How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

By: Dennis B. B. Taylor

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Welcome to our complete guide on how to play Small World, the popular board game that combines strategy, conquest, and fantasy. Small World is a game of epic proportions, where players take on the roles of different fantasy races and vie for control of a small world filled with magic and adventure. In this guide, we will walk you through the rules, strategies, and tips to help you become a master of Small World.

In Small World, each player chooses a combination of a fantasy race and a special power, such as “Flying Elves” or “Commando Orcs”. These combinations determine the unique abilities and advantages that each player will have throughout the game. The goal is to conquer as many regions as possible and earn victory points, which are awarded for controlling territories and achieving certain objectives.

The game is played over a series of rounds, with each round consisting of several turns. On your turn, you will have the opportunity to conquer new regions, attack other players, and reinforce your existing territories. The key to success in Small World is knowing when to expand your empire and when to go into decline. Going into decline allows you to choose a new race and power combination, giving you fresh opportunities and advantages.

Throughout the game, you will encounter various obstacles and challenges, such as fortified regions, special abilities of other players, and even the dreaded “Lost Tribes” that can disrupt your plans. It is important to adapt your strategy and make tactical decisions based on the changing landscape of the game. Small World offers endless possibilities and replayability, making each game a unique and exciting experience.

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to start playing Small World and improve your skills. From understanding the basic rules to mastering advanced strategies, we will cover it all. So gather your friends, choose your fantasy race, and embark on an epic journey in the world of Small World!

Game Setup and Components

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Before diving into the world of Small World, it’s important to understand the game setup and familiarize yourself with its components. This will ensure a smooth and enjoyable gaming experience.

Game Setup

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Setting up Small World is a relatively straightforward process. Follow these steps to get started:

  1. Place the game board in the center of the playing area. Make sure all players have easy access to it.
  2. Shuffle the race banners and place them face down in a stack next to the game board.
  3. Shuffle the special power badges and place them face down in a separate stack next to the race banners.
  4. Each player chooses a color and takes the matching set of colored tokens, including victory coins and race tokens.
  5. Place the victory point tokens and the reinforcement die within reach of all players.
  6. Determine the number of turns based on the number of players and set the round marker accordingly.
  7. Randomly select a starting player and give them the first player token.


How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Small World comes with a variety of components that add depth and strategy to the game. Here are the main components you’ll find in the box:

  • Game Board: The game board depicts the world of Small World, divided into different regions and territories.
  • Race Banners: These cards represent the different fantasy races that players can control during the game.
  • Special Power Badges: These cards provide unique abilities and advantages to the player’s chosen race.
  • Colored Tokens: Each player has a set of colored tokens, including victory coins and race tokens, to represent their control over territories and resources.
  • Victory Point Tokens: These tokens are used to track each player’s victory points throughout the game.
  • Reinforcement Die: The reinforcement die is used to determine the number of additional race tokens players can deploy each turn.
  • Round Marker: The round marker indicates the current round of the game.
  • First Player Token: This token is given to the starting player and is passed clockwise to indicate the turn order.

By understanding the game setup and components, you’ll be well-prepared to embark on your Small World adventure. So gather your friends, choose your races, and conquer the world!

Gameplay and Rules

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Small World is a strategy board game that takes place in a fantasy world where players control different races and try to conquer as much territory as possible. The game is played on a board that represents the world map, divided into different regions.

At the beginning of the game, each player chooses a race and a special power combination. These combinations determine the abilities and strengths of the player’s race. Each race has a unique ability that can be used to gain an advantage in the game.

The game is played in turns, with each player taking their turn in clockwise order. On their turn, players can do the following actions:

  1. Conquer: Players can choose to conquer regions adjacent to their existing territories. To conquer a region, players must have enough tokens to match the number of regions in that territory.
  2. Redeploy: After conquering regions, players can redeploy their tokens to reinforce their territories or to attack other players.
  3. Score: At the end of each turn, players score points based on the number of regions they control and any special abilities they have.
  4. Decline: After a certain number of turns, players can choose to decline their race and choose a new one. Declining allows players to start fresh with a new race and special power combination.

The game continues until a certain number of turns have been played or until one player reaches a certain number of victory points. The player with the most victory points at the end of the game is declared the winner.

Small World is a game that requires strategic thinking and careful planning. Players must decide when to conquer, when to redeploy, and when to decline their race. The combination of different races and special powers adds depth and variety to the gameplay, making each game unique and challenging.

Number of Players Playing Time Recommended Age
2-5 players 60-90 minutes 8 years and up

Strategy and Tips

How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Playing Small World requires a combination of strategic thinking and adaptability. Here are some tips to help you improve your gameplay:

1. Choose your race and special power wisely: Each race and special power combination has its own strengths and weaknesses. Consider the board layout and the other players’ choices before making your decision. Try to find a combination that complements your play style and offers strategic advantages.

2. Expand quickly: Small World is all about conquering territories and gaining control. Don’t be afraid to expand aggressively in the early game to secure valuable regions and deny your opponents resources.

3. Balance offense and defense: While expanding is important, it’s also crucial to defend your territories. Leave enough units behind to protect your borders and prevent easy conquests by your opponents.

4. Timing is key: Knowing when to go into decline and when to switch races is crucial. Going into decline too early can leave you vulnerable, while waiting too long can result in missed opportunities. Pay attention to the board state and the actions of other players to make informed decisions.

5. Watch your opponents: Keep an eye on what your opponents are doing. Look for patterns in their strategies and adapt accordingly. If a player is focusing on a particular region or race, try to counter their moves and disrupt their plans.

6. Use your special power effectively: Each special power has unique abilities that can give you an edge in the game. Make sure to utilize your power to its full potential and consider how it can synergize with your race’s abilities.

7. Be flexible: Small World is a dynamic game, and the board state can change rapidly. Be prepared to adapt your strategy based on the actions of other players and the evolving game situation.

8. Don’t neglect the objective: While conquering territories is important, don’t forget about the objective cards. Fulfilling the objectives can earn you valuable victory points and give you an advantage over your opponents.

9. Plan ahead: Think several turns ahead and anticipate the consequences of your actions. Consider the potential moves of your opponents and plan your strategy accordingly.

10. Have fun: Small World is a game of strategy and competition, but it’s also meant to be enjoyed. Don’t get too caught up in winning or losing and remember to have fun with your friends and fellow players.

By following these strategies and tips, you can improve your gameplay and increase your chances of success in Small World.

Video:How to Play Small World: A Complete Guide

Small World in about 3 minutes

Small World: Wil Wheaton, Jenna Busch, Grant Imahara, Sean Plott. TableTop, Episode 1

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