Kickstart This! #169: D.E.I. – Divide et Impera
Designer: Tommaso Batista (Barrage)
Artists: Fernando Armentano (Black Rose Wars, The Faceless, Village Attacks), Giovanni Pirrotta (Black Rose Wars, Dungeonology: The Expedition, Nova Aetas), Simone de Paolis (Dungeonology: The Expedition, Sine Tempore), Tommaso Incecchi (Black Rose Wars, Dungeonology: The Expedition, The Faceless)
Publisher: Ludus Magnus Studio (Black Rose Wars, Dungeonology: The Expedition, Sine Tempore)
Genre/Mechanisms: area majority/influence, area movement, card drafting, hand management, miniatures, modular board, worker placement
Funding Status: At the time of this posting, D.E.I. – Divide et Impera is already fully-funded. Pledges currently total more than 2.5x the initial funding goal, with 2 days left to go on the campaign.
*We’ve waited to post this recommendation for longer than normal, until the final expansion and “All-In Bundle” were announced and listed; this is likely something we’ll continue doing with campaigns from the likes of Awaken Realms and CMON in the future. It means the entry is posted closer to 48 hours before campaign-end instead of 1 week before campaign-end, but it also means the pledge levels and add-ons are complete upon posting.
Player Count: 1-4; 1-6 with 5-6 player expansion
Solo Mode: yes
What It’s About: “A competitive game of exploration and survival, based on conquests of resources, and set in a world devastated by a New Ice Age. Control one of the four bands of Survivors, competing with each other for the wealthiest loot to trade with the Pure Caste. Explore London on two levels, between the streets and on the roofs of the old buildings, and find the precious resources of the past era coveted by the Pure Ones: Technologies and Energy Cells.”
How It Works: D.E.I. – Divide et Impera is “set on a modular board subdivided into areas called Ground and Roof Regions. Scrappers of each group are moved on the board using their Feats to collect as many materials as possible. Two types of resources, Technology Items and Energy Cells, are represented in the game by tokens, and can be used to buy items in various Markets to improve skills, or kept until the end of the game to convert into food and medicine Supplies for victory points. At the end of each turn players are asked to satisfy the Purebreds’ requests through public Missions that everyone can undertake if the prerequisites are met. Powerful Purebreds’ Drones are assigned to help, but beware of opponents who could retrieve them and use them against you. Each game lasts 4 turns (or rounds), made up of several phases. At the end of those 4 turns, the player with the most Supplies wins the game.”
Each turn is comprised of an Action Phase, a second Action Phase followed by the Unlocking of Feats, and a third and final Action Phase followed by Missions, and then a quick Clean-Up where players adjust the Faction/Market cards and discard or retrieve played cards.
During each Action Phase, players will each play 2 Faction/Market cards in turn order, resolving their actions as they do. A player can play the action on both cards combined in any order, and can choose not to take any number of the listed actions. Basic Actions include Enlist (deploying a Scrapper), Move, Collect (resources), and Construct (Refuges, Elevators, or Bridges). Advanced Actions include Copying an Action, Collecting Supplies, Collecting Technology/Energy Cells, performing indicated Actions a number of times for each controlled Outpost, and more powerful versions of Enlist, Move, and Collect. Some Faction/Market cards allow players to hijack the Purebred’s Drones, Collecting, Moving, Enlisting, or Killing with them.
The Unlocking of Feats after the second Action Phase involves unlocking abilities that persist for the rest of the game based on set collection of same-colored Outpost cubes. Missions, following the 3rd Action Phase of a turn (round), involves contributing a Mission Token to a Purebred Mission goal to receive additional Supplies.
After the fourth turn (round) is complete, players score end-game Supply points (Victory Points) for the following:
1 for each controlled Outpost
1, 3 or 6 if the player has unlocked 1, 2, or 3 Feats
1 for every 2 Technology tokens
1 for every 1 Energy Cell token
the number of points shown on their Market Cards, including those in the Recycle Bin.
And then, the player with the most points wins.
Comparisons: In theme, this game bears some comparisons with last year’s Kickstarter campaign for Last Aurora. Considering the miniatures and various factions, it also has much in common with Grey Fox Games’ second printing of Tsukuyumi: Full Moon Down. But where Tsukuyumi is a miniatures skirmish game with Euro mechanics, D.E.I. is more deeply-rooted in its Euro-style play and much less concerned with direct combat. In that sense, a great comparison is probably Scythe.
What Should I Pledge?:
$66 Scrappers – Meeples: the Core box (meeples version) with all unlocked stretch goals. Stretch goals currently include the Faun Faction & Solo Play Expansion, the Psionic faction Expansion, the Industrial Market Expansion, and may include the Wild Pack faction Expansion.
$88 Scrappers – Miniatures: the Core box (miniatures version) with all unlocked stretch goals. Stretch goals currently include the Faun Faction & Solo Play Expansion, the Psionic faction Expansion, the Industrial Market Expansion, and may include the Wild Pack faction Expansion.
$99 Leader – Meeples: everything in the Scrappers – Meeples pledge level, plus the Old London Expansion (meeples version) and 100 Wooden resources.
$139 Leader – Miniatures: everything in the Scrappers – Miniatures pledge level, plus the Old London Expansion (miniatures version) and 100 PVC resources.
$9 Penny Boom, the Dynamiter: includes meeple version, miniature version, Mercenary card, and Reference/Background card. This item also comes free to all returning backers from the first campaign.
$11 Mad & Max, the Interceptors: includes meeple version, miniature version, Mercenary card, and Reference/Background card. This item also comes free to all 24-hour Early Bird backers.
$18 100 Wooden resources (already comes as a part of the Leader – Meeples pledge).
$23 100 PVC resources (already comes as a part of the Leader – Miniatures pledge).
$9 Mini Custom Sleeves (pack of 100)
$3 Mini Transparent Sleeves (pack of 50)
$20 Core + Old London Meeple Box (for those pledging the Miniatures version, who want the meeples as well)
$32 Cash & Rads – Meeples: the meeples version of the 5-6 player expansion, featuring the Camdens & Rads factions.
$39 Cash & Rads – Miniatures: the miniatures version of the 5-6 player expansion, featuring the Camdens & Rads factions.
$24 The Citadel Expansion – Meeples: adds 4 new tiles, a new game mechanic, and 6 new figures, including 4 alternative faction leaders.
$32 The Citadel Expansion – Miniatures: adds 4 new tiles, a new game mechanic, and 6 new figures, including 4 alternative faction leaders.
$66 All-In Bundle – Meeples: includes the 5-6 Player Cash & Rads Expansion, The Citadel Expansion, and 2 packs of Mini Custom Sleeves and 1 pack of Mini Transparent Sleeves (enough for all of the cards in the game, including all stretch goals and add-ons).
$77 All-In Bundle – Miniatures: includes the 5-6 Player Cash & Rads Expansion, The Citadel Expansion, and 2 packs of Mini Custom Sleeves and 1 pack of Mini Transparent Sleeves (enough for all of the cards in the game, including all stretch goals and add-ons).
All of the miniatures are KS-Exclusive. So are both the miniatures AND meeples versions of the Old London Expansion, the Faun Faction & Solo Play Expansion, the Psionic Expansion, the Industrial Market Expansion, the Wild Pack Faction, the Penny Boom figure, the Mad & Max figure, the PVC resources, the Mini Custom Sleeves, the Artbook, and the Core + Old London Meeple Box.
Which means the only thing heading to retail is the meeples version of the Core game, and possibly the meeples version of the 5-6 player expansion, the meeples version of The Citadel Expansion, and the All-In Bundle – Meeples.
All-In Total: In the continental U.S., you’re looking at $139 for the Leaders – Miniatures pledge; $20 for the Penny Boom and Mad & Max figures (if you weren’t a 24-hour Early Bird back and a backer of the previous cancelled campaign); $77 for the All-In Bundle with the Cash & Rads 5-6 Player Expansion – Miniatures, The Citadel Expansion – Miniatures, and the 3 sleeve packs; $20 for the Core + Old London Meeple Box (if you want to give yourself the option to play with meeples instead of with miniatures); plus an estimated $33 in shipping, for a total of $289.
If you don’t want the Meeple Box and prefer to play with Miniatures only, then $269.
If you ONLY want the Meeples version of the entire game, your total will be $218 including shipping (and you don’t need to pick up the Meeple Box as you’ll already be receiving all of the meeples in it with that version of your pledge).
D.E.I. – Divide et Impera completes its Kickstarter on Thursday, February 6th and tentatively ships in January 2021.