Happy New Year! With the arrival of 2017, it’s time for me to pull out the ol’ crystal ball and make some prognostications for the coming year in the world of naval gaming. This is the third year that I’ve done these predictions, and as with 2015 and 2016, these are completely made up; I have no insider information for any of them. Let’s get started!
1. The Dystopian Wars Kickstarter Will Fulfill On Time, and Rejuvenate the DW Community.
You would think that I would have learned my lesson about making predictions on gaming Kickstarters after what happened with my prediction on the Dropfleet Commander KS from last year. However, I trying to inject some positive energy here! Plus, this prediction isn’t all wishful thinking. The number of backers and the size of the campaign for the DW KS are much smaller than they were for the DFC KS, and Spartan has a lot of experience with bringing new product to market (*cough*). So, they might just be able to pull this one off. Once the 2.5 rules and the new models hit stores, I’m hopeful that will jump-start some interest in the game.
2. After the Success of the DW Kickstarter, Spartan will launch a Kickstarter Campaign for At Least One of its Other Games in 2017.
This seems like a somewhat safe prediction, given that Spartan has stated its intention to do this publicly. However, there is still some risk involved here, as they did not attach a timeline to these intentions, and Spartan has also not followed through on such statements of intent in the past. Given the success of the DW Kickstarter, though, I have to think that Spartan will be encouraged to run at least one more campaign before the end of the year.
3. Dropfleet Commander Will Receive Continued Support and Grow in Popularity
DFC has had some stumbles out of the gate with regards to how the Kickstarter fulfillment was handled, but the game seems to be well received and Hawk is showing previews for a number of new releases for the game. My bet is that Hawk will continue to release new models for the game through 2017, and that we will start to see tournament events at gaming conventions like Adepticon, Gencon, and Templecon.
4. Games Workshop Will Make a Detailed Announcement About a Battlefleet Gothic Re-release by the End of 2017.
Given the release of both the BFG Armada PC game and the BFG Leviathan mobile game in 2016, I think the time is right for GW to make a move on the BFG name in the tabletop realm. The success of the recent re-release of Blood Bowl will hopefully convince GW that there really is something there when it comes to the old Specialist Games line. Of course, this is GW we are talking about here, and the traditionally keep things close to their vest when it comes to new products.
5. 2017 Will see the Release of a New Class “A” Historical Game
Admittedly, this is some wish-listing on my part, but I really do think this could be a possibility. IMO, there has been a hole in the marketplace in this area ever since War at Sea went out of production. A new game may or may not be set in WWII, but I think there still definite mass-market appeal for ship games, and there aren’t any historical miniature games other than Sails of Glory that are readily available “off the shelf” at most stores. Coincidentally, in addition to being in the centenary of WWI, we are also entering into the window for the 75th anniversaries of a lot of key WWII naval battles.
6. World of Warships Will Continue to Thrive in 2017, and Will have a Tech Tree for a New Country Added by the End of the Year.
WoWS has managed to do well enough to stay in business through 2016, and is generally well received by gamers and critics. I’ve certainly not seen the kinds of negative reviews of WoWS that I’ve seen for Wargaming’s World of Warplanes! I think that in 2017 the game will continue to grow. The plans announced for 2017 so far indicate all kinds of exciting new features, but I have a hunch that they do not cover everything that Wargaming has planned. In all honesty, it seems like the features they discussed in their 2017 preview could all be implemented by April or May! I think we will see another country added to the game by the end of the year, perhaps Italy or France. And not just as a one-off single ship (a French battleship is already available!), but as a full tech tree line.
And there you have it! My predictions for 2017. Will I manage to beat my prediction score from 2016? We will see come next December. Regardless of how my predictions turn out, I think we are in for another good year of naval gaming. Until next time!