• Feature: Hellboy in Mexico game expansion Interviews 

    Mignolaversity: Rob Burman talks Hellboy: The Board Game

    By | May 15th, 2018
    Posted in Interviews | % Comments

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    In case you didn’t know, late last month Matic Games launched a Kickstarter for Hellboy: The Board Game. It’s been doing really well, unlocked lots of stretch goals, and now there’s an optional add-on for backers that I know Mignolaversity readers are going to love: a “Hellboy in Mexico” expansion. This is an iconic era from Hellboy’s formative years (and you can bet “Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1956” will be touching on it too when it kicks off later this year), and certainly an exciting one to explore as a part of Hellboy: The Board Game. To tell us a little more about it, we invited Rob Burman to talk with us.

    This Kickstarter has been a tremendous success; I believe it’s Mantic’s most successful Kickstarter yet. You’ve crossed over £1,000,000 pounds now!

    Rob Burman: This is Mantic’s most successful Kickstarter and we’re not even finished yet! To be honest, we’ve been absolutely blown away by the response. Obviously we always knew that Hellboy was popular around the world, but the reaction from fans has been absolutely staggering. The other great thing is that the Kickstarter is already helping to build a community of Hellboy: The Board Game fans ready for when the game launches next year. Many of the backers are already talking about the characters they want to play as and the custom rules they want to make… and it’s not even out yet!

    I was particularly happy with one of the latest updates—you made Dr. Kate Corrigan a playable character! I was well chuffed with that.

    Rob: From day one we always knew we wanted to bring in a range of iconic characters from the comic. Of course, a lot of people only know Hellboy from the films so will be expecting the likes of Rasputin, Abe Sapien, and Liz, but there are so many other fantastic characters to choose from. In fact there are just too many for the scope of this Kickstarter—we would probably need about ten Kickstarters to do everything. Kate has always been a particular favorite of mine and originally she was one of the four core agents in the game. However, Mike Mignola suggested swapping her out for Johann Kraus and that’s why she became a Back-up Agent.

    At this point the Hellboy Universe spans seventy-five trade paperbacks so, like you say, there’s a lot Hellboy: The Board Game can draw from, but so far it seems Mantic is sticking to the ‘Seed of Destruction’ to ‘Conqueror Worm’ era. Why is that?

    Rob: There is so much “Hellboy” lore that we had to sit down carefully and choose what elements of the graphic novels we wanted to bring over for the game. Trying to do everything all at once would have been pushing the limits of what we can achieve during the Kickstarter. We do plan to roughly stick to the story, so at the moment we’re progressing through ‘Seed of Destruction’ and ‘Conqueror Worm,’ but we definitely have plans to take in the likes of ‘Darkness Calls’ and ‘The Wild Hunt.’ We did a similar thing with our Walking Dead: All Out War game. Each expansion told a different narrative inspired by the comics and introduced new characters.

    This latest expansion, “Hellboy in Mexico,” is set in a very different era, in 1956 when Hellboy spent a “drunken weekend” in Mexico from May to October. It’s outside the main “Hellboy” plotline, and a very different kind of adventure. What is it about this era that made Mantic want to do a game about it?

    Rob: Mainly it was because we loved the idea of having an expansion featuring luchadores facing off against undead conquistadors and a giant vampire bat in a wrestling outfit. Surely, we don’t need any more reasons than that?!

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    You had me luchadores. As I understand it, while the “Hellboy in Mexico” expansion isn’t Kickstarter exclusive (it may also be available at shows or events), it won’t be made available for retail. This expansion is definitely something special. Could you tell us what sets this apart from the other expansions?

    Rob: “Hellboy in Mexico” is a limited edition, so we will only be doing one print run. The reason behind this is kind of what you alluded to above. “Hellboy in Mexico” isn’t part of the core storyline, so didn’t fit in with our plans to progress through the storyline with new expansions. However, the beauty of Kickstarter is that we can do things that are a little off the wall because we’ve got the chance to tell the fans about it (and get their feedback too). There’s also the opportunity to have some great set pieces too, like the players fighting the wrestling vampire bat inside a wrestling ring!

    I see that joining Hellboy you have Esteban and his two brothers from the first “Hellboy in Mexico” story. Will this expansion draw from the other Mexico stories as well? I for one would love to see the Frankenstein monster make an appearance.

    Esteban and Hellboy
    Rob: We’ve chosen some of the minions from the different stories collected together in “Hellboy in Mexico.” The luchadores and vampires are from ‘Hellboy in Mexico,’ the undead conquistadors are from ‘Hellboy Gets Married’ and the ghost/vampire is from ‘House of the Living Dead.’ There’s definitely an opportunity to do Frankenstein and people also keep asking from the vampire turkey seen in ‘Hellboy in Mexico…’ so we’ll just have to see!

    Every Wednesday of the campaign is “Add-on Wednesday.” The first Wednesday Mantic added optional furniture figures and a Kickstarter exclusive dice tray, and last Wednesday was the “Hellboy in Mexico” expansion. Would you care to tease what may be ahead tomorrow?

    Rob: This Wednesday will be resin versions of some of the key miniatures. Resin miniatures capture the detail of the original sculpt fantastically so they’re great for painters and collectors. This means there’ll be an opportunity to pick up Hellboy and co. in resin. Then we’ve got one final Add-on Wednesday to go… and perhaps another expansion would be cool!

    Mantic Games has just unveiled a brand new tequila-soaked expansion for its Hellboy: The Board Game Kickstarter. The “Hellboy in Mexico” expansion is inspired by Hellboy’s five-month “drunken weekend” in which he fights vampires, teams up with three wrestling brothers, takes on undead conquistadors, and even spends some time as a Luchador. What’s not to love? Oh, and did we mention he fights a giant bat in a wrestling ring? Seriously, this expansion has it all.


    The Hellboy: The Board Game Kickstarter continues to go from strength to strength. It’s now passed the £1 million mark and more than 10,000 Hellboy fans from around the globe have jumped on board to become members of the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense.

    Inspired by Mike Mignola’s Hellboy comic book universe, the game is a co-operative experience in which players face off against some of the comic’s most famous foes. Up to four people take control of iconic B.R.P.D. members, such as Hellboy, Abe Sapien, and Roger the Homunculus, before exploring gothic locations and uncovering ancient artifacts.

    Featuring stunning, pre-assembled plastic miniatures, Mantic Games has worked closely with Dark Horse Comics and Mike Mignola to ensure the gaming pieces accurately capture the look and feel of the source material. What’s more, top games designer James M. Hewitt—who has previously worked on Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower, Necromunda: Underhive, and Blood Bowl 2016—has been drafted in to create a compelling game experience.

    If you want to know more about the game, there’s lot of resources on the Kickstarter page, including a demo playthrough video with Rob Burman, Martin Thirlwell, and designer James M. Hewitt.

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    Also, they’ve got a bunch of blog pieces about the game:
    Developing the game (Part 1)
    Developing the game (Part 1)
    What’s an Agent Card?
    Case Files
    What’s the HQ Board?
    The Deck of Doom
    Exploring and encounters
    Agent Actions
    Dice mechanics
    Fun with budgets
    Design diary: more than punching
    Ronnie talks Hellboy
    Hellboy in Mexico unveiled

    Mark Tweedale

    Mark writes Haunted Trails, The Harrow County Observer, and The Damned Speakeasy. An animator and an eternal Tintin fan, he spends his free time reading comics, listening to film scores, watching far too many video essays, and consuming the finest dark chocolates. You can find him on Twitter @MarkTweedale.