British Game News – Cubiko games launches first abstract strategy game, FOUNDATION™

May 2012

Cubiko games launches first abstract strategy game, FOUNDATION™.

UK Games Expo 2012 saw the launch of a brand new abstract strategy game called FOUNDATION, by London-based games developer, Cubiko Games.

Now in his 4th year at the UK Games Expo, Gavin Birnbaum, founder of Cubiko Games brought yet another exciting new game to the UK’s largest games fair, held in Birmingham during the last weekend of May.

The rules for FOUNDATION are some of simplest seen at Expo for a new strategy game for a long time, yet the game itself rivals chess with its numerous possibilities and strategies required.

FOUNDATION is a 2 player game. Players start with 14 blocks each and the objective is to place as many of your pieces as you can to gain the most points. Points are awarded for each piece that a newly placed block makes contact with. In effect, the stronger the ‘foundations’, the more points you will receive.

The game itself was created by a fellow games designer, Rafi Arkin. He had the idea for the game after helping his 5 years old daughter, Isabelle, play a game of her own creation using Jenga Blocks and plastic ‘Go Go’ pieces.

Rafi explains:

“Having watched Isabelle develop a game of cat and mouse using wooden Jenga blocks, I began to visualise a very simple point scoring game with wooden blocks touching each other. I quickly started drawing grids, cutting out pieces of card, and putting things together. The main thing for me was simplicity. You can explain the rules to FOUNDATION in 30 seconds and all ages can have a go”

Working with a number of board game enthusiasts as guinea pigs, Rafi eventually ended up with the simple set of 4 rules and 14 pieces you now see in the set.

Rafi was about to launch the game at Expo 2011, when he landed a marketing role at The Health Lottery. So he put FOUNDATION on the back-burner. A year on, with a successful Lottery launch behind him, his attention turned back to FOUNDATION and asked Gavin Birnbaum, founder of Cubiko Games for help.

Gavin Birnbaum explains how the launch of FOUNDATION fits into the longer term strategy for Cubiko Games:

“I feel that it’s important to keep a pipeline of new ideas coming to market every year – to give the growing number of Cubiko followers something new to play and buy. I felt that FOUNDATION was the right product to launch at Expo 2012 and that some of my other developments would remain as previews this year, ready for full release later”

Editors notes:

FOUNDATION retails at £19.95 and went on sale at UK Games Expo 2012. Gavin and Rafi will be at the Expo to demonstrate the game.

The first edition will be a limited edition of 30 sets, all handmade in London, and numbered.

The second edition will be on sale as pre-orders, available for distribution later in the year.

UK Games Expo 2012 was be held between 25th and 27th May at The Clarendon Suites, Stirling Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham.

Cubiko Games also sells the following games

Cubiko Original

Cubiko Word

Cheese Factory

Olympic Steeplechase (on demo at Expo 2012, available for pre-sale)

For more information on FOUNDATION, interviews and images contact:

Gavin Birnbaum

Cubiko Games


Wholesale customers and retailer enquiries for FOUNDATION, please contact:

Contact Rafi Arkin

07742 607 248








Rafi Arkin is an games designer, marketing specialist, and an idea generator. Most recently worked on the successful launch of The Health Lottery, he has also worked in the marketing teams for brands such as Carr’s Table Water biscuits, Quorn, Stella Artois and Hoegaarden Beer.


Following a number of ‘talking game’ launches, FOUNDATION is his first abstract board game launch.




Gavin Birnbaum set up Cubiko in 2009. Now a regular feature of UK Games Expo and Essen, he has successfully launched 3 board games in the last 3 years. He has a string of awards now to his name and a growing following of games enthusiasts..


Gavin also runs the Cubiko World Tournament, now in its 3rd year.




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