Middara is an adventure game by Succubus Publishing. I (Brad) wasn't an original backer of this project–I only learned about it at 2018's SaltCon. From across the hall when I saw the box and miniatures propped up on the table, I was immediately intrigued. The anime-inspired art was gorgeous, the game was sprawling and stuffed with content, and a huge book of lore and storylines rested on the table beside it.
Tim Fowers of Fowers Games is a designer that inspires me. The care that Tim puts into the games, both stylistically and gameplay-wise is inspiring, and it’s made Fowers Games a household name among gamers in spite of the fact that they can't be found in most retail stores.
Near and Far is a story-driven adventure game by Red Raven Games. It sports an expansive story mode, with each game taking place on a different map. Each map’s layout not only provides new decisions to make during gameplay, but also a new set of quests players can interact with. Reading the quests is almost as fun as being the one that gets to make the decision during them.
Kamigami Battles is the latest original property from Japanime Games, and is a spiritual-successor-slash-reimplementation of their classic Kanzume Goddess. Kamigami is a fast-paced, highly interactive deckbuilding game that leans heavily on character powers to make each experience unique. Unlike most deckbuilders, the name of the game is direct combat–you win once you destroy all of your enemies!
Kill the Overlord is a game of hot potato. The executioner is out for heads, and the players will have to use their wits and their bribes to keep him circulating around the table and away from them. Once a player can no longer pass the buck, he loses his head and gets demoted to the lowest status in the kingdom. After the Overlord dies, the social hierarchy moves up, with survivors advancing, and the killed players reincarnating back into the lower castes.