How far would one go to defend their claim as the inventor of time travel? That’s the ostensible premise of That Time You Killed Me, a narrative, scenario-based board game about a pair of time-hoppers determined to write their name in whatever twisted strand of history survives the slaughter.
Publisher Pandasaurus Games officially announced the upcoming board game on August 11th, calling it an “abstract game” from designer Peter C. Hayward. Two players will go toe-to-toe in a battle to murder the other in short sessions that can last anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes. Each armed with a time machine, they will hop through alternate time streams - and across three separate four-by-four gridded boards - in search for their foe while also evading the other’s traps.
Those time machines will make true death difficult, as each inventor will leave multiple copies of themselves across the fourth dimension’s labyrinthine passageways. Players will need to deal with each if they hope to put the pretender down for good. At the same time, their own copies will be methodically butchered, keeping both players on an ever-shortening clock.
Sessions play out over four distinct chapters that each use different rules and components. Preview images show several numbered boxes that players will open as they progress, but Pandasaurus didn’t elaborate on what might be inside. According to the announcement page, the difficulty and complexity increases as chapters unfold in a linear order - at least in this respect, time only flows in one direction.
Illustrator Jor Ros has provided all the art for That Time You Killed Me, including a cover piece that lands somewhere between very classy tarot cards and the gridded lines and geometric abstractions of 1980s’ computer software boxes. “Ros did such a beautiful job on this game,” Pandasaurus writes on its website. “However, most of the art is revealed as you progress through the game, unlocking new content in the rulebook, boxes, and....other places.” Just where those places might be is left up to the player’s imagination, for now.
Hayward founded board game company Jellybean in 2015, which has published the medieval card game Village Pillage and the five-in-one hybrid card game The Lady and the Tiger, among others. He’s also designing the upcoming archaelogy-themed drafting solo title Cartouche from Coffeebean Games.
That Time You Killed Me is currently available for pre-order through Pandasarus’ website and other select retailers for $40 (£32). It did not specify a release date at this time, but Dicebreaker will update this story as more information becomes available.