Great two player games don’t cross my desk all that often. I find that a lot of games say they can be played with two players but for a really great experience, you need more than 2 players. Not with this week’s game – because it’s a true two player game. Like backgammon or chess, you can only play City Square Off with two players – and I’m addicted.
I mentioned Gamewright’s City Square Off in one of my 2011 Toy Fair trends articles (you can see it HERE). I talked about how tile-placement games (ala Blokus and Cir*Kis) were still on the rise and although the trend may start to feel stale soon, I though that City Square Off was different and fun. And I was so right! At Toy Fair I rarely get to play games from start to finish, so I only get the general idea of what is going on and if it might be fun. And City Square Off is. Gamewright was nice enough to send me a copy to try out and we played about 20 times over Memorial Day weekend alone.
In City Square Off each player starts with a board and a “city.” I like using the city I’ve lovingly dubbed “the Skywalker Residence” because it looks like the place Luke grew up on Tatooine (okay maybe not a lot like it…but it does look like it belongs on Tatooine). There are three other cities to choose from and it really doesn’t matter which one you pick but it needs to be placed over the Gamewright logo in the middle of your board. From there, the cards are shuffled and then the top one is flipped over. Both players take the piece shown on the card and place it adjacent to their City. Pieces can be rotated in any direction and even flipped over so how you put it on the board is up to you, it just must be touching the City or, as the game progresses, another piece. The game ends when a player cannot place a piece on their board without it hanging off the side. If both players can’t place a piece on the same turn, then each person counts up the biggest mass of adjacent open spaces and whoever has the highest number wins!
There are also a couple game variations in the box that are just as fun to play, but I’ll let you discover them on your own. I highly recommend this game and hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
Note: I also have to give mad props to whoever designed their packaging. The box looks great — but it’s the inside packaging that made me melt. There is a black plastic piece sorter that has 4 spaces: 2 for the colored tiles, one for cities and one for cards — and oh my gosh – the boards snap in place like a lid so the don’t get all jumbled up inside the box. OUTSTANDING!
City Square Off Stats
- ~$20 Amazon and some mom & pop retailers
- 2 players ONLY
- ~8-10 minutes per game
- Ages 8 and up is what the box says…I say 6 and up