Toledo is a new 4 player game from Kosmos and soon to be published in English by Mayfair. Design credit goes to Martin Wallace. This is not a typical Martin Wallace game. It is a light eurogame. In the game, you try to collect gems and steel to be turned into wonderful swords and then take these swords to the fortress of Alcazar in the city of Toledo. Each player has 5 workers that must travel along a path through Spain to collect the materials and take them to the sword smith. Once the sword is made, one of the workers must continue on to Alcazar and deliver the sword.
Components include a rule book, a colorful mounted board, 5 meeples of each color, a deck of cards (used for movement and cash), 5 art cards, 8 business tiles of each color, 2 tavern tiles, 1 El Greco tile, a number of sword tiles (4 vp to 15 vp), some movement tiles, and some sword master tiles.
Each player begins the game with 5 helpers at the cathedral (start space), 6 cards in their hand, and their 8 business tiles off the board. The 2 taverns and 1 El Greco tile are placed on the designated spots on the board. The Art cards are placed with the highest victory point (3) painting on top then 2, 1, 1, and 1. There is a place for the cards, discards, sword tiles, sword master tiles, movement tiles, gems, and steel ingots on the board. A first player is chosen.
Each turn a player may take 1 of 4 options. Play continue clockwise after the first player.
1.Draw 2 cards from the deck. That's it.
2.Move one or more helpers. Play a card. The number on the card is the number of movement points you must use to move one helper. That helper can stop on a business tile. If the business is open (has a spot open for a helper), you must pay one card to the owner (free if you own the tile) and immediately gain the item (gem, steel, sword master tile, sword). The art business sells the top art card and the tavern sells 3 cards from the top of the deck. You pay a card to the discard pile for the tavern and art dealer. If you want to play another identical number card, you can move another helper or the same one again. If there is not an open spot on the business, you can play another identical card and continue moving or challenge one of the players on the tile to a duel. You cannot challenge yourself. It is a best 2 out of 3 duel. There are pictures on the bottom of the cards showing a sword fight. The attacker or the defender is highlighted. As cards are turned over this identifies who wins that round. The sword master tiles can adjust some battles. The loser goes back to the Cathedral. The current player can continue their turn if they want to.
3.Place a business. Put one of your businesses on any open spot on the board. You may place a business with 2 or 1 opening.
4.Return a helper to the cathedral (start spot). This is even stated in the rules as a rare choice. The reason you might want to go back is that you have the right cards to pick up a lot of stuff on one turn, if you are at the start.
The game ends when one player has 3 helpers in Alcazar. Each of the other players gets one more turn. Swords that reach Alcazar are worth their printed value. Other swords are half value and gems not used are exchanged at 2 gems = 1 VP.
Toledo is a quick game. The card movement system and the cards as cash keeps the game close. A player may use several cards one turn but will need to refresh their hand to do this again. There is no hand limit so hording a few cards may be a good idea. My first game ended 21, 20, 19, 14. I moved my 3rd helper to the fortress to end the game with 19 points so I got beat by 2 others. One turn made the difference. This is a good game with an interesting theme. Families could play this. There is some strategy about when to play some cards and even losing duels to get back to the start has its place. Most will find a fun, quick game that is worth owning.
Last edited by Charlie Davis; 04-19-2008 at 04:46 PM.
Reason: Corrected a few grammatical errors