Review: Tsuro

Overview

Boardgamegeek

A beautiful and beautifully simple game of laying a tile before your own token to continue its path on each turn. The goal is to keep your token on the board longer than anyone else’s, but as the board fills up this becomes harder because there are fewer empty spaces left… and another player’s tile may also extend your own path in a direction you’d rather not go.

Core Gameplay

Tsuro is a tile laying game with very simple and easy to learn gameplay. The main aim of the game is to keep your pawn on the board the longest. When a player is forced off the board, they are out of the game. To play, each player is given three tiles and must place one down on their turn. They must place the new tile on the edge of the tile where their pawn currently is. From here, their pawn must follow the trail of the new tile till it hits the edge of a tile piece (or the edge of the board). Other players are also moved if the new tile makes their trail go further as well.

Tsuro is a very simple game and yet has a decent amount of strategy. Where you go on the board and what tiles you use are important. You can try and be safe and stay away from opponents, or go in for the kill and try and take other players out. Either way, you want to stay away from opponents placing down a tile that moves you as I found it generally knocked you out.

The great thing about Tsuro is that it is fun for many different player counts. It supports 2-8 players and works well with all. The game gets more cut-throat with more players as there is less area for players to maneuver before colliding with opponents.

I am not usually a fan of player elimination in games. It forces people to wait while everyone else is playing. However, Tsuro games are quick and knocked out players won’t have to wait long. I would say that it is even quicker than King of Tokyo

Replayability

I would say the replayability of Tsuro comes from the speed of the game. As most games last 10-20 minutes, you can play many games in a short period of time. It is a great filler game and easy to teach newcomers to the world of board games.

In saying that, the game will become repetitive fairly quickly. Enjoy several games as a filler and then pull out something else. I will happily keep coming back and playing Tsuro, however, there is probably a limit to the amount of games I can play in a row.

Aesthetics and Components

The components and aesthetics of Tsuro are gorgeous. Although the game is fairly abstract, I really like the. According to the publisher “Tsuro has an Asian spiritual theme – the lines representing the “many roads that lead to divine wisdom”, and the game as a whole representing “the classic quest for enlightenment”.  The game board fits well into this Asian design, showcasing a phoenix on the board (before being covered with tiles). 

The tiles themselves are well made. Each tile has a different pattern on it, connecting paths from all the edges in different ways.

Design Takeaways

  • Tile laying: I really like the element of following the paths given on the tiles. They are designed well in that they are all different but easy to follow.

Overall

Tsuro is a simple and elegant tile laying game. It allows for a wide player count and is quick, fun and easy to learn and play. If you want a game that is a little cut-throat while at the same time being quick and easy to play, Tsuro is the game for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *