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I don’t usually flog a seven-year-old board game on here but if you love board games go buy Splendor. The game is akin to a fast-paced trading card game like Magic or, more closely, Dominion, and it’s truly a blast.

Conceptually the game is about resource allocation. You’re a Rennaissance jewel trader and you collect jewels to buy resources. The resources include miles, gem-cutters, and towns and nobles come to visit when you have enough resources. The first person to get to 15 resource points wins.

Gameplay is delightfully fast and, most important, the rule book consists of a single page. You set things up, start grabbing gems, and you’re off.

There’s an expansion, Cities of Splendor, that I haven’t tried yet but a regular game has enough replayability that we spent an entire evening playing and replaying the game.

We played a two-player game but it supports up to four players and it’s easy enough for even younger players — I’d say about 8 and older, depending on the child’s math skills — will get the hang of it. It was the first game I’ve played in years that didn’t take an hour or two just to learn.

If you think of grabbing it, use our affiliate link. Let me know what you think.


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By John Biggs

John Biggs is an entrepreneur, consultant, writer, and maker. He spent fifteen years as an editor for Gizmodo, CrunchGear, and TechCrunch and has a deep background in hardware startups, 3D printing, and blockchain. His work has appeared in Men’s Health, Wired, and the New York Times.