It’s the last day of 2017 so welcome to the inaugural look back at the year in tabletop gaming where I name my top 5 companies or people from that year! This list is based entirely on my opinions, as well as the games I play. I know there are so many amazing companies, both big and single-person deals, putting out great tabletop contents of all types throughout the year, but unfortunately I can only rate what I know.
5) d20Monkey– d20Monkey, or more specifically, Brian F’n Patterson, has churned out some awesome stuff this year. In addition to his great continuous work on his webcomic, d20Monkey, he also released an epic fantasy setting through Evil Hat Productions called Karthun that he partnered up with Tracy Barnett to create. Whether you are a current or future reader of the webcomic, there’s something for everyone to love in Karthun so be sure to check it out.
4) Lay Waste Games– Lay Waste Games holds a special place in my heart as we absolutely adore their first game, Dragoon, and eagerly await both the expansion and their newest game. Actually, it’s the success of the kickstarters for both the expansion and their new game, Human Era, that placed them on this list. The expansion to Dragoon brings the game to 6 players with 2 new characters, adding in so much more fun, while Human Era is for a whopping 4-10 players and pits humans, cyborgs and robots against each other in time traveling action!
3) Reaper– Time to celebrate, because 2017 was Reaper‘s 25th anniversary and they celebrated in style- by releasing a new mini every month! Not just that, but they also launched their Bones 4 kickstarter to much success and excitement! I’m glad I was able to get in on this after backing the first Bones kickstarter but missing numbers 2 and 3. The only thing left to mention is to get ready, because they already announced another new-mini-a-month series for 2018.
2) Wizards of the Coast– Unless you’re not here for the roleplaying games, you’d have to had been living under a rock this year if you missed out on all the amazing things we got from Wizards. From the monthly (and for a while, weekly) Unearthed Arcanas that promised great playtesting rules, to Tales From The Yawning Portal, a new DM Screen to Tomb of Annihilation, Betrayal at Baulder’s Gate to Xanathar’s Guide to Everything (and even more!) everything they have shipped out has been high quality, and, dare I say, a critical hit!
1) Games Workshop– I struggled between placing GW in second and elevating Wizards to the top spot, but as much as Wizards hit home runs, GW was able to suck me into 2 completely new games that I hadn’t played before, as well as allowed me to convince a friend to start as well. The release of 8th edition Warhammer 40k reignited the dormant wargamer within me and now I fight for Russ and the Allfather (Magnus did everything wrong, by the way). But more than 40k, they released the first Warhammer: Underworlds game, being Shadespire. And I fell hard for Shadespire. I hopped on at launch, I bought into it, and it’s the most fun I’ve had on the tabletop in some time. The small warbands, combination of board, deck and war, cool dice, cooler minis, and fun strategies have sucked me in and promise to hit my wallet everytime a new warband comes out. If you haven’t played Shadespire, check out our YouTube videos where we talk about the game and how great it is.
And that ends my top 5 look at tabletop in 2017! I look forward to writing about some of the same as well as some new entities in 2018. Happy new year everyone, and happy gaming!