Feb 08

Game Review: Citadels!

citadelsContinuing on this week with our board game reviews, is Citadels!

It is good to be King

In citadels you are attempting to build yourself a nice big city, and if you manage this then in the power vacuum you find yourself in you will obviously be the most powerful person in all the land! Of course, there is one problem. All your friends are attempting to accomplish the same goal! This isn’t any kind of friendly game for you and your mates to get along with, instead your goal is to stop them at every turn they have. Of course, you cannot just BUILD a city on your own, so you need to get yourselves some minions to help you on your way. Thus you can hire certain job roles each turn who will help your city come to life!

How do you play it?

A short but easy to play card game, the rules are simple. Your goal is firstly to build buildings in your city and each building as a cost depending on how much gold it is to build. The player that scores the most points at the end of the game is the winner and the game ends when a player builds their eighth building. You start the game with four building cards in hand and 2 gold. You use gold to build your buildings in front of you.

There is two phases in each round, with a role-selection phase and then the actual turn phase. At the role-selection phase you get to choose the person who is going to help you build the city. Depending on the role you select you get a different ability to use during your turn. Whether that is stealing from another player or even getting money depending on the buildings you choose to build in your city. The roles are numbers from one to eight, and that decides the order in which people will play each round. An interesting point to this is when the roles are laid out, at least one role is left out of the pile

The main part of each person’s turn is choosing whether to draw more building cards or to get more gold. Then after you have selected this you can build. Each of the buildings have a cost associated with it but also a colour. Some of the roles are associated with a colour and you gain certain benefits depending on how many of that colour of building you have (the warlord games a gold for each building of a certain colour, for example).

Of course, the gameplay itself sounds pretty basic and easy to get on with, so then there comes the fun bit!

Because Stabbing your mate is big and clever!

Now the different roles can interact with each other. Earlier on I said there was a way to rob another player. The different here is the exact text on the card. You see, you don’t get to target your mate directly, you can only target the different possible character roles. So if the assassin, who goes first in the turn order, really wants to target his mate Bob, he has to citadels-assassinguess which role he has potentially chosen. Do they have a lot of a particular colour buildings? Are they really wanting to go first next round? Picking the role, rather than the player can have some interesting consequences and makes it much harder to be able to specifically target a player unless you can guess what they are playing.

This is where it gets first. You could have a flawless plan, but if someone can work out what your moves are, they could easily target you and stop your progress. Or, with more direct actions like the warlord, who can destroy your buildings if they can afford it. Of course… you could just take the assassin’s role and then kill the warlord.


The game is fun, although very luck-based. If you keep getting bad draws you could find yourself stuck in limbo, or if someone can read your moves they could stop you from acting (or can’t read someone else, and you are an innocent bystander). Another quick and easy “beer and pretzel” game you can certainly pick this up as a game to end the night, or as a bit of fun from the cooperative games you have been playing. I find it immense fun, although as a “break” game rather than something I would play over and over again continuously.


You can grab a copy over on Red Dice Games where it is a mere £17.99. Don’t forget you can get a further 5% off that cost when you buy a copy and use our “nedice” code which only runs until this Sunday!

Talk to us!

%d bloggers like this: