Thursday, November 23, 2006

Carcassone Big Box Review - Part 1

I am going to split my review of Carcassonne Big Box into 5. The main game and the 4 expansions individually. I will begin here with the main body of the game. Carcassonne.

Carcassonne is a tile laying game for 2 to 5 players. It plays within 45 to 60 minutes.

The game set up begins with a fixed starting tile placed on the gaming area. Each player is given 8 meeples one of witch would be used on the score board to keep track of their score. The 7 meeples will be used to score in the game.

Each tile may have one, some or all of the 4 different areas/elements 1 on each of the four sides of the tile. These are roads, cities, meadows and monastery. The monastery tile unlike other tiles has a monastery in the middle with a meadow surrounding it .

Placing tiles adds to the “map” of Carcassonne. Players may place their meeple on an empty area. If the area is completed then it scores immediately. Meadows only score at the end of the game equal to the number of completed cities, a monastery scores when it is surrounded by 8 tiles, a road as complete and scores then both its ends are blocked, and a city is completed when it is completely surrounded by walls. Incomplete areas also scores but comparatively little.

The game ends when there are no more tiles to be laid.

It sound complicated but it will all make sense when you play the game. This game is a must have. It could be played with adults and children. It is rare in a board game that the end result of a session is something beautiful in this case a map.

The actual game play is very simple and intuitive but scoring could be tricky at first. Playes have to make decisions on tile placement and manage their limited meeples. The rules are straight forward and easy to understand and the components are few and will not disappoint.

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