If you’re looking for a game mechanic with a diverse range of game options, look no further than tile placement games. Whether you want to build a Renaissance-era empire, colonize Mars, or just knit a beautiful quilt, there’s a tile-placement game for you. There’s a game to fit any age group or playing time you could possibly want! Here are our top picks for the best tile placement board games.
🏆 Our Top Picks for Best Tile Placement Board Games
In a hurry? Take a quick peek before you go.
Something tells me that Elon Musk had something to do with this… In this Euro board game, occupying Mars becomes reality. It’s the 2400’s, and humans are quite literally Terraforming Mars. You will quickly learn just how byzantine recreating an Earth-life planet can be.
Play the role of a corporation endeavoring to make Mars habitable. Work to warm the planet, increase oxygen levels and create oceans, while promoting your company’s economic interests. Players will work together for the greater good of Mars, but all will strive to earn victory points for going above and beyond in their individual projects.
Tiles represent oceans, cities, forests and you will compete with your opponents for the best tile placements on the gameboard. Will you be the one who transforms The Red Planet?
In the south of France lies a fortress where you can relish the beauty of the picturesque, medieval citadel that is Carcassonne. As you’ll find while playing, the art in this game is modeled after said extraordinary fortress.
Tile by tile, players will lay the landscape around the city. Tiles come in the form of cities, fields, roads, and monasteries, with each placement expanding the territory. As the map grows, you will need to have your wits about you to make tough decisions to place tiles to advance yourself forward or lay tiles that upset your opponents’ strategies.
Carcassonne is a simple, yet strategic tile placement game. It is great for people of all ages — from beginners to veteran gamers. Plus, there are a variety of expansion packs available, so the fun can continue on and on!
The Pacific Northwest is one of the most captivating places in the United States. The vast snow-capped mountains, brilliant, lush greenery, and diverse wildlife are an outdoorsy person’s dream. In Cascadia, you’ll be tasked with creating the most balanced ecosystem in the region.
There is no gameboard, only hexagon-shaped tiles, so this game has a bit of a puzzle feel to it. The “puzzles” that players create will be their own terrain, which will continue to grow and become populated with animals inhabiting these areas.
Earn points by growing landscapes and keeping akin terrain together while creating a harmonious habitat for the animals. Because each animal has more than one way of scoring, the game stays varied and offers a high replay value.
Cascadia is great for all the nature and animal lovers out there. It is not very competitive and is simple and quick to learn and play. The artwork on the cards and tiles perfectly illustrates the raw, effortless beauty of the wilderness. It is an easy-going game that would make a great addition to any board game collection.
Playing time: 30-45mins
The Alhambra Palace in Spain certainly is something to marvel at. It is so dazzling, in fact, that the vivid reflections of the stained glass caught King Manuel I of Portugal’s eye. After seeing the beauty of the Palace, he requested his own be adorned in the same Moorish tiles.
Let your inner artisan run free as you strategically select and place tiles on your board. Each tile you choose will affect what other players can subsequently use. Earn bonus points for collecting particular sets of tiles and creating specific arrangements. Remember, unused tiles will work against you and cost you points at the end of the game. And you don’t want to aid in your opponents’ victory.
Playing time: 30mins
Expand your city throughout multiple generations in My City! This competitive legacy game is played in 24 short episodes, where each choice you make will affect future episodes.
Watch cities evolve and industrialize as you place the Tetris-like building-shaped tiles intentionally. Players will need to lay their tiles in grid patterns, leaving minimal green space. This gives the game a slight puzzle feel. Each episode will bring new, interesting challenges to overcome, and bonuses to be earned.
What’s particularly great about this game is that the board is double-sided. If you do not wish to play in a legacy format, the reverse side has a replayable option. For legacy play, the episodes are quick and you can choose how many to play in each sitting. This game is a great way to keep friends or family getting together to see who can build the ultimate city.
Playing time: 15-25mins
If you’ve ever wondered what it’d be like to build and rule your own kingdom, Kingdomino is for you! Think of this award-wining game as traditional dominoes with a feudal twist.
As a lord, you will strategically choose dominoes to surround your castle and expand your existing kingdom. Explore forests, wastelands, and water, remembering that pieces laid will need to be adjacent to each other.
Outscore the other lords of the lands by completing your grid with the most connected tiles. And keep your eye out for the pieces with the treasured crown. The tiles are bright and fun and the competitive edge will keep everyone engaged!
This game is very quick, easy to learn, and has a high replay value! So, gather your knights and damsels and take a seat at the round table with Kingdomino this game night.
The Castles of Burgundy
Playing time: 30-90mins
Goodbye medieval times, hello Renaissance era! Imagine yourself as a noble in 15th century France. You’re in control of your own princedom, and you have a vision of further prosperity in your lands.
You and your opponents are all aiming to build ostentatious castles, expand your realms and gain the most power. This game is strategic and challenging, as you will find while drafting tiles. Each tile serves a purpose and each region will utilize a certain kind of tile. Find the proper balance between agriculture, mining, and building up your settlements to come out ahead of competitors.
The Castles of Burgundy is where dice game meets tile placement game. It is a great strategy game for the more competitive board gamers. So, set up the board and grab yourself a chalice of pinot noir with this game. After all, you’ll want to set the proper scene.
Playing time: 15-30mins
Give the artsy handicrafter in you a chance to shine as you cut, sew, and stitch hand-selected materials together to create aesthetic designs. This delightfully unique 2-player game will have opponents vying to create the most beautiful and top-scoring quilt.
Carefully purchase patches using buttons- the currency of needleworking, of course — and add to your gameboard. Remember, patchwork is an art form, and no one said it was going to be easy. Sometimes, the patches just don’t mesh well together, and you’ll need to try again. But when they do fit, you’ll create a masterpiece you can be proud of.
The tiles (patches) are beautiful, charming patterns with decorative buttons sure to make your quilt one of a kind. Players will work to fill their 9×9 boards and outscore their rival quilt maker.
Patchwork is easy to learn and play at the drop of a pin. It is a wholesome game that is great for families or beginners. Don’t let the quilting theme throw you off, this game is a must-have addition to your collection.
Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King
Playing time: 30-50mins
The Isle of Skye in Scotland is a picturesque, fairytale-resembling region where you’ll find medieval castles, infamous fairy pools, and jaw-dropping landscapes. Oh, and of course, highland cows — moo! In this Euro game, you’ll be transported to this beautifully diverse part of the world.
As chieftain of your clan, you will be responsible for building up your territory in this competitive tile-placement game. Players will attempt to sell their tiles, setting appropriate prices to maximize profits, while also not being stuck buying back their unsold tiles. Planning and strategy are necessary to maximize your points earned and take into account the ever-changing board. Will your clan reign supreme in the end?
Because only four of your sixteen tiles will earn you points, each game is vastly different, leading to a high replay value and countless outcomes. As for the aesthetics, the tiles are vibrant and colorful, truthfully depicting the raw beauty of the magical Isle itself. Everyone will love playing Isle of Skye.
Playing time: 45mins
We bet you didn’t come here looking for a lesson in farming, but when the animal in your care can eat over 80 pounds of bamboo a day… you need to be on top of your game.
This is no ordinary panda. This panda represents the peace that needs to be kept between Japan and China per a peace offering made ages ago. You have been bestowed the duty to tend to the bamboo garden for this beloved animal. Surely you can bear-ly contain your excitement. Choose to farm and grow one of three types of bamboo and feed the panda’s insatiable appetite all the while. The player who grows the most bamboo will be victorious.
The game itself is beautiful. From the vividly illustrated tiles to the colorful, miniature game pieces, it is truly a work of art. Additionally, it is simple to play, making it a great gateway game. Regardless of experience level, this game is sure to be a stu-panda-ous addition to your next game night!
We hope you enjoyed our list of the best tile-placement board games! The tile-laying mechanic is such a unique style of gameplay that really allows for endless combinations, tons of replayability, and a completely new experience each time you play.
Have you tried any of the games on this list? Did we miss any of your favorite tile-placement games? Drop a comment below and let us know. We’d love to hear from you!