While Sophie and Lisa were away at piano lessons, Noah and I had a go at Torres. It had been months since it had seen the table and it was Noah’s first time. As usual, kids pick up the rules extremely quickly and he was off and running without any problems whatsoever.
Torres is a great little game that was recently reprinted and now readily available. My copy is an original version but as I understand it, the reprint has only some minor rule differences. In Torres, your job is to build up castles by placing blocks near and on top of the original 8 starting blocks. You can neither join adjacent castles nor create additional castles. You are awarded points by placing your knights (the colored pawns) within the levels of the castles. The higher the level, the more points you receive. There is also a king’s bonus awarded to knights at specified levels of the king’s castle (the large white pawn). The specific target level changes from one phase of the game to the next.
The game progresses on an Action Point Allowance system. When it’s your turn, you can ‘spend’ 5 action points to place a knight (2 points), move a knight (1 point per square), build a castle block (1 point), take an action card (1 point), play an action card(s) (0 points), or move your scoring pawn on the track 1 square per point. The Action Cards allow you to perform ‘super moves’ on you turn that would not normally be allowed (e.g. spend 7 points this time instead of the normal 5).
The game is arguably classified as an abstract since the theme (the castles and knights) is pretty thin in the same manner that chess is a battle between warring medieval factions. I do not, however, enjoy chess. Torres, on the other hand, is an enjoyable quick game for two that retains great play value up to 3 and 4 players.