New Sci-Fi Board Game Coming To Kickstarter This Summer

By Polar_Bear
In Board Games
Apr 21st, 2014

Outer Limit Games announces their upcoming sci-fi board game, Tau Ceti: Planetary Crisis. Be on the lookout for it coming to Kickstarter soon.
Also be on the lookout for embedded audio on their website. I couldn’t see the button to turn it off, either.


From the announcement:

Outer Limit Games introduces an upcoming 2-6 player, star ship miniatures sci-fi sandbox game featuring six alien races who take on the role of an interstellar captains in Tau Ceti.

Each interstellar captain competes for power, while trying to resolve mysterious planetary crises that have recently begun to plague the Tau Ceti system such as; biological pandemics, magnetic storms, tectonic disruptions, atmospheric disturbances, chemical erosions, and more.

Players will have freedom to take a variety of actions such as; mining exotic elements, terra-forming, acquiring biological samples, hiring specialists, building a variety of weapons, defense and special technologies, trading, selling raw materials, attacking rivals, reverse engineering technologies, stealing, provoking planetary crises, manipulating economies, controlling resources and more.

Game play is approximately 1hr 30min – 2hrs. Look for the game on Kickstarter this summer.

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  • Grindar

    Media player is right below the subscribe to mailing list box. Orangeish reddish button is play/pause.

    • outerlimitgames

      Sorry about the super cool dramatic apocalypse music on our website.. lol! We put it on auto play to add to the dramatization of the game, but yeah, it can certainly be turned off and found at the bottom right of the home page 🙂

      • That works. I was just wondering why my Sepultura was starting to go all crazy-sounding on me when I loaded up the site.

        • outerlimitgames

          Lol.. yeah combining Sepultura with dramatic sci-fi trailer music might be a bit intense.

  • jkadisak

    When I saw the header and picture on the TGN homepage feed, I was confused as I thought this was related to Xia. I see now this is a new product coming to Kickstarter, but to my eyes there are some glaring similarities… too similar for my liking. 🙁

    outlimitgames – Would you care to comment on these similarities to acquiesce any concerns of your potential future backers? I am a huge fan of this genre and would love to back your game, but I could not do so in good conscious as the map tile design and art, ship cards, upgrades, 30 fame/galactic points, dice selection (d6/d8/d12), damage marker, energy use, etcetera are all too similar for me.

    If you do move forward with this project to Kickstarter, I suggest you have your rule book ready to post to show how your game is unique.

    • PuddleJumper

      I agree. This looks worryingly similar.

    • jawmonkey

      I agree as well. This game has way too many visual similarities with Xia and it looks like you have stolen someone’s game.

    • outerlimitgames

      Thank you for your honesty regarding our game, we take every comment and concern extremely seriously. I had not realized how similar looking our design is to Xia, until it was brought up recently. So, thank you for bringing it up because we do not in any way want to copy another game. Let me say though, that there are other games that also look similar to Xia such as; Supernova, PARSEC, and Babylon 5. Although, we are not in the business to copy anyone, even though a lot of games do. However, after looking at Xia we realize there are “too many” similarities in our game.

      We are making necessary changes, because we do not want to have the image of “those are the guys that copied Xia”. We take this extremely seriously, and take great pride in our work and the projects we create.

      I’m going to address all the similarities you’ve mentioned:

      After looking at Xia’s rulebook, we do believe our game is entirely unique from the actual game play.

      Map tile are and design – we agree, after looking at Xia there is too much in common. We are making changes to the design, features, and art. While we will not change our color schemes (because this is an essential part of our game’s look and image, and we are using a different color palette from Xia), we are considering changing the hex shapes (even though there are other games that use this shape). We are also going to take out the nebula, even though this is a common concept in space exploration games. We will leave the asteroid fields because they are prevalent in the Tau Ceti star system, so this is essential. Although, we will modify the look of it so that it looks less like Xia. The solid glowing lines around the planets – these will be changed as well. We agree they look way too similar to Xia. We are also changing the inner white dashed lines which make up each smaller hex. We will probably go with a solid look. These changes should clearly result in a hex system that has no obvious similarities to Xia. Please be aware though, we will continue to seek feedback throughout this process to ensure that the changes are significant enough that the game doesn’t resemble Xia too closely.
      Regarding the ship cards, the only similarity I can see is the idea of the star ship layout, and putting things on top of it. However, Xia uses “outfits” which we do not. Keep in mind, Eclipse does this as well, as do many other games.
      As for the upgrades, I didn’t see anything in Xia like this at all, maybe I missed it though?
      Galactic points, they are essentially victory points, which almost every game has them. Xia calls them fame points, we call them galactic points, because we feel the term victory points is overused.
      The dice selection – disregard the d8, the image you see on our website is just random components that will not necessarily be the final pieces going with the game. We will not have a d8 in our game. We will have a red and a black d6 and one turquoise d12. Xia’s dice are red, yellow, blue and green, and they have a d20, which we don’t have. There are no similarities regarding the dice.
      Damage markers – Xia uses orange jewel pieces for damage, we are using pink wooden cubes. Many games use damage markers of various kinds. Again, no similarity.
      Energy use – I can’t tell which kind of markers Xia uses for tracking energy. We are using turquoise wooden cubes. Our energy tracking system looks completely different. Again, many games track energy, not just ours and Xia’s.

      Please let us know if there is anything we left out, or that you think looks too similar. Hopefully we were able to answer all of your concerns. Again, we really appreciate the honesty, and will make ANY and ALL necessary changes to ensure our game is unique looking from Xia. We will be posting the rulebook on BGG soon, probably sometime next month as we are finalizing things.


      Mike Strickland

      • jkadisak

        Thanks Mike for responding. You get extra kudos for doing so in such a thoughtful manner. 🙂

        I agree that games within the same genre are highly likely to share some common design components or artistic flare, and is in fact likely to occur. My concern arose from there being far too many of these similarities to be entirely coincidental. In fact I still find this statement you make troublesome “I had not realized how similar looking our design is to Xia, until it was brought up recently.”. You became a fan of Xia on BGG about 6 months ago, and in fact it was the first game you tagged in this way.

        Mike Stricklands Fan List

        I appreciate your concern regarding peoples perceptions like mine, so please do proceed with making sure your game has its own unique flare. As I mentioned before… I love this genre, and it appears you do as well, and I would happily back your game as long as I feel it is unique and fun.

        I will keep an eye out for the rulebook being posted to BGG. I am sure my fears will be alleviated once we have a chance to peruse your work. Thanks again for taking the time to respond above.

        • outerlimitgames

          Thanks again for your sincerity, yes I was a fan of Xia the moment I saw it on KS. I had watched the video and glanced over it all a while back, this was during the time I was beginning work on what is now Tau Ceti. However, I’ve been a fan of many other games in this genre such as Eclipse, Twilight Imperium and Merchants of Venus ( some of my favorites).

          I think what probably happened, is some of the highlights in Xia stood out in my mind (because it was so unique), and I subconsciously started recreating some of those things without even realizing how similar it was. When you’re in the design phase, you sometimes get into your own world and don’t look at things from an external perspective. Is it obvious to me now that I had some influence from Xia? Absolutely. And I see now there is too much influence from that particular game alone. I already have a few other design ideas in mind that will hopefully differentiate this game from Xia. In fact, I don’t want it to look anything like Xia at this point.

          About 95% of the mechanics and game play are fortunately not centered around the hex tiles, and movement through the star system. So, these changes should not affect too much of the actual game. I would really appreciate your feedback on this as I make these changes and put the new design content out, just to ensure the changes are significant enough to make it look like a completely different game.