Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

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Rating Summary (99 Total)


Garritt's game


Brilliant design. I enjoy worker placement and the pay-me-now-or-pay-me-later mechanism in this game is excellent. A worker placement where getting more workers is NOT a primary objective? Nice! Of course, the theme is A+++ for me. The only problem is that the game is prone to analysis paralysis, specially in the later rounds. INCLUDED: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar – Tribes & Prophecies


With [thing=143065][/thing]


4.11.18 Tzolkin is a worker placement game, the catch being that workers go on the teeth of various cogs and, as the main cog signifying the calendar rotates, the actions you can take become increasingly better. This game reminded me of a more complex Stone Age that has removed the dice. There are different resources that need converting, buildings to build, and grunts to feed. I have a few hesitations about how the currency (i.e., corn) affect game play, which is why I rated this a 7, but I could see raising the score to an 8 after exploring the game more. Thoughts after the first play. PROS -The board, with its moving gears, is incredibly unique. It’s hard to think of a regular board game with a more interesting presence. In terms of components, the crystal skulls stand out while the other cube resources are satisfactory. -Big, big fan of the artistic style of the game. -The different paths to explore—corn, skulls, buildings, monuments, temples, and technology—keep the game from getting stale and let advanced players explore untried strategies while playing with inexperienced players. -The starting tiles are excellent! I love the idea that these aid your decision in which strategy you will take. CONS -Corn is a constant and sometimes insurmountable problem. In our game, not one player got another worker for fear of having to feed him. I managed to grab the farm tile that allows a player to feed three of workers and I believe this is the reason I won. In order to stay afloat, it seems that you have to have a worker on the corn wheel at all times and you have to have the tech that allows you to harvest from exhausted fields. I could see gathering sufficient corn limiting a player’s enjoyment of the game as it is such a central focus but also a boring chore when compared with all of the other interesting actions you want to be taking. -While focusing on corn, you also need to be amassing cube resources but the wheel where you do this offers infuriatingly few cubes. This seemingly means you need to decide if you want to go for buildings OR monuments but I would be hard pressed to see how you could do both as monuments are incredibly exorbitant. Again, not one player was able to purchase a monument.


Gift from Sam, Nov. 2014.


2-4 Players 90 Minutes


The gears in this game add some complexity to a worker placement game. I enjoyed the second game a lot more once we got to grips with the rules. The gears provide a timed strategy to work towards and therefore you didn't feel that the game outlived its welcome.


No need to sleeve


Need to play more, but seems solid so far.


2-4* players (best 4) 90 minutes


Very tense euro that transcends the silly toy on the board. I really want to play with the expansion.


The worker placement & gear mechanic provides for some good strategy and required forethought. The game is really enjoyable at two players, but at four players it takes a little too long between turns. The production quality of the gears and the components as well as the illustration is all fantastic.


The worker placement & gear mechanic provides for some good strategy and required forethought. The game is really enjoyable at two players, but at four players it takes a little too long between turns. The production quality of the gears and the components as well as the illustration is all fantastic.


Interesting timing element added to what is otherwise a paint-by-numbers worker placement resource conversion engine builder. Very restrictive in terms of resource collection and moderately punishing thanks to the asinine "feed your people" mechanic, which I rarely like. The gears are interesting and do call attention the fact that your turns are actually resources (which is true for many games, but here it's codified by the movement of your workers).


2-4, 90m


love the gears.


2016-12-10 - Gift Like caylus with gears. 2019-01-13 - Sold; Richmond gamer


[Draw bags for randomize some tiles]


Sure, the gears are good fun, but there's actually really interesting things happening too.


I'm not sure I am smart enough to be good at this game. But spinning the wheel is fun! :P If you and your friends aren't super hardcore gamers, maybe stick to a worker placement that's easier to wrap your head around and doesn't involve planning out everything 10 moves ahead (like Agricola).


The rotation of the worker gears, really separates this from the crowd, and despite the plethora of worker placement games on the market, this one has held onto its high position, and for good reason. Calculating how to place and pull the optimal number of workers each turn, and establishing a good rhythm is crucial to victory, but not easily mastered. There seem to be about three dominant strategies to utilize and combat, but mastery is not easily attained. Whether a player goes big on corn, building, or theology, it'll take a few plays to iron out the kinks, and this will lure the optimizers of the world, myself included, into several plays. Perhaps it is my Puerto Rico bias leaking through, but the Big Corn strategy is wicked fun.


Theme/Art: I like the theme a lot, I was always interested in Aztec and Mayan culture. The theme also fits the game and the game looks great and colourful. The art is great too, especially the box art. Production quality: Very good, the board itself is very unique and the gears work very smoothly. Resources are basic wooden cubes, aside from wood and corn, which are cardboard tiles, and crystal skulls, which are little plastic skulls. Everything else is cardboard. Replayability: Since Tzolk'in has a lot going on and quite a few ways to score points, replayability is given. Additionally the order of buildings and the available monuments are different every game. The expansions adds even more replayability with different tribes and prophecies. Depth/Difficulty: The core mechanic of the game can be explained in one sentence: On your turn you either place workers on gears or take workers off gears to receive the benefit of the gear space you took them from. However, there are a lot of different gear spaces to learn and there are also gods, technologies, and harvest festivals. I weight it 4/5. Strategy: You need to think ahead, manage your resources, keep workers on gears as short as possible, but as long as needed to get the best benefits. It plays very fluid though, because turns are very short. Luck: Pretty much non existent. Aside from starting tiles, buildings, and monuments nothing in this game is random. Tzolk'in is an amazing game and depending on player count it takes 60-150 minutes to play. I think the gears are a great and unique way to implement a worker placement mechanic and I can't wait to get the expansion.


Took a couple of plays to get in to, but it is currently my personal favorite. Different paths to victory, different strategies. Going to have fun playing as many times as possible to try out as many strategies as possible.


Interesting mechanics in this game definitely save it from being extremely boring. Still takes too long for what it is though in my opinion.


(11/17) 8. Really, really interesting worker placement game where timing is everything. You don't just need to know when to place your workers, but when to take them off as well and when to do both efficiently. Loved playing and would definitely play again soon!


Complicated game with alot of movement. Worker placement done right. The rule that you have to either put out or take one of your workers really does wonders


Love this game! The workers upgrading each turn and only being able to place or retrieve workers makes so many interesting decisions while not outstaying its welcome.