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Rating: 6.8 Good
Players: 2-8 players
Playing time: 20-60 minutes

Created by: Bruno Faidutti, Cyrille Daujean, Julien Delval, Jesper Ejsing, Bruno Faidutti, Didier Graffet, Bjarne Hansen, Darrell Hardy, Florence Magnin, Jean-Louis Mourier, Scott Nicely

Published by: 999 Games, Arclight, Asmodee

Alternate Names: Citadelă, Citadela, Citadele, Citadeles, Citadella


Citadels is a German-style card game of nobles, intrigue and medieval cities. Each player leads a city and seeks to increase its prosperity by building new city districts. Beware, it's not an easy task as you need to influence nobles, warlords, merchants and other powerful characters of your realm.

The hiring of different characters from architects, magicians, bishops to thieves, adds a decent level of strategy to the gameplay as each character has its own special ability. The usefulness of them depends on your situation and on your opponents. On your road to victory, you must also wisely spend your gold, bluff, intimidate and outmaneuver your rivals.

On a turn, a player earns gold and optionally purchase and constructs one building. Each building is worth a certain number of points. The game ends after one player has built his 8th district, after which a winner is determined by how many points his completed city is worth.

Retail Price:$17
Citadels: The Dark City
Golden Geek Best Card Game Nominee 2007
Nederlandse Spellenprijs Winner 2001
Nederlandse Spellenprijs Nominee 2001
International Gamers Awards - General Strategy; Multi-player Nominee 2001
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Game Components

  • 18 character cards
  • 30 gold counters
  • 80 district cards
  • 1 wooden Crown marker
  • 8 reference cards
  • A rulebook


Remove the bonus character and district cards (marked by a white star).

Shuffle the eight remaining character cards together into one deck. This is called the Character Deck.

Shuffle the remaining district cards together into one deck. This is called the District Deck.

Each player is then dealt four random district cards from the District Deck and each player receives two gold from the bank. …

Every character in Citadels has a unique special power. You may use your character's power once at any point during your turn; however, you are never required to use a special power should you choose not to. Each character's power is summarized on its card and is detailed over the next few pages.

Note: Characters who receive income for certain types of districts in their cities (the King, Emperor, Bishop, Abbot, Merchant, Warlord, and Diplomat) may use their power to receive this gold at any point in their turn. Thus you may choose to receive your income either before building new districts (if you need the gold in order to build the districts), or after building new districts (to gain income from the newly built district). You cannot, however, do both. …

In Citadels, players are vying to become the kingdom's next Master Builder by constructing the most impressive medieval city. To do so, players must acquire gold and enlist the services of a diverse cast of characters.

During a round, each player chooses one character, who provides a special ability for that turn. Each player builds his own city by playing district cards from his hand, which at the end of the game are worth points equal to their cost.

The game ends at the end of the round in which a player has seven districts in his city, and the player with the most points will become the kingdom's next Master Builder! …

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