Tiny Towns

Tiny Towns is one of those games I had heard a lot about but didn’t really jump out at me. Curiosity got the better of me and I picked up a copy to see for myself. After playing this a couple times I was pleasantly surprised, this game lives up to the hype.

In the game you are given a grid to build a town on. You’ll collect cubes to place in hopes of changing cubes into buildings and those buildings will get you points. At the start it seems easy, you’ll set up a building plan but depending on what cubes come out, placement will get tricky as you go.

The town theme works well, the little buildings are cute and do make your grid look like a city and I love the components that come in the game. There seems to be a lot of replay value, it comes with a deck of cards that switch up how buildings are made each game. No two games are going to be exactly the same. Even though building placements can be difficult the game itself is really straight forward. The rules are laid out easily and you can be up and running quickly. It’s an easy game to teach but even with that being said there is still a lot of strategy needed to get the most points out of your town. So it has a bit of something for everyone.

Designed by Peter McPherson, art by Gong Studios and published by Alderac Entertainment group, Tiny Towns is a 1 to 6 player game for ages 14 and up that takes about an hour to play.

Components

  • 1 rulebook
  • 1 score pad
  • 6 player boards
  • 55 cards – 25 Building, 15 Monument, 15 Resource
  • 126 buildings
  • 1 Master Builder hammer
  • 6 Monuments
  • 90 Resource cubes

Setup

Every player gets a board. Resource are only used for the town hall rules or a solo game, otherwise keep them in the box.

The Cottage card goes face up on the table. The other buildings need to be sorted by symbols, shuffle each symbol and draw one card from each pile and place face up next to the cottage card. Leftover cards go back in the box.

Examples of different building cards.

There are 5 types of resource cubes: wood, wheat, brick, glass and stone. Place the pile of cubes somewhere easy for all players to access.

Shuffle the monument cards and deal 2 to each player face down. Players will look at their cards and pick one and return the other one face down in the box with the other unused monument cards. Each player will also get a wooden monument piece to keep near their card. Monument cards can only be used by the player holding that card. Players can only build their monuments once in the game. Once build, the player must read the card and place it face up for everyone to see.

Some different monument options

The first player will get the Master builder hammer.

How to Play

The first player will name a resource and all players must take a cube of this resource and place it on an empty square on their grid. The resource cannot be moved once placed unless to construct a building. Players can construct buildings once they have the matching resources in the right shape on their board. Once everyone’s cube is placed and any buildings are built, the next player will name a resource and the game continues like this.

Building Construction

Building layouts can be flipped or rotated as long as the configuration of resources matches the card. Once you have the pieces to build, remove the resources for that shape and take a matching building and place it in one of the squares where the resources were. A resource can only be used to construct one building. Buildings do not have to be build when the resources are in place, players can wait to construct a building. Players can construct multiple buildings at once. Once a building has been placed it cannot be moved.

Pay attention to what buildings need to score. Cottages must be fed to be worth 3 points so you will need a farm.

Different building conditions laid out

Once your town is full of resources and you are unable to build anymore your town is completed. You are out of the game and can start adding up your points. If the game is down to one player that player can continue to name resources until their town is completed.

End of Game

Once all the towns are completed the game ends. Resource cubes are removed unless they are in a warehouse. Empty squares are then worth -1. Buildings are scored based on the conditions of the cards. The player with the most points wins.

There are also town hall rules listed which are slightly different and rules for a solo variant. I really like the solo variant for this game. In fact I like the solo variant so much it makes this game a definite keeper because I know I will get a lot of plays out of it. I think Tiny Towns is great game that will appeal to lot of different types of gamers and is worth checking out.

A tiny town

If you like Tiny Towns, try:

Calico

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