Designer: Bruno Cathala
Publisher: Blue Orange
Players: 2 – 4 players
Recommended Age: 8+
Time to Play: 15 minutes
BGG Ranking: 7.4
My Ranking: 7/10
Game Level: Beginner
My quick review: Kingdomino is a nice addition to your collection and is a light, easy to learn game. There’s not much complexity or strategy needed so it is great for beginners and younger players. When you’re looking to play a quick, simple game, Kingdomino is a great pick!
Kingdomino, a Speil des Jahres winner, is a two to four player game where you are a lord or lady working to expand your kingdom. You explore different types of lands and compete to get the best land options before your opponents. The game ends when you have selected and, if possible, placed your 12th plot of land.
Compared to more complex games, Kingdomino is very easy to learn. In under 10 minutes, you should be ready to get the game started. Since it is a lighter board game, there is not much strategy involved and your play style won’t really change each time you play outside of the types of land that you might focus more of your attention on. Your primary goal is to acquire plots of land with crowns and select dominos with some diversity so you have flexibility to fit a variety of land types into your kingdom. Each domino must be connected to another one with at least one of the same land types. If you cannot place one of your selected dominos, you must discard it and it hurts your kingdom’s growth because you cannot select more than 12 total dominos. At the end of the game, you calculate your score based off of the lands with crowns – no crown means no points. You get extra points for making a square and the player with the most points wins!
For me, Kingdomino is good… but not great. I choose to play Kingdomino when I’m interested in a quick, light game or when I am playing with people who are new to gaming. It is a great family game because it is easy to learn and has a simple objective. In my opinion, one of the downsides of Kingdomino is that it can feel solitary. The game requires little player interaction and there’s not much you can do to block your opponent because your board may not be able to take any available domino at any given time. You could potentially hurt your board more than your opponent’s by trying to block them and selecting a domino that you can’t place well into your kingdom. Because of this, it lacks some of that competitive tension because your focus is on effectively expanding your own kingdom instead of focusing on what your opponent is doing.
If you are new to gaming or if you want to add some lighter options to your collection, Kingdomino is a great option! And be sure to check out the expansion… Age of Giants!