Startropolis, a 3D Space Station building board game, launched today on Kickstarter. Normally here at Board Game Quest, we’d write a preview article where you can read how it’s played and our impressions of the game play at this stage. However Startropolis is a bit of a special case. I am actually one of the co-designers of the game (together with Jeff Petersen), so me writing a preview article would be a little silly because of course I think the game is great! So instead, I’ll tell you a little about the game and you can decide if you think it’s worth checking out.
In Startropolis, you are trying to earn the most money (credits) by purchasing modules and attaching them to a communal space station. Each round you buy a module from the construction track, attach it to the station, and then collect revenue based on what your modules are earning you. There are 6 different modules in the core game, each of which will earn you credits in a different way.
While the core mechanics of the rules are fairly easy to pick-up, there is actually a ton of interaction in the game. This is because every module placed on the station has the ability to affect one or more other modules. So your newly purchased Basic Habitation Module will, of course, immediately start earning you revenue. But if you connect it to your Market Center module, it will also increase what that module is earning for you. And if you can connect it to your opponent’s Luxury Habitation Module as well, you’ll actually be decreasing their revenue! It’s this kind of strategic planning that can make Startropolis pretty fun.
The other thing that stands out about Startropolis is that it’s a 3D game. From the very start we knew that we didn’t want to play Startropolis on a game board. We wanted you to be able to pick up and rotate the space station, giving you the option of growing the station and placing modules on any side as you see fit. That means that the station can grow in any direction making each game just a little bit different. I always enjoyed watching the station come to life as the game progresses.
You can back Startropolis on Kickstarter right now for $49 ($11 off MSRP), which gets you not only the core game, but also a limited edition Glow-in-the-Dark Core Module. However if you upgrade to the $79 pledge level, you also get all the stretch goals unlocked during the campaign.
Speaking of stretch goals, we’ve worked up a lot of great ideas that will hopefully unlock during the campaign. The first stretch goal has already been revealed: a set of Advanced Modules. While the core game of Startropolis is great, we considered the fact that some gamers might want even more variety and complexity in the game. So Jeff and I, with the help of Lincoln Petersen, cooked up some advanced modules that I think really add a good amount of replay value. And after we hit that goal, the second stretch goal will be a brand new module type (that is twice the size of any other current module)!
If you enjoy building, modular, or economic games, consider backing Startropolis on Kickstarter now.