The Last Treefrog Game
Treefrog is both pleased and saddened to announce the imminent release of A Handful of Stars which will be the very last game that will be published under our label.
It has been a struggle to keep Treefrog going for the last few years. The games market has become increasingly crowded with new releases and as a small company we have found it difficult to compete. I have decided that it is better for me to focus on my core strength, which is game design, and leave matters of production and marketing to others. There will be plenty more ‘Martin Wallace’ designs in the future, they will just lack the Treefrog logo.
A Handful of Stars is the final game in an unintended trilogy. It is a space themed game that builds on the concepts and mechanisms first seen in A Few Acres of Snow, then developed in Mythotopia. Rather than bore you by going into lots of detail about the game, the rules are posted on this site so that you can download them. If you have played either of the two former games then much of what you will find here will be familiar.
We will be printing 2500 copies in all, all with English language rules. There will be no collector’s edition, just one version of the game. I have already sold the rights to the game to Fantasy Flight Games, who may or may not print a new version at some time. They purchased the system so that they could use the core mechanics for other games, so I have no idea what their plans are for this game. This is a long way of saying, ‘buy it now!’ You will only be able to buy the game directly from a number of sources. Treefrog still has a few debts to pay off – including the shipping bill for Moongha Invaders, so pretty much all of the money we make will go to various creditors. Some of you may question the high price, but please remember that with a shorter print run production and art costs are higher (art and graphic costs are fixed, so the smaller the print run the higher the cost per unit). The various companies that we have arranged to handle sales are taking a lower than normal margin, so most of the profit is heading back to Treefrog.
All of the files are now ready to go to the printer’s. To help with cash-flow we will be making the game available for pre order. If you live in the USA then you are best ordering the game from either Grey Fox, Board Game Geek or Stratamax. Those lucky Canadians can go to BoardGameBliss. If you live in the UK or Europe then you are best ordering the game from Gameslore. For Australia and New Zealand you will need to order from The Games Capital in Canberra. For those folks in other parts of the world then simply take your pick from the above, but shipping costs will be higher. Hopefully the games will be ready to ship by March 2017 – it takes about eight weeks to print the game, plus a little extra time for seasonal holidays.
I would like to thank in advance all of those people who take the plunge and pre-order the last Treefrog game – please be assured that it will be a great help to us. I would also like to thank the folks at Grey Fox, Board Game Geek, Stratamax, BoardGameBliss, Gameslore and The Games Capital for helping to facilitate sales of the game.
Finally, a massive thanks to all of those people who have supported myself and Julia over the years, either by buying our games or just being there when help was required.
Brass Mobile Launched
Brass Mobile now available for download!
I’m pleased to be bringing admirers of Brass some great news! If you’re a fan of the board game, you can now play Brass anytime, wherever you are. Brass mobile allows you to play with friends, colleagues or other Brass lovers around the world.
Brought to you by the team at Phalanx/Cublo, we think this new version of Brass will make existing players of the board game very happy, as it retains the integrity of play, while bringing next gen graphics to a whole new customer. As always, you’ll be competing to build lucrative economies during the British Industrial Revolution.
Now you can put the game in your pocket and enjoy a design refresh.
- 3 or 4 players per game
- AI opponent
- Network multiplayer with push notifications
- Local multiplayer (pass & play)
- Refreshed artwork
- Works in any orientation (portrait & landscape)
- In-game tutorial & manual
- Achievements and leaderboards
Julia and Martin are away from home travelling with family and are unable to respond promptly to emails about missing pieces, rules questions and other queries. They will try and catch up as soon as possible. Thanks for your patience and understanding
Grey Fox Games to Publish A Study in Emerald
Treefrog are very pleased to announce that Grey Fox Games are the US publishers of A Study in Emerald second edition. Please see the following link for more details.
A Study In Emerald 2nd Edition Rules
The English rules for A Study In Emerald 2nd Edition are available to download here.
The English rules for Ships are available to download here
Treefrog’s New Direction
Julia and I have decided that it is time for Treefrog to make a change in direction. We will cease to produce our own titles and focus instead on designing games for other companies. There are numerous reasons behind this decision, but the main factor has been the increased costs of running the company from New Zealand. This does not mean the end of ‘Treefrog’ style games, it just means they will appear with another companies logo on.
The last game off the slipway will be A Handful of Stars, which hopefully will be available in the first half of 2016. This will be a limited production of 2500 units, so we will be taking pre orders close to the point where the game will be ready for shipping.
To clarify the situation with Brass, Treefrog will not be producing the new Kickstarter edition. We are presently negotiating with another company, we hope to have positive news soon.
Brass legal situation update
Treefrog have engaged the services of Jeff Myers, of Peacock Myers, to handle our legal issues with Eagle Gryphon Games over the rights to Brass. A formal letter has been sent to Eagle Gryphon informing them that the agreement for Brass must be regarded as terminated with immediate effect. You can read the letters relating to this here and here
It is our firm belief that Eagle Gryphon Games no longer have the right to publish and sell Brass. Unfortunately, the costs of imposing formal legal action against Eagle Gryphon Games are too high for our small company to afford. Thus, it is up to you, the consumer, to decide whether you feel comfortable purchasing a game from Eagle Gryphon that is essentially stolen property.
New version of Brass
Treefrog has already started work on a new version of Brass, which will have new artwork through out, improved components and a second board based in the Midlands of England (around Birmingham). We have employed a New Zealand artist, Warren Mahy. You can check out his work here.
We expect the game to be launched on Kickstarter this year. If all goes to plan then copies of the new version of the game will be ready early 2016.
If you are keen to buy a new copy of Brass we would urge you to wait until our new version is ready. This will ensure that the designer is paid properly for his work.
We would like to thank the many people out there who have been supportive of us during this period of difficulty.
Apology to Funagain Games
I have made a few minor changes to the original post below. I would like to make a fulsome apology to Funagain Games for including their name in the original post. I was unaware that they were no longer part of EGG-FRED empire. I am truly sorry if I have unintentionally besmirched their good name.
Brassed off with FRED (again)
I came across this post on BGG last week,
Apparently Eagle Gryphon are planning to launch a deluxe edition of Brass on Kickstarter in July. There is one tiny issue with regards to this new version of the game, which is that Eagle Gryphon no longer have the rights to Brass.
To fully understand this issue it is necessary to take a little trip down Memory Lane.
Some of you will be aware that there is no love lost between myself and Rick Soued, the owner of Eagle Gryphon and FRED. Rick was responsible for the theft of Age of Steam in 2009. This game was reprinted by FRED despite the fact that I had informed him that John Bohrer, who he signed the contract with, had no rights over the game. Bizarrely FRED then sued me over a contract I had agreed with Eagle (the old Eagle, before it went bankrupt) which they thought gave them the rights to Age of Steam. A close reading of the contract made it explicit that the rights to the original Age of Steam remained with myself and Warfrog. After my lawyer pointed this out to them they dropped the case. I still had to pay my lawyer for what in effect was a nuisance claim. At that point in time I did not have the money or energy to follow up the case. I decided that the best response was to get on with life and put the matter behind me. I think the point needs to be made that I receive no royalties for Age of Steam or any of the expansion maps and I have no contract with John Bohrer.
Prior to all of this unpleasantness I had signed a contract with FRED allowing them to reprint Brass. Sales of such games as Brass are not great, once you have met the initial demand there is usually very few on-going sales. I figured that FRED had sold all of the Brass they were ever likely to and left it at that. Last December I decided to go back and check whether FRED (or Eagle Gryphon, its all the same to me), had reprinted the game. As it turned out they had done so in 2013. They had not informed me of this, nor had they sent me royalty statements or royalties owed. I contacted FRED via there website, not knowing the best person to contact. Ralph Anderson got back to me and arranged for a statement and royalties to be paid. At the same time that I made this inquiry I also informed them that I wished to terminate the contract. The contract is very clear on this, after 2013 either party can give six months notice of termination as long as sales are below a certain amount, which was the case here.
Thus, I was a little surprised to see that FRED are intending to release a deluxe version of the game on Kickstarter. Even if I had not terminated the contract they are still bound to consult me about artwork, which they have not done. The major issue for me is that another company wishes to acquire the rights to the game. For Treefrog this is quite important, as we have a lot of games in production and not a lot of money in the bank. However, with FRED still claiming ownership of the game this other party is reluctant to get involved. So, I’m being done both ways, losing money from not being able to sell the rights to the game and having FRED continue to make money off of me without my consent.
I have emailed Ralph Anderson a number of times to try to clear this matter up without my going public. I have had no response, hence the present post. If Eagle Gryphon do go ahead with the Kickstarter I urge you not to subscribe. To do so would be giving money to a company which has repeatedly acted in an illegal manner. I will be contacting Kickstarter to inform them about this situation, with the aim of having the game removed from their site. I will also be seeking legal advice regarding Age of Steam.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post.