After our wedding we wanted to catch up on the gaming scene, and made a list of games that seemed to be popular before heading to a games cafe. The first one we found when there was Quadropolis – and it was the first one we played.
It was a bit of a rocky start – the instructions weren’t laid out in the best way – but once we got it we loved it.
So Quadropolis also became the first game we bought after the wedding.
What is Quadropolis?
Quadropolis is by Days of Wonder, I’m sure you recognize the name of those who brought us Ticket to Ride, one of the essential gateway games. Quadropolis is also quick to pick up, but a bit more strategy than classic TTR – it’s a tile-laying and, in a way, a resource management and worker placement game.
Taking available buildings from the main board, each player strategically builds their own city while trying to maximize points and making sure they have enough energy and people for the city to be running. But you can’t place pieces all willy-nilly, there are rules – and that’s when your brain really starts working.
What’s in the Box?
Not a “beautiful” game but they did a good job on the art – I particularly love the drawing on the back of the main mat means it looks pretty cool when you first open it up.The art is otherwise simplistic but attractive – and kinda cute. It looks like a really well-drawn children’s book on urban planning.
The organization on the inside can make any of you who get satisfied by organizational things insanely happy. It sorts all the tiles for you (there’s a classic version and an expert version), keeps player pieces in separate slots… there’s a space for everything – it even thought through what to do after you open and pop out all the pieces!
Quadropolis is played in four rounds (classic version). After setting up the buildings on the main play mat (some will be turned over depending on how many players), you start the rounds going back and forth building your cities.
With each round, the decided first player takes one of their four architects and places it in pointing down a column or line on the main mat. The player must then take the building in the square numbered on the architect on the line/column it’s pointing too.
You then place the “Urbanist” in the new empty space. When picking from the board, you cannot have your architect pointing at the architect, so this will limit your choices along with the flipped buildings.
The player will then place it on their own map. They can place the piece on any open square in the row or column with the number of the architect. The different colours mark districts – they don’t affect your placements, but your points – so you will want to plan accordingly.
Some buildings will allow you to take resources – red energy or little blue meeple people. It’s at this point in the round a player would take the resources.
Some buildings require these resource to get points. You can move them around whenever you want during the game, but before you decide points you must decide their final position.
Play then continues around to other players who follow the same steps. Once all the architects are gone, players regain their architects and clear the mat and place the next rounds buildings (it’s marked on the back which round they are for).
After four rounds of this (ending once all architects are gone from the fourth round collecting the ‘4’ buildings) all resources must be placed – and then it’s time to count points.
The basics for points are as follows: Apartment towers score per number of floors (you can stack them in later rounds, as they can be placed in the row/column or floor number of an architect), shops gain points for how many people you put in them, public services gain points for the number of districts you’ve put them in, parks gain points per adjacent apartment towers, factories gain points for adjacent shops and harbors and harbors gain points when aligned with other harbors.
Tally up on the score sheet to see who won!
- Hers – 1. Make sure you thoroughly understand the point system. 2. Pick a strategy within the first round, either residential (towers, parks, public services concentration) or commercial (harbors and factories), and stick with it. 3. Shops work for either strategy, so always go for them and stack them full – one at a time. Don’t divide people between shops.
- His – Think about how you can play the architect from all angles, there are many ways to reach the building you want to reach.
Although the rules they provide weren’t straight forward to follow, we understood within the first round and picked it up fast. We knew we were going to buy it too, because it’s our type of game – we love resource management and strategic tile placement. It’s a real workout for your brain.
Quadropolis is therefore easy to pick up, quick enough to play, fun, and a good little brain challenge.
We’ll give it a 7/10 for a well-rounded game for the enthusiastic hobbyist.
- 2-4 players
- 45 minutes
- 8+ years old
- $60-$70 CAD.