready for your perusal. All of the cards are up and ready for you to preorder your individual card printings of, whether you want the regular card or foil and whether you want dice or not. It’s even there if you just want to see all the pictures in the same place.

Take a gander.

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Limited Edition Printing of New KeyForge Adventure

Summer is in full swing, which means it’s the peak season for slipping into swimsuits, slathering on sunscreen and…exploring the ocean’s depths to uncover a villainous and dangerous conspiracy?!?

Well, if you’re a fan of KeyForge Adventures, then yeah, sure! Fantasy Flight Games recently released The Abyssal Conspiracy, the second adventure to expand on the Dark Tidings two-player starter set – and Kingwood Hobbies now offers a limited edition printing that you won’t want to miss.

New Way to Play

Earlier this spring, FFG announced KeyForge Adventures, a cooperative play version of KeyForge that pits one to three players – using decks from their existing collections – against a unique, pre-constructed adventure that replaces your usual human opponent and features multiple difficulty levels. 

In the first adventure, Rise of the Keyraken, players battle the Keyraken, a powerful creature that absorbs the psychic power of Æmber. Players can choose multiple strategies for defeating this mythological monster. In the second adventure, The Abyssal Conspiracy, players must navigate a grid of nine locations as they descend into the ocean’s depths to uncover the conspiracy and find the tool needed to put an end to its villainy.

Value-added Adventure

Both Rise of the Keyraken and The Abyssal Conspiracy are available as free downloads for fans who simply want a print-and-play experience. However, for players who prefer their KeyForge gameplay frustration-free and their game pieces high-quality, Kingwood Hobbies provides professional printing services for these cards along with unique additional accessories.

Included in this Kingwood Hobbies limited edition printing of The Abyssal Conspiracy:

  • All Seals and Vaultbinder cards are printed with a delightful foil finish that will make your gaming sessions shimmer.
  • An oversized 3.5″ x 5″ Tide card encased in hard plastic to give you an easy-to-read and easy-to-manipulate card for everyone at the table to see.
  • A high-resolution 8.5″ x 11″ booklet containing rules for The Abyssal Conspiracy, so that you’re never left wondering what you’re supposed to do.
  • The adventure deck comes in its own hard plastic case for secure storage of your professionally printed cards.

There’s no conspiracy, scheme, machinations or intrigue going on here – just a quality version of the latest flavor of KeyForge fun for you and your friends and family to explore this summer! Sunscreen not included: we prefer to leave that choice to the individual.

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X-Wing Stuff!

Lots of news swirling around X-Wing these days. Check out this new stuff.

Two new expansions ready for preorder for Resistance and First Order

BTA-NR2 Y-Wing

Update your Resistance squadrons with a modern version of a classic starfighter! The BTA-NR2 Y-wing was designed as a craft capable of filling nearly any role with the right suite of modifications. The standard wartime loadout has been reworked as a separate upgrade module, making the craft lighter and more user-friendly. An ideal choice for small planetary governments, independent security operations, or even criminal cartels.

This expansion includes everything players need to add two of these reworked starfighters into their Star Wars™: X-Wing collection, beginning with two beautifully painted BTA-NR2 Y-wing miniatures. Additionally, beings from across the galaxy flock to join the Resistance, and 12 ship cards let them handpick the right pilots for their strategy. The BTA-NR2 Y-wing is highly versatile and 18 upgrade cards invite players to customize their ships to meet your parameters. Finally, four Quick Build cards help players combine pilots and upgrades to jump into missions as fast as possible.

Fury of the First Order

The First Order’s starfighter engineers continue to develop new technologies for use by their ace pilots, and the Fury of the First Order Squadron Pack allows players to bring these advanced starfighters to their games of Star Wars™: X-Wing!. The TIE/se Bomber bristles with a heavy payload of ordnance, while the TIE/wi Whisper Modified Interceptor is a deadly craft worthy of the Supreme Leader himself. Armed with its stealth capabilities, advanced maneuverability, and heavy weapon turret, Kylo Ren leads his fanatical 709th Legion as they mercilessly hunt pockets of resistance across the galaxy.

This squadron pack includes content for Kylo Ren and his devoted diehards, featuring new abilities and upgrades based on their appearance in Star Wars™: The Rise of Skywalker and Star Wars™: Resistance. This pack includes everything you need to add 1 TIE/wi Whisper Modified Interceptor ship and 2 TIE/se Bomber ships to your games of Star Wars: X-Wing! 14 pilot cards create a pool of versatile pilots for these ships which can be customized in a myriad of ways with the 32 included upgrade cards. Players eager to play with these ships can as soon as possible can utilize the four included Quick Build cards which will get these powerful ships on the table in record time with effective suggestions on upgrades and configurations.

The Trident-class Assault Ship is in stock and shipping

Trident-class Assault Ship

Whether spearheading surprise attacks on key Republic facilities or pirate raids on innocent worlds, the Trident-class assault ship heralds the arrival of hostile forces, emerging ominously from the seas of stars. Armed with crushing tentacles and capable of operating in space, atmosphere, or the ocean’s depths, these versatile warships present an unorthodox threat that can strike unexpectedly to seize control of nearly any battlefield. Inside you will find multiple new Huge Ship Upgrade cards, Quick Build cards, and several new scenarios for using this craft: Rising Tide, a head-to-head scenario, and Leviathan Hunt, a co-operative scenario where multiple players work together to bring down a single Trident-class assault ship controlled by a simplified Solo System AI deck. This pack includes everything you need to add 1 Trident-class Assault Ship to your game.

Restocks are in hand for a number of hard-to-find ships

TIE/rb Heavy

The TIE/rb Heavy is one of the largest TIE variants produced for the Galactic Empire and is often assigned to patrol routes where it is expected to fight without the support of a carrier or escorts. Thanks to its robust armor, swiveling laser cannons, and integrated MGK-300-series droid intelligence, this vessel lives up to its nickname: the “Brute.”

The TIE/rb Heavy Expansion Pack includes everything you need to add one of these imposing ships to your Galactic Empire squadrons, beginning with a beautifully detailed, pre-painted miniature and a medium plastic base. Four ship cards give you the freedom to choose your pilot, while 12 upgrade cards invite you to customize your ship to fir your needs. Finally, two Quick Build cards offer helpful combinations of pilots and upgrades to get you into the fight right away.

LAAT/I Gunship

A durable, reliable workhorse capable of serving in a wide array of environments, the LAAT/i gunship is renowned for getting the job done. Whether making precision drops of clone troopers on contested worlds, supporting Republic formations with interlaced fire in atmospheric battles, or engaging starfighters in the depths of space, the LAAT/i can be outfitted for nearly any role or battlefield.

The LAAT/i Gunship Expansion Pack contains everything you need to add one of these sturdy ships to your Galactic Republic squadrons, including a finely detailed LAAT/i Gunship miniature, four ship cards, 14 upgrade cards, and two quick build cards to get your ship directly into the fight.

HMP Droid Gunship

A menacing silhouette slides overhead, repulsorlifts humming ominously and eyes glowing with malevolence. The HMP gunship’s presence invokes fear thanks to predatory droid intelligence and an unpredictable capacity to strafe targets with devastating missile pods, bombs, and a wide-sweeping array of laser cannons.

The HMP Droid Gunship Expansion Pack unlocks new possibilities with a beautifully detailed HMP Droid Gunship miniature and six ship cards with their own programming and protocols for battle. Your droid gunship can be further modified to your exact specifications with eight upgrade cards, or you can follow the recommendations of three quick build cards to get your gunship into battle as quickly as possible.

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Sommelier’s Selection: Trial By Trolley

While the COVID-19 pandemic hurt traffic to American board gaming cafes, the global board gaming industry continues to grow. One report projects revenue from board games to increase 13% over the next five years. A 2018 analysis estimated about 3,500 new board games are released every year. It seems like a pretty safe bet that many of them will suck. With such an overwhelming avalanche of choices, how can average Joes and Janes possibly expect to discover fun games worth spending their hard-earned dollars to play?

Fear not, our board gaming buddies: your friends at Kingwood Hobbies have already done the hard work of weeding through what’s wack and weak sauce to curate for you a trusted collection of games we think you’re likely to love. Much in the same way sommeliers develop wine lists for restaurants, we are experienced and knowledgeable game stewards who can personally vouch for and recommend every game we offer. So, mesdames et messieurs, mais oui…may we…recommend a fun party game for three to 13 adult players? It’s called Trial By Trolley and we think it’s worth your while.

Philosophical Fun

Described as “an adult card game of moral dilemmas and murder,” Trial By Trolley is based on the famous Trolley Problem, a series of thought experiments in ethics and psychology introduced in 1967 by English philosopher Philippa Foot. In this fictional scenario, an onlooker has the chance to save five people in danger of being hit by a runaway trolley by diverting the trolley to another track to kill just one person. This experiment was explored in the second season of the fantasy-comedy television series The Good Place.

In the game, one player acts as the trolley conductor while the remaining players are split into two teams. Each team draws three “innocent” cards, three “guilty” cards, and three modifier cards. A round begins when teams place a good card on their track, attempting to dissuade the trolley operator from rolling down it. Then teams place a bad card on their opponents’ track. Finally, teams place a modifier card on either track, attempting to make something good worse or something bad better. Then the teams debate, each attempting to persuade the trolley operator to run over their opponents’ track.

Easy Decision

Trial By Trolley is highly portable, simple to set up, and lends itself easily to custom variations of the rules based on your group of players. The cards are high-quality and durable. While the goal is to kill people on your opponents’ track, the game is not exactly family-friendly. However, the cards aren’t as risqué as those in games like Cards Against Humanity or Joking Hazard, so it’s better suited to play with older kids.

We’ve had a blast playing this game and think you will, too. Trial By Trolley fosters creative and hilarious debate that’s all in good fun and, in our opinion is great for parties and game nights. The easiest decision you have to make is to simply buy this game. The only thing we haven’t determined yet is what wine best pairs with it – and if you think we’re just being silly, there ARE indeed wine trolley tours. Probably something that comes in a wineskin to avoid spillage….

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KeyForge Adventures!

First thing to note. All KeyForge Adventures, so far, are available for free from Fantasy Flight Games. Our offer is for a high-quality printing service for these free cards. To find the free versions, please see the official KeyForge product page.

If you’re a KeyForge player, it’s not much news to you that FFG has released the print-and-play KeyForge Adventures to bring co-op play to this unique game. What might be new to you is that Kingwood Hobbies is bringing its well-loved printing facilities over from Star Wars: Destiny to join the game of professional printings. Our first round of shipments have gone out, and to quote one of our customers, “That Keyraken Card. I can’t stop looking at it.”

Some of the advantages of the Kingwood Hobbies printing are:

But How Does it Play?

As a KeyForge family ourselves, we definitely had to try out this KF Adventures thing as soon as they arrive in-house, so we broke out the oversized KeyForge playmat, shuffled up the three Dark Tidings decks we’d opened, and got to playing.

First, some lessons learned from the Dismukes family about playing Rise of the KeyRacken.

  • The game says it supports up to three players, but I see no mechanics reason you couldn’t do more. The only difficulty we had was with space. KeyForge takes up quite a bit of table space, and with the three of us playing alongside the KeyRacken, I’m not sure how we would have fit my other daughter in.
  • You’re going to need tokens, and I mean a lot of tokens. You’re going to want to keep the tide high most of the time, meaning 18+ aember are on the KeyRacken before it rises. That, coupled with 90 health in a three-person game mean bits are floating around everywhere. I’d highly suggest getting a big supply of pennies for aember and maybe a scoresheet for KeyRacken damage.
  • It’s a little awkward at first as you fumble your way through how the KeyRacken plays, and that’s ok. Press through, however, and you should get the hang of it before long. Don’t be afraid to take a break for dinner or something. When you come back things will run more smoothly.
  • The rest of my family suggested that there should be a player who sits at the table only to run the KeyRacken rather than each person flipping up KR cards themselves. I’m not sure I agree with that one because it seems like that would be boring, but we did find it easier to have one person flip all of the KeyRacken cards instead of each player.
  • We found it useful to apply our creatures, ‘Opponents’ keys cost X more’ cards towards the KeyRacken’s advances so that these cards contributed to the game in a meaningful way. I could not find anything referring to this in the rules for this adventure, so this may just be a house rule that we keep.
  • If you make a mistake, just keep going. There’s a lot of action going on, and it’s easy to forget a step here or there. Since your opponent doesn’t have an intelligence to get offended by an accidental cheat, it makes much more sense to keep the game flowing smoothly than to back up and try to iron out a mistake that happened a couple of turns ago. Our family members are all game players, but some are less interested in getting all the fiddly bits perfect than others. Smooth gameplay goes a long way towards helping everyone have a good time.

Our Game

Our first time into the Rise of the KeyRacken gave us a bit of a pause as we tried to figure out exactly what on earth we were trying to do. We all know how to play the game, but what is our strategy? Are we assaulting the KeyRacken directly? Do we need to try and build a battle line? Are we going to try and forge any keys or just go straight through the armor? This, coupled with the confusion of learning how to run the KeyRacken’s turns, made the first several turns of our game a bit of a mess. Cards and tokens everywhere. No one really understanding what’s going on. It wasn’t great.

The KeyRacken, on the other hand, had no such qualms about its strategy and hit the ground running. Some of its first actions were to tack on upgrades that give it extra cards on each of its turns. Since the KeyRacken’s power is directly tied to playing cards, doubling the number of cards played every turn means things are going to get out of hand VERY quickly. I blame Tori’s shuffling skills. I let her shuffle the KeyRacken’s deck, and it let this guy rip out of the gate swinging. I really need to spend more time teaching her the finer points of messing up an opponent’s game with a good shuffle (note: this is a joke. It’s like when I tell Destiny people they should subscribe to my Patreon where I will teach them to roll dice better).

Despite the mess of the early game, we were able to get a grip when Melissa and I combined to thoroughly house one of the KeyRacken’s advancements. She managed to stick a Bombyx on the table while I helped it capture something like 20 aember just before the KR advanced. This six-armored up egg sat there like a giant turtle hoarding all that aember while we got our feet under us.

The mid-game saw us start to land some big shots on the KeyRacken’s body itself, mostly through Melissa’s Saurian monsters (who, incidentally, also let her start spending all that Bombyx aember forging her own keys). Tori’s Shadow cards and my triple Ritual of Balance worked to slow the KeyRacken’s advance, but there was only so much we could do before our opponent began advancing.

We went round and round the table doing work but weren’t quite able to prevent this horror from creeping ever closer towards laying waste to the Crucible. Things were looking pretty grim as we started our last trip around the table. Tori went first and had to do something, anything, to get the KeyRacken below 18 aember. With a bit of desperation in her plays, she was able to just barely accomplish that and punt to me. Now, with defeat looming even closer, I was able to once again just barely hang on to prolong the game one more round.

The final turn came around, and my wife was despondent. Tori and I had scrabbled and clawed and held off the KeyRacken’s last advance as best we could, but Melissa couldn’t keep the game up any longer. The KeyRacken had amassed an insane amount of aember and had a battle line that was multiple rows deep (this game can take up a lot of space). In frustration, she was about to toss her hand down and concede when I looked at her and said, “Honey, just play out your turn.” I didn’t know what was in her hand, but I knew the deck I’d given her. In exasperation, she called Star Alliance and proceeded to lay down her deck’s copy of Selective Preservation.

Turns out she’d completely forgotten about that little line on the bottom of the KeyRacken’s creatures that says, “When this card is destroyed, deal 3 damage to the KeyRacken”. After choosing a creature at each power level, I dramatically picked up each of the KeyRacken’s dudes, slapped them down in his bin, and said “3 damage to the KeyRacken. 3 damage to the KeyRacken. 3 damage to the KeyRacken…” With this one play, the KeyRacken from eight remaining health as it crashed over the world to us obliterating it with well over 100 damage.

It was an amazing victory! Melissa was the hero of the tale and saved all of the Crucible from destruction at the hands of the KeyRacken. Tori and I looked on as pleased sidekicks while all the denizens of the Crucible celebrated my lady’s victory.

Conclusion

Rise of the KeyRacken is a really fun way to spend an evening with the family. There’s a bit of a learning curve when it comes to managing all the bits you have to keep track of, but after a few rounds you will get the hang of it and the game will flow much more smoothly. This is definitely one we will pull out again. If you’re looking for a high quality professionally printed version of this Adventure, please consider the Kingwood Hobbies printing.

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A Tiny Addition to ARH Destiny Sets, Errata Insurance

A couple of small announcements for ARH set printings today:

  • All of the new additions for High Stakes orders are being applied retroactively to Redemption and Faltering Allegiances set. If you haven’t picked up those sets yet, they will now come with
    1. The black bookshelf storage box, including spine lettering and upgraded foam dice storage.
    2. A $10 donation to the ARH team to keep this wonderful game alive.
    3. One free, random, foil character, plot, or battlefield from the set.
  • Also, going forward and applying retroactively to everyone who has ordered or will order regular priced sets from Kingwood Hobbies, errata insurance.

Periodically, the A Renewed Hope team releases updates to their cards in the form of changed wording or updated point totals. These changes, while necessary for the health of the game, can make it tough to play physical cards.

NO MORE I SAY!

Kingwood Hobbies will begin offering errata packs that contain updated versions of the cards touched in each balance update. As soon as ARH releases updated images, packs of new cards will be going on sale for those who want the newest versions of their cards. For folks who get their sets from us, however, for one year from the date of your last set purchase your errata packs are on the house. Simply cover shipping, and the updated cards will keep your physical collection fresh and correct.

Here’s a cute puppy.

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Bookshelf Boxes Ready to Go!

The Redemption printings from Kingwood Hobbies came with what was, hopefully, a delightful surprise. A new way to hand the organization of Destiny dice. No more storing your dice in zip-lock bags or shoeboxes; These new sets came with attractive black boxes that could sit on your bookshelf and hold your dice in nice, soft foam. At the time, they were only available with playset printing orders. I wanted to see how they were received by the community before I made them available en masse.

Well, the community seems to love them, so I’ve ordered and received more of these lovely products. With upgraded foam, these are the perfect way to store your dice attractively on a bookshelf.

That’s upgraded foam, right there.

In addition to lovely black boxes and luxurious foam, each box has available customized lettering on the spine to help you identify which set these dice are from. Options are available all the way back to Awakenings, for, for a bit more, I can put whatever you like on the spine.

Ready to go for future sets, too.

Finally, for all you folks who received version 1.0 of boxes with the older foam, I promised a low-cost upgrade to the new foam. If you’re happy with the box, but want the new sexy foam, there’s an option to order the foam trays individually.

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Did Someone Ask for New Destiny Cards?

I feel like I overuse ron-paul-its-happening.gif, but, man, there is just new and awesome stuff happening all the time, isn’t there? If you’ve been paying attention to the Destiny world today, you might have noticed that ARH announced the next set.

Just in case you were living under a rock, prepare to have your hair blown back. I believe it was out of respect for FFG that the perpetrators of A Renewed Hope held off on touching anything from the Mandalorian because the final set, Wild Horizons, was supposed to have some Mando-themed cards. Once Fantasy Flight gave our community the finger, however, the gloves came off. Din Djarin and crew seem to be arriving on June 11, and I, for one, welcome our new Mandalorian-themed Destiny overlords.

With the third release of ARH’s Destiny comes the third release of complete playset printings from Kingwood Hobbies. I’ve tried to improve the product with each new release, and this one is no different. After dropping the new storage boxes with some ‘meh’ dice trays for the last set, our new Flippin’ Sweet Dice Trays are making their appearance. These are a massive upgrade that will make your Destiny life muchos better. The smooth feel of buttery foam gently, yet firmly, caressing your dice while they slumber will send you to bed at night finally able to sleep without worry.

Also with this set, I’m doing two completely new things to bump the value to you, my dear customer.

Foils don’t photograph well for the web. This is what your soul will feel like when you play with one, though.