Board game celebrates Copper Country history

Board game celebrates Copper Country history

Fans of board games in the Upper Peninsula may find that they have a new favorite game in the coming weeks.

“Copper Country: Live, Work, Profit, Death” is the board game brainchild of two entrepreneurial Upper Peninsula natives. The premise of the game centers around Keweenaw copper mining in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

“Players represent the mining companies, and you know that when you send that miner out to mine that it’s dangerous, and it’s your responsibility from the first turn of the game whether or not your miners get upset with you, or die even,” said Lead Game Designer David Lankton. “So on the game board there are the four camps and each camp is surrounded by mine sites. So you’re going to hire your miners at the camps, and then they’re going to head out and work the mine sites surrounding it.”

“The way that we would describe it is ‘area control and resource management,'” Game Designer Scott Diehl added. “You’re going to be collecting resources into your hand. You’re going to be sort of building out your area on the board where you’re building your company houses, your hoist houses, and your shaft houses.”

The idea for the game came from an inspirational trip home by Lankton in 2012, where he spent time both playing board games with his friends and reading the Copper Country history research of his father, a retired MTU professor.

“Fortunately, my dad had done a lot of the hard work for me, and I was able to mostly read and re–read his books to get a feel for what it was like,” Lankton said.

“The theme really resonated with me,” added Diehl. “You know, I’m a proud Yooper. We know lots of proud Yoopers. People really think it’s a special place and are proud of whatever connection they have to the area.”

The duo, in conjunction with a visual artist from Minnesota, have been hard at work playtesting the game while raising funds via Kickstarter. Their Kickstarter campaign is well on its way to meeting its goal.

For more information on the Copper Country board game, head to the CMX Games website.