Board games are going through a renaissance right now. It may appear to the casual observer that hobbyist games are a new phenomenon, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Talented designers have been designing and publishing games that can stand up to some of the best the modern board gaming world has to offer for decades.

Unfortunately, many of those games fell by the wayside because of circumstances that were beyond their control. Some games were designed in such a way that they needed technology that didn’t exist yet to really help them shine. Other games had a kernel of greatness that was hidden under a pile of cliché mechanics that were considered “required” in order to be commercially viable in their day. Others were great games that served a small niche and needed the expanded reach of this internet to help them thrive.

Restoration Games was founded to help find those lost marvels and give them a new life thanks to inspired game design principles, modern technology, and advanced production techniques. Every game deserves another turn and the team at Restoration Games is dedicated to finding the best ones and giving them another go.

Restoration Games has four games under their belt right now. Three of them are available through online retailers and friendly local game stores (FLGS for short) right now. The fourth will be coming to Kickstarter later on this year.

Stop Thief!

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Stop Thief! Was original published in 1979 and was one of the first board games to employ the hidden movement mechanic. The game relied on a battery operated radio that played sounds to help players figure out where their targets were on the game board using audio clues.

That clunky battery operated device has been replaced by a free mobile app that not only helps clean up the original experience, but it offers an easy opportunity for the designers to expand on the game in the future should they choose to do so.


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Downforce has been published before under many names like Top Race, Daytona 500, and Cleveland Grand Prix. It was originally designed nearly forty years ago by Wolfgang Kramer.

It’s a card-based racing game that has been very well received by other reviewers so far. We can’t wait to get our hands on it soon.


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Indulgence has had quite the journey since it was originally published as Coup d’Etat back in 1966. It had a brief pitstop in 1982 to be republished as Dragonmaster. It’s a trick-taking card game where players can either follow the leader’s rules of taking the risk of undermining them for a bigger reward.

This is another game that has been well received so far. It feels like the depth of strategy will be a little bit beyond our target age range, but I absolutely love the art style.

Fireball Island

The internet erupted when this was announced as part of the Dice Tower panel at GenCon 50 earlier this summer. Fireball Island is a well-loved game from the 80s that definitely could stand to be given some love.

The primary feature of the original game was its massive game board. In truth, it was less of a board than it was a vacuum molded plastic island that you could play a game on. The centerpiece was a massive volcano that would spew red marbles that would roll down paths and knock over player’s game pieces. It was an interesting gimmick, and it certainly got the attention of lots of kids back when it was first released. But, I am excited to see how the team at Restoration Games will improve upon it.


Restoration Games even takes suggestions! Head on over to their website and you’ll get the chance to tell them what game you’d like them to tackle next!

By Stephen Duetzmann

Editor in Chief Founder/EiC Blogger, Podcaster, Video Host RE: games that families can play together.

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