The Castles of Burgundy - Board Game Box Shot

The Castles of Burgundy

| Published: 2011

Die Burgen von Burgund
15th century princes from the Loire Valley devote their efforts to strategic trading and building in order to bring their estates to prosperity and prominence.

Over the course of 5 rounds, collect the most points by trading, livestock farming, city building and scientific research to win! The-Castles-of-Burgundy-components

images © Ravensburger

User Reviews (16)

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120 of 127 gamers found this helpful
“Storming the Castle... Its Full of Good Times”

Castles of Burgundy is a fun Euro styled game where you play the role of a price expanding this kingdom. However, as the case in most Euro games, the theme is pretty thin. And while there is no actual “storming of the castle,” that does not stop this game from being a fun mind bender as you grow your land.

RULES:
When we started playing this game and the rules were explained to me, my head was spinning. When you sit down to do the same be ready to be overcome with lots of details. Take a deep breath, its ok. Once you dive in you’ll start to get it and everything will be awesome. I’ll try to share some of this with you now, brace for impact.

The main bulk of rule explanation comes from the many different tiles that are the main focus of the game. These are the tiles you use to add to your kingdom and see it grow. There are six different tiles and each one has a different benefit.

It’s not necessarily each of these tiles that make the game a little complex, but the focus should be on two tiles, the knowledge/science tiles and the building tiles. While the rest of the tiles have one specific function, these tiles are a little special and each one is a little different, providing you with unique abilities that can separate you from the group.

SET UP:
The game is set up with a buying market where land tiles are placed into groups one through six. If you want to select a tile from group four, then you need to have a die roll with a four on it.

On your player board you have a land mass you are trying to fill with different colored spaces and numbers on them. The colors represent the type of tile that can go into that space, and the number represent what roll you need to fill that space.

GAME PLAY:
At the start of the turn the players roll their dice and this shows the players what selections from the market are available to them or what spaces they can use on their board. While some may not like this use of dice in a Euro game, the luck factor is narrowed. For one you have worker tiles you can spend to influence your die roll. Additionally there is always something you can do with what is rolled. I have never felt like I missed out on something because of a bad role.

The game progresses through five rounds that replenishes and replaces the tiles in the market area after each round.

There is also a little economy involved in the game as you mine for silver and also can trade/sell your goods for VPs and silver. The silver can be used to purchase tiles from the market, but these tiles are only available through purchase.

PROS:
• There are several player boards that I think will add to the replay ability. Once you think you have a map down, you can change it and the way your kingdom is built will be completely different.
• There are multiple ways score victory points in this game and I love that. That tells me there are multiple ways to win the game. Multiple strategies and tactics that can be used. I can look at the game and head in one direction and my opponents in another and we can all win. Most likely I’ll lose, but I have a chance. “So you’re telling me there’s a chance!”
• I’ve seen this game online for under $40. A game you can add to your collection with great replay ability and strategic game play for under $40 is a great game.

CONS:
• The game is only playable with 2-4 players. That is pretty limited to me and I prefer games with more options for players. For me this is the biggest knock on the game.
• The rules may come over you like a tsunami. This is not a game for new gamers, so make sure you know who you are playing this with. However, don’t let this stop you from playing. If you can get past the rules and are willing to sit down to actually play the game, it makes more sense and will not be over your head.
• Again, know who you are playing with. This game can cause paralysis by analysis. At the same time, make sure that you are not the one slowing the game and giving the other players a bad taste for the game.

OVERALL
I know that I have a pretty balanced pros v. cons, but the more that I think about this game the more I want to get it back to the table. Not only play again, but this is a game that I would love to own. I love how this game is deep, but not deep enough to drown people. It takes a bit of time, but not so much that your whole night is lost. There is a bit of luck, but not enough to ruin your game. All in all it is a greatly balanced game that will stretch many with its diverse strategy.

 
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130 of 138 gamers found this helpful
“so much fun with dice”

Fun factor – 10/10
Replay value – 9/10
Components – 6/10
Learning Curve – 7/10

Fun Factor: I am going to just start by saying that my group really loves this game. We have a fairly sizable amount of games so repeat plays of games back to back are pretty rare for any game over 30 minutes but this one has gotten such attention a couple different times. It is really fun to roll your dice and try to figure out how you are going to make them work to complete the task you want to do. It is the best use of “dice placement” I have played to date and since playing this one we have tried several, none were as good for us.

I think that my favorite part is that no matter what you roll or if others take something you wanted. There is always something good to take, not just an option but truly something that will always really help you. So while you can make poor choices and lose from that, losing to “bad luck” or someone “stealing” what you really needed to win is going to be extremely rare if it’s even possible at all. I have never experienced it personally in my runs through this one.

Replay Value: The base game comes with so many different maps to play on for each player and with the way the dice work together with the randomly drawn tiles I could see playing a huge number of times before ever getting bored or seeing a repeat play. I am also going to bring up how long it takes to play here and how quickly turns go because I think that this really helps make the game replayable. You can normally finish a playthrough in under an hour and each turn goes in less than 5 minutes which means you are always engaged and that the entire game lasts just long enough to make you feel like you finished but also not too long that you are drained.

Components: This is the part that I am going to bring the biggest complaint against. The parts all feel a little flimsy and thin. The player mats are pretty much just thick paper instead of the normal cardboard, same with many of the other pieces. Every time I play I find myself wishing that the pieces had a little more weight and substance. The parts are all good color and are perfectly functional but when I compare them to other similarly priced games I am a little disappointed. I would have happily paid another 5-10 bucks to get better components.

Learning Curve: The basics of this game are almost entirely easy to learn and are all clearly described through the iconography in the game. At this point I am able to teach most of this game within 10 or so minutes. There is only one thing bringing this part down, the building (light brown) tiles. These are the part of the game that gives everyone the most trouble to grasp how they work. Normally I teach the entire game and then the new player will ask another 3-4 times what buildings do and need explanations again and again. This isn’t horrible and I honestly don’t think there is much that the game could really do to solve the issue but it is a little dent in the otherwise easy to teach game.

Verdict: My group just loves this game, every week this game creeps to the top of the “what to play list” even with brand new games to play. Yea, you should get this one if you don’t already.

Blog post with pic: http://mythosgaming.wordpress.com/2014/08/26/23/

 
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Crab Clan - Legend of the Five Rings
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79 of 86 gamers found this helpful
“Castles of (Ron) Burgundy is a Great Next Step!”

I thought Castles of (Ron) Burgundy would be a nice step-up from Settlers of Catan and I was right. The game is great fun, even though it’s not an action packed adventure with Forbidden in the title. I love cause and effect in games, and you can feel that happening as you build you kingdom.

Is it Pretty?
This game is reminiscent of Settlers of Catan. It’s not drop dead gorgeous, but it’s pretty and it get the job done. After a few games, you won’t need the rule book anymore and the game will become entirely visual-driven. The main game board that all resources come from is nice and the design works perfectly with the game. Your own personal map is somewhat bland, but you fill it up with hexes and goods soon enough and it starts feeling extremely satisfying as you build your little kingdom. Beautiful, not really. But it’s easy on the eyes and helpful to the players.

Who’s it For?
I believe this is a good step-up game for people. After few games of Catan, Castles of (Ron) Burgundy seems like a natural move. This isn’t a game for people who need tons of action, but people who like peaceful pacing but stressful choices. Think of it as building a puzzle with friends. Except, one of you can win! It makes a great two player game as well, so if you need a game to accommodate less people, this works great.

Why is it in My Collection
I found this at Barnes and Noble in the discount bin and it’s one of the best finds I’ve had. My wife really enjoys this game and she tends to beat me by a good margin of points. But it’s still fun and it is really fulfilling to complete certain sections of your map, it’s a tangible, growing marker of your progress and success. Plus, in five rounds, it doesn’t over stay it’s welcome and I can’t wait to introduce it to more people. Castles of (Ron) Burgundy is a buy!

 
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Canada
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9
65 of 72 gamers found this helpful
“A wonderful workout for your brain!”

In Castles of Burgundy, you and your opponents are 15th century princes from the Burgundy region of the Loire Valley in Central France competing to bring your estates prosperity and prominence through strategic trading and building. Castles of Burgundy is very much a Euro game. While the theme puts the player actions into context, it is not very deep and the game mechanics are not restricted by the theme. Play entails set collection and tile placement and there are numerous ways to earn victory points. Additionally, player interaction is limited as time is spent quietly contemplating and strategizing your route to victory. That being said, Castles of Burgundy is a delightfully addictive game that combines a little chance with a whole lot of strategy.

At first glance, the game looks incredibly complicated to learn with its many pieces and cryptic boards. However, the straight forward mechanics of the game are easy to learn. Castles of Burgundy is played in five phases, each phase consisting of five rounds. Each player has a mat consisting of 37 hexagonal spaces that together represent the estate you are developing. Also included on the player mats are spaces for dice, goods, silverlings (the game’s currency), workers, and six-sided tiles that have not yet been played. Additionally, the mats include a puzzling player aid that at first makes little sense, but after playing the game a couple of times, the meaning becomes clear and the player aid is quite helpful. The central game board has six numbered depots that hold both the six types of terrain hex tiles and the six types of goods that come into play as the game progresses. Why so many sixes? Dice. Each player has two dice that are the same colour as the player scoring pieces.

At the start of each round, players roll their dice and use them to perform two separate actions based on the value of each die. Players are free to choose from four different actions; however, the values on the dice place constraints on how the actions are carried out. For example, if you roll a five on one die you can either gain a tile from depot five on the main board, place a terrain hex on a five space on your player mat, or sell value five goods. Before using a die to take any of these actions, you can use one die to gain two worker tiles. A worker tile allows you to adjust the value of a die up or down by one. Workers are a valuable resource in that they assist you in meeting your strategic goal, and at the end of the game, you gain one victory point for every two workers you have remaining.

There are many different types of hex tiles, (knowledge, ships, mines, animals, castles and buildings) each offering something different that assists you in developing your estate. Keeping track of what each tile means can be rather confusing. For example, there are 26 different knowledge tiles, each with a different effect, and eight types of buildings that all give different bonuses. While the player aid on the mat helps to determine what some hexes do, it is not very detailed and not all inclusive. I found myself constantly flipping through the player manual to find out what the various tiles did. I found a solution to this problem on BoardGameGeek. Stephen Brinich, a BoardGame Geek member created a fantastic two-page cheat sheet that has pictures and descriptions of all the hex tiles. I printed and laminated several copies so that each player has their own quick reference player aid. This definitely simplified play!

I have played this game with two and three players. Both work equally well, it just takes a little longer with three. Castles of Burgundy left me feeling like I had given my brain a really good workout – in a fun and positive way. It definitely requires a sharp mind and plenty of focus! The only criticism I have about this game is the colour scheme. The colours blend together in a way that sometimes makes it difficult to discern what hex tiles are remaining on the main board.

Castles of Burgundy has immense replay value. A game is never the same twice AND it comes with nine different players mats for added variability. There have been a number of small expansions that add hex tiles and different player mats, but they are difficult to find. Overall, this is a fantastic Euro game that should not be missed!

 
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61 of 68 gamers found this helpful
“Great Choice to Enter Medium Euro Level”

For new players, getting into board gaming hobby can be a challenged. Taking a great leap of faith from among small, party filler games into more serious and challenging experience is not that easy and a walk in the park. Okay you know Splendor or even Carcassonne but are those enough? Well don’t look the other way, The Castles of Burgundy is the right choice to help you guide into the light.

This game is quite simple to learn and so smooth in game play, but offers enough challenge and interesting plays in the same time. Players will build their own estate with buildings and interesting things that can be found in 15th century castles (pastures, castles, mines, rivers, knowledge and such).
The game consists of 5 rounds with each round has 5 turns where in each turn players will roll 2 dice and use those dice to do actions.
The actions refer to the die result (1 to 6) and can be used in many ways (very innovative dice slash worker placement game). You can use any dice to acquire tiles from the main board (the value of the die decides where you can get the tile from), place it to your estate (same procedure), selling goods, and getting workers for modifiers.

Completing your estate basically giving you points, but the number of points depends on when you complete the region on your estate. Earlier scoring and bigger region will get you higher points.

The game is simple, roll dice, take turns based on turn order to use those dice. But maybe for new players there seems to be a lot to take in, many building types and many scoring possibilities. But once you play it for the first time, everything will make sense in such an enlightening way. I successfully managed to introduce this game to new players several times ( quite often).

The artwork is kinda dull, it’s a classic Euro which explains it. The components are also slightly below par, which I think could be better, such as thicker tiles and player mats.

The last but not the least, the game also comes in different variants in the player mats so this hugely adds the replay value to the game. You can try with different maps.

 
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103 of 115 gamers found this helpful
“Fantastic Game - Simple Game Play, yet Deep Strategy”

If you enjoy other Euro board games then don’t even think twice about getting this game. It is great fun! There are so many different paths to victory that everyone has a chance of winning. And I absolutely love the dice rolling mechanic in this game. It is so unique. Basically everyone gets two dice and they roll them, but instead of adding them up you use them to either [1] get tiles from the center board, [2] place tiles on your personal board (i.e. your princedom), [3] sell goods which get you victory points and money, or [4] trade a die roll for workers that allow you to adjust your die rolls + or – 1 point. That’s it. Roll dice. Choose 1 of 4 options for each die. Repeat.

The object of the game is to get victory points by adding tiles to your princedom. Your princedom is divided into 6 different colored regions of varying sizes (1 – 8 hex tile slots). Each hex slot has a die number pictured on it that corresponds to your die roll. You can score victory points for placing different tiles, completing colored regions, or by selling goods (which also have corresponding die numbers pictured on them).

The best part about this game is all of the different decisions that you can make with each turn. Everyone can work toward completing a different colored region (which all have different benefits), or they can compete with each other to try and complete a like colored region. Or you can simply see that your opponent is attempting to complete a certain color that you are not and take those tiles from the board before they have a chance (evil). 🙂

This game is complex, but not complicated. And that is exactly what makes it so much fun! And once you’ve played a few rounds you’ll find that the complexity is not in the actual game play, it is in the vast array of decisions that you can make with every play. This is what makes me want to play it over and over. Every time I play I think of different things that I could have done to improve my strategy.

This is a great game, and one that I highly recommend!

 
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88 of 119 gamers found this helpful
“Great Eurogame! A must have!”

This game worth every money you spend it!
Stephen Feld once again makes a great eurogame with great playability and easy rules. Strategy is everything. There´s a lot of things going on is this game and you can earn VPs in several ways.
The game have a main board where all de goods and buildings are placed. This board also have 6 different spots where these good and buildings stay. Each player rolls two dice and with these dice they can play two actions based on the number they rolled. The trick is the worker tile, with this tile you can adjust your roll plus 1 or minus 1. So, based on your roll (with or without a Worker modifier) you can buy a good or a building from the specific spot on the board.
Each player also have his own board where you place the goods and buildings that you buy from the main board.
There are several types of goods and buildings and each one have an specific “power”.
The rest you can see on the thin rulebook 😉 but the main rules are these.
I already played a few times and in every time I had a great time! I can honestly state that you can play this game with 2 to 4 players without lose any fun!
This is great isn´t it?
I recommend it very much! An eurogame without cubes and with a lots of rolling dice!
Aaa it is a fast game too! Much faster than Agricola, Le Havre or Ore et Labore.

 
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I'm Gettin' the Hang of It
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96 of 130 gamers found this helpful
“A nice game for the sophisticated gamer”

A european-style building game with a wide variety of tiles with different characteristics. The game confronts the player with many decision points, requiring both long-range planning and on-the-fly adaptation. For the regular gamer, this title is thought-provoking and enjoyable.

The game itself is nicely laid out. The individual boards are attractive and there are a variety of well-constructed parts.

As a less experienced gamer, I found this to be tougher to pick up. There are a number of different ways to score, and it took me several rounds to understand all the nuances despite a capable teacher. I was quickly outdistanced by the more experienced gamers, but it was still an enjoyable game and I would enjoy playing it again.

We did make one mistake in playing the game. The rules instruct all players to roll the dice simultaneously at the beginning of the round. We weren’t doing this at first; each player was rolling at the beginning of his turn. This made the game play very slow. When we started rolling all the dice from the beginning of the round, players were able to make decisions more quickly and the pace of the game picked up.

 
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87 of 133 gamers found this helpful
“Effect of the dice”

As the title shows, I’ll simply explain what effect the dice have in this game as a strategic one, from my point of view.

– The first thing I have to say is that the dice don’t affect much the strategy of the game and, even though luck could make some points of difference, the winner will be the one that has played best and not who has rolled better.

– Playing with dice means that there is no way to control the “main resource” to buy things and because of that, even if a general strategy is possible to follow, adaptability is necessary in order to avoid wasting +/- modifiers and losing points. So the dice make the players making decisions each turn and don’t let to plan far ahead.

– The dice make the last turn a little bit of a waste in some situations. This is sometimes a problem when a game ends in a certain amount of time instead of when someone achieves victory, but dice make it worse. Unless you save goods to sell or a last construction and some modifiers in front of you, is difficult to plan something as you can’t know which numbers you will have to use. As the last part of a game is usually the most important one to feel satisfied after playing it, this is one of the bad parts of the game.

I personally like the game, and think that the way the dice work is well prepared.

 
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8 of 14 gamers found this helpful
“In my opinion the GOAT”

Feld made a ton of great games, but none were better than Castles of Burgundy. Few games can claim that dice are their primary mechanic and still manage to be deep challenging games the way CoB can.

Using a die roll you can take a tile into your board, place it into your kingdom from your board, sell goods, or sell the die roll for workers who can manipulate future die rolls. You’ll need them because what you roll is what you are allowed to do.

I strongly recommend this one to anyone looking to go into their first euro with a more hefty oomph than a gateway game offers

 
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8
78 of 149 gamers found this helpful
“Excellent euro game”

I love the theme and feel of the game. The artwork is decent but does a good job of setting the tone for the game. You are competing estates striving to build the best castle.
Mechanics are solid.. my favorite being the ability to combo your building placement. That’s what really makes this game mechanically unique and sets it apart from a lot of other euro style games.
There are times where you simply get screwed by the dice but that adds to the fun of it all… and that’s the only element of luck. The rest is pure skill, planning, and strategy. Great replay value. Super fun for 2 players but also great for 4.

 
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78 of 155 gamers found this helpful
“Amazing”

Game scales well from 2-4 players. Lots of replayability with different player boards. Multiple paths to victory that enable variable strategies. The dice mechanic allows players to make tactical decisions while still maintaining an overall strategy. Mostly independent actions but has blocking opportunities with a premium placed on player order to allow competition for the best tiles. Game is easy to teach to gamers that are familiar with eurogames and also appeals to family gamers as there is no player elimination. A Feld masterpiece.

 
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Gamer - Level 1
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78 of 162 gamers found this helpful
“A lot of game, in a lot of time”

I Love this dice driven euro game by Stefan feld and ravensburger games. If your familiar with Stefan feld games than your not looking for a thematic experience here, but lots interesting decision and tons of strategic choices are packed into this game. My biggest problem is the length of the game. This isn’t a heavy strategy game (it’s more in the medium range) but a four player game could easily last 2 hours, but the doesn’t even detract too much because this game kept me engaged through to the end.

Great game 8/10

 
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78 of 163 gamers found this helpful
“Great game, new mechanic.”

There is a lot going on in this game but it is very easy to formulate your own strategy and go to it. The dice rolling mechanic in this game is very unique and works perfect as far as luck vs strategy.

This game is an excellent social game, it takes a while to play but when it is not your turn there is plenty of conversation time.

 
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Canada
 
2 of 5 gamers found this helpful
“Vidéocritique en français!”

Je vous présente un jeu de Ravensburger, conçu par notre très cher Stefan Feld. J’ai nommé…. The Castles of Burgundy (et oui, certains l’avaient reconnu suite au dernier indice donné!) Un jeu pour 2 à 4 joueurs dont une partie dure entre 45 et 90 minutes selon le nombre de joueurs. J’ajouterais aussi qu’il s’agit d’un véritable coup de coeur pour ma femme! Avis aux couples de gamers 😉

Dans cet univers, votre but sera de construire le royaume le plus prestigieux autour de votre château de départ. Pour cela, il faudra bâtir, élever du bétail, pratiquer le commerce fluvial, exploiter les richesses du sol, etc. Au final, selon avec le royaume le plus grandiose sera déclaré vainqueur!

Vous aurez, ci-bas, les liens vers les 3 vidéos produites pour vous présenter ce jeu!

Règles abrégées:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsCNkF-j4G4

Aperçu du gameplay:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5iTylCtasxc

Critique personnel:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qStmHKNTIlc

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/ecoledujeu

 
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2 of 9 gamers found this helpful
“Great little tile laying game”

fun game. interactive with the ability to add some variety with both a base and optional player boards and this also provides great replay value. my first Feld game and we really enjoy it. The components are not as high quality as we see out there today but the aren’t terrible either. the color choices are a little odd and very bland. the card board is on the thin side but I have nothing warped.

 

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