December 19, 2018: Munchkin Musings: December 2018 - The Year In Review
Here we are, at the end of another solar orbit, ready to look back over a year of Munchkin news. (You can go back to read the reports from 2016 and 2017 if you want to see how good a prophet I am.)
In the Grim Darkness of Deadline Pressure . . .
Probably the biggest announcement of the year was our partnership with Games Workshop to create a game and expansions based on their perennially hot Warhammer 40,000 game. I've spent half the year designing and developing the Munchkin Warhammer 40,000 sets, and looking at all of John's art as it has been coming in, and it has been easily as much fun as you would expect. If you think we're excited about Munchkin Warhammer 40,000, try asking John about it!
As of this writing, the base game and the first expansion, Faith and Firepower, are off to print, and the second expansion, Savagery and Sorcery, is working its way quickly through the production and approval processes. Our goal is to have it to print before the end of the year as well, so we can all relax. Briefly. Except for me, because my next big project (still a secret!) is due as soon as I'm back from Christmas break.
A Backward Glance
We delivered the rewards for the Munchkin Starfinder Kickstarter a little earlier than we originally expected. Somehow, this did not rupture the space-time continuum. The reception was strong enough that we're going back for reprints on Munchkin Starfinder and Munchkin Starfinder 2 – Far Out, which was not previously available separately through distribution. Look for those in February.
The Munchkin Steampunk: Girl Genius Kickstarter was another phenomenal success; y'all ran us out of stretch goals with over a week to go! We're pairing that new expansion with a reprint of Munchkin Steampunk (not the Deluxe set, the regular one) and some bonus accessories, all coming in the summer of 2019.
We also ran a Kickstarter for Munchkin Unicorns and Friends, making that expansion significantly larger than our original plans, and have even started delivering this one to backers. From Kickstarter to fulfillment in less than a year! (Is that even allowed?)
Not a Kickstarter but still a project we've been very excited about, Munchkin 9 – Jurassic Snark shipped in October. Steve's wanted to do a dinosaur/prehistoric-themed Munchkin expansion for a while, and we were pleased to bring it to life this year. It sold well enough that we've already commissioned a second printing for next summer. Don't miss it, or you'll be dino-sorry!
We also released an assortment of smaller expansions, starting with Munchkin Clowns in January and then debuting our new mini-tuckbox format with Munchkin Cheats, Munchkin Fowl Play, and Munchkin Side Quests later in the year. We wrapped up with Munchkin Party Pack, half expansion and half promo party favors for the people you like . . . or like to stab in the back. All of these have done very well for us, and I can confirm that we have Very Serious Plans to continue this format in 2019 with several expansions that are already written and just waiting for the right moment to be unleashed on the world. (We do have to get them printed first, but we're working on that.)
Collect Them All!
Another success this year was the long-delayed release of the Munchkin Collectible Card Game in February followed by The Desolation of Blarg, Fashion Furious, and Grave Danger throughout the rest of the year. We've been so gratified to hear about all the games and events being run at Friendly Local Game Stores (and conventions) all over the world, and we were thrilled to host the first Munchkin CCG World Championship at Gen Con this summer.
Third Parties Are the Best Parties
This was the year our licensing efforts really took off. Alain Dawson, our Director of Licensing, deserves special thanks for herding so many cats in 2018 (including me; I'm a cat), doing her best to make sure our partner publishers had the support they needed to release their games with as much fanfare as we could summon.
Our long-time partners at USAopoly only had one Munchkin release in 2018, but when that release is Munchkin Harry Potter Deluxe, how many more do you need? They've started working on their plan for 2019, and in fact, I've got their first draft of their next game sitting right here. IDW Games had a blockbuster Kickstarter for Munchkin Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles that led to three separate versions of the game (that Deluxe Ultimate is suh-WEEET!) and a Kevin Eastman art sale that y'all should totally get in on! And SlugFest Games partnered with us on a two-way license, letting us make a Munchkin: The Red Dragon Inn mini-expansion and adding Spyke and Flower to the chaos at the Red Dragon Inn itself.
Asmodee Digital and CMON continued working on Munchkin games as well. Randy has been our conduit to Asmodee for information about their Munchkin game for the Switch, and we just recently hosted a CMON representative in Austin to look over the latest files for Munchkin Dungeon. We expect more news about both of these games early next year.
Is That All?
Not even close, but it's all I can say right now . . . I can't talk about the new expansion for a fan-favorite Munchkin set, or the big GAMA Trade Show announcement, or . . . no, definitely not THAT.
But what I can say is that 2018 has been a busy, fun year, and I'm super excited to hit the ground running in 2019 with lots more Munchkin work to do and new Munchkin games to show off to everyone!
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