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Roads & Boats
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Roads & Boats

4th edition

Your Price: $139.99
(Worth 13,999 Funagain Points!)

This item is In Stock []

Ages Play Time Players
14+ 180-240 minutes 1-4

Designer(s): Joris Wiersinga, Jeroen Doumen

Manufacturer(s): Splotter Spellen

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Product Description

In Roads & Boats, each player builds a civilization over a long period of time, like in many other games. Unlike most games, however, the emphasis is not on warfare, population growth, city or statebuilding, but on logistics, or rather: on transport. Each player starts the game with three donkeys, a pile of wooden boards, a number of stones and two geese. With these few resources, you try to build such diverse things as woodcutters, roads, boats, mines, a stock exchange... but beware! There is no concept of territory in this game: you cannot own land, nor buildings, so the things you build can be used by any other player...

The game can be played by two to four players, but it can also be used as a one-person puzzle. Material for a fifth and a sixth player is available in the &Cetera expansion.

The basic game contains a rule and scenario book in English and Germand, a pile of hexagonal terrain tiles, 120 means of transportation from donkeys to steamers (wooden pieces), 75 walls (little woorden rods), 4 research boards, 28 discovery stones (glass), a wonder of the world with 193 wonder stones (cardboard), 18 mines + bags, 115 factories (cardboard), 600 goods (cardboard) and several other parts.

The fourth edition will be very similar to the third edition except: the counters will be printed on both sides (gold and iron will be black on the backside); the stickers have been upgraded to last longer; and, hopefully, we will have a foldable plate instead of a rolled-up one.

Product Information

Roads & Boats has the following expansions available:
2013 printing

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 5 in 1 review

Wow ... Wow ... Just ... Wow ... Extraordinary Gamer's Game.
February 24, 2004

Yes, this is a pricey game, probably $20-$30 overpriced, but Splotter Spellen is a small company, and doesn't produce games in volume. Roads & Boats has 200+ wooden bits, and several hundred lesser quality bits. Hex tiles alone number about 140 to construct game boards. No, it doesn't have $100 worth of bits, but I, for one, am glad I made the investment. This one is a keeper.

Each player starts with three donkeys, five piles of lumber, one pile of stone, and two geese with which to build a transportantion and production empire. Final scoring is based upon the number of stock certificates, coins, and gold nuggets that the players accumulate, as well contributing to the building of the Wonder.

Roads and Boats is not normally a game of great conflict. The game consists mostly of each player building their own empire. However, a board can be constructed to allow for lots of conflict if you prefer, or some lesser amount of conflict. There is room for conflict, if your game group prefers that sort of thing. With little conflict you are looking at a 4+ hour game, add conflict and you could be at it all day.

The game is pure strategy, no luck involved, thank you. With all the bits, the strategy, and planning required, this is a rather fiddly game, but the payoff is huge if you don't mind keeping track of units. Win, lose, or call it quits because of time restraints, I find it to be a satisfying and fun game.

Roads & Boats is perfectly suited for solitaire play. An included scenario book lays out solitaire games and high scores. The Splotter Spellen website gives more scenario maps and the best scores for each. This enables you to play solitaire and know how well you did compared to others. I can't remember ever playing any boardgame alone and liking it, but Roads and Boats has me hooked. It holds my attention as well as Civilization on the PC, and I love Civ.

If you like long, empire building games with lots of pieces such as the original Avalon Hill 'Civilization' (R&B has hundreds more pieces, yet doesn't take as long to play), or 'Sid Meier's Civilization' on the PC Roads & Boats should appeal to you.

Two huge thumbs up.

Note: this review refers to a different release of this product.

Other Resources for Roads & Boats:

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