05 October 2016
Two- to four-player title involving changing seasons and tarot-like cards inspired by prop used in 2009 photoshoot
Keith Baker, the games designer behind Gloom and Eberron, has partnered with indie folk rock band The Decemberists to make a new card game, Illimat.
According to its Kickstarter page, the game’s name and style actually arose during a 2009 photoshoot where the band were pretending to be part of a secret society. Photographer Autumn de Wilde and illustrator Carson Ellis created ‘The Illimat’ as a prop to use in the shoot.
Apparently The Decemberists went on to become big fans of board games, playing titles such as Catan and Codenames during the downtime in their tours, and swung back around to the idea of making Illimat a real game. Guitarist Chris Funk contacted Baker and his game firm Twogether Studios to help bring the idea to life.
Illimat is a two- to four-player card game, with one match taking roughly 15 minutes to play. Baker describes his inspiration for the game as “something you might find in your grandfather’s attic”, playing “like an old classic, while still being dynamic and new”.
Each turn, players place a card from their hand to harvest, sow or stockpile their fields, with specific cards advancing in-game seasons and distributing tokens based on the status of fields when the season changes. Luminary cards, which resemble tarot-style characters and are illustrated by Ellis, alter the rules.
The game starts at $45 for backers of the crowdfunding campaign, with the set including a 65-card deck, eight Luminary cards, four okus tokens, four point counters and a cloth board.
Almost $119,000 has been raised towards the time at the time of writing, smashing the initial (and oddly specific) $42,812 target with 29 days left to run.