Patchwork: Can You Put All the Pieces Together?

Tile-laying board games can be super fun for anyone who loves abstract strategy or puzzles. Patchwork gives you all of the fun of these classic board tile-laying board games wrapped up tightly in a big, snuggly quilt. The goal of Patchwork is to piece together the most finely crafted, tight-knit quilt possible in order to earn the highest amount of buttons and win the game. Do you have what it takes to put the pieces together?

Purchasing Patches

Players are each given their own 9×9 game board on which to patch together their quilt, laying the pieces down in whichever arrangement they choose. In order to earn more buttons, you’ll want to cover up as much of your board as possible by making sure the pieces fit snugly together.

At the beginning of the board game, players are given five buttons with which to purchase patches for their quilt. Players will lay out all of the patches in a circle in random order, then place a spool on a spot along the circle. Each turn gives you two options: either purchase one of the three patches located clockwise to the spool or pass.

Buying patches requires you to pay the cost in buttons as indicated on the patch. If you choose to buy a patch, you’ll move the spool to that patch’s location in the circle and add the patch to your board. Remember, you’re trying to fit the pieces together as tightly as possible, so be sure there’s room for it on your board before you fork over the buttons.

Time Tokens

The length of the game is measured using tokens on a time track. Once your turn is up, you’ll move your token along the time track however many spaces are indicated on the patch you purchased. If your time token is either behind the other player’s token or on top of it, then you get to go again. If your time token is in front of theirs, then it’s your opponent’s turn.

If you decide to pass instead of buying a patch, then you’ll move your time token to the space directly in front of your opponent’s. You’ll also earn one button for every space you moved. The time track also contains five 1×1 patches, which players can claim if they manage to get there before the other player. These are perfect for filling in holes on your board and boosting your points.

Players also have a chance to earn button income each time they pass a button on the time track. Each of your patches will indicate a certain number of buttons between zero and three. Once you’ve passed the button spot, you’ll add up all of the button income on your quilt and take it from the bank.

The game ends once both players reach the center of the time track. Players will then score one point for every button they have and lose two points for every empty square on their board. The player who collected the most points wins the game!

Patchwork Sequels

Patchwork comes with two sequel board games that take the original fun of Patchwork and morph it into something new. Patchwork Doodle is a roll-and-write version of the original game, allowing you to draw in the pieces of your quilt instead of laying the pieces. 

Patchwork Express takes the original game and brings it down to a smaller scale. With a 7×7 game board and larger pieces, this board game simplifies the original game and makes it perfect for players as young as six.

Become the Button Master with Patchwork

Patchwork is a two-person game, as it comes with only two playing boards. It’s perfect for one-on-one games between kids and adults. It’s also suitable for ages 8 and up, as younger players can easily pick up the rules without too much trouble. The great thing about Patchwork is that it’s easy to learn, but hard to master.

Playing time lasts between 15-30 minutes, so you can easily play a few rounds or just fit in a quick game before dinner. Buy Patchwork today and become the ultimate master of the buttons!

 

Tsuro: Paths that Lead to Enlightenment and Fun

Few games include such beautiful tokens or such a heartbreaking story as Tsuro, the 2004 tile-based game that has drawn in countless players.  With simple and fast gameplay and an entertaining background story, Tsuro is a board game that will stand out in your mind for years to come.  As the board fills up and the small carved tokens follow their winding roads, Tsuro is sure to leave you desperate for another round.

The Story Of The Dragon

One of the most beautiful parts of Tsuro is its Asian spiritual theme, as the lines that you travel along are meant to represent the roads leading to divine wisdom.  The story behind Tsuro is that of a Dragon and Phoenix tasked with overseeing these paths.  One day, Ares drove the Phoenix away and turned the Dragon into a war general.  Now the Dragon seeks to follow the winding paths back to his true love, the Phoenix.  Can you help him succeed?

Laying Down The Line

At the beginning of the game, each player is given a token that must follow the path to enlightenment.  Gameplay involves laying down tiles in front of your token to keep it on the board and continue its path.  After you lay down a new tile on the 6×6 grid game board, you will move your token as far as the path takes you.  The more tiles you lay down, the faster the board begins to fill up, leading you down a path that may be your downfall.

The End Of The Road

The aim of the game is to try to keep your token on the board longer than your competitors.  The way to do this is to use strategy to ensure your token follows the correct path while you try to divert the other players’ tokens to force them out of the game.  If you reach the end of the board or end up running into someone else’s token, it’s game over for you.  Only the wisest and most strategic can achieve true enlightenment.

When there are three or more players, the Dragon tile is used to help extend gameplay.  Once you run out of tiles, the next player takes the Dragon tile to signify that they will be the first to draw from the deck of unplayed tiles left over by eliminated players.

Alternate Editions of Tsuro

Calliope Games published Tsuro in 2004, and have since created many different versions and spinoffs of the game.  The first was called Tsuro of the Seas, created in 2012.  This fun spinoff adds new boat-shaped player pieces as well as dangerous daikaiju tiles that will automatically remove anyone who lands on them.  This spinoff game also comes with a larger game board measuring 7×7 instead of 6×6.

Veterans of the Seas is an expansion of Tsuro that adds four new types of tiles.  These tiles range from whirlpools to tsunamis that require you to roll a die to avoid.  There’s even a Star Wars themed spinoff called Asteroid Escape, which takes the water bound game and launches it into outer space.  Instead of riding boats and navigating around whirlpools, you’ll be flying spaceships and dodging asteroids!

Tsuro: The Game of the Path

Tsuro is a beautiful and simple game that is easy to learn.  Suitable for ages 8 and up, Tsuro is a great way to introduce your kids to board games that have a story behind them, which are often much more memorable and entertaining than simple games like Scrabble.  Game time also lasts around 15-20 minutes, which means that it’s not too much of a time investment to work in a game or two in an evening.

Tsuro also fits anywhere from 2-8 players, allowing you to enjoy the game both with a large group at a party as well as an intimate night in with your partner.  Inspired by the romance of the Dragon and the Phoenix, Tsuro is sure to ignite the romantic passions of lost love—just so long as you don’t knock the other player off the board first!  Dive into Tsuro and follow the path to divine wisdom and enlightenment.

 

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