city building

KOSMOS is coming out with a new board game, Cities Skylines- The Board Game, designed by Rustan Håkansson. This 1-4 player cooperative game is based on the video game Cities: Skylines where you and your team will plan and develop your own metropolis!

To create this thriving city, you will need to expand while keeping in mind pollution, traffic, crime, and other problems that arise throughout the course of the game. Replayability will be high as there are multiple starting scenarios where you will build different cities with unique buildings as you attempt to keep the population in a good mood.

Cities Skylines- The Board Game is set to come out October, 2019. You can preorder the game here.

Z-Man Games has announced The Great City of Rome, designed by Matthew Dunstan and Brett J. Gilbert. The game is for 2-4 players, ages 10+ where players compete to design and build the greatest city in the world.

The game requires players to make meticulous plans, dedicate their workers and gather sturdy materials. First, travel to the Emperor’s court to gain blueprints and materials and use emissaries to earn the Emperor’s favor. However, use the emissaries wisely. The more time spent sweet-talking the Emperor, the less time there is to gather resources and materials

During each round, players reveal a set of building cards, each with their own attributes, as well as flip one of the six unique action strips. Using their emissaries, players claim spaces on the action strip, carefully choosing the placement to earn the right to claim the best building cards or maximize the number of actions they can take. After the emissaries have been placed, players draft building cards, resolve actions and construct buildings in order from closest to farthest from the golden Emperor pawn.

Now that you have your blueprints, workers and materials, it’s time to build the city! City planning requires the careful arrangement of housing, utilities and amenities to make the city’s residents happy.

After drafting a building card, you can place the building into your play area, creating a maximum of a 4×4 grid of buildings. Carefully arrange your residential areas with nearby public buildings and add in aqueducts and temples to make a civilized, balanced city and score the most points to win.

Game contents: 86 Cards, 39 Coins, 33 Influence Tokens, 18 Point Tokens, 6 Brick Tokens, 6 Action Strips, 8 Wooden Pawns, 1 Scoring Pad, 1 Rulebook, 1 Summary Sheet

You can pre-order your copy of The Great City of Rome today. It will be released in early 2019.

Lookout Games announces NEOM, a city building game designed by Paul Sottosanti.  In NEOM, players are city planners who build the city in stages, one generation at a time.  Players must plan with an eye for the future when they plan their city.  NEOM is a tile drafting, tile placement, and simultaneous play game. Players will begin their planning with a starting city tile and an empty tableau to build their future city.  Each city will also begin with three anchor buildings that provide many benefits to the city. Each generation, players will draft tiles to place in their city, providing power, resources, services, industries, and other features every growing city needs.  Once all the tiles are drafted, player plan and place their drafted city features.  Once placed, the tile can not be moved, so the road system and feature location must be carefully considered.  Each generation, more powerful buildings and feature are available IF players have provided their city the means to build and use them.  Misfortune also awaits in the tiles, especially for those cities whose city planners did not provide sufficient emergency services.  After three generations, city planning is complete and the cities are scored.  The player with the highest score is the winner.

NEOM plays 1-5 players, ages 10+ in about 45 minutes.  Contents include 6 city boards, 150 tiles, 85 good tokens, 65 coin tokens, 1 scoring pad, and a rulebook.  The European release of NEOM is expected in October of 2018 and in North America shortly afterwards.

Warsaw: City of Ruins, or Capital if you are buying the Granna edition of the game, is a game all about building and rebuilding the war ravaged city of Warsaw.  If you go to modern day Warsaw you will see that the city is an amalgamation of older buildings, modern buildings, socialist blocks, and more all jammed together in one area.  This makes things look like a mess but also speaks to the people’s resilience as parts of the city got destroyed in each world war.  In the game  Warsaw: City of Ruins you will be playing a tile laying game to build up, and then rebuild your city over the span of six rounds called epochs.  In each round everyone will get a hand of tiles that they will draft from, and once they pick a tile they can either pay it’s cost and build it, or turn it in for some money to be able to build tiles later.  At the end of the round each player’s city will activate and give out points and money based on which buildings you built.  At the end of third and fourth rounds though is when war comes and ravages parts of your city, so make sure to prepare for it.  At the end of the game it will be the person with the most points that will be the winner.

The art of the game is pretty minimal with the city blocks having  having clear colors and icons, and the monument tiles are photos of the actual monuments.  Also if the gameplay sounds family, that is because it plays similar to other drafting, city building games like Fields of Green or Among the Stars, but some new mechanics added in make this game stand out as a unique entry.  If you are going to Origins you will be able to check this game out there, if not then you will just have to wait for it to hit store shelves in August.  Either way you can check out North Star Games’ facebook page for more information.

Welcome to… is the latest roll and write, although it is more accurate to say flip a card and write, from Benoit Turpin and Blue Cocker Games.  In the game you are trying to build the best and most desirable suburban community back in the 1950’s, and what is considered desirable is determined by city planning cards.  On each turn of the game three cards will be flipped, from those three cards you will pick which one you will use, and write down the corresponding house number and take that card’s special action.  Some of the actions include adding fences, building pools, improving the points you get for your housing clusters, and even modifying the numbers on the cards.  On your sheet you have to write numbers in ascending order from left to right, so number placement becomes very important so you don’t block yourself.  However, there is a way to get around this, and that’s by copying a house number and marking it as a B, but doing so will get you negative points at the end.  The game ends when either all three city planning cards have been satisfied by a player, someone fills their entire neighborhood with house numbers, or someone was unable to write a house number for a third time.  At that time points are totaled and the most points is the winner.

This is an interesting take on the roll and write genre that I personally find interesting, but so far it has only seen a release overseas, until now.  Deepwater Games has announced they have partnered with Blue Cocker Games to create an English version of the game to distribute worldwide.  Pre-orders will be starting up on the 18th of April, and release of the game will come later this year in August.  You can find out more information on the Deepwater Games’ website, and then brush up on your 1950’s interior decorating ideas while you wait for the games to arrive on store shelves.  Unless you are attending Origins, they will have copies there to distribute to those who opt to pick up at the convention.

The Steampunk theme is one that will forever remain endearing for some, and I’m no exception. However, nowadays it takes something a little more than a typical card game with a theme I like to grab my attention. So what about a game that has a Steampunk theme that does something really cool with cards?! That gives us Noxford, the newest game from Quick Simple Fun Games releasing this month. It’s essentially a tile-laying game that uses cards instead of tiles which everyone is placing in a shared space in a mad bid of territory control. Here’s a brief description from the publisher:

“Set in a Steampunk universe, Noxford gives you the opportunity to seize control of the Victorian city that you build over the course of the game. In turn, players place either cards depicting influence of their syndicate or neutral cards representing rich districts (victory points) as well as barracks (which cancel syndicate influence around those areas). Cards must be placed so that they touch at least two cards already in play and must have at least two edges aligned on the edges of the cards that it touches.”

We’ve seen this type of card placement before in a game called Honshu, which featured bidding for cards to place them in your own personal town for points and resources. Noxford, on its face, is quite a bit more sinister than that as it forces all the players to build one city, a city where points come from neutral cards that must be played and also protected and fought for in order to be scored. If it lives up to Quick Simple Fun’s namesake, Noxford will be a game that I will be looking out for when it releases. If you too are interested in Noxford and other Quick Simple Fun releases, please check out their website for more information.

Zendo, the rule guessing abstract game is finally getting an update and reprint.  Zendo is an easy game to play, the active player will come up with a rule, like two pyramids must touch at the tip, and then the other players start building layouts tying to guess the rule.  As the go along the rule maker will answer questions and let you know if you built something that satisfies the rule.  Once someone figures out the rule they win.

When the Pyramid Arcade was announced and Kickstarted, everyone was clamoring for the game Zendo to be added to the list of games in the box.  However, Looney Labs kept saying no, and then we found out that this was because they would reprint the game separately.  And now we have a date to go with that, so look for the game to be back on store shelves in December of this year.

Wizkids has announced a new expansion to the Star Trek: Frontiers game, a re-theme and update to Mage Knight, called The Return of Khan.  This expansion adds a whole new scenario to the game where Khan has returned and is looking to rule the galaxy with power he can steal from the Borg.  It’s up to captains from across the Star Trek series, Picard, Kirk, Sisko, and more, to work together and stop him before he can complete his plans.  This expansion you will give you all the tokens, tiles, and cards needed for this new scenario, as well as rules and tokens to be able to add a 5th player to the game.  You can find this game on store shelves in November of this year, and you can head over to Wizkids’ website to read more about it.

Last from WizKids as well is the colorful euro style building game, Favelas.  In this game you are building your own Favelas, a multi-level house painted all sorts of colors in order to beautify and rejuvenate the town.  However there is a catch, the council over seeing this effort, and the one determining the point values, is notoriously fickle and will change their minds each year, changing the value of each color.  So over three years in the game you will build up your town with colors that get you the most points before the council’s mood changes.  The person with the most points at the end is the winner. Favelas looks like an interesting and colorful game, and it should arrive on store shelves in October of this year.  Until then you can read more on Wizkids’ website.

Greater Than Games and designers Chris and Suzanne Zinsli (Tessen) have announced a Kickstarter campaign for Dubai: Rebuild the Ruins. Dubai is a resource collection and tile laying game in which players rebuild a post apocalyptic city of Dubai as one of 4 unique factions. The interesting mechanic of the game is the concept of a worker rotation on one of 3 rondel tracks. A player will place one of his workers in the next spot clockwise on either the ruins, engineer or port rondel. All players then can bid for actions around that rondel in counterclockwise order. Finally, the player who has the last spot on the rondel moves his worker and leads the next turn. This system offers a very dynamic turn order and keeps all players engaged each turn. The port rondel is for resource collection, the engineer rondel for collecting money or purchasing one of 5 types of structure tiles, and the ruins rondel is for receiving secret goal cards, building collected tiles or trading resources. Each rondel is a 3 dimensional attractive cardboard tower, and the campaign has options for upgraded resource pieces and metal coins. As players build tiles, they uncover additional bonuses by removing crystals from their faction board. Players earn victory points for area control, money, and achieving secret goals.

The Kickstarter Campaign continues through March 24, 2007 and is expected to deliver in March 2018. You can visit the campaign webpage here.

Quadropolis, the beautiful city-building game from Days of Wonder, will have its first expansion this June.  Quadropolis:  Public Services adds 24 new building tiles such as Maternity Ward, Reprocessing Plant, and Police Station.  Each round, several of these new tiles are revealed face up next to the board.  As Mayor, you need to decide when to add these to your city – “which will best serve my population?”.  The buildings add in game bonuses and scoring options.

“With the Public Services expansion, players will add all new Public Service Buildings to their Quadropolis game. As a Mayor, will they choose to increase the population by building a Maternity Ward or protect their citizens with a new Police Station? But competition will be fierce, and being able to build the right Public Service at the right time will not be made easy by the other players.”

The game includes the 24 building tiles, 4 Helpers and a Rulebook.  More information can be found on Days of Wonder’s Quadropolis page.

Days of Wonder would like to announce Yamataï, a new board game themed in a legendary far-eastern kingdom that is governed by the majestic Queen Himiko.  This new board game is designed by Bruno Cathala and Marc Paquien.  What follows is a quote from the official press release from Days of Wonder:

In Yamataï, players have to complete a delicate mission: build the most prestigious city of the kingdom! To accomplish this ambitious task, players transport various resources through the islands of the archipelago and collect Culture Tokens or raise buildings and monuments. Recruiting specialists and using their powers will constitute a decisive strategy for each builder to ultimately obtain Queen Himiko’s favors.

The game rules are simple and easy to learn and players will be making choices that include:

  • choosing the right Fleet Tile in due time to obtain resources and useful powers
  • carefully observing other players’ actions
  • following numerous paths to victory to become the master builder

A copy of the game will include:

  • 1 lavishly illustrated game board
  • 4 player mats with meeples
  • 80 wooden boats carrying resources (bamboo, wood, stone, clay, gold)
  • 10 Fleet Tiles
  • 28 Building Tiles (21 Standard Buildings and 7 Prestige Buildings, each represented with wooden figures)
  • 7 Mountain Tiles
  • 34 Culture Tokens
  • 8 Sacred Ground tokens
  • 73 Coins
  • 24 Prestige Point Tokens
  • 18 Specialist Tiles

Yamataï is a game for 2 to 4 players, ages 13 and up and plays in 40 to 80 minutes.

The entire press release is available to read HERE.

For more information, please visit www.daysofwonder.com/yamatai.