Santiago De Cuba Board Game Review

Sport Overview

Once I first noticed the duvet of the sport together with a brief description and photographs of the parts, I used to be instantly intrigued to play it. The title appeared enticing too, as Cuba could be very far-off from my nation (I reside in Greece) and that simply provides to the unique and thriller environment for which the nation is already celebrated. Let’s undergo some fundamental details about gameplay:

In Santiago de Cuba you’re a dealer within the metropolis of Santiago, the second largest metropolis of Cuba. Your purpose is to make revenue by making offers with the locals and visiting (and even shopping for) buildings as a way to collect items and cargo them to the ships arriving within the metropolis’s port. Out there items are: sugar cane (white) citrus fruit (orange), tobacco (inexperienced), rum (purple), cigars (black) and wooden. On the faceit boost sport board there are 12 constructing tiles, that are all the time shuffled when organising the sport after which positioned on the suitable packing containers within the outskirts of the town. There are additionally 9 Cubans who will enable you to out and are additionally shuffled and distributed randomly on the 9 packing containers within the middle of the sport board. A avenue runs in entrance of the Cubans in a loop. A automotive, utilized by all gamers, will journey by way of this avenue and its 10 stops (stars), one for every of the Cubans and a cease on the port (yellow star).

There are 7 ships that can attain the town’s port one after the opposite and for each, the kind and amount of products it accepts to hold are decided by rolling 5 coloured cube and selecting 4 of them to put on the ship. The colour of the cube signifies the kind of good and the quantity, the amount required. There’s a worth marker on the board in entrance of the ship, indicating the quantity of victory factors you obtain for every good delivered to the ship (2,3 or 4 victory factors). This marker is initially set to 2 and for every time the automotive passes from the port (yellow star) with out stopping there the marker is moved one flag to the correct. Nevertheless if the marker strikes from the worth 4 to the checkered flag, the ship leaves instantly even when it isn’t full. As soon as a ship has all objects loaded, it leaves the port and one other one arrives.

Firstly of the sport, buildings and Cubans tiles are shuffled and positioned on the board, every participant chooses a shade and the primary participant is set. Every participant is dealt 3 cash (pesos), 2 victory factors and one sugar cane, one citrus fruit and one tobacco. All items and cash are hidden behind particular participant screens. The automotive is positioned on the port and the primary ship arrives. The participant to the correct of the primary participant rolls the 5 cube to find out the ships cargo. Every spherical a participant should use the automotive to go to a location transferring clockwise by transferring as many “star” areas they like. Solely step one to a brand new place is free. For each area past the primary one, the participant should pay 1 peso. By stopping in entrance of a Cuban, you often get items, cash or victory factors. Then you definitely instantly go to one of many buildings of the colour indicated by the flower icon on the Cuban’s tile. In buildings, gamers do sure actions that assist them advance within the sport resembling alternate various kinds of items, get victory factors or load items to the ship. By stopping on the yellow star (final cease within the loop, port) gamers set off a supply spherical, throughout which all gamers can ship items to the ship. Gamers get victory factors (the precise quantity is indicated by the worth marker talked about earlier) for loading the ship. Wooden can all the time be loaded to the ship as an alternative of anyone different good however gamers obtain just one victory level for every wooden loaded. The sport ends when all 7 ships depart the port. At that time any remaining items are transformed to victory factors (1 vp for each 3 items) and victory factors are counted. The participant with essentially the most victory factors, is the winner.

First Impressions

Upon opening the field, I used to be impressed with the attractive art work of the sport board and tiles. Setup was fairly straightforward, following the well-written rulebook. Tiles shuffled and positioned, colours chosen and right here we go. The sport flows easy and turns are fairly fast as there are solely 2 actions that should be made every spherical and decisions are fairly straight ahead. Often you do not wish to transfer many areas ahead with the automotive as this can price some huge cash after which there may be the selection of the constructing to go to that can rely on the particular wants of the participant or could also be a strategic selection as nicely. An attention-grabbing side is that gamers’ items and cash are hidden behind screens, so one should be alert and attempt to bear in mind what items the opposite gamers have gathered. That could be a huge a part of the sport’s technique. The sport has nice immersion resulting from wonderful art work and sport mechanics. All of it feels a lot like Cuba! It additionally has a lot replayability because of the shuffling of tiles at sport setup.

I have not performed Cuba which appears to have rather a lot in frequent with Santiago de Cuba (the designer and the artist of Santiago have additionally labored on Cuba) so I could not evaluate the 2 video games, however after enjoying a few video games of Santiago, I’ve a transparent impression of the sport which I’m able to share with you! Let’s undergo our common score classes:


Sport parts are very good and of excellent high quality. The sport board is sort of a portray, depicting the town and the port with nice element. The constructing and Cuban tiles are of comparable high quality from a design perspective and manufactured from thick cardboard, as are victory level tokens, pesos (cash) and property markers. Enjoying items and items are manufactured from wooden which feels very good. All in all, the sport parts are all that one may hope for and much more. 9/10


The guts of each sport in fact. Gameplay is quick and there may be sufficient area for strategic pondering and planning forward. Upon deciding which Cuban to fulfill, you will need to make just a few issues such because the deal you’ll make with them, the buildings which might be out there to go to afterwards and what cease the following participant may select. You even have to consider which will be the most worthwhile buildings to grab with Alonso (the lawyer) which can also be an attention-grabbing side of the sport. Your reminiscence expertise shall be placed on a take a look at with Santiago as a result of as a way to do nicely on this sport, you will need to bear in mind what items your opponents have gathered. That shall be a vital issue as a way to resolve if you wish to cease on the port or not and a miscalculation might price you just a few victory factors. Only a thought in regards to the constructing tiles: I believe it might be attention-grabbing to have a constructing tile, working within the simply reverse means from the Customs Workplace, that’s to have the ability to flip a cube of your selection on the ship to no matter quantity you need (besides 0). The sport appears very balanced in its mechanics and there appears to be no obvious technique that will all the time result in victory. Shuffling of the tiles at sport setup ensures that each sport shall be a totally completely different one. 8/10

Studying Curve:

The rulebook could be very nicely written and solely 8 pages lengthy, together with some illustrations and examples. After studying by way of the principles and enjoying the sport as soon as you’ll really feel very comfy about it and perhaps by no means have to seek the advice of the rulebook once more. 8/10


The theme of being in Cuba and act as a dealer could be very nicely supported by stunning art work in addition to plausible mechanics. The usage of the automotive is a really intelligent concept that contributes to the theme too, making issues really feel extra actual. The buildings have been nicely thought, by linking the buildings’ use with an acceptable identify. For instance, it feels very pure and in-theme to go to the “Financial institution” constructing as a way to get 2 pesos or go to the “Cigar manufacturing facility” to commerce tobacco for cigars. That could be a nice design aspect that enhances the texture of the theme inside the sport. 9/10


Only a repetition right here of what was talked about earlier. Attributable to shuffling of the Buildings and Cubans tiles throughout setup, it’s assured that no two video games would be the similar. The overall technique of the sport nevertheless will keep fairly the identical, as some buildings such because the Newspaper writer or the Workplace and a few Cubans like Alonso will all the time stay favourite locations. I do not assume that could be a minus although, it appears fairly logical. All in all I believe I’ll by no means be bored to play this sport. 8/10


I had a lot enjoyable enjoying Santiago though there’s no interplay in any respect between gamers besides when visiting El Zorro (every participant should provide you with 1 victory level, 1 good or 1 peso). It will likely be enjoyable at factors, when speculating about every others belongings and absolutely sufficient whimpering shall be current when somebody visits the Newspaper writer to make Alonso inactive. Quick gameplay (~40 minutes) is not going to tire gamers and makes the sport simply be used as a filler between longer video games. An excellent sport for the entire household too! 8/10



  • Lovely art work and prime quality materials
  • Every sport is completely different as constructing and Cuban tiles are shuffled throughout setup
  • Theme is applied most effectively
  • Simple to study but in addition has sufficient depth
  • Quick-paced sport




  • No participant interplay
  • I’ve some concepts about completely different skills in buildings (probably not a con)

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