Free League Publishing is about to offer a board game version of Crusader Kings, the PC game from Paradox Interactive. Their crowdfunding campaign has been running for the past few weeks now. They’ve busted their original goal by multitudes and are fast approaching the $500,000 mark. But the campaign ends soon — within hours!

A strategy board game set in Medieval Europe, Crusader Kings is all about power: the struggle to obtain it, rip it from someone else, and keep it from someone else trying to rip it from you. Gameplay is quite involved and includes just about everything you’ve seen on Game of Thrones. “To win, you will need to groom your family, build mighty castles, develop your dominion, be shrewd in the realm of diplomacy and intrigue, and use your vassals wisely to grow your wealth and military power. You must survive invasions, plots, plagues, crusades to the Holy Land – and marriage!” says Free League.

  • Character Focus. The game brings characters and dynasties to the forefront, using traits and events to develop the characters and the story.
  • Grand Strategy. Crusader Kings is a grand strategy game at heart, and so is the board game. To win, you will need to plan decades ahead and outwit your opponents.
  • Emergent Storytelling. Like the computer game, the board game has an events system (using cards) that interacts with the game mechanics to create unexpected and memorable story twists.
  • Steeped in History. The board game is based on historical characters and events of the Middle Ages, letting you relive – and change – the course of actual history.

Which one of your friends will be the ruler of Europe when all is left standing? It depends on which one of you is craftier.

crusader kings

A massive game requires massive equipment. The Standard Edition (worth a $68 pledge) comes with a whopping 70 plastic miniatures — knights, foot soldiers and castles. The Royal Edition (worth a $91 pledge) adds ten more, and a stretch goal threw in ten each on top of that, so the biggest version of the game now has 94 miniatures. Crazy!

If you want your own copy of Crusader Kings, now’s the time to act. The Kickstarter closes at Noon Pacific tomorrow.