- Game Title: King of New York
- Release Date: 2014
- Number of Players: 2-6
- Average Game Time: 30-40 minutes
- Game Publisher: IELLO
- Website: http://www.iellogames.com/KingOfNewYork.html
- Game Designer: Richard Garfield
- Expansions/Alternates: Yes
- Available in Stores: Yes
Back in December of 2015 I wrote an article about the board game King of Tokyo and described a dice-rolling game with a fun and adventurous theme. Board game publisher Iello took the success of their original game and ran with it, creating the alternate version King of New York. King of New York takes the same gameplay mechanics as King of Tokyo and adds to them/enhances them, creating a game that is similar to the original but with a different feel to it. Since the gameplay is so similar, I am not going to go into a description of how the game works in this article (for details on that, check out my King of Tokyo article above). Instead, I am going to go through a list of the changes/adds Iello made to this game compared to the original:
- Expanded Board with additional locations (boroughs) – In King of Tokyo, you were either in the city or outside of the city and that was it. There were no other locations available, so if you weren’t in Tokyo your monster was off of the board completely. King of New York altered this idea so that every monster is in the city during the whole game. Instead of having “in or out” you have 5 boroughs of New York that you can occupy. The largest one, Manhattan, acts as the Tokyo-esque area in this situation, where you gain points but take massive damage from being there. You can also move from lower Manhattan to Middle and Upper Manhattan, which provide you with additional benefits.
- Different Dice Options- While the dice in King of New York have three identical sides to King of Tokyo (energy, heal, and attack) they added new sides to the dice for different effects. Instead of numbers 1-3, the dice now have destruction, celebrity, and Ouch! sides which provide different effects.
- Destruction allows you to get rid of buildings
- Celebrity allows you to gather more points if you have roll at least three of them
- Ouch! causes damage based on the number of enemy units located in your borough
- Superstar and Statue of Liberty Cards- King of New York added two special cards to the game,
the Superstar card and the Statue of Liberty card.
- The Superstar Card transfers to any player that rolls 3 celebrity symbols in a turn, and provides added victory points to the player whenever they roll the celebrity symbol
- The Statue of liberty happens whenever someone rolls 3 Ouch! symbols in a turn, and gives the player a victory point boost if they survived all the damage
- Buildings and Enemy Units- At the beginning of the game, each borough gets 3 stacks of building units which can be destroyed by any monster in that borough. When you roll enough destruction symbols to overcome the unit’s durability, you can destroy it and take whatever reward is listed on the building (energy, health, or victory points). Once the building is destroyed, that building tile is flipped over to become an enemy unit. Enemy units attack you when you roll an Ouch! symbol, and can also be destroyed by destruction symbols for varying effects.
- New monsters/cards- The new monsters are only for aesthetics, but the new artwork is nonetheless a nice improvement. The 6 monsters you can choose at the beginning of the game are completely different than the ones from Tokyo. The cards that you can buy in the game have also been changed- I can’t confirm that they are all different, but a number of cards have been created based on all of the new rules listed above.
I think that because this game is so similar to King of Tokyo, it isn’t really possible for me to separately rate it because it is so similar to the other game. What I’ve found is that both of these games are fun for different reasons and both can be used in different situations. King of Tokyo is a more straightforward game, which works well when someone is new to board gaming and better for more casual game nights. King of New York’s additions make the game more complex, which makes the game better for high-strategy groups and a more intense gaming experience. King of New York should not replace King of Tokyo in your collection, and in fact they both complement each other quite well. Because of this, I feel that King of New York deserves the same rating as King of Tokyo did: a fun, challenging, and engaging game with beautiful artwork that is great for your collection.
Jack’s Rating: 4.5/5 stars