It was 10 years ago that we assembled for our regular weekly game night at my best friend's house. He was the elder statesman of gaming in our group and had a knowledge of tabletop games that made us mere mortals stand in awe.
So when he suggested that we play a game where we would rotate being the Dark Legion, aka "bad guys", and our job was to do our best to prevent our opponents figs, aka "Doomtroopers", from finishing their mission or to even kill them outright, we were hooked.
Alas, the game went out of print and this cult classic became something of a grail game for those of us who collect such things.
Luckily, fate has smiled upon a new generation of gamers and Modiphius is bringing Siege of the Citadel back with a vengeance! This isn't just a fresh coat of paint, my friends! This is a modernization of a classic!
I was lucky enough to get a chance to talk to Chris Birch, the Publishing Director for Modiphius, and ask about his newest KICKSTARTER.
First it was Matt Leacock (Pandemic, Forbidden Island) with Thunderbirds 60th Anniversary, now it's Richard Borg (Liar's Dice, Siege of the Citadel, Memoir '44) with Eric Lang (Blood Rage, Dice Masters, X-COM, Arcadia Quest), Jay Little (X-Wing), and Kevin Wilson (Arkham Horror, Descent, Sid Meier's Civilization) coming together to forge Siege of the Citadel 2nd Edition. Modiphius is starting to build a bit of a reputation for putting award winning designers together with much loved but neglected (at least in the board game realm) IPs! In this case, you are working with a game, first released 23 years ago, that has become something of a cult classic.
So, how did this project begin? Did you approach Richard or did he come to you?
Well actually it started with us working on the Mutant Chronicles RPG with Jay Little under license from Cabinet Entertainment who own the Siege of the Citadel game brand. They saw what were doing with Kickstarters and our love for the universe and asked us if we’d like to partner on the project - it was a very easy answer!
The first stop on our journey was to chat to Richard Borg to see if he’d like to be involved and he was over the moon - in fact he’d been working on ideas on and off over the years for what he’d do to update the game!
As we mentioned, you have assembled an All-Star roster for Siege 2nd Edition! Talk for a minute about how that all came together.
Well aside from Richard, I was chatting with Kevin Wilson and he said “you know Eric (Lang) and I have loved this since we were kids and it’s probably Eric’s favourite game of all time” so we asked them to get involved in the base game revision and also to write some of their own scenarios for fans. Next, Jay Little emailed and threatened death and chaos if he couldn’t get in on the action - he still has THREE copies of the game! So the A-Team was formed!
(Cover of the Original 1993 SIEGE OF THE CITADEL by Pressman Games)
While Siege 1st Edition holds up well, there have been many innovations in game design since it's release in 1993. Though we know you are still designing and refining the rules, can you give us a sneak peek of your favorite changes rules or doom trooper character abilities so far?
For me I really like the fact you now can spend Doomtrooper cards as if they were extra actions - this gives you more of them, and the dilemma of saving them to use them for their card ability, or to claim an extra action when you need it. The new tech rules allow characters to interact with the scenery in cool ways - getting a citadel trap to open up under an enemy, or unlock a door without setting off a trap. This makes the Dark Legion player’s experience so much more fun too.
We also introduced leveling up during the mission and there’s now a smoother gradient to ranking up which will make a big difference.
The Kickstarter is doing well and has promised to deliver the base game and two expansions already - - and there are still 8 days to go! Is there are particular piece of expansion content you are looking forward to bringing to life?
Yes in fact we were working on it the other day and it involves the Dark Legion Apostles and creating some awesome boss battles, saying that there’s a lot of very cool creatures we want to bring in, more tiles (like the Venusian Jungles surrounding the citadel, and much more.
I, like many older gamers, was very reluctant to sign on for any games that had too strong of a digital component. That said, games like Alchemists (CGE), Descent 2nd Edition (FFG) & XCOM (FFG) have broken that ground and Mansions of Madness, 2nd Edition (FFG) are taking the digital experience to new levels.
Have you considered integrating any digitally interactive components into Siege 2nd Edition and why or why not?
You just never know, but these digital components are not cheap to develop and I think it’s something you might see in the future if Siege of the Citadel is a success. I certainly really like the implementation in Mansions of Madness and Descent and I think it would be perfect for Siege.
Thank you very much for your time and good luck on rest of the Kickstarter!
Siege of the Citadel - 2nd Edition is now live on Kickstarter. Click HERE to check it out!
Erik Szpyra's alter-ego, Dr. Dice, is a Board and Card game reviewer who now resides in Chicago, IL. Follow him on twitter @TheDrDice