- Players: 2-4
- Game Length: ~2.5 hours learning / ~ 1 hour experienced
- Categories: Territory Control, Card Drafting, Hand Management, Player Negotiation
What it's about: In Inis, players take on the role of the chieftain of a clan of ancient Celts who have traveled across the seas from Ireland to a newly discovered island. They must lead their clans to become the greatest bearers of celtic civilization on the island, thus becoming Ard-Ri, the High King of the land.
How it's played: Players take turns playing cards from their hands in order to influence their position on the map, explore new territories, sabotage other players, or to tell epic tales. Players must decide when it is most beneficial to engage in “clashes” and when to seek a diplomatic resolution to conflict, thus players require a degree of negotiation in order to achieve their goals. Ultimately, chieftains can become the high king by outpositioning their opponents in any combination of the three victory conditions: Leadership, Land, or Religion.
Who may enjoy it: Inis offers a surprisingly deep strategic experience for a game of its time scale. Players who enjoy larger negotiation-and-territory-control games like Diplomacy, Cosmic Encounter, and to some extent even the household classic RISK will enjoy Inis’ mechanics for conquest and warfare. At the same time, fans of deck/hand-building card games like Dominion, Star Realms, or Gloom (and dare I say even perhaps fand of Magic the Gathering) are certain to love the intrigue that develops over hand-selection and management, and in particular, who is holding the “Geis” card.