Samurai is a strategic board game set in medieval Japan. It immerses players in a contest of influence and power among three key factions of the era: samurai, peasants, and priests.

Gameplay and Objectives

The game unfolds on a board depicting the islands of Japan, dotted with helmet (samurai), rice paddy (peasant), and Buddha (priest) figures. Players compete to win the favor of these factions using hexagonal tiles. Each tile is designed to curry favor with one or more factions, and players can deploy them in various strategies, from swift strikes with horseback ronin and ships to more deliberate approaches.

Winning the Game

The goal is to surround and capture these figures by gaining the most favor with the related group. The game ends when all symbols of one type are claimed or when four figures are removed due to ties in influence. In the end, players compare the symbols they've captured, vying for majorities in each of the three factions. Ties are frequent and are broken by counting the number of 'non-majority' symbols each player has.

Notable Game Design

Samurai is part of what's known as the Knizia tile-laying trilogy, a series of games renowned for their elegant design and engaging strategic depth.

The game stands out for its blend of strategic tile placement, thematic richness, and tactical decision-making, appealing to those who enjoy games with historical settings and a balance of swift action and careful planning.

Nominated for 2 awards.

  • 2 - 4 Players
  • 30 - 60 Minutes
  • 10+ years old
  • Easy to learn

Video reviews, ratings, Let's Plays and tests for Samurai

  • YouTube Review for the game "Samurai" by Shut Up & Sit Down
    Video is in English

We like Samurai so much that we recommend it in the following board game recommendation lists 2024

Games similar to Samurai

You like Samurai and are on the lookout for a similar game? Then we recommend the following board games:
All details for the board game Gonzaga and similar gamesAll details for the board game Stellar and similar gamesAll details for the board game Neuroshima Hex! 3.0: Mephisto and similar gamesAll details for the board game Neuroshima Hex! 3.0: Dancer and similar gamesAll details for the board game Neuroshima Hex! 3.0 and similar games