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Amun-Re

English language edition


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Product Awards:  

Ages Play Time Players
12+ 60-90 minutes 3-5

Designer(s): Reiner Knizia

Manufacturer(s): Rio Grande Games, Hans im Gluck

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Product Description

Everyone knows of the pyramids on the Nile - eternal monuments of a powerful and beautiful culture, that can still take our breath away. The pharaohs choose their sites, build their pyramids, and thank Amun Re and the other Gods for their bounty.

Each player wants, as pharaoh, to build the most pyramids. To accomplish this, he must first acquire a province, where he can trade and farm. With his profits, he can buy new provinces and building stones to erect pyramids. For all his actions, the player must make clever use of his power cards. And always offer appropriate sacrifices to Amun Re. But, will it ever be enough? Whatever happens, a player must always keep his eyes on his goal: the building of eternal pyramids. For when a player loses sight of his goal, he will surely lose the game!

Product Awards

Spiel des Jahres
Nominee, 2003
Deutscher Spiele Preis
1st Place, 2003
International Gamers Awards
Best Strategy Game Nominee, 2003

Product Information

  • Designer(s): Reiner Knizia

  • Manufacturer(s): Rio Grande Games, Hans im Gluck

  • Artist(s): Franz Vohwinkel

  • Year: 2003

  • Players: 3 - 5

  • Time: 60 - 90 minutes

  • Ages: 12 and up

  • Weight: 1,050 grams

  • All-Time Sales Rank: #237

  • Language Requirements: This is an international edition or domestic edition of an imported item. Game components are language-independent.

Contents:

  • 1 game board
  • 66 money cards
  • 39 power cards
  • 15 province cards
  • 30 pyramids
  • 15 building stones
  • 10 player markers
  • builder, farmer, and province markers
  • 5 summary cards
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Product Reviews

 
 
 
 
 

Average Rating: 4.3 in 13 reviews

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Huge replay value - Knizia's underrated classic!
December 04, 2005
Amun Re is not as well known as some of the other European- style games from recent years, but it should be. We reach for this game twice as often as any other in our collection, even after years of playing with various friends. The game is superbly balanced. The rules are simple enough for a casual gamer but the gameplay has enough depth and subtlety to satisfy a serious strategist. Each turn presents agonizing decisions: how much do I invest to develop my provinces and how much gold do I reserve for the next auction? Rounds are quick, so there is not a lot of waiting around during the other players' turns. Highly recommended!
 
 
 
 
 
by A Gamer
Our favourite game
August 01, 2005

We keep coming back to Amun Re. The game is a lot of fun, especially with 4 players, as it makes the bidding in the New Empire cut-throat. The game is very balanced, and no two games are the same. In addition, the theme is omnipresent, and the game materials are fun to play with. We also like Puerto Rico, San Marco, and The Princes of Florence, but this is the most entertaining, in our view. Have fun!

 
 
 
 
 
Excellent and Challenging Game
July 10, 2004

Amun Re is a very rich game, with a central theme (pyramid building) that is complicated by a multitude of side elements requiring careful thought and decision making. There are many strategic choices to be made, and each province has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. So, a careful selection is required, depending on what strategy you're pursuing. And then, there is the element of dividing the game into two parts, with only the pyramids remaining after the first, which further complicates matters.

The game is not too complex ruleswise, but it is quite intricate in its strategy and in player interaction. Highly recommended.

 
 
 
 
 
Having a blast on the banks of the Nile
January 20, 2004

After playing Amun-Re several times, our 'gaming group' still can't get enough of it. Although easy to learn(there'll be some rules reading during the first play through), there are several avenues of strategy to pursue in attempting to win.

Although the primary goal is to build pyramids, you can still earn points other ways like controlling provinces with temples or meeting certain conditions on the power cards(i.e. all 3 provinces on the banks of the Nile, all provinces in Upper or Lower Eqypt, having a certain number of farmers, etc.). Because of the different strategies involved, I still haven't determined which is the best route to go in any particular game. That, of course, keeps the game fresh because I find myself playing it differently each time out.

The game components are top notch(as usual), visually striking, and the theme is excellent. The game as the added bonus that it can played quickly, we breeze through a game in about 45 minutes.

A real winner and highly recommended.

 
 
 
 
 
Chalk up another hit for Knizia!
November 09, 2003

As I've confessed in other reviews, I'm a true fan of Reiner Knizia's designs, and Amun-Re is but one more in a long line of design hits.

Once again, Dr. Knizia has crafted a game with lots of tough decisions, auctions, some luck (in the cards), and most of all --- options. After three playings, I'm not yet sure if it ranks with Taj Mahal (my favorite) or Tigris & Euphrates, but it's certainly close to them if if not.

I'm a long way from achieving competence in Amun-Re, let alone mastering it, and maybe I never will. And that's okay, because the many options in play will keep me coming back to try new strategies and tactics. This game requires some hard thinking and the need to strike a good balance between one's options. Like many of Knizia's designs, I expect that this one will invite many replayings over the years.

 
 
 
 
 
Wonderful
July 20, 2003

i've enjoyed this game. i've played 3 times so far. twice a 3 player game, and once a 4 player game. played with my cousins copy.

besides for the card drawing, there is no random factors involved. its all calculated. i dislike games which has a large random/luck factor.

this would be a kind of game which i would most likely to buy in the near future to add in my game collection.

 
 
 
 
 
by Elyah
Close to the Top of the Pyramid!
May 18, 2003

Ever so often a very good game comes on the scene - Settlers, Euphrat & Tigris, Puerto Rico -that really captures my imagination. Amun-Re is the latest in that exclusive line! I've now played it 3 times and it continues to fascinate me. I think it's partly due to the myriad of choices available at each juncture of the game. Choosing which Province to go for; determining how much to bid; deciding how to allocate your funds to purchase Power Cards, Farmers, and building blocks; and choosing how much to sacrifice to Amun-Re. So many different mechanics are in play, and so many delicious decisions are to be made. I place it very near the top of the pyramid of great games! Great bits; good mechanics; lots of tension. It may be a tad too long and a bit too convoluted to become a classic - but it hits the spot for me.

 
 
 
 
 
Another Knizia Classic!
May 17, 2003

After having played this game 4 times now, I am pretty confident in saying that this game is bound to be right up there with all of the other 'great' Knizia games.

The game itself is played in 6 rounds... The first 3 of which are called the 'Old Kingdom' and the 2nd 3 are the 'New Kingdom'... Scores are calculated twice (once at the end of each kingdom).

In each of the six rounds, players bid to get control of one of the available provinces. An interesting bidding mechanic makes for some careful scheming about where to put your bidding chip first. Next, players buy power cards (and potentially play them), and stock up their provinces with farmers (which later generally translate into gold -- needed for purchasing more items) and pyramid building blocks (which later generally translate into points -- needed to win the game!)

After all players have had a chance to purchase cards, farmers, and blocks. There is an extremely interesting phase where players use the gold (or the -3 gold) cards in their hands to add to a group sacrifice to Amun-Re. The total of this sacrifice generally determines how much gold people's Farmers will be worth, but there are some provinces on the board where players actually get more gold if the sacrifice is on the low end of the scale. (During rounds 3 and 6, this sacrifice also effects how many points players with 'temples' will get in the scoring round)

Finally, earnings from the farms are totaled and added to players hands. And the next phase starts.

The power cards add a lot of interesting twists to the game including some 'goals' for players to try to achieve while deciding which provinces to acquire (such as having all three of your provinces for the 'kingdom' be on the same side of the Nile river). Power cards can effect every phase of the game, but as is typical in a great Knizia game like this one... There are lots of different ways to score points, but only a well-balanced play strategy that is open to mid-stream changes will get you ahead in the end.

There is a higher level of randomness (due to the random draws of the cards) than some may prefer. It's not a perfect game for everyone, but it's a great game for me...

The theme is Egyptian, but it clearly could have been something entirely different... I like it though... The pyramid pieces are nice and the graphics on the board are pleasant. The only minor issue I have is that the 'double pyramids' which count as two pyramids but look like a big one with a little one beside it, sometimes look like a single pyramid if viewed from the wrong angle. All of the other elements, cards, etc, are very nicely done.

Overall, a great new 'big' game from my favorite designer.

 
 
 
 
 
Very Very Good for 5 people!!
February 27, 2006
It´s better if you play with people capable of deciding fast when dealing with numbers. They don´t have to be math masters, because values involded are not high and are much the same along the game. The bidding rules are specially fun because of outbid possiblities. If you really need/want a province you you´ll have to play high. The special thing about playing with 5 people is that all provinces will be available for auction. If you play with less people you may problems to fullfill some objective cards, as far as you may get too many east instead of west provinces, upper nile provinces instead of lower provinces, ... You may have good chances of winning if you abble to track how much money your oponnentes have, becauce you may get Amon-Re´s atention for cheaper price.
 
 
 
 
 
How does her do it?
January 25, 2004

One has to admire Dr. Knizia for the sheer number of games he has published, and one also has to be in awe of the quality of most of these titles. He has published games in so many categories, from simple children's games to the deepest of strategy games. One would expect at some point that his muse would leave him, simply from being overworked.

Such is not the case with Amun-Re. I can not improve on the Excellent Counter review above, but I will add my few comments here.

First, the playing time on this game, once understood, is a very manageable 45 to 90 minutes, depending on the players. This is not a game of the same level of complexity and subtlety of, say, Euphrat & Tigris, so a shorter playing time is greatly appreciated.

Second, the quality is top-notch. While the cars are perhaps a bit small, the board and the pyramid pieces are of the best quality. The game looks and feels good to play.

Third, the gameplay itself is highly thematic. Many of Dr. Knizia's games suffer a bit from a tacked-on theme, but this one is rich in atmosphere. The various game mechanics all tie in nicely with the idea of developing one's provinces and appeasing the gods.

There is much to like here and nothing really to detract from it, other than it does fall on the heavier end of the scale, game-wise, and might intimidate more casual gamers. Should those gamers give it a chance, though, they will find it a rewarding experience.

Highly recommended.

 
 
 
 
 
'See the pyramids along the Nile...'
May 22, 2003

Amun Re is a Dr. Reiner Knizia design and like the aforementioned Patti Page song (honestly, how many of you knew that!) Amun Re will become a game standard.

Amun Re returns to Reiners favorite playground, Africa ( Ra, Tigris & Euphrates, Through the Desert, Africa, Scarab Lords). Players find themselves bidding for 15 provinces along the Nile using an interesting one-upmanship bidding process. Each province has its strengths and weaknesses toward your final goal: building the most valuable collection of pyramids. Players develop farmers in their provinces to generate revenue to buy more provinces and the building stones for their pyramids. How much your farmers/provinces generate in terms of income, depends on the sacrifice All players make to Amun Re. After three rounds (Old Kingdom) of bidding, sacrificing and building , Victory points are scored. The board is cleared of everything but existing pyramids and stones which become neutral till that province is bid on again. Three more rounds (new kingdom) are played , followed by the final scoring. Most VPs win.

Amun Re features a lot of the Knizia touch; lots of options, few resources and PLENTY of calculations. The bidding process has the hah! Beat that feel of Taj Mahal. The sacrifice phase measures your ability to seek short or long term goals i.e. help yourself or screw your opponents (at times, both!). Finally, the deck of power cards allow you to score extra VPs and the end of each kingdom or bend the rules in your favor. There has been some whining over the luck of these cards, but the game system allows the player to sell back (at ANY time) cards that are / or become useless to you. One of our players at BGoR bought a card every turn; if he didnt like it, he sold it right back.

Amun Re features some nice player interaction during the Bidding and Sacrifice phases, but does have an AP element to it. Like the Kramer/Kielsing exploration trilogy, there is dry time while each player analyzes his best course of action. There also is a small learning curve to what the power cards can do for you (card summary is on the back of the rules) but soon, the card graphics make sense.

This is a gamers game wit plenty of tension and planning. It will probably suffer the same Spiel de Jahres fate of Puerto Rico; nominated, but ultimately losing to a more family friendly game. BGoR rate it four stars and a good buy.

 
 
 
 
 
by A Gamer
A few flaws, but enjoyable game.
May 21, 2006

There are a couple minor flaws I wish the designers had thought about before publishing Amun-Re.

1. Power cards and Gold cards have the same graphic on the back of the card. I wish they had taken the time to create different backgrounds for each type of card. Doesn't affect gameplay, but would have been a nice aesthetic feature.

2. No "reference" card to explain what the Power cards do or when you can use them. This really annoyed all of us as we played. We were constantly having to pass around the instruction manual to read what what our power cards do and when they could be played. It would have been great to have had that information on the reference cards each player has. I plan on photocoping and shrinking down the last page of the manual and hand a copy to each of us next time we play.

3. The "reference" card didn't include all the scoring possibilities. You can earn more points than just what is listed on the card.

Overall we enjoyed the game, you can take various approaches to try to gain the most points. Some drawbacks were that we got a little bored while waiting on other players to make their transactions. There is also a lot of convoluted math involved. You get X gold for this, in this certain instance... you get Y gold if you do this... it costs Z gold if you buy this, but if you want this it's N gold. Adding up points is just as cluttered. For people who are terrible with numbers, it was mind-numbing! LOL.

 
 
 
 
 
BORING!!
January 18, 2006
I played this game last night and it was confusing and boring. Everyone was saying it is a great game. I knew it was supposed to be heavy, but I did not know it was also BORING.

The game felt like a complicated web of solitare. The most fun part was the bidding to see if the water in the Nile would rise or not. Sometimes I did weird things to try and throw people off but they just got mad at me for not making the "right" play. Whatever. I guess I missed the memo about how games not supposed to be fun anymore.

The art was cool. I liked the plastic pyramids. Maybe I'd even like the game a little better next time now that I know what I'm getting into, but I somehow doubt that. So beware if you play this game: it is LONG and BORING and people get mad at you if you try and have fun while playing it.

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