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Ukraine war hero dog becomes King of Tokyo board game monster

A board game store in Ukraine is raising money for charity with a new King of Tokyo monster – based on the viral bomb detector dog, Patron.

Photo of Patron from @patron_dsns on Instagram, and an image of Thunder Hound from board game store Igromag

Ukrainian board game retailer Igromag is selling a new, unofficial monster for the King of Tokyo board game, and its origins are incredibly wholesome. The armored pup appears to be based on Patron, a real detection dog that won the Order of Courage by sniffing out unexploded bombs for the Emergency Services of Ukraine.

According to Igromag’s website (and a generous dose of Google translate), Thunder Dog is “a Jack Russell terrier who received a dose of superhero serum.” He’s got some pretty sick claws, and his character board seems to suggest that this future King of Tokyo can command lightning.

King of Tokyo board game monster, Thunder Dog

The real-life dog’s powers aren’t quite so fantastic, but his achievements are perhaps more impressive. When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, Patron and his owner Mykhailo Iliev began neutralizing unexploded bombs and landmines in the city of Chernihiv.

A video of Patron went viral that same year, and Patron became something of a mascot for Ukraine’s emergency services. He received an award from Ukraine’s president, and he’s even been featured on charity stamps.

Instagram photo of Patron from @patron_dsns

Like those stamps, Thunder Dog is a product that’s funding a good cause. Igromag’s website says all sales will be donated to United24, a charity run by the Ukrainian government that raises funds to support the country during the Russo-Ukrainian war. A Thunder Dog standee and player board is currently selling for 200 UAH ($5.13 / £4.05).

Igromag’s website may be in Ukrainian, but they do ship to other countries. The retailer recommends getting in touch if you have any questions about this.

King of Tokyo is one of our favorite dice games, and it’s a great gateway game for newer players. If you want to play the creme of the crop, though, be sure to check out our guide to the best board games to play in 2024. And be sure to follow Wargamer on Google News for more tabletop updates.