Heroscape: Age of Annihilation doesn't really want to gain momentum as crowdfunding. Hasbro requires 8.000 supporters for success on its in-house platform Pulse – so far not even half of them have been reached.  

When the time comes, supporters will come – you might think so. Doesn't Hasbro just need patience to make Heroscape: Age of Annihilation successful through crowdfunding? Maybe, given that the campaign ends in about a week, the question doesn't arise. The new edition of the classic would have a lot that fans would otherwise find very attractive: lots of material, miniatures, a portion of nostalgia, and with the 3D hex field terrain even rare content. Nevertheless, crowdfunding does not really want to take off. 

Heroscape: Age of Annihilation about to end?

The announcement of a return for Heroscape: Age of Annihilation came as a surprise and was greeted with enthusiasm, not least because of the modular hex field concept. Hasbro now wants to finance the Vanguard Edition of the game with crowdfunding. At least 8.000 supporters are necessary for success. In other words: two million US dollars.

It can be done. Most recently, with HeroQuest, Hasbro proved how much a campaign for a nostalgic board game can go through the roof. The project had generated around 3,7 million US dollars, almost four times the targeted amount. Fans had criticized HeroQuest's high price: the game costs around 150 US dollars. Heroscape: Age of Annihilation now charges $100 more. 

Fans should pay around 250 US dollars. Yes, there is plenty of material for that. Still, the pricing doesn't seem to be going down well. As a result, less than half of the necessary supporters have pumped money into the campaign so far. There is still a week left, but the financing project has long since lost its momentum. The air is out Heroscape: Age of Annihilation.

The fans themselves sometimes express hope, others have already given up and accept the expected failure. Avalon Hill design director Chris Nadeau also paints a rather gloomy picture. He explained in an interview with Wargamer that at least the idea of ​​the Vanguard Edition as a full out-of-the-box experience would have died if the campaign goal wasn't met. 

Nevertheless: Overall, retro obviously has a market. at HeroQuest has done it well, recent is a new edition of Axis and Allies – also by Avalon Hill – has been announced.  

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The future of Heroscape: Age of Annihilation is uncertain. Image: Hasbro

The fact is: fans are currently generally hesitant about crowdfunding campaigns for high-priced board games. Taxes and sometimes high shipping costs are added to the product price. In addition, high entry prices act as a deterrent, especially for newcomers. And: Paying several hundred euros in advance and then having to wait a year or longer for a game is gradually becoming less attractive.

In this regard, competition comes from within the industry itself: publishers are increasingly discovering successful crowdfunding projects, launching localized versions regularly after contract negotiations, often earlier or parallel to the crowdfunding games themselves. At least that cannot be assumed for Hasbro's own campaign . With consequences for the fans: If the crowdfunding for Heroscape: Age of Annihilation fails, it could mean the end of the extra portion of retro plastic. 

It is possible that mistakes had already been made beforehand. Chris Nadeau thinks it's possible that Avalon Hill misjudged the size of Heroscape: Age of Annihilation's fan audience, i.e. overestimated it. For the time being, it remains unclear whether the campaign failure is also the actual end for Heroscape: Age of Annihilation as a whole or just for the Vanguard Edition. After all, Avalon Hill and Hasbro could probably make good money with a stripped down experience and regular expansions - then at a lower starting price.  

The basic question as to why the toy giant Hasbro does not simply pay for the title out of petty cash hardly arises against the background of the adjusted corporate strategy: Hasbro had announced a long time ago that it wanted to concentrate primarily on its core business, i.e. the popular brands Dungeons and To monetize Dragons or Magic: The Gathering, among other things, through cross-media possibilities. Experiments like the return of HeroQuest or now Heroscape: Age of Annihilation will be realized with the support of the fans. 

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