Tasty Minstrel Games (TMG) has finally released Orléans into mass market in the Americas.
Orléans, designed by Reiner Stockhausen, is a “bag building” game in which players will throw tiles into a bag and draw them out randomly to do various things. Players use worker placement elements to try and score the most victory points from a long list of available options. Many elements of the game such as Scholars, Knights and Craftsmen, must be combined in the best possible way to meet your strategy for victory.
“One thing I like is that, while the core of the game is reasonably complex, it’s not gussied up with lots of extra little bits. Each of the eighteen rounds of the game is very simple: reveal an event tile, quickly assess the farmer track, then everyone draws their tokens and plans their actions. After that players take turns performing actions, then the event is resolved. Obviously given how popular some games are that have ninety-two different phases in each round my view is in the minority, but I still think a nice clean system is a plus.” – Dan Blum, Opinionated Gamers
Orléans was first published by dlp games in 2014. It achieved immediate acclaim, getting nominated for three Golden Geek awards and the Meeple’s Choice award for 2014. After its Kennerspiel 2015 nomination, Orléans has become an incredibly sought after product. Getting the game outside Europe was difficult.
Earlier this year, TMG picked up the game for a deluxe Kickstarter version with high quality, larger components (reviewed by Tom Vasel here). TMG also gained the distribution rights to publish in the USA, Canada and Australia. Their retail version of the game has finally arrived and is in stores now. According to their most recent mailing list update, TMG has sold out of all their first print run of the game, so act fast if you want to get a copy!
“Orléans by nature is an engine-building game because you are trying to get your machine working. What workers you get is what makes your game extremely interesting. Let me start out by saying I really enjoyed this game. Wow. Yes the theme is the same old get resources, get workers, blah blah blah. I don’t care about that, I focus on this game straight up on the mechanisms because they were so clear on how they worked. …The fun I had playing this. This is amazing. It’s one of the few times where the theme wasn’t relevant to me because I had so much fun just getting my engine together and working. … High thumbs up for me, this is a game that I enjoyed quite a bit and look forward to playing many more times over the coming years.” – Tom Vasel, Dice Tower. Revew by the Dice Tower can be found here.
The edition now on sale will be the standard edition. There are a few changes to the game, most notable the bathhouse tile (which is often listed as being too powerful and has a few suggested fixes put out for it). TMG has said in the past that there are no plans to put the deluxe edition out for sale to the mass market. You can pick up Orléans here.