Prompted by the recent announcement of Between Two Castles of Mad King Ludwig, I thought I would look at co-productions in the games industry as a whole. So, in case you don’t know, Between Two Castles of Mad King Ludwig is a collaboration between Bézier Games and Stonemaier Games. Designed by Ben Rosset and Matthew O’Malley, with artwork from Agnieszka Dabrowiecka, Laura Bevon and Barlomiej Kordowski, this game is an amalgamation of Between Two Cities and Castles of Mad King Ludwig.
I think it is great to see two large publishers working together to create something that is a combination of two amazing games. More often than not publishers protect their game IP, which is fully understandable, but unfortunately it sometimes goes so far as to stop innovation and the creation of new games that build on existing ones.
Saying that, recently the tabletop games industry has made inroads and been able to turn quite large IPs into really good games. Star Wars, the Marvel universe, Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, to name only a few.
Tabletop game publishers have also been happy to convert computer or smartphone games for a while now, with Jetpack Joyride by Lucky Duck Games only being one recent example. Of course, converting tabletop games into digital versions is also very common.
However, when it comes to one tabletop game publisher using the IP of another tabletop game publisher, there is very little. It is true that you find US or British publishers working with German or other European publishers to translate their games from one language to another and bringing it to a new market, but this has very little to do with creating new games in co-operation.
It would be great to see more publishers working together and take the best elements of their games to build something new and exciting. Let’s hope the trend continues.
Have I missed any tabletop game co-operations? Are there games that you think should be mashed together to make something new? Please share your thoughts and suggestions in the comments below.