Kingdomino is an award-winning game (2017 Spiel des Jahres) that blends the classic mechanics of domino with a civilization building game. It is very simple to learn but impossible to master, always a sign of a great board game. If you are into drafting and tile laying, than Kingdomino is for you. It is like Carcassonne meets Azul. Do yourself a favor and check out this amazing title that is fit for the whole family. This is our step-by-step guide to how to play Kingdomino.
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HOW TO PLAY KINGDOMINO – WHAT IS IT?
You are a royal, seeking new lands to expand your ever-growing kingdom. Explore and conquer the different terrains, and develop the best and richest territories for your people. Scour lands full of wheat fields, forests, lakes, grasslands, swamps and mines, diversifying your kingdom’s richest along the way. Make sure to plan and acquire carefully, as others are also coveting these valuable properties.
The object of Kingdomino is to be the player whose 5×5 kingdom earns them the highest number of points. You earn points by strategically adding dominoes to your kingdoms, matching and connecting them to form different territories. Each domino has 2 terrain squares, and a territory is a group of matching terrain squares that are connected horizontally or vertically. The more connecting terrain squares and point-earning crowns a territory has, the more points you receive at the end of the game.
HOW TO PLAY KINGDOMINO – STEP BY STEP
Time Needed: Approximately 20 minutes.
This is a step by step guide for how to play Kingdomino the popular drafting strategy board game. Additional notions and special rules can be found below the list. These will be referenced for your convenience.
1. SETUP | Assemble Start Castles
The very first time you play you need to put together the 4x 3d starting castles. Punch out the cardboard and fit these together. These are the starting pieces.
2. SETUP | Hand Out Starting Pieces
Each player gets a starting castle and a king meeple figure of your choice. The 2nd king meeple is only for a 2-player game so you can put those back.
3. SETUP | Put Domino Tiles in Box
Depending on player count you are going to have a certain number of long domino tiles (2 players: 24 | 3 or 4 players: 48). Put these in the long slot in the game box to draw from throughout the game. No player should be able to see the top or bottom of any tile. As you can see, the setup portion while learning how to play Kingdomino is very easy.
4. GAMEPLAY | Draw Four Tiles
The brown tiles will have a number on one side and two land sections on the other. Draw four tiles from the front of the long stack. Showing the brown back and number side, place these in a line where the top is the lowest number and the bottom is the highest.
5. GAMEPLAY | Flip Over Tiles
Now that the tiles have been ordered, flip them over to reveal the tile options for this round. Players will take turns drafting these.
6. GAMEPLAY | Players Draft Tiles
The way it works is whoever took the top tile in the previous round gets to go first, second goes second, etc. The reason this works is that due to sorting by number, the lower tiles in the column are better so it is all about weighing that decision. Place your King Meeple next to the tile you want for the round. In a 3 player game, the unchosen tile is discarded and in a 2 player game each player chooses twice (why you need the 2nd meeple). Decide a random start player for the first turn.
7. GAMEPLAY | Players Place Tiles
You now place your selected tile in your grid. It starts as just a one tile castle, but your goal is to make a 5×5 grid. You can place your tile anywhere it works, but you can not go wider or higher than 5 units. The castle is wild, so you can put anything next to it, but after that, the tile you have can only be added if it shares at least one terrain type of what it is touching. If you cannot place the tile, it gets discarded.
8. GAMEPLAY | Repeat
After you place, put out 4x fresh new tiles. Players all choose again based on their order in the previous round.
9. GAME ENDS | All Tiles Are Used
Once the tiles are gone, that is the last round and the game is over. Since it is 48 tiles and 4 go a round, that means you have 12 rounds. It is the same with 2 players, you have half the tiles but you get double each round.
10. SCORING | Number of Tiles Times Multiplyer
Scoring does take a little math and can get overwhelming. Keep track on paper or your phone to not lose track. There are six different terrain types. For each section of terrain (that type that tocuhes), you take the number of tiles in that group and multiple it by the number of crown symbols in that section. So for example, if you have a section of 8 forests that has 2 crowns, a section of 3 water that has 3 crowns and a section of 4 plains with 0 crowns, your final score would be 25 [(8×2) + (3×3) + (4×0)].
11. WINNING | Highest Total Wins
You add all your section point totals together and the highest total wins. Learning how to play Kingdomino is very easy, it is very face paced with simple yet deep mechanics.
HOW TO PLAY KINGDOMINO – KEY INFORMATION
- 4x Starting Tiles
- 4x 3D Castles (1x pink, 1x yellow, 1x green, 1x blue)
- 48x Dominoes
- 8x Wooden King Meeples (2x pink, 2x yellow, 2x green, 2x blue)
HOW TO PLAY KINGDOMINO – IN CLOSING
We hope you can now say that you know how to play Kingdomino. This truly is a wonderful game that appeals to so many different board gamers of all ages and intensity levels. Kingdomino won the most prestigious board game of the year award back in 2017 and we completely understand why. It is not impossible and has been done well. Look at some of the adaptions of Go, Chess and Mahjong. The game is very simple to play but all your decisions have a big effect. It is a very exciting game that happens quickly.