KingDomino: Age of Giants by BlueOrange Games Preview

Theme and What is it?

KingDomino won the Spiel de Jahres in 2017. It is a domino/tile game that allows for a growth of a kingdom. 

Age of Giants is an expansion that fits either KingDomino or the successor QueenDomino, and there is apparently a way to play all three together, but it sounds rather confusing to me. 

Gameplay Mechanics

Giants add two main mechanics to either KingDomino or QueenDomino, negaitive points based on the giants being in your kingdom, and challenges that add points based on specific criteria. It doesn’t over-complicate either game, but adds a little take that to the equation. 

Initial Impressions

I enjoyed the original KingDomino, quite a lot. It was simple, and allowed for multi-person solitaire to have more interaction than other games with this phenomenon, because it allows to one to force the opponent to choose otherwise useless tiles.

For this reason, my impression of this expansion was nearly equal. I liked how it looked, and was excited to see how it plays.

Game Build Quality

One of the few issues I had with the original game was the placement of the tiles before they were in play. It just bothered me. Age of Giants resolves this with a tower dispenser. I really like the build quality of this. 

If you are expecting dominoes, they are not Bakelite, but they are significant cardboard. I think BlueOrange has done a great job with the production value. Just because something is cardboard, doesn’t mean it needs to feel cheap.

Artistic Direction

The art is just about the same as the original game. I liked the original, and therefore, I also like the style here.

Fun Factor

Some games are classic on their own. This expnasion adds some gamification to the underlying game of KingDomino. Whether you like that or not, is highly dependent on whether you think games are better with additional elements added to them or games that are “boiled” down are more of interest.

Age Range & Weight

8+.

I’m sorry for the publisher on this, I would agree on the base game of this analysis, but disagree vehemently on the expansion.. I know my daughter could play it. The additional elements would most likely be too difficult for most younger kids. It is too much to track for a younger mind.

Conclusions

I played Age of Giants with QueenDomino. The games match quite well. The challenge tiles can make the game VERY interesting, though in practice, the buildings from QueenDomino added more point value to the end of the game for scoring.

The Giants added some great take that value to the game, and easily cost me a few dozen points. I like this expansion, but I also very much liked the underlying base game. If you liked KingDomino, this adds some great ideas to KingDomino. With QueenDomino the value of the expansion to me becomes superfluous. If you only have KingDomino, this is easily a great add-on.

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