Crystal Palace is a Euro-style board game by Capstone Games. It’s not about the football team, nor a crystalline royal castle! Instead, players head back in time to an era of marvellous inventions. Nations compete in 1851, looking to impress at the first-ever World Fair in the Crystal Palace.
Like ‘heavyweight’ games, layers of complexity and player interaction? You’ll love Crystal Palace. There’s plenty of wonderful decisions to make, throughout. Dice placement lies at the heart of the game, with superb twists along the way. In a standard game with this mechanism, you’d roll dice and then place them in locations, reacting to the results. Not in Crystal Palace. Here, you don’t roll the dice… Instead, you decide what the numbers are!
Everyone picks (simultaneous, and in secret) which pip values they want at the start of each round. Sure, you could pick a bunch of sixes. But beware: you have to pay a cost per pip! Like any Euro-style game worth it’s salt, money is tight in Crystal Palace. On your turn you can visit eight different locations. The Patent Office provides patents for inventions. Later, you’ll try to turn these into inventions, for big points. And, the earlier you invent them, the more points you’ll earn! The Bank of England, meanwhile, provides shares. You meet inventors at the Reform Club. The London Times creates ‘buzz’ for you, which unlocks further benefits.
Each location has limited spaces with specified numbers shown. Only dice with a pip value equal to or higher than said numbers can sit here. Once everyone has placed their dice, the locations then trigger one at a time. The highest-placed dice value in each location activates first. As each round progresses, you’ll have be wise with your placement, to ensure you get what you need.
After five rounds, the player with the most points wins. What will you invent at the Crystal Palace?
Players Count: 2-5 player
Time: 90-150 minutes