Deluxe editions of games are a thing. Sometimes they are just everything in the box, and sometimes there is something new. Bezier Games has gone all out here.
Way back in the before times (well, 2014) Bezier games released Castles of Mad King Ludwig. While I never got around to doing a formal review, I find the game enjoyable enough. Quite a few people definitely agreed – even today it is still a top-rated game!
Well, in a couple of weeks Bezier is putting the Castles of Mad King Ludwig Collector’s Edition on Kickstarter. This is essentially a ‘Big Box’ release with the base game and all expansions on the surface. There is an added bonus of two new expansions as well!
So what is Castles of Mad King Ludwig?
Very loosely based on Ludwig II of Bavaria, players take the role of builders and attempt to create large lavish castles to satisfy the king.
There is no one way to build your castle. There are changing conditions that need to be met. But on top of layout criteria, you may not be able to create precisely what you need, as specific rooms might not be available to you.
Each round, a master builder gets to draw the available rooms and set their price more importantly. You really want a room but don’t have a lot of cash? Sure, you can make it cheap. However, this opens up the room for another player to snap up, leaving you just as left out.
This makes the game design an exciting puzzle element, complete with an auction mechanic, resource management and variable objectives. There is a lot of replay value to Castles of Mad King Ludwig, but the game isn’t as complicated as it initially sounds.
So what is the Collector’s Edition?
Apart from all the expansions (including new ones!), all of the artwork has been redone. There is also the very welcome inclusion of GameTrayz, making organising and setup much easier.
Components have also been upgraded, and you can choose a Royal tier on Kickstarter for even higher quality components.
It’s probably best to let the video explain what is included.
Are you backing Castles of Mad King Ludwig Collector’s Edition?
Right now – probably not. There is definite interest, even ‘just’ for the expansions. The cost is still unknown, and that is something that is going to need to be weighed up.
The issue for me is that even though I enjoy Castles of Mad King Ludwig, it is not a game that has made it to the table very often. I enjoy the game, but there are either new games to try or other group favourites to play.
If you know that you enjoy Castles of Mad King Ludwig, you will probably be in the same situation as me. Sure, sounds great, but how much do I want to spend to get it?
The original game has been very hard to get for a while now, let alone the Secrets expansion. I would also like to know if the new expansions are being released independently during the Kickstarter. If I back or not will definitely be swayed by the answers to these questions.
More will be known on January 20th (Australian time) when Castles of Mad King Ludwig Collectors Edition is launched. In the meantime, you can go over the Kickstarter Page and sign up for notifications. You can also check out the original game and the Secrets expansion on Board Game Geek.
I will shuffle some things around, so look out next week for a formal review of Castles of Mad King Ludwig to help you make up your mind before the campaign begins!
Until next time,