Would you like to own a little leprechaun… and can he take you to the end of the rainbow?
Perhaps, but like every headline, there’s always an interesting story behind it.
The Truth. Back in 2010 Sir Terry Pratchett kindly gave us his blessing to bring characters from his Discworld books to life through pen pictures and the subsequent artistic talents of Stephen Player. This was a very great honour indeed. To create ninety illustrations of Discworld characters for playing cards based only on snippets of pen descriptions from some twenty-plus novels. Easy huh…
Nope, it was very challenging indeed. All the illustrations Stephen created would have to be approved by the great man himself. To improve our chances of having as many as possible approved on the first review we commissioned Stephen to create several extra illustrations. This was vital as we had been in discussion with Terry’s agent, Colin Smythe about our Guards! Guards! Boardgame since September 2006. Our thoughts were “Don’t mess it up now.”
On presentation of the ninety we felt were best, (the only concern we had was Mrs Cosmopolite) Terry commented “He’s got them right, apart from Mrs Cosmopolite.”
What a relief. Shortly after that we substituted Mrs Cosmopolite for Lu-Tze and received Terry’s approval. Terry subsequently approved the rest of the artwork for the game, the box cover and the dragon cards. We then added a humorous quotation about each character and sought approvals from the publishers.
As far as we are aware Guards! Guards! is still the only boardgame with a mechanic driven by characters from an author’s fantasy books!
This was the beginning of Backspindle Games ‘bringing to life characters from fantasy books to boardgames.’
So, when we agreed to create a boardgame from Garry McElherron’s MourneQuest novels in which we brought the characters to life as miniatures, this was a whole new experience. To honour a writer’s creations and satisfying the passion of readers cannot be taken lightly.
We commissioned local artists John Farrelly (Captain Wonder Cartoons) and Alan Perry to do the illustrations, colouring and 3D sculpting. This was vital as they were aware of the MourneQuest world and could quickly adapt to modifications required for approval. At every stage we had to liaise with the author, albeit a much less well known one. This was new territory which culminated in pride for us at the UK Games Expo in June 2019.
Tom Vasel from the Dice Tower boardgame review show called to our booth just to say “You guys knocked it out of the ball-park with the MourneQuest miniatures.” What a compliment! Our little chibi style Clurichauns, Leprechauns and other Irish fantasy creatures had not only met the approval of the author, but also a world-renowned lover of miniatures.
So now a small number of sets have become available, we are selling them from our webstore.
Then with the 5th Anniversary Collector’s Edition of our Clacks boardgame, we were granted permission to create Discworld character miniatures of Moist Von Lipwig on Boris and a Deep Dwarf together with twelve Clacks towers.
We stayed true to our promises to Terry and continued to honour his creations.
What better place to do this than in a garden!
One of our most undermarketed games of the last few years is ‘Dance of the Fireflies.’
So, what’s it about and does it offer a digital detox?
First of all, it is VERY pretty! It has beautiful playing cards of flowers all drawn by flower illustrations Like all good gardens it has a Potting Shed, a Greenhouse, a Compost Heap, a 3D Sun Dial and of course some tokens to represent each player’s Fireflies.
But don’t let the stunning beauty fool you as it is a game of strategy and bluff. Players need to concentrate of what is happening at every point in the game. The reason is this, the sun moves each day and if you don’t plan ahead for night and day you may miss out on grabbing the point-scoring flowers for your garden.
To add to the strategy, all flowers have special abilities once planted in your garden. Players also need to look out for the Orchid/Weed cards. And finally, of course is your bidding power, the Fireflies. Players secretly use these, including their Royal Firefly token to outwit and outmanoeuvre their opponents.
The game plays from 2 – 6 players and takes longer with higher numbers of players.
Currently the game is ON SALE at just £13.99 from our webstore and with each order we will include one set of our limited-edition Firefly player shields.
Or simply have fun chucking dice and laughing
Or, if you prefer much more physical interaction and high-fives you may wish to try ‘Lucha Wars.’
It’s our follow-up wrestling boardgame to our award-winning Luchador. However, Lucha Wars goes to the next level of fun. That’s because it has new gameplay. A weapons match, a ladder match and a trios match. The game still retains the old favourites of tag-team and cage matches.
Here is a short video of some of the fun that can be had.
Finally if you buy a copy from our webstore you will get a set of limited edition Lucha Wrestling Meeples FREE!
Speak his name
Our friends at Discworld Monthly are once again planning to celebrate the life and creations of Sir Terry Pratchett. This will take place at Llamedos Holiday Camp from Friday 1st March 2024 to Monday 4th March 2024, the Diplomat Hotel, Llanelli, Wales, SA15 3PJ
There will be Discworld events such as Nobby’s Knees Competitions, the infamous Talent Show, Beauty Contest and much, much more.
Whilst most holiday Camps are for families with children being front and centre, this one is for the Trolls, Elves, Witches, Wizards, UnDead, Assassins, Fools, Mimes, Watchmen, Dwarves, Druids, Barbarians and even the Patricians amongst you.
If this sounds like something you’d love, pop along to the Llamedos Holiday Camp website for more information.