

I don't know that many tileplacement games, but it seems like just about every tile game uses hexagons or squares. Anybody ever seen a game that uses rhombus tiles? Specifically, the one made from two equilateral triangles sharing an edge?I've been thinking about how to exploit this for a while.
Really I'm curious about any other sorts of exotic tiles that might be used. For example the Cairo pentagonal tiling could be very cool.
Or tiles like this could be cool. What do you got geeks?

Nyles Breecher
United States Milwaukee WI

I have no examples of games with unique tiles, but I do have observations about the rhombus tiles. The biggest difference compared to square tiles I notice is that you can have a loop of three spaces, which is just not possible with many other tile shapes. While loops of three are possible with hexes, they have more spaces they connect to. I'd love to hear your observations about rhombus tiles.
I really like the other two tile examples. For me, the biggest difference between hexes and squares is that hexes feel more open to me. It just feels like there is more room to move around. Besides having a lot of flair, I'm not entirely certain what other advantages different tile types might have, but I'm excited to see games people come up with.
EDIT: I think Castles of Mad King Ludwig is relatively unique on the tile laying aspect, just because of all the different tile types.

Dan Blum
United States Wilmington Massachusetts

A number of games with rhombus tiles are listed in I Am the Rhombus. There is at least one more recent one: Rome: City of Marble

Pablo Schulman
Brazil Belo Horizonte Minas Gerais

paulsalomon27 wrote: Really I'm curious about any other sorts of exotic tiles that might be used. For example the Cairo pentagonal tiling could be very cool.
Cairo Corridor



I think no matter what you choose to use as your tile system, the choice is usually motivated by a certain need. Square tiles usually simulate buildings and such, where orthogonal movement is desired. Hex tiles are used for more organic movements, to allow players to move "towards" spots with more fluidity.
These other fancy tiles, while cool, are quite confusing. The fauxisometric one is okay, the Cairo pentagonal one has uneven connection distribution, which makes strange movements that are hard to justify thematically. The last one has edge to edge connections but also a single point connection which makes movement again awkward.
So... I guess find a good thematic reason to use them, and rules that use them that makes sense, and that might work
But don't make confusing things just because, perhaps that's the reason they haven't seen use.

Matt Davis
United States New Concord Ohio

Also check out Sunda to Sahul. It uses jigsaw puzzle pieces in the rhombic shape, but you're not required to stick to the regular tiling.

Scott Walker
United States Bolingbroke Georgia

This one?
Lost Valley: the Yukon Goldrush

Was George Orwell an Optimist?
United States Corvallis Oregon
Abdullah Ibrahim  Water from an Ancient Well

LKOsiliconMage wrote: Also Cronberg and Tom Tube. The Goslars specialized in rhombic tile games.



Good stuff so far, everyone. Thanks, gang!
nbreecher wrote: I have no examples of games with unique tiles, but I do have observations about the rhombus tiles. The biggest difference compared to square tiles I notice is that you can have a loop of three spaces, which is just not possible with many other tile shapes. While loops of three are possible with hexes, they have more spaces they connect to. I'd love to hear your observations about rhombus tiles.
Mostly, I'm imagining exploiting the tiles for adjacency and placement more than say movement. Like an Alhambratype game, say. I originally picked the rhombic tiles because they could connect with 3 at a corner, or 6, or 4, which can be done a couple of different ways. Completing a corner with 6tiles could be more difficult, hence more rewarding, where as a completion of a corner with 3 might nudge you along quickly in the shortterm of the game.
Of course theme's the thing. I haven't really figured out what makes good sense for this sort of thing, but it's floating around in my head. *** Also... Great point on Castles of Mad King Ludwig. Played the solo game tonight, which is actually pretty decent.
I think what got me started on this was playing Alhambra for the first time. The actual Alhambra is this incredible Moorish palace in Granada, Spain, which is utterly full of the most incredible tile patterns you can imagine. It's the stuff that inspired Escher to explore tessellations and symmetry the way he did so beautifully. AND YET, the game uses... ho hum square tiles. And doesn't really have anything to do with symmetry or pattern or the feel of the Alhambra itself, which was thoroughly disappointing to me.
Maybe I can make a great tileplacement game about pattern and symmetry. Idk. BUT, I just thought "there's GOT to be a better WAY!"



The other thing about the rhombic tile thing is that it makes cube looking structures, so maybe you're making some 3D building or something. Maybe players move there, after all.



There was a game around here with isometric tiles, I can't remember the name so I can't really find it.
And myself I'm making a game with the isometric visual too, though it's more thematic than mechanical:
I've tried to use the isometry in various different ways, and mostly have found it to be fiddly in playtesting, and while it looks fancy and cool, there's almost always an easier way to do the same thing that makes the game easier to teach and play, which for me trumps the gains from something that looks fancier but harder to play.
Here's hoping a good game with a simple and playerfriendly system using them comes about

Nyles Breecher
United States Milwaukee WI

Check out the Rocca game company: https://boardgamegeek.com/geeksearch.php?action=search&objec...
But the BGG pages are sparse, so you might get better info from their website: http://roccagame.jp/lineup/
They make games trying to explore that isometric dimensionality of tiles.



nbreecher wrote:
Oh cool, actually using hex cards That's fun. I wonder if the production is standardised.

Jeremy Lennert
United States California

One potential advantage to squares and hexes is that, since they are regular polygons, you can't mess up the tessellation by rotating them wrong. This means you can let players rotate them any way they fit, OR you can have a marking on the tile that dictates the orientation (e.g. you could have a side marked as north, or a side that has to be the door the player entered through).
There's more than one tessellation that can be formed with your rhombus shape. For your others, I'm not sure at first glance, but there are at least some ways to place contiguous tiles where they appear to match but aren't compatible with your pictured tessellation in the long run. So you'd need more complicated rules for placement (or you'd need to play the game on top of a predrawn grid).
Aside from squares and hexes, the only other regular polygon that can tessellate is an equilateral triangle. I'm not sure why triangles are less common than hexes; it may be because hexes never meet only at a corner.
Another potential advantage to rectangles is that they're probably easier to manufacture. I'm not sure how significant that is, though.

Jake Staines
United Kingdom Grantham Lincolnshire

Antistone wrote: I'm not sure why triangles are less common than hexes; it may be because hexes never meet only at a corner.
Also probably because:  hexes use the same rotation for all tiles  hexes are closer to rectangles in shape and therefore a rectangle doesn't need to be so small to fit entirely within the hex
and maybe a little bit because:  miniatures with hex bases are either seen as more stable than miniatures with triangle bases or can be placed closer to each other than miniatures with triangle bases  the corners aren't so pointy so your expensive board game tiles aren't going to get ruined so easily by stubbing them.

Jeremy Lennert
United States California

Bichatse wrote: hexes use the same rotation for all tiles Ah, good point. That means you can move in a straight line on a hex grid, whereas that's not possible in a triangular grid.

Thomas Gagniarre
France Ermont

Antistone wrote: Ah, good point. That means you can move in a straight line on a hex grid, whereas that's not possible in a triangular grid.
? : it depends if you go "along the grain" or "against the grain", in which case the "straighter route" is a zigzag kind of line.
Biggest drawback of hexes compared to squares as a planar tesselation basis for a movementregulating grid, as we wargamers know for quite a few decades...



Parlett would say you can go in a straight line on a hex though we normally don't. This has to do with his assertion (not developed enough to be an argument) that "Diagonal" means moving from a corner to corner, rather than edge to edge. So he would say a hex game that allows diagonal movement would let you move in a straight line effectively jumping the offset tiles. I don't like his assertion and I think "diagonal" may well be meaningless given a hex base.
I think Jeremy has a good point about bullet proofing your tessellation, but if you still wanted to keep your idea of two joined equilateral triangles why not have equilateral triangle tiles and force (or incentivize) the placing of tiles in multiples of two? You get the bullet proof tessellation and the shape you want as well.

Jeremy Lennert
United States California

TheVarangianGuard wrote: ? : it depends if you go "along the grain" or "against the grain", in which case the "straighter route" is a zigzag kind of line. Perhaps that was poorlyphrased.
In a square or hex grid, if you start in the center of one cell and move in a direction that is normal to any edge, then the line of your movement will be perpendicular to every edge it crosses.
If you try the same thing on a triangular grid, the second step along your line of movement will pass through a corner instead of a side.
Obviously, in any grid, it's possible to draw a line that doesn't line up with the grid. But in a square or hex grid, there are also a few lines that do align with the grid, whereas in a triangular grid there are zero such lines.
unbalancedbutfair wrote: Parlett would say you can go in a straight line on a hex though we normally don't. This has to do with his assertion (not developed enough to be an argument) that "Diagonal" means moving from a corner to corner, rather than edge to edge. So he would say a hex game that allows diagonal movement would let you move in a straight line effectively jumping the offset tiles. I don't like his assertion and I think "diagonal" may well be meaningless given a hex base. Formally, in geometry, a diagonal is a line segment connecting two nonconsecutive vertices.
By this definition, the usual lines of movement on a hex grid are parallel to some of the diagonals, but those diagonals don't pass through the centers of any cells, and "full" diagonal movement would also allow you to exit your hex through a corner and travel along the border between two adjacent hexes (which is not typically allowed).
However, if we're going to be formal, then "straight" does not mean "nondiagonal". It just means that you don't change direction partway through. So all "lines" are "straight", regardless of their angle, and no possible amount of arguing over the definition of "diagonal" would have any relevance.
If you said that the usual allowed movement options on a hex grid are "not orthogonal", that would be correct. (Because "orthogonal" requires 90 degree angles.)
The formal term for how you typically move on a hex grid would probably be "normal", in the mathematical sense of being perpendicular to a surface (in this case, the edges of the hexes). So go right ahead and call that "normal movement", and not only will people understand what you mean, but you'll even be mathematically precise at the same time!

Thomas Gagniarre
France Ermont

Antistone wrote: TheVarangianGuard wrote: ? : it depends if you go "along the grain" or "against the grain", in which case the "straighter route" is a zigzag kind of line. Perhaps that was poorlyphrased. In a square or hex grid, if you start in the center of one cell and move in a direction that is normal to any edge, then the line of your movement will be perpendicular to every edge it crosses. If you try the same thing on a triangular grid, the second step along your line of movement will pass through a corner instead of a side. Obviously, in any grid, it's possible to draw a line that doesn't line up with the grid. But in a square or hex grid, there are also a few lines that do align with the grid, whereas in a triangular grid there are zero such lines. (...) The formal term for how you typically move on a hex grid would probably be "normal", in the mathematical sense of being perpendicular to a surface (in this case, the edges of the hexes). So go right ahead and call that "normal movement", and not only will people understand what you mean, but you'll even be mathematically precise at the same time!
Great arguments. I second this.



I was thinking about what you wrote casting my mind back to geometry and it seemed to me that in geometry "diagonals" are drawn inside a figure. And the Wiki page you linked similarly refers to the line inside a figure, and even when discussing matrices again it is all inside the limits. Theoretically of course we could pick the beginning and endpoint, draw a larger figure encompassing those points in the tessellation, and then speak of diagonals,but I don't know if that would be at all useful.
Actually the more I think think about it, the more I wonder if movement between cells is part of formal geometry. And if you wind up more in the real world physics, we put it inside Cartesian space and leave it at that. No Cells. This actually might be a gaming and computer science realm entirely.
The wiki page on orthogonality has an interesting sentence: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orthogonality#Gaming
Quote: In board games such as chess which feature a grid of squares, 'orthogonal' is commonly used to mean "in the same row/'rank' or column/'file'". In this context 'orthogonal' and 'diagonal' are considered opposites.
[Edit, typed Euclidean when I meant Cartesian]

John "Omega" Williams
United States Kentwood Michigan

There are a few that use Rhomboids.
The crazy pyramids game Martian City uses a sort of rhomboid shaped variable board for example.
Moku uses diamondshaped tiles to create a 3d effect.
Couple of games use rectangles.

Markus Hagenauer jr.
Germany Surheim Germany

There is alos another thread that might be an interresting read for you.
Beyond Squares 'n' Hexes



Antistone wrote: One potential advantage to squares and hexes is that, since they are regular polygons, you can't mess up the tessellation by rotating them wrong. This means you can let players rotate them any way they fit, OR you can have a marking on the tile that dictates the orientation (e.g. you could have a side marked as north, or a side that has to be the door the player entered through). I actually like that there are so many different tilings you can do with the rhombs. It wouldn't have to be the symmetric "tumbling cubes" tiling. Players could tile in different ways for strategic purposes.

Jeremy Lennert
United States California

Sure, as long as you don't mind the occasional leftover empty space that nothing fits into.


