The Castles of Burgundy, by Ravensburger, is a building game in which all players will develop an estate. All players have their own player board in front of them with a kind of hexagonal island that consists of different areas of varying sizes. There are different types of areas, such as water, grassland, silver mines and cities. At the beginning of the game everyone places a castle on the board and during the game the island will gradually be built up piece by piece.
The game consists of a number of rounds in which tiles are distributed with which the areas on the player boards have to be built. On the board you can see which types of tiles will be redistributed every round (the number of tiles is adjusted to the number of players). The tiles are divided into groups where a die is shown with a number. A round consists of several turns.
Every turn, every player throw two dices. These dice determine your options. You can pick up a chip from a group that belongs to one of the numbers you have thrown. You can put this token in your stock (you can deposit a maximum of three chips here) You can also place a chip from your stock on your board, for which you have to have the right number (and you have to make sure that your new tile is at least adjacent to one previously placed tile). It may occur that you do not throw the correct numbers, but luckily you can do something about this by turning over employees (you can get them back by rolling the dice).
The moment you lay a tile on your board you almost always get something. This can be for example points when you build a pasture tile (depending on how many animals of the same species are in the meadow). When you build a new castle you get a extra action as a gift. And if you build a water token you can put your pawn a step forward in the player sequence. With some tiles you do not immediately get something in return but you get points at the end of the game (for example for the number of different types of animals that live on your island) or a special benefit during the game.
The moment you complete an area, you immediately receive points. The larger the area is, the more points it yields. But you also get a bonus for every round you have completed an area: the earlier in the game you finish an area the more bonus points you get. The game lasts a fixed number of rounds. At the end there are bonus points to distribute, for example for those who were first or second to build all tiles of one kind. Whoever has the most points at the end of the game wins the game.
Conclusion: The Castles of Burgundy, a good one to have lying around the house!
The power of this game is that the pace is pretty high and you have always something fun to do. So you are constantly busy trying to build your land. But this does not mean that it does not matter what you do, because you have to pay attention to which tiles you decide to pick. Because if you do not have a good strategy you will not score well at the end of the game. It pays to make choices by trying to build up certain areas as quickly as possible and by claiming the bonus rules that will award you with many points. Because there are so many tiles the first time playing The Castles of Burgundy may contain a bit of searching for how everything works, but it is not a hard game to learn (and what you forget, you can just look it up). If that is not enough reasons to want this game in, it is also really nice with two players. Which is nice to remember, it never hurts to have a fun 2 player game ready to go for when a friend is over!