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Digital Subscriptions > Tabletop Gaming > September 2018 (#22) > Holding on

Holding on

Dealing with death, illness and regret, Holding On is a board game like nothing you’ve ever played – and it tells a story you’ll never forget

THE GAME OF LIFE

For a board game, Holding On appears rather mundane. Dull, even. There’s no fantasy world to explore, no spaceships to pilot to unknown planets, no mythical monsters to battle with magical spells, no bartering with merchants in an ancient city or seas to sail in the company of Vikings. Players instead find themselves in the plain, sterile setting of a hospital in an unspecified country, tending to a 60-year-old man who suffered a massive heart attack on a flight from Sydney to London. He is Billy Kerr, and Holding On is his story.

It’s a deliberately sobering, down-to-Earth setup. Holding On: The Troubled Life of Billy Kerr isn’t a game about winning by suddenly discovering a miracle cure – the nursing staff players embody during the course of the campaign’s ten connected scenarios are told from the outset to “be prepared for the worst”. The aim is a simple one: make Billy’s remaining time as comfortable as possible, and try to uncover his difficult past to help him pass on free of regrets. With the realities of illness, death and regret represented so candidly, co-creator Michael Fox accepts that the experience of playing may prove too overwhelming for some.

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About Tabletop Gaming

X-Wing 2.0: The Force awakens in the second edition of the Star Wars miniatures phenomenon. Its creators reveal what to X-pect from the game’s biggest and best overhaul yet. Tabletop Gaming Live: Check out the brand new releases from Gen Con, must-play games and live seminars coming to London’s hottest new gaming convention in Alexandra Palace on September 29th and 30th, from the new card game from the creator of Magic: The Gathering to the UK launch of Pandemic designer Matt Leacock’s Forbidden Sky. Print-and-Play Games: From hidden gems to fan-made mods, the world of DIY board and card games is an endless treasure trove for players. We discover how to make your own games at home for next to nothing. And why not start with… FREE BOARD GAME: Find a free and exclusive new edition of Fightopia from acclaimed designers James Ernest and Mike Selinker for you to print and play at home! Holding On: The Troubled Life of Billy Kerr: It’s a board game like no other, tackling serious subjects and telling a story you’ll never forget. We learn more about the tale of Billy Kerr from its creators. How We Made: Avery Alder takes us inside the creation of her supernatural teen drama RPG Monsterhearts. REVIEWED: Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game Sailing Toward Osiris Welcome To… Heroes of Land, Air & Sea Spy Club Star Wars: The RPG – 30th Anniversary Edition Ticket to Ride: New York Dungeons & Dragons: Wayfinder’s Guide to Eberron Council of 4 Specter Ops: Broken Covenant + more!
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