In the board game Small World, the land is too small for everyone to live on, so the civilizations must try and conquer the other lands and eliminate the weaker races.
eliminate your weaker neighbors
The goal is to try and gain as many Victory Coins as possible within the 8 rounds. You pick separate cards to create your civilization. Each race is randomly attached to a special power, ie. Stout Dwarves with Spirit Powers, then you select the territories you want to claim with your civilization by placing your character cards on that territory. Unless you are playing a specific race, all starting regions you conquer must be on the edge of the map or one of it’s seas. You may then claim other regions that are adjacent to the ones you have already claimed unless your race allows for other positioning.
conquering territories can thin your troops out over time
The terrain plays a big part in your ability to conquer a territory as well. Depending on which race you have, can either help or hinder your ability to claim a territory. Terrain’s include: Farmlands, Forests, Hills, Swamps, Mountains, and Seas & Lakes. However, conquering territories can thin your troops out over time, making you more vulnerable to attack and eventually you will have to move a civilization into decline in order to start a new one. When you are attacked, you can either choose to move troops from another area to help defend or you can choose to flee and give up your territory. When you go to attack an enemy, squat your troops carefully in position to the adjacent territory you plan to conquor, and pick your fight wisely.
Small World is very strategic and the learning curve takes some time, so be prepared to spend a majority of your time reading the rules or looking up tips. The game is made for 2-5 players, ages 8+, and average game play time can range anywhere from 40-80 minutes long. In my opinion, very few 8 year olds will want to spend time strategizing for 40-80 minutes, unless of course your child is anything like my son who was playing tabletop games by the time he was 5.
Small World is a fun and zany civilizations game
Overall, Small World is a fun and zany civilizations game with so many different ways to play. Picking the right combination of fantasy races with unique powers will help you win a civilizations rule by expanding your territories at the expense of your weaker neighbors. The game is full of backstabbing deception and quirky comedy from races with unique and funny powers.