At a Glance: Sagrada is a beautifully presented puzzle game of placing colorful dice in a stained glass window.
Sagrada is a game for 1-4 players that was released in 2017, so it is still pretty fresh. In Sagrada, each player is trying to fill their stained glass window with well-placed colored dice. The game comes with 90 of these dice and all of them are placed in the bag to start the game. On your turn, you pull a number of dice out of the bag and that becomes the dice pool for everyone. Then, starting with you, everyone takes one die and places it in their window grid. Each stained glass card is unique and varies in difficulty, and there are placement rules for the dice. Some spaces have a specific color and only that color may be placed there. Likewise, some spaces have a specific number and only that number may be placed. Aside from that though, there is a rule that no dice of the same color of number may be placed side-to-side adjacent (diagonal is ok). The turn order snakes around and the starting player will choose from the last 2 dice. The game takes place over 10 rounds and whoever has the most points is the winner. You get points from fulfilling different Objectives. There are 3 Public Objectives that anyone can complete, and 1 Private Objective for each player. The Objectives are also repeatable, so if one Objective is to have a row of one of each color, you can accomplish that in more than one row and reap the points for it. There are also Tools that players may spend Favor Tokens to use. Depending on the difficulty of their window, players receive a certain number of Favor Tokens at the start of the game. If they have any unused tokens left at the end, they get extra points. Lastly, as players score at the end, they lose 1 point for every empty space on their window.
There is something really satisfying about filling your stained glass window board with the dice, and the game tickles that nerve that likes puzzles and organization. The whole idea of pulling dice out of a bag and everyone picking them from the same pool is something neat that you don’t see often, and I love it. The variability of the window cards is nice because you can risk attempting a more difficult one, which will give you more Favor Tokens to use tools, or points if you are able to retain them as unused. Specific Objectives are different each time, so scoring will always be a bit different. Ultimately, though, you want to fill as many spots in your window as possible. As you fill them up, it gets tougher and more enticing to use the tools that are laid out. Though I suppose you could, the game does not provide much temptation to be mean. I find I am generally more concerned with my own window than scanning the table seeing if I can block someone from getting the dice they need.
The theme is really fascinating and as you might hope, the components look great and match the aesthetic quality that you would expect from a game about stained glass. Floodgate Games did not skimp on anything here. Now, the game box suggested 14+ years, and frankly I’m confused. Obviously there is no mature content and though it is certainly not a good game for young children, 14 is too high I think. This is a pretty accessible and attractive game that I highly recommend. Well of course I do…it’s in my Top 30 games of all time!
Check it out: https://amzn.to/2QaYBK7