Statera is the first title from the young indie publisher FATboardgames and promises a lot of games in one package thanks to its stories. We spoke to game designer Filip Kráčmar about the first game he is developing with his friend Tomáš Chládek and how it went from idea to implementation.
A unique strategy game with real scales. With these words, FATboardgames advertises Statera on its Preview page on Gamefound and not entirely wrong. Because Statera is a double-asymmetrical strategy game for 1 - 4 players that is suitable for beginners as well as for frequent players, offers a variety of playing options through its "stories" and has a working scale that does more than just look good.
Double Asymmetric? Yes, and how!
There are four factions in Statera, two Staterans and two gods. The Staterans, in the form of the Chompas and Fauns, fight for dominance in Statera. Their goal is to have more buildings than the opposing Statera nation and to create a balanced relationship between the gods. The gods, in the form of the Dragons or Ferun, have a completely different goal. They want to bind the Staterans to their faith and get three souls more than the opposing god, because then there will be an imbalance of faith. This imbalance is represented by the fully functioning scales in the center of the game board. In addition to having different objectives, each faction plays differently.
Both factions of the Staterans are quite simple. At the start of your turn, one Stateran per building is born. Then action cards are placed on the player mat and dead Staterans are removed from the camp sites. Then two actions (placed action cards or basic actions) are carried out and finally an event card is evaluated if you have one. An asymmetry is created here by the different action and combat cards of the two Stateran factions and the placement of the action cards on the player board. While the Chompas are more combat-oriented, the Fauns influence events through their beliefs. Due to the straightforward structure, the Staterans are very easy to play and are particularly suitable for newcomers. However, placing the action cards on the player board also offers frequent players room for ingenious tactics.
However, it gets particularly tactical with the gods, because they play completely differently and are intended to present the player with a strategic challenge. Consisting of three dragons, the Dragons train to gain advantages that can make their actions more powerful. The more they train, the better the benefits they receive. Ferun, the evil cat god, on the other hand, has to manage the number of his envoys well, because the more envoys he has on the field, the more actions he can carry out. Initially, Ferun starts with nothing, but slowly builds up through clever tactics.
The fight against the gods
Staterans need buildings to bring more figures onto the board for their actions. These buildings can be converted into temples by the gods. As a result, the gods can now use a special action to create new "believing" Straterans near the building. As long as the faithful are alive, they belong to the Strateran player. On death, however, they pass into the hands of the god. The souls of believers, which can be gathered in other ways besides death, then come to his sanctuary. From here, the god can send his souls to the scales in the middle of the game board to increase faith in him.
However, the gods must be careful. Since "believing" Staterans remain owned by their respective nation, the gods must find the right balance. Thus, giving birth to too many believers in a nation can ultimately help it to victory. As a Stateran, you can also use a variety of methods to counteract the buff. For example, you can use the move action to flee from temples or envoys of the gods.
Lots of variety through the “Stories”
FATboardgames has come up with something special for Statera. The game has different stories that tell the history of the eponymous world. Before each game, the players can freely decide which story they want to immerse themselves in. Each one changes the structure of the game, the number of players, the number of rounds, the goals of the game and thus also the entire course of the game. The different stories should make the game more diverse and significantly increase the replay value.
The community should also be able to develop their own stories. For this, Statera has a modular game board, which can be rotated and rearranged. This opens up new paths and connects clearings that were previously not connected. A map that was previously designed like a kind of roundabout can, for example, become a map in which you can move freely.
history of development
The idea for Statera came up at a magic show in December 2019, which was very boring for Tomáš and Filip. So the two game designers talked about board games. At some point the idea came up that a board game would be great, in which heaven and hell fight for souls. The devil wants to draw people to the dark side, while God wants people to believe. The idea of the scales, which should represent the influence, was already mentioned here as a joke. The next day, Tomáš and Filip wrote to each other and decided to implement the idea. Since then, the two have met regularly to work on their idea.
They start working together on the basic mechanics until April 2020, when the pandemic threw a spanner in the works. As a result, the development of the tabletop simulator was postponed in order to be able to test all ideas.
Since May 2021, Tomáš and Filip have been working closely with art designer Jana "Yuffie" Kilianová, who has already worked on board games such as Codenames Pictures or the digital version of Galaxy Trucker. With the cooperation, the theme of the game also changed, since the theme of religion is ultimately difficult to implement. The devil became Ferun, the evil cat god, and the god became the dragons, which are said to be reminiscent of angels.
Gamefound preview online
Currently you can Statera on Gamefound follow. There you will find the latest updates on the project and will be notified as soon as the crowdfunding project starts. In addition, as a small goodie for following the preview page, you will receive a wooden Ferun trophy, which you will receive free of charge if you support the project.
We are definitely looking forward to Statera. The gameplay sounds promising and the art style of Jana "Yuffie" is simply beautiful. If you want, you can already test the game via the tabletop simulator.
Information about Statera
|Number of players: 1 to 4
Age: from 14 years
Playing time: 30 - 150 minutes
Difficulty: medium - difficult
Long-term motivation: high
Core mechanisms: double asymmetry, stories
Author: Filip Kráčmar, Tomáš Chládek
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