Kickstart This! #304:  Core Space: First Born

Designers: Wayne Abela (Core Space), Colin Young (Core Space)

Artist: Colin Young (Core Space)

Publisher:  Battle Systems Ltd. (Core Space)

Genre/Mechanisms: cooperative game, cyberpunk, dice rolling, die icon resolution, miniatures, modular board, role playing, scenario/mission/campaign game, semi-cooperative game, variable setup

Funding Status: At the time of this posting, Core Space: First Born is already fully-funded. Pledges currently total more than 2x the initial funding goal with 4 days left to go on the campaign.

Player Count: 1-6

Solo Mode: yes

Complexity: medium-heavy

Risk: medium-high

What It’s About: “A standalone starter set in the Core Space universe featuring a terrifying new enemy, new terrain and more. Core Space is a science fiction miniatures board game. Each player takes control of a band of Traders trying to make a living in a dangerous galaxy, all the while hunted by the Purge, a semi-sentient race of humanoid machines whose sole task is to harvest worlds.”

How It Works: “Core Space is played in a series of narrative missions. Your group of Traders will be presented with a set of objectives and a map of the area, showing how to set out your terrain. They will need to venture out from their ship, complete the objectives and get back to safety. Objectives may be to collect intel from a local civilian, sabotage equipment, or simply scavenge enough to trade for supplies.”

“It is up to the players whether they want to work cooperatively with the other crews in the area, or attack them and try to take the objectives for themselves. It’s not quite that simple either; allegiances may change as the game progresses as one player realizes they need help to escape.”

“During each round of the game each crew will alternate taking actions with their Traders – moving, shooting and exploring the board. The Traders’ abilities are tracked using the game’s unique Character Dashboard, and the success of their actions is determined by rolling the various dice.”

“When the Traders have taken their actions, it’s the NPCs’ turn. NPCs are non-player characters controlled by the game’s mechanics. The most common NPCs are the Purge – the deadly alien enemy sent to destroy all life – but you may also encounter Civilians, Gangers or the troopers of the Galactic Corps.”

“While all of this is going on, the game’s Hostility level will be rising. As each peg is placed into the Hostility Tracker, the Purge will become even more dangerous, as will the unpredictable events coming out of the game’s event deck each round.”

“The First Born replace the Purge as the primary NPC enemy in the new standalone game. The First Born Phase entirely replaces the Purge Phase in each round (from the original Core Space game) and works in conjunction with the new Hostility Tracker and First Born Board.”

Comparisons: As a dungeon crawler with a cyberpunk theme, Core Space is relatively unique. Shadowrun: Crossfire shares the cyberpunk theme and is also cooperative, but is a deck-builder rather than a dungeon crawler. Renegade is also a cyberpunk, cooperative deck-builder. New Angeles is a semi-cooperative cyberpunk bluffing, hidden roles, and traitor game. And Android: Netrunner is a 2-player cyberpunk-themed game that pits one player against the other within the framework of a living card game.

What Should I Pledge?:
$7 Add-Ons Only: a minimum pledge if you don’t want either of the official pledges because you only want some combination of add-ons.
$118 Core Space: First Born – Kickstarted Ed.: the new Core Space: First Born Starter Set and the Fury of the Insane God Expansion with all applicable stretch goals.
$250 Core Space: First Born – All-In Pledge: everything in the previous pledge level, plus the Gates of Ry’Sa Expansion; Trading Post 5 Expansion; Trader Encampment Terrain Set; Additional Trader, Ship, and Utility Dashboards; and Core Space Pen, Base Rings, and Reference Cards.

$41 Gates of Ry’Sa Expansion
$41 Trading Post 5 Expansion
$60 Trader Encampment Terrain Set
$12 Utility Dashboards
$13 Enhanced Ship Dashboard
$29 First Born Support
$13 Dashboards (4)
$8 Clip Bases (16)
$3 Dry-Wipe Pen
$8 Reference Cards
$60 Alien Catacombs Terrain
$7 Walls (9)
$17 Alien Catacombs Game Mat
$8 First Born Dice
$105 Core Space: First Born Retail Edition (does not include stretch goals or expansions)
$29 Fury of the Insane God
$24 In the Line of Fire
$29 Ships of Disrepute

KS Exclusives
While nothing has been stated, their previous game Core Space does not appear to be available at retail. The retail version of Core Space: First Born does not include the Fury of the Insane God, In the Line of Fire, Ships of Disrepute, Utility Dashboards, First Born Support, Additional Walls, Additional Entrances, Additional Scatter, or Additional Equipment. It seems unlikely that these items will be sold separately at retail.

All-In Total: In the continental U.S., you’re looking at $250 for the Core Space: First Born – All-In Pledge and $16 in shipping for a total of $266.

Core Space: First Born completes its Kickstarter on Thursday, November 19th and tentatively ships in October 2021.

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