Let’s be real for a moment here. I’m a reviewer, and I do my best to stay as balanced as possible. At the same time, I’m a player. I love games and have always loved games. So there are simply some companies/ designers/games that I will just always squee in excitement about. Lay Waste Games is one of those companies. So when I saw they had a new Kickstarter Campaign coming, I was excited. When I saw it was called Metal, I was even more excited, because their work in that medium is basically unparalleled.
Metal is the first of a collection of games being designed by Jordan Draper, each being made of a single material, and each being published by a company that excels in working with that material.
Metal takes its inspiration from classic lawn games such as Bocce, Kubb, and Croquet. In fact, you can play miniaturized versions of all of those games with the components made of… Metal. The game also includes three new games. “Not Pool” uses Kubb pins that players are trying to knock down the randomly scattered pins in numerical order. “Bangers” feels a bit like real-time Bocce played without turns. I love the mechanic that if you knock the smaller target ball off the table your score gets reset to zero; because that’s going to add a much bigger challenge to this one. The final game, “Team Meeting” is a unique drafting game for two players or teams of players. With all of these games, I’m going to give you some advice from my experience playing Heads Will Roll. Before you play any of these games, block off any vents or other holes that could swallow a stray component. If you don’t, you may find yourself very very sad.
One of the coolest aspects about this is that the pieces aren’t the only thing made of metal, so is the box. Now, we’re not talking about a cheap tin. Both pieces of the box are made from a single piece of steel, that is pressed into the proper shape, complete with all the logos and such imprinted in it. They have a gif on their campaign page that shows roughly how it works.
There is only a single pledge level on this campaign. $35 (USD) gets you the game and the handful of stretch goals. Shipping is not included, but Lay Waste Games has been doing this long enough to give reasonably accurate estimates on it, especially with the minimal stretch goals.
So far the only stretch goals are adding unique finishes to the balls, so they aren’t all identical, and a tiny golden mallet. There appears to be a third secret goal, that I am personally hoping will be another three mallets, but stylized as dragons and/or flamingos (a’la Alice in Wonderland, complete with a rose gold one)
This game is simply too expensive to manufacture for it to go into the mass retail market. It will be offered through Kickstarter, and eventually through Lay Waste’s online store and at conventions they attend.