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Kingdom Builder Review

Posted: 7 days ago, last updated 5 days ago.

Author: @GeekDadGamer and Rob Prior.


Kingdom Builder is a strategy world-building game where you create a kingdom by placing settlers' houses. You work to build settlements with positions and orientations that meet three specific criteria chosen at the start. This, along with special Location abilities that let you move and grow your settlement in different ways, create a game that is both simple to learn but has considerable depth.

The board is constructed when you start and varies each play. Before starting you pick 3 Kingdom Builder cards that define the gold scoring rules for the round. This might require you to build near mountains, form horizontal lines of buildings and build next to castles terrain.

Each turn you place three settlement tokens on unoccupied hexagons matching the terrain type you draw (grass, fields, desserts, forest). You have to place them adjacent to any existing settlements. If you build next to the Location tiles you get special actions each turn like placing an additional settlements or moving an existing settlement. When someone has placed all their settlements when someone places the last settlement.

What starts as a simple placement game, quickly evolves in to a competition for space. Placement is restrained to start with and so less combative, but as you get more Location tile special abilities you can move into areas other players are working on and even bridge your settlement across rivers. All the while players are competing to find new ways to meet more Kingdom Builder criteria and score more points.

DetailsGame Details

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: 01/01/2011

Genres: Strategy and World Building

Accessibility: 20 features

Pieces: Board, Dice, Placeables, Score Pad and Tokens

Developer: Real Queen Games (@Real_QueenGames)

Players: 2-4



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Learn to Play: This takes half an hour to learn. It's quite a complex game but this is through a simple set of layered rules rather than a lot of things to learn.

Before you play it's important to do the following:
  • Highlight what the different Location abilities offer in the current board.
  • Read through the Kingdom Builder scoring cards so everyone understands.
  • Go through some legal and illegal Settlement placement on the board.

Play Time: This game will take between 45 minutes and 50 minutes to complete.

Play StylePlay Style

You can play with 2 to 4 players in the same room.

You can play this game in the following styles:

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Skill Rating

8+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Provided younger players can cope with others targeting the places they are building, or working to foil their point scoring plans, they can have a good time with this game.

Content Rating

We rate this suitable for 3+ years-olds.


No cost data.


Our Kingdom Builder Accessibility Report documents 20 accessibility features:
The game relies on contextual information (size, adjacency and orientation of terrain, placement of settlements) being processed from visual cues. there is a lot of detail to distinguish and then a lot to keep track of, particularly considering the layered scoring.

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Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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