Birdwatcher Board Game Announced

A new game about photographing birds is coming to tabletop game stores. Birdwatcher is a new game published by Oni Games and Renegade Game Studios in which players attempt to lure birds out into the open so that they can be photographed for points. Players can take three actions each turn, which includes calling birds to the "player's tree," taking photos of a bird, and publishing findings about a bird to maximize points. Players can also use their zoom lens to snipe photos of birds that sit on another player's tree, or venture into the jungle in order to flush out a desired bird. All the birds are represented by cards featuring artwork by Lauren Helton, a scientific illustrator for the Institute of Bird Populations. Birdwatcher was designed by Zakir Jafry and supports 1-5 players.

Surprisingly, Birdwatcher isn't the first game that involves watching birds. One of the biggest board games in recent memory, Wingspan, is all about luring birds to specific nature reserves in order to score victory points. One key difference between Wingspan and Birdwatcher is that the former is an engine-builder game in which players build combo chains, while Birdwatcher focuses on set collection. Given that Wingspan's popularity was due in part to the number of bird enthusiasts jumping into the hobby to play a game about their favorite feathered friends, it seems like Birdwatcher has the potential to be a sleeper hit. 

Birdwatcher was originally funded via a successful Kickstarter campaign last fall, where it raised over $50,000. However, the game now has a wider retail release planned for later this year. You can pre-order the game from Renegade Games. The game will have a retail price of $40.00.