If there’s anything that DoubleFine’s incredible Kickstarter campaign proved for the videogames industry, it’s that respected veterans of the business can receive ample funding from devoted fans. With big-name video/board game development titans like Eric Lee Smith (as far back as 1979’s Bulge), John Butterfield (member of the game designer hall of fame) and David Dunham (King of Dragon Pass) coming together to create a Kickstarter for Battle of the Bulge, they’re already off to a great start.

We’ve talked plenty of times about how board and card games have been a perfect mix with Apple’s touch-screen devices, and Shenandoah’s Eric Lee Smith couldn’t agree more.

“The iPad changes [everything],” he says. “All you do is pinch, zoom, drag, drop, so you can take the playing pieces and manipulate them very quickly. This is a profound change in the way games can be designed and developed.”

Battle of the Bulge aims to revolutionize this concept by applying classic board game concepts, but being built from the ground-up for the iPad. Set in the 1944 World War II battle of the same name, players assume the roles of either the offensive German army or the counteroffensive Allied forces.

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The turn-based strategy game aims to be as historically accurate as possible, while still being simple to learn and fun to play. Real-life maps, units, and positioning are meant to convey the battle as close to history as can be. The only difference is that you are now given the reigns as commander, free to explore the historical what-if: could the battle have been played out differently?

Luckily, you don’t only have to relive the war by yourself. Multiplayer will be available in three different forms: passing a single iPad, local multiplayer, and asynchronous turn-by-turn gameplay over the internet. Perhaps the greatest offering for board games in the digital realm is the ability to play with anyone and anywhere, and Battle of the Bulge will be pulling out all the stops to make it happen.

Donations via Kickstarter range from as low as $10 for the game itself when it releases, to as heavy as $5,000 for a chance to attend a Shenandoah weekend-long seminar geared to develop Battle of the Bulge‘s sequel. Levels in-between offer everything from t-shirts to a complete physical copy of the game itself, for those classic board gamers looking to relive their glory days.


At $15,161 out of a $20,000 total with 26 days ago, things are looking great for Shenandoah Studio. If you’re interested in learning about the insights and processes of their veteran developers, check out their company blog here to stay tuned. If their funding offensive is anything like the Allied forces counterattack, we should have another impressive Kickstarter victory on our hands soon.

Project Name: Battle of the Bulge

Platforms: iOS (iPad)

Funds Needed: $20,000

Funding Acquired (as of this writing): $15,161

Days Left: 26

Kickstarter Picks is a series on Gamezebo that profiles Kickstarter projects in the world of video games. We’re doing this in the hopes of calling attention to interesting projects in need of funding, so please, if a game looks like something you’d want to play, don’t hesitate to lend it your support!