Crafting Beauty: A Journey Through the World of Azul

Azul: A Mosaic of Strategy and Art

Azul, designed by Michael Kiesling and brought to life by Plan B Games, is a visually stunning board game that combines simple mechanics with deep strategic gameplay. Released in 2017, Azul quickly garnered attention and accolades, including the prestigious Spiel des Jahres award. The game invites players into the world of tile laying, where they act as artisans decorating the walls of the Royal Palace of Evora with beautiful tiles.

azul game pieces

Gameplay and Mechanics

In Azul, 2 to 4 players draft colored tiles from supply factories to their player board, aiming to fill up rows and then transfer these tiles to their wall to score points. Each turn, players choose tiles from the factories, but they must take all tiles of the same color from their chosen factory, placing the remaining tiles in the center of the table. Strategic placement is key, as players score points based on how they organize their tiles to decorate the wall. Bonus points are awarded for completed rows, columns, and for collecting sets of the same color of tiles.

What Makes Azul Stand Out

Azul sets itself apart with its elegant simplicity and depth. The rules are easy to learn, making it accessible to new players, but the game also offers rich strategic choices, appealing to experienced gamers. The high-quality, tactile tiles and visually appealing design make the gameplay experience aesthetically pleasing and engaging.

The Verdict

Azul is an excellent choice for a wide range of players. The game is fast-paced, typically lasting 30-45 minutes, making it perfect for a casual game night or a more competitive gathering. The balance between strategy, luck, and aesthetics makes Azul a unique and satisfying experience.

Piecing Together Victory: Strategies in Azul

Plan Your Moves

Think ahead when selecting tiles. Consider not only how the tiles fit on your board currently but also how they might affect future rounds. Avoid getting stuck with tiles that will result in penalties.

Watch Your Opponents

Observing your opponents' boards can be as crucial as planning your strategy. You can anticipate their moves and potentially disrupt their plans by choosing tiles they need.

Balance Flexibility and Commitment

While having a plan is important, be flexible. The random nature of the tile distribution means you might need to adapt your strategy based on the available tiles.

Games Similar to Azul You Might Enjoy

Sagrada game


Sagrada is a dice-drafting game where players build stained glass windows with colorful dice. Like Azul, it combines strategic depth with stunning visual elements.



In Splendor, players collect gems to purchase cards, with a focus on resource management and pattern building. Its simple mechanics coupled with strategic depth make it similar to Azul.

patchwork board game


Patchwork is a two-player game that involves tile placement and resource management. Players compete to build the most aesthetic and high-scoring quilt, offering a similarly satisfying strategic challenge.

In conclusion, Azul is a beautifully crafted game that seamlessly blends strategy, aesthetics, and engaging gameplay. Whether you're a seasoned board gamer or new to the hobby, Azul offers a unique and enjoyable experience, combining the joy of creating beautiful patterns with the satisfaction of a well-executed strategy. Its universal appeal lies in the elegance of its design and the depth of its gameplay, making it a gem in the world of modern board games.

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