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Nemesis, one of the best modern board games, shatters records on Gamefound

It could be the biggest crowdfunding campaign of the year

Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

In 2022, upstart crowdfunding website Gamefound left beta to go head-to-head against Kickstarter, at the time the world’s premiere crowdfunding platform for tabletop games. More than a year later, the Polish company has proved its worth with a cavalcade of high-profile campaigns by CMON, Everything Epic, and Chip Theory Games among others. Now its own imprint, Awaken Realms, has achieved something remarkable: It’s campaign for Nemesis: Retaliation, the third in its series of Alien-inspired board games, is now the third most-funded tabletop game of all time. It closed Thursday with nearly $12.2 million earned. Delivery is expected by April 2025.

The original Nemesis, one of the best modern board games, launched in 2018. Together with its sequel, Nemesis: Lockdown, the series has made a mark by combining multiple trends. First, it’s a co-operative game with a traitor mechanic, not unlike the legendary Battlestar Galactica (reimplemented recently as Unfathomable). But it’s also a dungeon crawler, with myriad maps and monsters. And it’s also a miniatures game known for its large, detailed, fully assembled miniatures that are also available pre-washed in a number of novel colorations. It all adds up to be catnip for the ever-growing legion of hobby board gamers.

With it’s nearly $12.2 million, Nemesis: Retaliation now ranks behind only Frosthaven (nearly $13 million) and Kingdom Death: Monster 1.5 (nearly $12.5 million) as the third most-funded tabletop crowdfunding campaign. With just a few weeks left in 2023, it is also likely to be the biggest crowdfunding success of any kind, on any platform, this year.

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