Theomachy Takes Kickstarter by Storm
#language & literature
small, Theomachy Takes Kickstarter by Storm, Theomachy, photo: producer's promotional materials, theomachy.jpg
The idea behind Theomachy? A fantastic clash between gods from various mythologies. This concept was appealing enough for the game’s creators to raise 123 thousand dollars via crowdfunding on the website Kickstarter in order to release an English version, more than 600% of the sum required to start production.
Be a God for a While
Mythology warns against the dangers of usurping the place of God. “You will be like God, knowing good and evil”, the snake urged Eve to take the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Tantalus stole ambrosia from the Greek gods for eternal life. The severity of their punishment is proverbial. However, Teomachia / Theomachy, allows us to be gods for a while at very little personal risk. A Theomachy player chooses a deity from one of the game’s pantheons and plays as that deity. The objective is to overpower other gods, that is, other players. The English version will consist of two sets, which if combined will allow up to 8 players to play together at the same time.
More than One Game
Theomachy was designed by a company from Lublin, named Fabryka Gier Historycznych / Historical Games Factory and has already been released in Polish and German. This Lublin production, which has been described as a combination of Texas Hold‘em poker and a strategic deck-building game, was praised, amongst other things, for the game’s mechanics. The similarity to poker entails the possibility of raising stakes and bluffing which makes the psychological approach an important factor. Unlike in poker, you don’t bet money, instead you bet the souls of your followers - being a proper god you have legions of believers. A player left without any followers loses and the last god standing wins. As a strategic deck-building game Theomachy offers the use of various combinations of special cards such as myth cards and prayer cards. The two sets from the English version will be Theomachy: the Warrior Gods and Theomachy: the Ancients. Each of these sets will be a game in its own right, meant for 2-4 players. As mentioned before the sets will be combinable. The first one will include three historical pantheons (Celtic, Norse, Slavonic) and a fictitious pantheon of the Great Old Ones, deities invented by the writer HP Lovecraft. The second set will also let players choose from three historical pantheons (Greek, Babylonian, Egyptian) and an imaginary pantheon of Lovecraft’s Outer Gods. If you’re interested in a confrontation between ancient Greece’s Poseidon and Babylon’s Ishtar or maybe between the Norse deity Thor and the Slavic god Perun Theomachy will be the perfect game for you.
When the folks from Historical Games Factory were starting Theomachy’s crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter they were hoping to get at least 20 thousand dollars. That was the sum needed for the release of the basic English version of the game. The game’s creators raised that amount in merely 7 hours. In total they raised 123 thousand dollars, which is more than 600% of what they needed to start production. It’s worth mentioning that the aforementioned crowdfunding campaign was co-organized by Sandy Peterson, founder of the company Petersen Games and creator of the board game Cthulu Wars. Peterson and his firm are collaborating with Historical Games Factory on the release of Theomachy’s English version. The English version’s Kickstarter success shouldn’t come as a surprise. After all Historical Games Factory has already ran successful crowdfunding campaigns in the past. In 2013 the creators of the Polish game raised over 11 thousand euros on the website Spiele-Offensive, which was enough to release the German version of Theomachy. A year later they raised enough money for two expansions to the Polish version, entitled Mitologia Słowiańska / Slavic Mythology and Kapłani / Priests.
In 2010 Historical Games Factory started out as a project of the Historical Institute of the Maria Skłodowska-Curie University in Lublin. Since then that academic project has developed into a company that’s presently an international tabletop games producer. Overall Historical Games Factory has released six games including Sigismundus Augustus. Dei gratia rex Poloniae and First to Fight. The company’s flagship product Theomachy was designed by a group of three friends: Kuba Wasilewski, Adam Kwapiński and Tomasz Bylina. As of yet the English versions’ release date hasn’t been set.
Author: Marek Kępa