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Empyreal: Spells & Steam is Ticket to Ride in a fantasy world, back on Kickstarter with a reprint and expansion

After selling out last year.

Image credit: Level 99

Fantasy train game Empyreal: Spells & Steam has returned to Kickstarter with a reprint of the sold-out title alongside a brand new mini-expansion.

Empyreal sees players constructing railroads à la Ticket to Ride across a fantasy world that draws on the colourful anime-inspired artwork and shared World of Indines universe of publisher Level 99’s other games, including TCG collection simulator Millennium Blades, competitive fighting game series Exceed and BattleCON, retro video game homage Pixel Tactics, and last year’s bullet hell-inspired puzzler Bullet.

Players take charge of six different companies looking to expand their reach across the hex-grid board. Each has unique abilities that benefit the players’ technomancers as they draw from the natural magical energy of the land to connect cities to their rail network and complete delivery contracts. The value of resources requested by contracts will change depending on the demand among players.

Being a magical world, players can also acquire and use spells to speed up their locomotive aspirations. Managing the available mana crystals from the land is key to traversing the map’s varied terrain and maximising profit from deliveries.

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Empyreal was originally crowdfunded to the tune of $220,829 on Kickstarter in the summer of 2018, before seeing a release last year. According to Level 99, the game sold out completely in a matter of months, making this latest Kickstarter the only way to grab a copy since then.

The Kickstarter includes a reprint of Empyreal: Spells & Steam - rather than a brand new edition - along with a small expansion titled Far Corners. Far Corners introduces variant rules for adding metros to Empyreal, which add a major trade hub ‘super-city’ to the map. When players connect with the metro, they’ll apparently gain “power benefits”.

Empyreal plays in around 20 minutes per person, with between two and six players supported in the base box - expansions can increase that count to seven and eight people.

The Far Corners mini-expansion can be grabbed by itself for $9 (£7) as part of the Kickstarter, while a very nice $69 (51) will bundle the base game with the add-on. Steeper tiers give another chance to grab the game’s deluxe edition and previous expansions.

The Empyreal: Spells & Steam reprint and Far Corners expansion are set to arrive with backers in March 2022 if the Kickstarter campaign reaches its target of $100,000 by April 29th.

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