One of the things we like to do here at the Malted Meeple is give some extra attention to our favorite board game publishers and designers. In our monthly Publisher’s Spotlight we provide a bit of a background on the publisher, discuss a few of their games, and may even announce a visit to The Meeple by some of the publisher’s representatives!
The Malted Meeple is pleased to announce our June Publisher’s Spotlight, featuring North Star Games!
Founded in 2003 by Dominic Crapuchettes, North Star’s mission is to bring people together through exciting and memorable experiences by inspiring laughter, cheering, creativity, and communication amongst friends and families. That sounds a lot like our mission here at the Meeple, and is definitely a cause we can get behind!
While we normally don’t dig too far into the creation of our spotlight publishers, North Star has an origins story that’s just too good to pass up. Prior to North Star, Dominic Crapuchettes captained an Alaskan salmon fishing boat for 12 seasons, but in his heart, he always dreamed about starting a board game company.
One stormy night, his boat took on enough water to submerge the batteries in the engine room. All of the electronics went dead, and Dom was forced to guide his boat home by the North Star. He vowed that if he survived, he would stop fishing and follow his dream. In 2003, he weighed anchor and started North Star Games. And boy are we glad he did!
North Star Games is perhaps best known for their award winning party games Wits & Wagers and Say Anything. Both of which have a spot in the Malted Meeple library. More recently, North Star Games has forayed into the deeper end of the gaming spectrum. Their first entrant is one of our favorite games, Evolution.
It was Evolution that first brought North Star to our attention back in 2014. North Star had heard about our Hoop & Stick Convention, and offered to send a prototype of Evolution for us to share with attendees. We of course were thrilled to agree, and our guests had a great time with the game.
North Star was kind enough to solicit our feedback, and sent us revised rules as they progressed through the development of the game – culminating in a final prototype for our guests to enjoy at Con in the Castle 2014.
The production version of the game arrived in November of 2014, and we’ve been playing it ever since. North Star recently completed a successful Kickstarter for an expansion to Evolution, introducing the world of Flight. We look forward to receiving it later this year, and are excited to share it with our Malted Meeple guests.
The next time you visit The Malted Meeple, be sure to try out one of North Star’s great games. If you’re in the mood for a bit of strategy, I highly suggest Evolution. If you’re hankering for a light hearted party game, grab Wits & Wagers or Say Anything from the shelf. Either way, you’re certain to be entertained!
Jim Reed is a lifelong gamer who started with the original red box Dungeons & Dragons. After spending 20 years in the corporate world, he decided it was high time that work be fun and struck out on his own. Jim now owns and operates Ravenwood Castle and The Malted Meeple, and spends his days ensuring his guests have as much fun as he does.