I’m so happy to announce that Micro Bots has funded, and so we can guarantee that some little mint tins will be packed full of fun and making their way to you in future.
If you’ve already backed the campaign then thank you! From myself for being with me again on this journey, and a huge thank you from Simon for helping bring to life his first published game!
If you haven’t yet pledged, you can pick up the base game for just £10 (~$12), or get the Power Up expansion included for just £8 ($10). As a mint tin game, shipping worldwide is super cheap, so don’t miss your chance for another great pocket sized game!
Tomorrow, I’ll be hitting the big launch button and the campaign for Micro Bots will be live. You can pick up the base game for just £10 (~$12), or get the Power Up expansion included for just £8 ($10). As a mint tin game, shipping worldwide is super cheap, so don’t miss your chance for another great pocket sized game.
The campaign will launch will be at the following times, and I look forward to seeing you there!
Americas: 4-7am (UTC-8 to UTC-5) UK/Europe: 12pm (GMT) Middle East: 4pm (UTC+4) East Asia/Oceania: 10pm (UTC+10)
Prometheus Game Labs is launching Micro Bots, by Simon Beal, on Kickstarter on February 1st 2023. The campaign is running for 23 days, during which backers can pledge funds to support production and in return receive a copy (or multiple copies) of the game. The game fits into a mint tin, and offers a head-to-head duelling experience for two players in around 20 minutes. Designed to pack a lot of game into a small (and cheap to ship) package, Backers can pledge from just £10 plus shipping, or add the Power Up expansion which is launching alongside it for a further £8. Print at home digital versions are also offered as part of the campaign.
Micro Bots is complete at launch, meaning there is no long post-campaign development and production cycle. Shortly after the campaign ends, files will be prepared to go into manufacturing, and backers will receive the game in the same year (with a general distribution release soon after).
About the Game
Micro Bots is a game of duelling robots with big lasers, that fits into a mint tin. The game, designed by Simon Beal, is reminiscent of early video games where players each choose a bot with unique abilities and cards to do battle against each other.
Players choose to play either weapon or support cards which increase in power the more these cards are played. When combat occurs, and there’s a lot of it, players choose from a set of power tokens to boost their attack or defense. These tokens are limited until a player spends a turn to ‘Recharge’, and so carefully using these power tokens to out-think (and out-play) your opponent is crucial. Micro Bots delivers a tense, tactical experience within 20 minutes and packs away into a pocket sized box.
Number of Players: 2 Game Duration: 20min Age: 10+
Earlier in the year I bought the roll-and-write game Rolling Realms by Stonemaier Games, and I fell in love with it. So much so in fact that I wrote an article analysing the games framework and then used that analysis to create a version of Micro Dojo that would could be played alongside Rolling Realms.
Well I’m delighted to announce, that Jamey has announced, the official Stonemaier Games published Micro Dojo Rolling Realms promotional pack. This will be on sale on the Stonemaier Games shop:
After 22 whole weeks and tons of votes cast, you the players have chosen your favourite Micro Dojo Building of all! With an overwhelming victory, the Stables has been chosen as the winner, with the Guard House and Theatre tied for second place.
Thanks to everyone who took part, and I hope you enjoyed reading the series with my thoughts on each of the Buildings and their uses.
The last round of the semi-finals is here, and almost the last week of the playoffs! As the Shinchoku buildings were all eliminated in earlier rounds we have 2 final Tsuyo buildings pitted against each other.
Both of these are pretty wild from a design point of view, as they disrupt two parts of the game that were previously untouched. Using points as a resource is a new feature introduced with the Brewery – previously you could exchange Gold and Food for points but not the other way around! The Theatre changes another feature of the design, which is that once objectives are scored they are effectively removed from the game. In the base game there is no difference between flipping an objective face down or removing it from the game, but this small distinction makes the Theatre possible in a way that also keeps the game one of ‘perfect information’.
Both of these buildings also mess with the design feature that every turn progresses the game towards a conclusion, but since only one player uses the Brewery and the Theatre can only be used one time, it doesn’t break that feature too drastically. And besides, they offer a lot of interesting decisions by doing so!
The last two of the base game buildings here in our almost last round of the playoffs.
For a final showdown, these two buildings are quite different. The base game has three categories of buildings – resource generation, movement, and scoring, with these two buildings in the last two categories. The similarity between them is that they both require resources to fuel. Whilst the Barracks provides a clear path to victory, the Stables is a little more situational by allowing you to control the board state and access spaces you need to. The only final observation I have is that the Barracks made it this far whilst it’s equivalent (the Shrine) did not. I wonder if people just like Gold more than Food!
Micro Bots is the first signing from Prometheus Game Labs – a game designed by Simon Beal and co-developed over the past year. Packed into a mint tin, Micro Bots delivers a tight two-player dueling experience in 15-30mins.
Micro Bots: Duel, along with the expansion Power Up, is launching on Kickstarter in February. Click below to be taken to the prelaunch page:
In Micro Bots you take on one of two bots maneuvering around an arena, shooting at each other, and aiming to be the first one to destroy the opponent. Each bot has a set of starting cards and a unique ability that changes the way they play.
Every round, you both play one card from your hand. Cards are played to either the Weapon or Support rows on either side of your bot card, which increase in power the more cards you have there.
When combat occurs (and there’s a lot of it), you will both play Power Tokens (from 0-5) to boost your attack or defense power. These tokens are exhausted until playing a Recharge card, so trying to predict which number your opponent is going to play (and how to counteract them) is key!
Recharging lets you refresh up your Power Tokens, gain energy, and replay some of your cards, but it leaves you vulnerable. Deciding whether to hang on for one more turn or Recharge early could be the difference between winning and losing.
Micro Bots delivers a tense, tactical experience as you each try to outwit and outplay each other, all in 15-30mins and a pocket sized box.
Micro Bots is inspired by retro video games, the very first of which is an unreleased game called Laser Droids that Simon developed more than 20 years ago. The game is intended to feel like two vehicle like robots battling out in an arena. More succinctly it is best described as Robot Wars (or Battle Bots in the US) with big lasers!
Simon and I have playtested each others designs in the past, and my first exposure to Micro Bots was when Simon was looking to brainstorm a concept for a new idea. Simon and I are both fans of Aeons End (a cooperative boss battler deckbuilding game) and Simon wanted to develop an arena type of boss battler from an old design of his – Laser Bots. I wasn’t considering taking on other designs at the time, but as he showed me the original mint tin game for context, I realised it would actually be a great fit for Prometheus Game Labs. It was a tight, two player game that fit into a tiny package and offered a lot of potential depth of play.
As we worked together on the game, we changed a few of the core mechanics. The single program row became two rows, giving players choice of focusing on their offensive or defensive capabilities. The dice rolling for combat became Power Tokens, allowing players more control over their outcomes and the opportunity to ‘outplay’ their opponent in a way that I love to bring to Prometheus Game Labs games. The final big change was to increase the maximum damage from 1 to 3, which balanced more exciting ‘big’ moments in the game without allowing a complete blowout.
Whilst we settled on the design for Duel fairly early on in the process, there was so much extra design space that just wouldn’t fit in a single tin, that we opted to launch Power Up alongside it. Alongside two new bots, Brains and Flash, this expansion lets you collect cubes from the range track (reflecting your bot zooming around the arena and picking up these special power ups) that improves your power tokens, increases your bots unique powers, and unlocks special Wildfire cards. As well as a chance to include some of the more complex Upgrade cards, Power Up has been a lot of fun to develop in a way that extends the base game further and offers even more interesting decisions.
You can read more about the development from original game to the Laser Bots mint tin game in an original post from Simon here.
Wow we’re into the final stretch! Just 4 weeks to go to settle the most popular Micro Dojo building. It seems already that the Tsuyo were the most popular clan (as none of the Shinchoku clan buildings made it to the semi-finals), and here we have the first base game vs expansion playoff.
By coincidence, these buildings cost (almost) the same to acquire, with the Toll Gate using the expected Favour rather than Food. The Guard House and the Toll Gate were both buildings that were designed at the very start of the process for each game. Though they went through a few tweaks to their costs and rulebook definitions, the core ability stayed the same. They are both some of the more interactive buildings in the game, allowing you to manipulate your opponents options game state, and both can be used quite tactically to your advantage.
But there can be only one, so which is your favourite?