Zed has hand-picked an exciting and varied selection of games in his subscription box. Expect to receive some of the best games as well as a few surprises!

    Subscribe Now »

    Looking for the latest new releases? Then this is the subscription for you, each month you’ll receive an amazing box full of just the newest & biggest games!

    Subscribe Now »

    Our two new Mystery Box offerings will help you pick up some of the latest top of the range games and exclusive goodies, but at a much lower price!

    Order Now »

    Menu

    Buy 3, get 3% off - use code ZATU3 · Buy 5, get 5% off - use code ZATU5

    Buy The Game

    Awards

    Rating

    • Artwork
    • Complexity
    • Replayability
    • Player Interaction
    • Component Quality

    You Might Like

    • The strategic elements.
    • The design of the cards.
    • The collecting aspect.

    Might Not Like

    • The element of luck.
    • The colour issues on the cards.

    Have you tried?

    Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here

    Lost Cities: The Board Game Review

    Lost Cities Board Game Review

    The first time I played Lost Cities, it was the two-player travel version. We enjoyed it a lot and when we saw the board game (designed by Reiner Knizia) on special offer we decided it would be good to introduce the kid to it. It has quickly become our go to family game.

    Gameplay

    There is an element of luck in Lost Cities, and a heavy dose of strategy. You cannot help the cards you draw but it is your choice when to blink, so to speak.

    You start off with eight cards. There are five differing colours of cards which correspond to five paths on the board. The object of the game is to move your people along the paths gathering points as you go. To do this you plot a route by playing the cards – these have numbers on them from zero to 10.

    This sounds very simple but there are complications. You don’t have to go to all the areas. If you don’t have the right cards then sometimes you are better off not starting on the path at all. At the paths start off with minus points – you start on -20 and move up through -15, -10 and finally +5. You also have one big person, with them you win (or lose) double points – you decide which path to put them on.

    As you go along the path you collect tokens that are either extra points, artefacts, or the ability to jump an extra square. The artefacts are counted up at the end of the game and become plus or minus points depending on quantity.

    Lost Cities can be played once, or over three rounds. There are two lots of each card in the pack. So, if you have a blue 10 and an opponent has a blue 10, then no one else is going to get one. If you don’t want to place a card you can discard one and then either pick a new one from the stack or one that someone else has discarded. You can’t play this card on this turn though, and you can only pick from the top of the discard piles.

    There is a very fine balance in terms of which cards to play. If you play a zero is it crazy to follow it with a seven, even if you have the eight, nine and 10 to follow. Only you can decide. The game is over when all the cards are used or when five people have travelled over the bridge (about three quarters of the way along the path).

    At the end of the game the person with the most points – converted into coins – wins. To play a three round game takes about 45 minutes.

    Lost Cities - The Board Game Components (Credit: Kosmos)

    Components

    There aren’t too many components in Lost Cities, but those there are seemingly sturdy enough. The cards are a lovely design. However, some of the blue cards have a bit of green on and vice versa. The situation is the same with the red and black cards. We have all made the mistake at one time or another. It can help to make sure you arrange them in your hand with the largest section of colour saturation on view.

    Replay Value

    The replay value with Lost Cities is infinite. The game changes every time, for varying reasons. It's partly because of each of the following.

    • The cards you're dealt.
    • The items you collect change place each turn.
    • You cannot control what your opponents do, or pick up.

    Interaction and Engagement

    Lots of shouts of ‘you kept that card from me on purpose!’ Usually this is exactly the case. Cards you pick up but can’t use can be squirrelled away in your hand to stop someone else from using them. We have on occasion come to an agreement to only pick from the discard pile for an extra hand to stop the stack from running out and the game being over.

    Lost Cities does give a high level of engagement and you can chose many different strategies. Our daughter likes to swap lots of cards in and out to create good paths. I like to collect lots of artefacts, whilst my partner has a very good eye for the balance between using cards and swapping cards.

    Final Thoughts on Lost Cities

    I questioned spending money on a game we already had in another format. However, I'm pleased that I've been proved wrong. We really like to play Lost Cities and I think the learning of tactics is vaguely educational as well. Decision making needs to be fairly quick and you often see the consequences of your actions play out in a game. As a result, it’s quite a good learning tool.

    Zatu Score

    Rating

    • Artwork
    • Complexity
    • Replayability
    • Player Interaction
    • Component Quality

    You might like

    • The strategic elements.
    • The design of the cards.
    • The collecting aspect.

    Might not like

    • The element of luck.
    • The colour issues on the cards.

    Zatu Blog

    Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here

    Join us today to receive exclusive discounts, get your hands on all the new releases and much more!

    Excellent
    08000075444
    Bowthorpe Main Centre, Unit 15, Norwich NR5 9HA
    Zatu Games is rated 4.86 based on 13412
    Reviews

    Amazing service and selection and quick resolution of problems

    Amazing service and selection and quick resolution of problems

    Great prices and great customer service when my parcel got lost in the post!

    Great prices and great customer service when my parcel got lost in the post!

    We've ordered many games now from Zatu. They offer a very extensive selection of games (great for people wanting to try new things) and often have discounted prices. Fast postage too (often with recycled boxes)!

    We've ordered many games now from Zatu. They offer a very extensive selection of games (great for people wanting to try new things) and often have discounted prices. Fast postage too (often with recycled boxes)!

    We always go straight to Zatu for inspiration when we’re looking for something new to play. Their passion and enthusiasm for games is awesome and they are incredibly competitive with pricing it’s a win:win!!

    We always go straight to Zatu for inspiration when we’re looking for something new to play. Their passion and enthusiasm for games is awesome and they are incredibly competitive with pricing it’s a win:win!!

    Easy and quick

    Easy and quick

    Game arrived on time, perfectly packaged.

    Game arrived on time, perfectly packaged.

    Excellent service, games are always immaculate, great price and supporting this company is always good. Highly recommend Zatu Games, fast responding online and super friendly.

    Excellent service, games are always immaculate, great price and supporting this company is always good. Highly recommend Zatu Games, fast responding online and super friendly.

    My go to for board games. Great customer service when needed. Fast delivery and great prices!!

    My go to for board games. Great customer service when needed. Fast delivery and great prices!!

    Cheap prices, fast delivery it has it all. The only bad thing I can think is that you have to find the website for what ever reason I have never seen it advertised which is a same as it is Great

    Cheap prices, fast delivery it has it all. The only bad thing I can think is that you have to find the website for what ever reason I have never seen it advertised which is a same as it is Great

    Bought 5 games a few weeks back to get me and a few started doing games night. Really fast service and the games were brilliant. Just wish they'd have more of USA markets boardgames over here. Love the victory points service and will be definitely be using them as they increase with more purchases. Apart from that, good overall service. :)

    Bought 5 games a few weeks back to get me and a few started doing games night. Really fast service and the games were brilliant. Just wish they'd have more of USA markets boardgames over here. Love the victory points service and will be definitely be using them as they increase with more purchases. Apart from that, good overall service. :)

    Read All Reviews