|Players:||2 - 7 players|
|Time:||45 - 60 minutes|
Between Two Castles of Mad King Ludwig is published by Stonemaier Games as part of a collaboration with Bezier Games.
The king demands a castle! You are a world-renowned master builder who has been asked by the Mad King Ludwig to help design his castles. Projects of such significance require the expertise of more than one person, so for each assignment you are paired with another master builder to execute your grandiose plans. Will your planning and collaborative skills be enough to design the most impressive castles in the world?
Between Two Castles of Mad King Ludwig is a competitive tile-drafting game in which each tile is a room in a castle. You work together with the player on your left to design one castle, and with the player on your right on another castle. On each turn you select two tiles from your hand, reveal them, then work with your partners to place them. To win, you have to share your attention and your devotion between two castles.
I took a long time to research and compare this hybrid game to its parent games 'Between Two Cities' and 'The Castles of Mad King Ludwig', hoping to buy only one (for now). Loved the idea of the unique semi-cooperative left and right sided partnership of Between 2 Cities but also the castle building theme and far more interesting art assets in Mad King Ludwig.
The hybrid delivers the best of both worlds making Between 2 Cities seem homogenous by comparison, expertly integrating all of the mad assets of Ludwig into what becomes a far more creative and satisfying design endeavour. Despite my worry, it doesn't actually turn out to be much more difficult to score than Two cities. Great for 4-7, but also plays 3. Essential game. Unique social dynamic.
I love this game because there is never any downtime waiting around, and the puzzle of where to put each piece you play is so satisfying! The tiles are all so unique it makes the game one you want to stop and look at after the play is over so you can really appreciate the rooms you put together. Great game.
Designing a castle for a luatic king appeals but this is a co-operative game in the order of "Seven Wonders" (as far as I am told) where you need to co-operate with people either side of you to build an amazing castle. Each card has certain bonuses and it is a real mess. This is a very cool game with more players in the mix and should really appeal to people who like the social aspect of games. However, there can only be one winner. Your score is derived by counting both castles next to you and taking the lesser score. That can really suck if one castle comes in at 90+ and the other is under 50.
A hint - get the app Steward, which scans the castles and scores for you! This is an amazing app for just this game. I love the game and really had a hoot with the social dynamic of my "partners". I heard from someone that this was better than "Between Two Cities", but I have never played that one, so must trust some more experienced gamers.