Gloomhaven second edition revealed with "fully rewritten campaign" and new reputation system

Gloomhaven Second Edition box and components on a wooden table
(Image credit: Cephalofair Games)

A new crowdfunding campaign from Cepholair games has given us our first good look at the Gloomhaven RPG, a second edition for the popular board game with dramatically reworked elements, and miniatures for the entire series - including the recently-released sequel, Frosthaven.

Revealed via Backerkit, the 'Gloomhaven Grand Festival' is a blowout of information on every corner of the Gloomhaven universe along with reduced prices for all those new products if you pledge. To begin with, the Gloomhaven RPG was shown off with a core rulebook and deluxe boxset featuring class decks, rules sporting an alternate gold foil-laced cover, a 'Gloom Master' screen, and a 'battle chest' box to hold it all. Next, hundreds of miniatures for use with the RPG and the board games were unveiled, offering an original model for every single Gloomhaven and Frosthaven enemy. Finally, a significant overhaul of the original Gloomhaven (which usually ranks high on most lists of the best board games) was also displayed, revealing a reworked campaign and revised classes.

This seems to be striking a chord with fans, at the very least. Even though the campaign is aiming for a target of $2,000,000, it struck more than $1,430,000 after just a few hours of the campaign going live. Indeed, a couple of days later and that number hit $1,968,943 - and it's still climbing. With more than 25 days left to go before the Backerkit closes, it'll be interesting to see how many pledges it amasses.

Because there's a lot to go through, we've broken down all the juicy details below.

Gloomhaven Second Edition

Gloomhaven Second Edition class cards on a wooden table

(Image credit: Cephalofair Games)

While this new version of the fan-favorite board game for adults is broadly similar to its 2017 predecessor, Gloomhaven Second Edition is described as a 'refined' experience with plenty of new features. While we knew about the rebalanced classes, some have been renamed (the Brute is now the Bruiser, for example) and given entirely new miniatures to go with all-new art and design across the project. 

In addition, a first look at Second Edition gameplay revealed that we'll be getting a "fully rewritten" campaign with a dramatically different structure (in other words, many of the actual missions will be the same but the writing for them has been redone). When combined with a new faction reputation system that opens up certain storylines for your character, it's starting to feel more like a top-to-bottom reboot than a simple tweak.  

There's no word on when this will launch, but you can get it for $130 instead of $180 if you pledge to Backerkit.

Gloomhaven RPG

Gloomhaven: The Role Playing Game RPG Deluxe Box Set on a wooden table

(Image credit: Cephalofair Games)

The Grand Festival has given us a better glimpse of what the Gloomhaven Roleplaying Game will look like. Even though there's a standalone core rulebook containing all the mechanics you need to play (including a bestiary and adventure you can run for your party), most of the focus was on the RPG Deluxe Box Set. Alongside a fancier version of the rulebook combining a faux-leather effect with gold foil elements, it comes with numerous card decks for your class and combat in addition to a D&D-style 'Gloom Master' screen, element trackers, and a treasure chest-inspired box to keep it all in.

Rather than being the board game system with a GM thrown in, this system combines the best tabletop RPGs with Gloomhaven's unique card-based combat. It's compatible with the new miniatures too, and there seems to be a tile system not unlike the board game if you want to play with physical models.

Unfortunately, we don't have a launch window for that either - but the core book is $30 instead of $40 on Backerkit, while the Deluxe Box Set is $90 rather than $120.

In addition, you can start to get a better feel for how the RPG works with the playthrough listed above.

Gloomhaven and Frosthaven miniatures

Gloomhaven miniatures

(Image credit: Cephalofair Games)

A wave of bespoke miniatures for the franchise was teased back a few months ago, but now we've got a better look at what they'll be like. Because there's a model for every single enemy in Gloomhaven, Jaws of the Lion, Forgotten Circles, and Frosthaven, there are quite literally hundreds of figures on offer. In fact, the base packs contain something along the lines of 250 miniatures each.

Along with replacing the cardboard standees from the board games, these models can also be used with the upcoming RPG.

For more, check out our interview with Gloomhaven creator Isaac Childres and our Frosthaven first impressions. As for some recommendations, don't miss these board games for 2 players.

Benjamin Abbott
Tabletop & Merch Editor

As the site's Tabletop & Merch Editor, you'll find my grubby paws on everything from board game reviews to the latest Lego news. I've been writing about games in one form or another since 2012, and can normally be found cackling over some evil plan I've cooked up for my group's next Dungeons & Dragons campaign.