What If Wingspan Was A Horror Game?

Hey, folks! A little bit of housekeeping: there’s something about a Monday/Friday release schedule that bugs my brain. I don’t know why. I’m going to try switching to a Tuesday/Thursday schedule for a few weeks because that feels more proper to me. I know, it’s all totally arbitrary, but… whatever.

I’ve talked a lot about Marvel Champions on here (because I love it), but my fondness for Fantasy Flight LCGs predates that game. The game that really got me hooked on this style of play was Arkham Horror: The LCG. It’s a really cool game with a lot of great ideas, and they’re releasing a modified version of the starter box that fixes a few minor issues with the original release, so now is a great time to try it out! Seriously, if you’re interested in board and card game mechanics, it’s worth it to buy the core box and play it even if you aren’t really into the whole Lovecraftian horror vibe–it’s really cool how they weave narrative and board game elements into a cooperative card game.

Anyway, I haven’t played Arkham in a while, but I’ve been wanting to get back to it. Another game that’s been popular at my house recently is Wingspan, a lovely engine-building game about birdwatching. Recently, I was talking about Arkham and my wife posed a question: What would a mashup of Arkham and Wingspan look like?

So, here’s what I’m thinking: Wingspan has three zones for your birds, based on common bird environments. You’ve got forest, grasslands, and water. I think a Cthulhu mythos version could keep that core conceit, having three ‘environments’ to play cards in: forest, city, and sea.

Instead of birds, though, you’d be playing cultists and monsters.

Imagine a forest row overflowing with ghouls and acolytes of The Black Goat With A Thousand Young! Deep Ones and Dagon cultists in your ocean row! A city full of Nyarlathotep’s worshippers!

Speaking of the various Elder Gods and Great Old Ones, they could serve as the equivalents of Wingspan‘s nest types. Instead of needing birds with bowl nests for your end-of-round bonus, you’d need Cthulhu cultists in the forest or soemthing.

Instead of flocking birds, you’d get recruiters to the various cults; hunting birds are replaced by cultists who perform ritual sacrifices.

Oh, and rather than eggs, you could use, like… tomes of eldritch lore. Or, as my wife suggested, robes. Cult’s gotta have cool robes for new members!

The only thing I can’t figure out is resources–the birdfeeder is a pretty important part of Wingspan, and I’m not sure how to replicate something similar for a Lovecraft version. Maybe things like ritual daggers instead of worms? Ichor in place of berries?

At any rate, I love Wingspan and I love spooky stuff! Not that it’s likely, but it would be fun if someone made a horror-themed game with Wingspan mechanics.

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