Traditionally, you set up a board game, play it, and then put it away just like you found it. But something special happens when a game changes and evolves over multiple plays. Here at Foxtrot Games, we’ve been inspired by this element in board games like Pandemic Legacy, T.I.M.E Stories, Fabled Fruit, and others.
We have developed a new format for our upcoming game Spy Club, co-designed by Jason D. Kingsley and Randy Hoyt. A campaign in Spy Club is a series of 5 games connected together to tell a larger story. These are the key elements:
- All the components can be fully reset, and you can start over from the beginning.
- You unlock only a small portion of the total content over a campaign. That means …
- You can play multiple campaigns, with different stories emerging each time. Each campaign will be a unique and personal experience.
(We call this the mosaic format: each module can stand alone, but a larger unique picture emerges each campaign depending on which modules get combined together.)
“I absolutely loved how the decisions our club made by committing clues affected the plot twists we unlocked next. It really felt like our group was writing the pages of our own epic choose your own adventure mystery book.”
—Nick Martinelli, Gen Con demo player
How is a Spy Club campaign different from a legacy game?
A legacy game campaign is intended to be experienced one time in a linear fashion to tell a strong narrative. Over the course of a single legacy campaign, players will unlock all (or at least most) of the content. Components in a legacy game are intended to be permanently altered to track the campaign.
Spy Club, on the other hand, is intended to be reset and replayed. The sequence of content isn’t scripted, so each campaign will unfold differently with a more emergent narrative. Only a portion of the content will be unlocked over the course of a campaign: even after multiple campaigns, players will still have new content to unlock.
How is a Spy Club campaign different from T.I.M.E Stories?
Jake from Nonstop Tabletop summed this up well: “T.I.M.E. Stories did, in fact, rely on modules that changed the game each time it was played. However, these were linear narrative experiences that could only be fully enjoyed the first time. Mosaic games only unlock a small portion of the content each time and fully reset after each campaign. All of the elements for a great story are there, but the pieces fit together differently with each playthrough. … If T.I.M.E. Stories was like a series of chapters in a great novel, then a mosaic game is like a choose your own adventure story. You’ll enjoy the story that unfolds with all of the requisite twists and turns. Then you’ll close the book, open it up and take a different path the second time. And the third.” (source)
We think it’s terrific that so many new campaign games and formats are coming out, and we’re excited to add Spy Club to that list alongside some other games that we truly love. If you have any questions about Spy Club or our mosaic campaign format, please do not hesitate to contact us!