Die Baumeister von Arkadia
original German edition of Arkadia
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Here's the picture: You just received in the mail yet another game totally in German and it turns out that you don't even need to read German to play the game (kind of like in Pillars of the Earth). You open up the contents to the game and it kind of looks like a combination of Torres, tetris, and The Princes of Florence. You wonder what this game is all about and finally it dawns on you. This game may be one of the best games of the new year and its called Die Baumeister von Arkadia.
This game plays really well and easily, but the more you play the more strategy there is to open up the game board. Players are each given cards with buildings on them and colors as well as little workers.
Players only have two options: First, in each turn either a player must 1) Play a card and place a building or 2) Surround a building with workers. Second, a player may turn in a flag to score their respective seals. That's it.
There is a catch though. Players can only place building next to other buildings (not diagonally) or other workers. In other words the boards get crammed pretty quickly.
When a building gets "completed" you get seals. When you turn in a flag (only four per player), you score seals. The trick is every time a building is completed another peice of the castle gets added and thus changes the value of your seals. In other words, you have to be careful and tactful when you score. The player with the most points (in this game represented by gold) wins.
I suggest you try this game. It has elements of luck and strategy that other games do not have. It is simple to teach to other people as well as learning yourself.