Bert Hui
United States
White Salmon
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Lanterns is a beautiful game with high replay value! In Lanterns, you are an artisan trying to gain favor with the emperor. You do that by adding colored lanterns to the emperor’s palace lake. Once you have patterns of lanterns that the emperor wants, you can dedicate those lanterns to the emperor and gain honor form the emperor. The winner is the artisan who gains the most favor by the end of the game! Mechanically, each player lays down one lantern tile every turn. You gain colored lanterns into your inventory based on making color matches from each lantern tile AND also a bit like mahjong, you gain colored lanterns based on where you are sitting around the table. Every time someone places a tile, everyone wins! Starting with the tile placer, all players get a colored lantern based on whatever colored edge is facing them when the tile is laid down. As long as the bank has that color lantern tile, even if you didn’t place the tile down, you will gain a lantern! In this way, Lanterns is like traditional Chinese mahjong where you not only have to pay attention to what you have in your hand and inventory, but you also have to pay attention to what your opponents have. You don’t want to give lanterns to your opponents so that they can dedicate their lanterns for points! Lanterns is a great family game because it teaches young kids how to recognize patterns and teaches some strategy to how to work around problems.

Puzzle solving in Lanterns is the name of the game, but it’s done so cleverly and easily that anyone can learn how to play. It won Mensa’s Select game of the year in 2015, a very well-deserving title based on the simple mechanics and the amount of strategy that can go into the same. I highly recommend Lanterns as a gateway game to those who may not have played non-big-box board games before but are looking to get into board gaming, or if you need to find a Xmas present for a loved one, Lanterns makes an awesome Xmas gift. Go out and buy a copy!
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Anabelle T

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I WILL give this to a friend for Christmas, I think she'll love it! It's so pretty, love the colors, love the pace, love the almost meditative experience while playing it. Very cool, thank you for your review.
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