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Carcassonne: The River tiles
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Carcassonne: The River tiles

English language edition of Carcassonne: Der Fluss

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Ages Play Time Players
8+ 30 minutes 2-5

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Carcassonne English language edition with River tiles Out of Stock

Carcassonne Big Box 2009 edition, AKA: Big Box 2 Out of Stock

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Carcassonne Big Box 2010 edition, AKA: Big Box 3 Out of Stock

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Carcassonne Z-Man Games edition, includes The River expansion Out of Stock

Product Description

The River is a mini-expansion for Carcassonne. It adds twelve river tiles. All the familiar landscape elements are also present. The river tiles are placed first, after that the game continues as normal. No followers may be placed on the river so the scoring is the same as in the basic game.

Product Information

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 4.1 in 10 reviews

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by Alan T.
Detracts from the spirit of the game
October 26, 2015

"Carcassonne: The Messages" is another in the generally excellent series of recently published mini expansions. I feel that this one falls short of the mark, however, because instead of enhancing the game mechanics, it fundamentally alters them. Basically, the messages are a series of written instructions that allow the player to do certain things/score some points. For me, non-placable tiles and scoring that isn't directly related to tile play just don't feel like Carcassonne. On the other hand, the tile's effects are generally negligible so you're adulterating the feel of the game without adding anything substantive to it. I give it two stars instead of one because it, like all Carcassonne products, is manufactured to the highest standards and, also, because if you've enjoyed the other mini-expansions in the series, it's affordable enough that you can be a completist without worrying about it.

Note: this review refers to a different release of this product.
by Alan T.
The Goldmines Are Pure Gold
October 26, 2015

"Carcassonne: The Goldmines" is a mini-expansion for the Carcassonne base game. The set includes several small yellow pieces that represent gold bars. When certain tiles are played, these gold bars are added to the map. Gold bars are won when a player completes a feature that includes a gold laden tile.

Like railroads in Monopoly, the more gold bars you have, the more they are worth. If the gold bars are spread out evenly, they contribute little to the outcome of the game. However, if there starts to be an imbalance in who's mining the gold, that player is likely to run away with the game.

The result of this is the "The Goldmines" often leads to in-game periods of intense competition within a very small part of the area. I like this a lot because I generally prefer Carcassonne games that are more directly confrontational.

All in all, this is one of my favorite small sets. Highly recommended.

Note: this review refers to a different release of this product.
Included in the base set - most necessary
February 12, 2005

For most people, Carcassonne: the River comes prepackaged with the base game of Carcassonne. It’s still considered an expansion in the rule set, having a paragraph mentioned near the end explaining the rules. Early sets of Carcassonne do not include the expansion, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes Carcassonne but is discouraged by huge farmer scores. It was given out for free at one of the Essen fairs, and copies of it are still available online.

The River expansion is made up of twelve tiles, each containing part of a river. One endpoint of the river (the spring) is the starting tile of the game, replacing the original starting tile. The other endpoint of the river (the lake) is set aside, with the remaining ten river tiles shuffled, forming the first ten tiles to be played during the game. Players draw and play these tiles just like normal tiles, with a few rules:

- Each river tile must connect to the other river tiles utilizing the river - not the other edges.

- The river cannot make a U-turn.

- Players may not place meeples directly on the river.

- The river divides farms just like roads do.

The river tiles have cities, roads, and even a monastery on them - just like normal tiles. After the tenth river tile has been played, the next player plays the lake tile to finish the river; and then play proceeds, using the regular tiles.

Aesthetically, the river adds a nice touch, bringing yet another feature to the colorful board. Play-wise, I think the river is also useful, for a couple reasons.

- The biggest and most important is the fact that the river breaks up huge farms that may occur in the basic game. I never found this to be much of a problem, myself, but some folk can’t stand how one farm can really sway the game. Because the river cuts up some of these huge farms, it brings scoring for them back down in the normal range. Farmers are still important, but not quite as powerful.

- The river also gives players more options when starting the game. Since the river tiles have different features on each one that cannot be connected to each other, players have the opportunity to get their meeples early into cities, roads, etc. - all of which should be easily finished. The river also forces these features to be spread out a little more, cutting down on huge cities, long roads, etc.

People’s reactions to the River are quite mixed. Many love it and find it necessary, as I do. It doesn’t change the game that much but really helps the startup to flow more smoothly. The river doesn’t add any real rules to the game, so I almost always include it when teaching the game to newcomers. Some players complain that the river tiles are worthless - and on a glance they might be - but I find that any game I play with them is a much more enjoyable experience.

Tom Vasel
“Real men play board games.”

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