Scythe is a competitive 4x game set in an alternate-history 1920s. It is a time of farming and war, broken hearts and rusted gears, innovation and valor.
The ashes from the first Great War still darken the snow in 1920s Europa. The capitalistic city-state know simply as The Factory, which fueled the war with heavily armored mechs, has closed its doors, drawing the attention of several nearby countries.
With characters from five factions converging onto a small but highly desired swath of land, who will gain fame and fortune establishing their empire as the leader of Eastern Europa?
Scythe is a Worker Placement/Economic Engine board game. Each player represents a character from one of five factions of Eastern Europa who are attempting to earn their fortune and claim their faction's stake in the land around the mysterious Factory. Players conquer territory, enlist new recruits, reap resources, gain villagers, build structures, and activate monstrous mechs.
Each player begins the game with different resources (power, coins, combat acumen, and popularity), a different starting location, and a hidden goal. Starting positions are specially calibrated to contribute to each faction’s uniqueness and the asymmetrical nature of the game (each faction always starts in the same place).
Scythe gives players almost complete control over their fate. Other than each player’s individual hidden objective card, the only elements of luck or variability are “encounter” cards that players will draw as they interact with the citizens of newly explored lands. Each encounter card provides the player with several options, allowing them to mitigate the luck of the draw through their selection. Combat is also driven by choices, not luck or randomness.
Scythe uses a streamlined action-selection mechanism (no rounds or phases) to keep gameplay moving at a brisk pace and reduce downtime between turns. While there is plenty of direct conflict for players who seek it, there is no player elimination.
Every part of Scythe has an aspect of engine-building to it. Players can upgrade actions to become more efficient, build structures that improve their position on the map, enlist new recruits to enhance character abilities, activate mechs to deter opponents from invading, and expand their borders to reap greater types and quantities of resources. These engine-building aspects create a sense of momentum and progress throughout the game. The order in which players improve their engine adds to the unique feel of each game, even when playing one faction multiple times.
- Colorblind Friendly
- 90% Language Independent
Suggested Ages: 13 and up
Number of Players: 1 to 5
Playing Time: 115 minutes
Designer: Stegmaier, Jamey
Illustrator: Jakub Rozalski
Publisher: Stonemaier Games
Awards & Honors