Copenhagen

RRP: £44.99

NOW £34.78
RRP £44.99

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On initial glance, Copenhagen looks like another one of those ‘Tetris’ games like Barenpark or Arraial, and while the shaped tiles and building nature of the game do give that impression, there are a few things that differentiate it from its peers. Tasked with designing one of the facades for the colourful waterside houses, players will attempt to build multi coloured rows an…
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Category Tags , SKU ZBG-QUE10402 Availability Restock Expected
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Awards

Rating

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

You Might Like

  • It's easy to learn.
  • It's different to other Tetris-style games.
  • A short playtime.

Might Not Like

  • Nothing strictly new here.
  • It doesn't stand up well to repeat plays in the same setting.
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Description

On initial glance, Copenhagen looks like another one of those ‘Tetris’ games like Barenpark or Arraial, and while the shaped tiles and building nature of the game do give that impression, there are a few things that differentiate it from its peers.

Tasked with designing one of the facades for the colourful waterside houses, players will attempt to build multi coloured rows and columns. As any self-respecting facade designers know, windows are awesome, so getting a full row or column of windows is rewarded with more points. To help matters further, when you cover up a shield icon you will be able to gain an extra power, refresh your existing powers, or take a single window tile.

Tiles come in various shapes and sizes, and to obtain them you will play cards in a fashion that is recognisable to anyone who has played Ticket to Ride. On your turn you may take two cards from the display or play a set of cards of the same colour to claim a tile. The length of the tile depends on the number of cards played and discounts can be had for building the same colour tiles adjacent to each other.

The rules of building are fairly loose. If there is at least one tile below you can build any shaped tile above. The winner of the game is the player who gets to 12 points first. Power tiles are varied and all are useful. This gives you pause and think about whether to earn a new one or reset your existing ones, and the layout of windows makes rushing just to make rows and columns or taking more time to get those point doubling windows? Games are fast and the Ticket to Ride style card play works well in this setting.

Copenhagen doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but by combining elements of other games it creates a pleasant and entertaining game.

Player Count: 2-4
Time: 20-40 Minutes
Age: 8+

Games with Tetris shaped pieces are the most popular board game genre at the moment. However, there sure are a lot of them. Copenhagen, from Queen Games, takes the Tetris love and mashes it together with Ticket to Ride style card play. Read on to see if that plays out as promisingly as it sounds!

Copenhagen

The game sees you attempting to decorate the buildings of Copenhagen with colourful facade tiles to score points. So yeah, apart from an excuse for looking nice, the theme is light. This isn't really noticeable once you start playing as the only theme you will notice is those flipping windows!

Points are achieved by creating rows and columns with the facade tiles. You get one point for a row and two for a column. Unless the row or column is made entirely of windows. Sounds easy? The thing is, the designers have deliberately put the windows in awkward places. As a result, you often have to decide between the quicker row and the longer, more point-heavy, columns.

The way you get the facade tiles is the aforementioned Ticket to Ride system. Seven cards are laid out in a horse shoe shape and on your turn you can take two adjacent cards or build a facade tile. Rules for building are very friendly with the only hard and fast rules being that tile must be within the building grid and supported beneath by either the floor or another tile.

You must turn in the amount of cards matching the colour and size of the tile you wish to use unless you are playing it adjacent to a tile of the same colour in which case you get a one card discount.

Copenhagen Board Game Components (Credit: Queen Games)

Ticket to Copenhagen

On your turn, as well as taking cards or building, you can activate a bonus tile. Once used these are flipped over. Cover a coat of arms, however, and you also get a bonus action. You get to choose from taking a single window piece, a bonus tile, or flipping all your used bonus tiles back to their usable side.

So, Copenhagen is familiar and a little bit different at the same time. I have to say that this mash up works. You very quickly learn that building in Copenhagen is not a case of neatly filling in all the gaps, ala Barenpark or Patchwork, but building rows and columns quickly. The game is blisteringly fast with the first player to hit 12 points ending the game instantly. The game can also end when the deck has been run through twice. For reference, four-player games usually go the way of the deck while lower player counts see the 12-point ending more often.

Winning the game is incredibly satisfying for you and frustrating for everybody else as they don't get an extra turn to try and overtake you, but it fits with the short play style. There can be a runaway leader problem in games where some players are new and some have played before, but it erodes after one play.

The big question is - Is this the best Tetrisy game out there? For me, almost. Barenpark has remained by go to Tetrisy game and this does nothing to change that, but Copenhagen has come closer than most. Barenpark's big issue is its set-up time. Copenhagen is quick to play and set-up, and while replay-ability may be lower without expansions, you won't notice or mind unless you play it over and over again without break!

The Bottom Line on Copenhagen

Copenhagen combines card selection, familiar to fans of Ticket to Ride, with tile placement in a smooth and elegant way. For those looking for a quick, satisfying and pretty game Copenhagen is a solid recommendation.

  • Zatu Review Summary
  • Zatu Score

    Rating

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

    You might like

    • It's easy to learn.
    • It's different to other Tetris-style games.
    • A short playtime.

    Might not like

    • Nothing strictly new here.
    • It doesn't stand up well to repeat plays in the same setting.