Classic bluffing card game Libertalia is getting a “revised, expanded, and refreshed edition” in 2022. Stonemaier Games, best known for publishing hit board games like Scythe and Wingspan, has teamed up with original Libertalia designer Paolo Mori and artist Lamaro Smith to refine many of the visual, thematic and mechanical aspects of the original 2012 swashbuckling ship-looter. ‘Libertalia: Winds of Galecrest’ will be available for pre-order on March 2 2022, and Stonemaier’s website predicts that the worldwide release will come “a few months later”.
At this stage, Stonemaier is playing its pirate-themed cards relatively close to its chest when it comes to specific details on what’s inside the Winds of Galecrest box. Information from the Stonemaier website and a Facebook livestream with developer Jamey Stegmaier do tell us a few key details, though.
Winds of Galecrest will have an improved two-player campaign, and there will be a brand new single-player mode not found in the original game. The game also has a more fantastical take on its pirate theme – with flying ships and anthropomorphic animal characters setting the scene.
It was Stegmaier who approached designer Paolo Mori with the idea to revise Libertalia. Mori has designed a wide range of tabletop gaming experiences, including Blitzkrieg, Ethnos, and expansions for games like Pandemic and Smallworld.
According to the Facebook livestream, Mori held the original rights to Libertalia, and Stegmaier got in touch to suggest returning to the game. With the first Libertalia having set sail in 2012, Winds of Galecrest is being released as a tenth-anniversary game “celebrating the foundations of the original design”, says Stonemaier’s website.
Stegmaier made it clear in the Facebook livestream that the Winds of Galecrest team had also taken fan feedback into account during development. The idea to recreate the game at all was based on this feedback; Stegmaier says on stream that “the spark came from user comments” which showed a sustained interest in getting hold of copies of the game.
Fan feedback also led to a controversial character being removed from Libertalia. “One of the things that was very unfortunate and controversial in the original was a freed slave character”, Stegmaier said in yesterday’s livestream. This character has been removed from Winds of Galecrest and replaced with a freed prisoner. Stegmaier stressed that Winds of Galecrest is making no direct comparison between slaves and prisoners in making this change, “but we don’t want slavery in this game in any way”.
Further revisions to the game found on Stonemaier’s website include:
- All-new art
- 40 characters per player
- A reputation system to resolve tie-breakers
- Premium loot tokens
Stonemaier Games will be releasing more information on what Winds of Galecrest will contain in the near future. Stegmaier stated on stream that the retail price in particular would be revealed after the pre-order date of March 2. Those looking to follow the game’s progress can do so in a tailored Facebook group or by checking the design diary on Stonemaier’s website.
Card games can be for grown ups too: check out our guide to the best card games for adults. Or if you’re more of a plunderer than a deck builder, you might be interested in hearing about the RPG Pathfinder’s pirate-themed one-shots.