Santorini board game
Santorini board game


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Overall Rank: #20 | Trending Rank: #119

Welcome to the world of Santorini, a fantastic reimagining of the classic abstract game from 2004. Players are given a sandbox in which to play as gods, moving their workers around the board to build up a beautiful, multi-tiered city. Do you have what it takes to outsmart your opponents? Find out, in Santorini!

Santorini is a re-imagining of the purely abstract 2004 edition. Since its original inception over 30 years ago, Santorini has been continually developed, enhanced and refined by designer Gordon Hamilton.

Santorini is an accessible strategy game, simple enough for an elementary school classroom while aiming to provide gameplay depth and content for hardcore gamers to explore, The rules are simple. Each turn consists of 2 steps:

1. Move - move one of your builders into a neighboring space. You may move your Builder Pawn on the same level, step-up one level, or step down any number of levels.

2. Build - Then construct a building level adjacent to the builder you moved. When building on top of the third level, place a dome instead, removing that space from play.

Winning the game - If either of your builders reaches the third level, you win.

Variable player powers - Santorini features variable player powers layered over an otherwise abstract game, with 40 thematic god and hero powers that fundamentally change the way the game is played.

Turns in Santorini are made up of two simple step: Move and Build. Move around the board and build a building in a spot adjacent to one of your workers. The first player to move their worker from a second level building to a third level building wins the game! Though, there are a few things that add a wrinkle to the basic formula.

Invoke the Power of the gods!
Each player will have access to a god power which lets them do things a little differently than normal. Be it changing the rules for how you can build or move, changing how you interact with other players, or providing you with an alternate victory condition, the 30 different god powers are sure to make every game of Santorini different and exciting!

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User Ratings & Reviews

  • I guess I might enjoy it more if it remains themeless and god power-less. Didn't enjoy the 3d puzzle
  • Steph does not like the abstract nature of this, and the repetitive, "checkers style" play... she lost interest very quickly. I on the other hand LOVE this game with the god powers. Hopefully I can get this to the table again!
  • The vanilla game is ok enough, if not completely captivating. The game looks fine, but I don't see the amazing work of art that many seem to see in it. It's a box full of white plastic. Hmmm... On a more positive note, where I feel my (not insubstantial amount of) money has been well spent is the god powers that elevate the game to something I am keen to play if requested. There are many, and they all seem to have unique behaviours that change your game strategy significantly. I haven't tried them all so have good reason to keep bringing it back to the table.
  • A beautiful abstract with beautiful components and (with the multitude of gods available) unending replayability!
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Reprint of #Sol: Last Days of a Star for sure, and possibly the deluxe edition of #Santorini and the next Dale of Merchants game if that happens

My goal is to never simply let my kids win. They earn their wins.  When I find a game that they can do well at I tend to favor playing those games with them.  It's one of the reasons why I like #Santorini and #Tak so much.  I'm terrible at both and the kids know it. They know they have a high chance of winning those games, which helps get them to the table more.

My mom and dad had an old game #Strata 5 that they said they played all the time until they found the least number of moves to win that couldn't be blocked. When I played #Santorini for the first time it immediately reminded me of that game. I'll be taking Santorini to Christmas day celebration to play with them. Bonus is that all my kids like it too, so thats extra plays with the grandparents!

  • #Sprawlopolis - I've had a PnP version of this in my backpack for months, but it's so small that I never even think about it. I finally did and tried it out solo. This is a neat little game! Perfect if you have 10-15 minutes to kill and want to get a game in. Basically zero setup and takes very little table space.
  • #Fort @ 3p - finally got to play this at more than 2, and I like it even better! More opportunities to follow, which gives you mean interesting decisions, IMO. Played on TTS.
  • #Santorini 2x @ 2p - my wife obliged me by playing this one. I won both games. She's not at all comfortable playing an abstract strategy game like this. She says she just makes a move and hopes for the best lol. Hopefully she can up her skill a little bit, I'd really like to play this with her more often.
  • #Underwater Cities - had more free time yesterday than I thought I would, so decided to learn this one. I played solo, so that I could learn it before trying to teach my wife. I think I liked it! I'm sure I made some mistakes, but once I understood the flow, it went pretty smoothly. I think it goes without saying that I lost by a wide margin haha. I think I'll be able to teach my wife how to play, though, which was the goal.

I am planning on picking up #Photosynthesis: Under the Moonlight . It's on my second tier list for my annual black Friday shopping trip with my brother-in-law. So, depending on how successful our FLGS are at stocking by the games I want, I may have it before the end of the year is up. Otherwise it will probably show up randomly sometime during 2021. 

It seems to provide a nice bit of variability for the base game.  I think it will act similar to the god cards in #Santorini: adding some variables that can really change the way you have to think about playing the game.

Ahh, you like some abstracts too I see. My answer is going to be abstract games in general haha. I really enjoy them but I'm not very good at the moment. I'm working to improve my strategy skills and tactics though! I'm playing more #Santorini, #Azul, and even #Chess!

I pretty much avoid apps for all games that I actually own (or expect to own) for this very reason. There's an app for #7 Wonders Duel, but I don't want to play it, because I want to actually play my wife competitively. Same with #Santorini.

My actual answers:

  • The best overall design: #Everdell
  • Your best memories: #Dune
  • Best cover art: #Oceans
  • The best euro: #Concordia (though to be honest, I'm not sure what actually counts as a Euro)
  • The best quick game (30m or less): #Santorini
  • The most fun you can have with your clothes on: 
  • The first game you loved: #Evolution: Climate
  • The best game you can can fit in your pocket: #Hive Pocket
  • The most immersive experience: #Western Legends
  • Your most played game: #Santorini
  • Your favourite components: #War Chest (heavy clinky chips!)
  • The 'to put it politely, I can't fathom how anyone can enjoy this' award: