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Subject: Boardless town building rss

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Ururam Tururam
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Experimenting Warlock
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Caffa et bucella per attractionem corporum venit ad stomachum meum.
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Citadels is a game about building a medieval town. But in fact I can easily imagine exactly the same rules with only naming changes to a number of themes, for example developing a trading enterprise or exploring the Universe. The rules are general enough, ant the genuine flavor suits them well.

The game is played with two decks of cards, a set of tokens representing gold money and a starting player marker – the crown. The decks are: the character deck and the town deck. The cards are well illustrated in a “dark ages” manner.

Game turns are divided in two main phases: during the first one the players choose the characters they impersonate in the current turn. Each of these characters has its own powers that benefits the player who has it and (in the cases of characters like “Thief” “Assassin” or “Warlord”) can harm the others. The choices are being made in “incomplete information” environment i.e. everyone knows their own character but have limited knowledge about the characters chosen by other players. Note that the knowledge is “limited” and not “none”. This creates a lot of opportunities for psychological trickery: “you think that I’d choose this but I choose that”. It’s important to guess the way of thinking of the opponents while hiding one’s own.

The second phase of the turn is about drawing and playing town cards representing various buildings. In order to play a card the player has to pay its cost so earning and accumulating gold is essential. This part is much more “mechanical” than the previous one. The players use the powers of their characters as well as powers of already played cards to be the first who has eight possibly most valuable town cards played. Eight cards is considered a “complete town” and it triggers the end of the game.

Citadels is an easy to learn, fast and funny game. It can be played basically by 2 to 8 players which extends to 9 with the expansion. A solo variant also exists. But in order to make the game reveal all its subtleties I strongly recommend playing with as many people as possible, let us say 6 at least. The 9-players games I had were by far the most interesting ones as all the characters were used and interactions between the players made the games be tense to their very end.
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Meeple Me
Canada
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I believe Citadels is designed to support 2 to 7 players, or 2 to 8 with the expansion... there should always be at least one character that is unused in order to ensure that no one else knows the last players character choice with certainty.
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John Mitchell
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A great little game. Our group has been playing it for a few years now and never tires of it. Don't discount playing with 2 or 3 though. In that case you still only have one city to build but players pick two characters each. This makes for some interesting decisions about role selection and, for example, when to build. While you may have two characters, the 'gold' supply is shared and so, for example, gold accumulated during the first character's turn can be spent in the second character's turn (assuming of course that the thief doesn't get there first). Great fun!
 
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