Wizards of the Coast has really been on top of Dungeons & Dragons' digital initiative lately. We've seen the launch of the MMO Neverwinter, the first official mobile game in DeNA's Arena of War, and now they're teaming up with card and board game masters Playdek to bring the award-winning Lords of Waterdeep to iPad.
From insane card game Fluxx to the wonderful intricate strategy board game Agricola, Playdek has proven itself time and time again as the go-to studio from bringing physical strategy titles to mobile platforms. So it's no surprise to see the studio's name attached to Dungeons & Dragons: Lords of Waterdeep. On my board game wish list for ages, Lords casts 2-5 players in the role of the masked lords who control the greatest city in the Forgotten Realms from the shadows. They recruit adventurers to undergo quests, extending their influence over the city, playing intrigue cards to help or hinder their opponents. It's almost like competitive dungeon mastering.
So yes, Playdek is the natural choice. Liz Schuh, Wizards of the Coast's head of publishing and licensing for Dungeons & Dragons, agrees.
"Their experience shipping titles like Ascension and Agricola prove they know how to bring board games to life on the tablet. From a solid tutorial experience to intuitive design for asynchronous and pass-and-play gameplay to creating a fun achievements system, their passion for the original game will mean a faithful rendition of Lords of Waterdeep, optimised for tablet play."
Judging from the first couple of screenshots, the developer is right on track.
The digital version of Lords of Waterdeep, like the tabletop version, will support between two and five players in pass-and-play and asynchronous online multiplayer, as well as player-versus-computer, which the physical product can't do. Take that, physical realm.
"Digital gaming offers a level of convenience that is difficult to match with traditional board games; you can play anytime and anywhere. Imagine being able to carry your favourite board games with you for impromptu gaming sessions, all with the ease of a digital interface. No lengthy set up and clean up or searching for a large play surface," said Schuh.
Announced today at Gen-Con 2013, Dungeons & Dragons: Lords of Waterdeep is coming soon to the iPad.