This is a card game based on the ancient 7 Wonders of the World. The goal of the game is to create a flourishing “civilization”, using the different resources that are available to you within the cards. There are three levels to this game, also known as ages I, II, and III. To win, you have to accumulate the most points by the end of age III. You can gain points in many ways in this game. Some of those are: building your military with the military cards, building your wonders, collecting the science cards, making money by having raw materials that your neighbors need, by playing cards that get you points for a specific card color and etc. Once you get the hang of the different cards and their worth, it’s a pretty simple game and goes by quickly.
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This is a 2 – 7 player card game. The objective of the game is to get the most points accumulated at the end of age III. The points can be accumulated in a number of ways that will be explained below.
Cards: There are 3 card decks, one for each age. You’ll play the game one age at-a-time, so you deal the cards at the start of each age. At the bottom center of the card, is a number that tells you which card to use based on the number of players, i.e. for 3-player game use all cards that have 3+ on them. For 5 player game, use all cards that have 3+, 4+ and 5+ on them and so on.
This applies to all three ages. However, in the third age, the deck contains Guild cards. These are purple colored cards. Remove all the Guild cards and put back as many Guild cards as there are players plus 2. So, if there are 4 players then 6 Guild cards are added to the Age III deck, if there are 3 players then 5 Guild cards are in play.
Return the remaining cards back to the box.
Boards: Each player can either willing chose a board or draw the board cards to decide which board to play.
Coins: Each player starts with three 1 value coins.
Deal 7 cards, at the beginning of each Age, to all players. Each player picks a card from their hand and puts it face down in front of them. There are three things players can do with the card they picked: (Note: All players make moves simultaneously)
- Players can collect a resource by placing the resource card on the top-left corner of their board. Or, they can build the structure represented in the card by putting the card face up in front of their board provided that they have the resources to pay for it, price is indicated on the top left corner of each card. Some cards are free and others can be free if you have another structure, indicated at the bottom-right of the card, already built. If you don’t have a resource needed to build a structure and either one of your neighbors to your left and right have the resource, you can pay them two 1 value coins to “share” the resource for your use in that turn. Keep in mind, the neighbor can also use the resource in the same turn.
- Players can build their wonder by putting a card face down under their wonder stage. You don’t have to show which card you’re using when playing this move. Wonders have to be built stage-by-stage. You can not skip a stage.
- Players can discard the card, facedown, and gain three 1 value coins or one 3 value coin.
Once all players have completed one of these three actions, the turn ends. A new hand begins when players pick up the cards passed to them by their neighbor the direction of play, clockwise or counter-clockwise, is indicated on the back of the cards in each Age.
Ending an Age:
On your sixth hand, you’re left with two cards. You will play one card and discard the other. Additionally, you’ll settle your military differences with your neighbors to the left and right. If you have more shield than your neighbor to your left, then they get a -1 Defeat Token and you get a Victory Token. If you have less shields than your neighbor to your right then you also get one Defeat Token and they get a Victory Token. If you and one or both of your neighbors happen to have the same amounts of shields than no tokens are given. (Note: In Age I the Victory Token is worth +1, in Age II it’s worth +3 and in Age III it’s worth +5).
Ending the Game:
Once you finish Age III and have settled your military differences, start counting your Victory Points. There is a color-coded scoring sheet that is provided in the game to make things easier. The point system works as follows:
- Military Conflicts: Sum up all your military tokens and write down the number.
- Coins: You get 1 victory point for every 3 coins in your possession.
- Wonders: If you have built any of your wonder stages then you get points that are indicated on the board for each stage.
- Structures: Most cards indicate the number
of points you receive when building that structure. The only point system that
is a bit complicated is the green Science cards. The point system for those
cards work as follow:
- Each card is worth 12, so if you have 2 cards with the same symbol, you get 22 points i.e. 4 Victory points.
- For each set of three different symbols you receive 7 Victory points.
- You add the above numbers together, if applicable, and that’s your total on the Science cards.
After adding all the points, whoever has the most points is declared the winner.
There aren’t any specific strategic moves that come in handy all the time since each hand dealt has different cards. However, there are certain things you can do to help your game. Stocking up on resources is a plus, especially for Ages II and III since the cards get more expensive to buy. Also, think about resources that will help your neighbors, since they will have no choice but to pay you for them when they need it. Another thing to keep in mind is if you don’t see a good option to play, then think about which card will benefit your neighbors and either use that to build your Wonder or discard it for coins.
Playtime: The game can take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes to play.
Player age: 10+ from the manufacturer and community.
Community rating: 7.1
Difficulty: Easy to Medium
Creator: Antoine Bauza
Published Year: 2010
Official Website: http://www.7wonders.net/7-wonders/?lang=en
Game Expansions: 7 Wonders Cities, Armada, Wonder Pack, Babel, Leaders Anniversary Pack & Cities Anniversaries Pack.
Game Variation: 7 Wonders Duel, is a 2-player game. Pantheon is its expansion.