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  • 1 Base Plate
  • 5 wooden Floors in 5 different colors
  • 20 Columns of 3 types and 4 colors
  • 1 Master Builder Seal
  • 1 Hook
  • Rulebook

Object of the Game

The players attempt to get their own columns onto the highest possible level of the Villa Paletti.

At any time, if a player doesn't feel able to move any column for fear of bringing the whole structure crashing to the ground, she may instead add a new floor to the top of the structure.

In this way, the whole flimsy construction keeps getting ever taller and ever more fragile.

The next Master Builder will then certainly want to get his own most valuable columns onto the new, highest level ... until at last someone tries to push the whole process a little too far, and brings the whole thing crashing to the ground, to the general condemnation of the other players.


First place the Base plate in the center of the table. The five floors and the hook are put next to it. Now all players place all the columns onto the base plate as they wish. Finally, the first, blue, floor is placed onto the columns, so that it doesn't extend beyond the Base plate (see diagrams 2 and 3).

Fig. 2: The blue floor is placed as soon as all the columns are on the base plate. All columns must be placed on the brown, building site, area of the base plate.

Fig. 3: The blue floor must be placed so that it does not extend beyond the borders of the base plate.

Game Play

(for 4 Players)

A. Starting Player and Color Choice

The youngest player rolls the Master Builder Seal and takes the color shown for herself. Then, all the other players in turn choose a color. Each player has 5 columns in his own color. The starting player is the last player, who has had no choice of color.

B. Building

Building takes place in a clockwise direction. When build- ing, each player must adhere to the General Building Regulations, as detailed later.

Building Methods

The player removes a column of his choice, (either free- standing, or supporting), and places it on the current uppermost floor. The column may be removed from any level (See Fig. 4). Once the column has been placed, his turn is over.

Fig. 4: Columns that are already on the currently uppermost level may not be used for building.

Abortive Building Attempts

An attempt to build, which threatens to cause the building to collapse may be broken off at any point (See Fig. 5). The column is replaced in its original position, and may not be moved again during the game (see Fig. 5b). The turn is then over.

Fig. 5a: Blanca BLUE would like to move her fat round column onto the uppermost level But while removing it, she realizes that the whole of Villa Paletti threatens to collapse. So Blanca BL UE replaces the column where it was. Her turn is now over.

Fig. 5b: Blanca BLUE may not use the column that she has already tried to move, again during the game.

Place a New Floor

If a player suspects, at the start of her move, that she will not be able to move any column without caus- ing the building to collapse, she may suggest adding a new floor to the building.

The new floor must be the next in line according to the list in Fig. 1. The other players may object. The first player to raise an objection must now remove a column of his choice, and place it on to the uppermost floor.

If he succeeds, this column is removed from the game. If however, the objector fails, the original player may take a column belonging to the player who objected from the building, and remove it from the game.

If there are no objectors, the player places a new floor on top of the uppermost columns. The new floor may not extend beyond the limits of the base plate. The new floor must be supported by at least 3 columns.

If this is impossible, the original player must give up the idea, and her turn ends. A player who places a new floor may not also move a column upwards.

Figs. 6a and 6b: Rudger RED is playing. He reckons that he won't be able to move any column up to the top floor, without causing the whole building to collapse.

So he suggests placing a new floor. No one objects. So he takes the next (yellow) floor, and places it on the topmost columns. He must cover at least 3 columns with the new floor.

Alternatively, you may choose to use the following variant when placing a new floor. When placing a new floor of the fourth (orange) level or above, the player need only cover 2 columns.

General Building Regulations

  1. When removing a column, the floor above it may be grasped, and lightly lifted. However, it must always be replaced in its original position, so that no columns that were free of it are now covered and vice versa.

  2. When placing a column, the player may not hold on to a floor.

  3. No column may hang over the edge of the floor that it is placed on.

  4. The building order of the floors is always the same, in decreasing order of size.

  5. The hook may be used to remove columns.

  6. Each turn, only one column may be chosen and removed. The removal of a second column, or movement of another column, is forbidden.

  7. Columns that are already on the topmost level may not be used to build further.

  8. Columns may not usually be placed on top of each other. The exception is on the final possible level, (the red floor). Above this level, columns may be built up on top of each other (see Fig. 1)

C. The Master Builder's Seal

Once the green floor has been placed, the contest for the Master Builder's seal begins.

The first player to place a column on the green floor takes the Seal. The Seal is then taken over by any player that gets a better score than the current holder. If two players have the same number of points, the Seal stays with its current owner.

A player gets victory points for every one of his own columns standing on the current top level. Once a new floor is placed, all the points collected on the floor below are lost. The first player to place a column on the new floor takes over the Seal.

When a player takes over the Seal, he places it in front of himself with the color of the former owner uppermost so that all the other players can see it (See Fig. 7a and 7b).

Example (Fig. 7a): Yannik YELLOW is leading, with 3 points worth of columns on the uppermost floor. He took over the Seal from Bianca BLUE.

Now Rudger RED places his thick round column on the uppermost floor, giving him 4 points, RED now takes the Seal from YELLOW, and places in front of himself, turning it so that it shows Yellow on it's up- permost face.

  • Points before Red's turn: Red.- I - Yellow: 3 - Blue: 2 - Green: I.
  • After Red's turn: Red.- 4 - Yellow: 3 - Blue: 2 - Green: I

Fig. 7b: On the next turn, Giovanna GREEN places her thick round column on the top level. She too now has 4 points, but that only matches RED's score, it doesn't beat it, so RED keeps the Seal.

  • Points before Green's turn: Red.- 4 - Yellow: 3 - Blue: 2 - Green: I
  • After Green's turn: Red.- 4 - Yellow: 3 - Blue: 2 - Green: I

End of the Game

The game ends when the Villa Paletti collapses, or when no player can build further.

The Winner is the player who owns the Master Builder's Seal at this point, unless that player causes the building to collapse - in which case the winner is the former owner of the Seal, as shown by the color uppermost on the Seal.

2 Players Rules

Each player chooses two colors. Before each turn they may choose one of their two colors. When scoring, players score the total of their two colors. The game is otherwise identical to the game with 4.

Villa Paletti

3 Players Rules

As in the 4-player game, the first action is the choice of colors. The remaining columns are known as the neutral color.

During his turn, a player must first choose a neutral column, and move it up to the uppermost floor. Then, and only then, may he remove one of his own columns and place it on the top level.

At least one neutral column must be left on each level. Hence, if there is only one column of the neutral color left on a level, it may not be removed.

An abortive attempt with a neutral column

If a player fears, while removing a neutral column, that it will lead to a collapse, he may break off the attempt. If no one objects, he may then remove one of his own columns and move it upwards.

If, however another player can demonstrate that it was in fact possible to move a neutral column, that column is moved upwards, and the original player loses his turn. Otherwise, the game is the same as for 4 players.

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