Small World Board Game

Small World Board Game

Small World from Days of Wonder and Asmodee is a zany, light-hearted civilization game. This game is designed by Philippe Keyaerts as a fantasy follow-up to his award-winning Vinci.

Players: 2-5

Game Time: 40-80min

Complexity: Medium

Age: 8+

Release Year: 2009

There is a cast of characters who live in the Small World, such as dwarves, wizards, amazons, giants, orcs, and even humans. As there are too many races living off the land, space is getting tight, making it hard to accommodate them all.

In the Small World board game, gamers will take on the roles of different races; everyone will have unique special powers. Throughout the game, each player will try to build his empire by conquering and holding as many regions as possible in order to earn victory points.

In this competitive game, the players have to pick the right combination from the 14 different fantasy races and 20 unique special powers.

And each player has to rush to expand his empires, often at the expense of weaker neighbors, as expansion goes by sending troops to weaker adjacent lands or neighbors and occupying those territories.

Also, you must know when to push your own over-extended civilization into decline and ride a new one to victory as the Small World is a war game that tracks the rise and fall of civilizations over the game. while you dominate other civilizations, keep in mind that yours is doomed as well

At the end of every turn, players score coins for every territory their races occupy. When the game ends, the player who owns the most coins will be the winner.

Game Components

2 Double-Sided Game Boards

14 Fantasy Races with matching banners & tokens

20 Special Power badges

10 Troll Lairs, 9 Mountains, 2 Holes, 6 Fortresses, 5 Encampments, Game Turn Marker

2 Heroes & 1 Dragon

109 Victory Coins

6 Player Summary Sheets

1 Reinforcement Die

1 Rules Booklet

Small World has two separate double-sided game boards. Those great game boards are all linen-textured cardboard that shows off different regions, all hand-drawn but colored to show their type: swamp, mountain, hill, field, or water. The art is very attractive.

The game comes with one simple wooden die. And the game box involves a little plastic container for all the race tokens. The container also comes with a snap-on top that will keep all the tokens in place once it has been closed up.

The rules come with some instructions to help you set up the box so that the game bits don’t go all over when you put the box on its side.

Small World Board Game

Game Setup

1-Choose a map for the game that matches the number of players and put it on the tabletop.

2- On the first spot of the map’s Game Turn track, place the Game Turn marker

This track is how the players monitor the progress of the game. When the Game Turn marker reaches the last position on the track, the game ends at the end of the turn.

3- The storage tray with all races is placed close to the board map where all the players can reach easily.

4-Then start Shuffling all the race banners and randomly draw five and place them face up in one column. All the remaining banners are placed face-up, in a single stack, at the column bottom.

5-Do the same thing with the Special Power badges and place one to the left of every Race banner. Stack the rest of the badges in a pile to the left of the Race banner stack.

6-Put a Lost Tribe token on every area of the map that features a Lost Tribe symbol.

The Lost Tribes are remnants of long-forgotten civilizations that have fallen into decline but still populate some regions at the game’s start.

7-Place a Mountain token on any area of the map featuring a mountain.

8- Each gamer will get five victory coins (of 1). then all the remaining coins, involving all “3”s, “5”s, and “10”s, are placed next to the board within easy reach of all players. During the game, these coins will serve as your currency, and also it will determine the winner at the end.

Small World Board Game, How to Play?

At the start of the gameplay, a player is picked to move the Game Turn marker forward one spot on the Game Turn Track and also proceed with his turn. Then other players will do their turns in clockwise order.

Once all the players are done with their turns, a new turn starts. When the Game Turn marker reaches the last spot on the Game Turn Track, the players play one final turn, and then the game will end. The player who gains the most Victory coins is declared the winner.

First Turn

During the first turn of the game, the players will do those steps.

1-Picking A Race And Special Power Combo

Each player will select one Race and special power combo from the six that are visible on the table. Each of those combos has a specific cost that is determined by its position in the column.

The first combo that is located at the column top is free. But as you move down the column, every combo will cost one additional Victory coin. For example, one coin for the second combo of the column and two coins for the third, and so on.

This cost is paid by dropping the player’s Victory coins on each of the combos situated above the one that he selected.

If this combo contains some Victory coins that are dropped by former gamers, you will gain these coins after paying the price for that combo.

After that, the players pick a number of matching race tokens equal to the sum of the indicated values on the race banner and its associated Special Power badge.

During the game, If you have Special Power or Race power that can let you get extra Race tokens from the storage tray, there is still a limit on the total number of tokens physically available.

The player can replenish their column of available combos by sliding existing ones up to one position in the column to fill the void and revealing a new combo from the top of the stack.

2-Conquering Regions

Use your Race tokens to conquer regions or territories on the map. For every region you conquer, you will earn victory coins.

First Conquest

If the player deploys a race on the map for the first time, he has to enter it by conquering one of its adjacent border regions.

Conquering a Region

In order to conquer any region on the map, a gamer must have available to deploy: 2 Race tokens, 1 additional Race token for every token already present in the region, 1 additional Race token for every Fortress, Encampment, Mountain, or Troll’s Lair marker. Seas and Lakes cannot usually be conquered.

The race tokens that are used to conquer the region must be deployed inside its borders on the map. Keep those tokens in this region until the end of this turn, as you can reorganize your troops.

Enemy Losses & Withdrawals

If a player’s race tokens were in this region before it was conquered, he must immediately return those tokens back and :

1-One of those Race tokens is discarded back into the storage tray permanently.

2-keep the remaining race tokens in his hand in order to redeploy them in any other region or regions that are occupied by his Race.

The region or the regions in which the remaining Race tokens will reside do not need to be adjacent or contiguous with the original location they fled from.

If all regions that belong to one player are attacked this turn, and he has no more race tokens on the board, he can redeploy these as if he was making a First Conquest on his next turn.

If the captured region is defended by one token, the defending token is discarded. This will usually be the case if the defending token belongs to a race in decline or is a Lost Tribe.

Following Conquests

During the active player’s turn, he can repeat this process and conquer as many new regions as he wants if there are enough Race tokens left for those conquests.

Unless permitted otherwise by his Race and Special Power combo, A newly conquered region has to share a border with a Region already occupied by his active Race tokens.

Final Conquest Attempt/Reinforcement Die Roll

During your final conquest attempt, you may find yourself with Race tokens that are not enough to conquer another Region outright. If there is still at least one unused Race token with you, one final conquest may be attempted; select a Region that you would normally be 3 or fewer Race tokens short of conquering.

After selecting the region, roll the dice once. If the race token or tokens you still have combined with the sum of the dice rolled is enough to conquer this Region, you may deploy the remaining Race tokens in it.

If not, the remaining tokens are deployed in one of the regions that you already occupied prior.

Troop Redeployment

Once you end your conquests, you can redeploy your Race tokens on the board freely. You can transfer them from one region to another that is occupied by your Race. Those regions do not need to be adjacent. But each Region under your control must be occupied by at least one Race token.

3-Scoring Victory Coins

After you are done with your turn, you will earn one victory coin for each Region occupied by your Race tokens. Also, additional Victory coins may be earned as a result of your Race and/or Special Power benefit.

The Regions these In Decline tokens occupy each contribute one Victory coin as well; but, unless explicitly stated otherwise by the Race or Special Power benefit, Race banner and Special Power benefits no longer contribute any bonus coins to the player.

The final score is revealed only when the game ends. Players have to hide their Victory coin values all the time.

Following Turns

In the following turns, the first gamer will move the Game Turn marker up one spot on the track; then, this game proceeds in clockwise order. During each player’s turn, he has to either.

1-Expanding Through New Conquests

Ready Your Troops

You can take all your Active Race tokens from the map back in your hand and leave only one race token in each region you occupy. then use those tokens to conquer new Regions


The players must respect all the rules relative to the conquest of new regions, with the exception of the First Conquest rules that are only applied when the new races enter the map.

Abandoning a Region

To conquer a new region, you can use only those Race tokens that you took back in hand. If you want more tokens, you may choose to empty up some or all your regions entirely.

This means that there are no tokens left on it, leaving them abandoned Regions that are no longer yours. And you can not earn any Victory coins from those regions.

If you abandon all your Regions, your next conquest must follow the same rules as the First Conquest.

2-Entering in Decline

Once your active race is over-extended and can’t continue expanding, you may select to put it In Decline by choosing a new Race and Special Power combo from the tabletop when the next turn starts.

You are allowed to have only one race In Decline on the map at any given time. The player immediately removes any tokens from an earlier In Decline race left on the map. During the turn, your race goes into Decline, you can make no conquests, and your turn ends immediately after scoring.

End of the Game

After the Game Turn marker reaches the final spot on the Game Turn track and all players play their final turn, the Victory coins are revealed.

The gamer with the highest score will win. If there is a tie, the gamer who has the most race tokens (Active + In Decline) that are still on the board wins.

Our Opinion About The Small World Board Game

Small World is like other civilizations’ board games; you have to build your race with various skills and resources.

Providing a completely different map board depending on the number of players participating in the game shows you their passion for having a balanced board.

Though the core board is the same, special abilities, map invasion entrance points, and the mix of races makes for a completely new experience every time. The fun is in the way the game is set up and the combat strategy; it is never the same two games in a row.

The game has simple rules and a fantasy theme that looks great, which makes it very visually appealing. Small World is a fun game that will draw you through an adventure in the imaginary world.

This strategy board game is a good choice for a family game night as it is perfect for 8-year-olds and up. Also, it is a 2-5 player game; you can play it with friends to have an enjoyable time.

Small World Board Game