Nova Lux is a space opera board game that explores the concept of entropy. The universe is winding down, and the stars are collapsing around you. Players take control of one of 18 alien factions and begin draining the remaining stars of hydrogen while sourcing all the necessary ingredients for life: botanical oxygen, lifeforms and water. Ancient artifacts must also be collected to preserve the knowledge of a universe that once was.
Nova Lux has proved that there is a vast demand for reasonably priced, incredibly diverse and portable sci-fi themed tabletop adventures. Launched on Kickstarter in August 2020, Nova Lux was funded within 14 hours and eventually thrashed its initial pledge goal by 522%.
Husband-and-wife duo Max and Mária Robbins founded Dragon Egg Games in 2020 to create outstanding board games that gamers and non-gamers alike could enjoy. They’ve even considered your shelf space in their unique design.
Nova Lux is Dragon Egg Games’ second title and is essentially a big box game in a smaller package. Max and Mária have designed the game to fit into a compact space by optimising every component. An impressive feat, no doubt, seeing that there are 139 game pieces (including the rule book). While your shelving space can see room for even more games, the small box of Nova Lux also adds the attractive element of portability when carrying around your favorites to Friday night gaming jams with friends.
Max and Mária Robbins plunged into board game design as a means to mingle their appreciation for psychology and face-to-face interactions. With everyone glued to their digital devices, Dragon Egg Games wants to help people disconnect from modern technology and be human. In an interview with Crowdfunding Nerds, Max Robbins explains:
“I have always been fascinated by psychology and the human experience in life. My wife and I are trying to raise a family that celebrates those experiences in a world that is increasingly isolating and pulling families and friends further from one another. In one small way, board games have provided my family and many others out there a haven for that connectivity we all so desperately crave. Thus, needless to say they have been a hallmark for us and a great way to spend time together unplugged from the distractions and the noise.”
The sci-fi genre in film and tv have had a massive impact on the themes in Dragon Egg Games’ products since they are fans themselves,
“I wanted to create a space epic something akin to Star Wars but with a theme that brought out the emotive element of the beings involved. I love love love Doctor Who and Star Trek, these stories that focus on diving into the psychology of this vast unbridled universe of crazy alien beings all with their own lives, emotions, hopes, dreams, and turmoils.”
Max continues to reveal the key inspiration behind Nova Lux:
“For Nova Lux, I was actually inspired by a short story by one of my favorite science fiction writers and certainly one of the greats: Isaac Asimov. His short story, “The Last Question” explores the concept of Entropy and the ultimate winding down of the universe. It tracks along with generations of humanity as it approaches the inevitable end of the universe and humanity’s search for meaning throughout.”
Nova Lux has many play styles, from solo to competitive, semi-cooperative or fully cooperative. The game is for 1-6 players with a playtime of 15min per player (a two player game would be 30min). Check out a solo play-through.
If you succeed in building your alien colony around a dwindling star before the entire universe collapses, you will then have to balance political relations between alien factions. Will you be able to ensure that peace and unity endure through what remains of the galaxy among rising threats? Fans of the series will be excited to know that a follow-up game Impendium explores the next chapter in this cosmic fight for survival.
Impendium, set to launch in May 2021, is the successor to Nova Lux, but can also be played as a stand-alone game.
In Impendium, a federation of alien species has successfully encapsulated a dying star with the materials necessary to re-construct the universe. Players will have to battle a new enemy, The Harbingers of The Void, who seek to revert your work and collapse the universe around you. You can also integrate factions and star cards from Nova Lux into Impendium to expand your experience. Otherwise, Impednium can be played right after a finished game of Nova Lux to continue the immersive story of saving the universe.
This continuity between games is something Max feels very strongly about:
“I love stories and themes and want that to shine through with every game we put out. I don’t want people to feel like they are moving little cubes around. I want them to feel like they are desperately searching the universe for water to balance their biosphere engine or that they are muscling for political power to influence a new federation project and shape a new galaxy to the benefit of their subverting followers.”
Rocketing into 2021, Dragon Egg Games plan to release three new board games, demonstrating their contagious enthusiasm for board game design.
We at Crowdfunding Nerds are thrilled to partner with Max and Mária Robbins of Dragon Egg Games for their incoming Impendium Kickstarter. It’s great to work with talented people who are passionate about game design!
Max concluded by saying:
“With every game we put out, we are going to strive for the most incredible art, compelling and accessible mechanics, and a thematically immersive play experience that everyone can have a great time with.”
Nova Lux is set to ship in February 2021 as Max has promised some nifty discounts for both Nova Lux and Impendium when the Kickstarter launches, so get the latest updates here.
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