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Greater Than Games (Fabled Nexus)  |  SKU: GTG-SISL-CORE

Spirit Island

$84.95 CAD
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Designer R. Eric Reuss
Publisher Greater Than Games (Fabled Nexus)
Players 1-4
Playtime 90-120 mins
Suggested Age 13 and up
Expansions Spirit Island: Branch & Claw  
Spirit Island: Jagged Earth 
Spirit Island: Feather and Flame
Spirit Island: Nature Incarnate

Insert Here - Spirit Island Organizer
E-Raptor - Insert Spirit Island and Branch & Claw Expansion
Folded Space - Spirit Island & Branch and Claw Expansion
Broken Token - Spirit Island Organizer
Spirit Island: Premium Token Pack
Folded Space - Spirit Island and Branch & Claw Expansion or Jagged Earth Expansion (v2)
Laserox - Spirit Organizer (Compatible with Spirit Island and Branch & Claw Expansion)
Laserox - Spirit Expansion Organizer (Compatible with Spirit Island Expansions) 
Spirit Island: Deluxe Invader Board
Spirit Island: Foil Panels

Honors 2019 Spiel der Spiele Hit für Experten Recommended
2019 As d'Or - Jeu de l'Année Expert Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Most Innovative Board Game Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Board Game of the Year Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Best Thematic Board Game Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Best Strategy Board Game Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Best Solo Board Game Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Best Cooperative Game Nominee
2017 Golden Geek Best Board Game Artwork & Presentation Nominee
2017 Cardboard Republic Striker Laurel Nominee

In the most distant reaches of the world, magic still exists, embodied by spirits of the land, of the sky, and of every natural thing. As the great powers of Europe stretch their colonial empires further and further, they will inevitably lay claim to a place where spirits still hold power - and when they do, the land itself will fight back alongside the islanders who live there.

Spirit Island is a complex and thematic cooperative game about defending your island home from colonizing Invaders. Players are different spirits of the land, each with its own unique elemental powers. Every turn, players simultaneously choose which of their power cards to play, paying energy to do so. Using combinations of power cards that match a spirit's elemental affinities can grant free bonus effects. Faster powers take effect immediately, before the Invaders spread and ravage, but other magics are slower, requiring forethought and planning to use effectively. In the Spirit phase, spirits gain energy, and choose how / whether to Grow: to reclaim used power cards, to seek for new power, or to spread presence into new areas of the island.

The Invaders expand across the island map in a semi-predictable fashion. Each turn they explore into some lands (portions of the island); the next turn, they build in those lands, forming settlements and cities. The turn after that, they ravage there, bringing blight to the land and attacking any native islanders present.

The islanders fight back against the Invaders when attacked, and lend the spirits some other aid, but may not always do so exactly as you'd hoped. Some Powers work through the islanders, helping them (eg) drive out the Invaders or clean the land of blight.

The game escalates as it progresses: spirits spread their presence to new parts of the island and seek out new and more potent powers, while the Invaders step up their colonization efforts. Each turn represents 1-3 years of alternate-history.

At game start, winning requires destroying every last settlement and city on the board - but as you frighten the Invaders more and more, victory becomes easier: they'll run away even if some number of settlements or cities remain. Defeat comes if any spirit is destroyed, if the island is overrun by blight, or if the Invader deck is depleted before achieving victory.

The game includes different adversaries to fight against (eg: a French Plantation Colony, or a Remote British Colony). Each changes play in different ways, and offers a different path of difficulty boosts to keep the game challenging as you gain skill.

Customer Reviews

Based on 23 reviews
William Lee
A great cooperative board game w/variability

I really enjoy playing Spirit Island and highly recommend it. It's my first more complex game and it's a blast!

My favorite game is probably Cosmic Encounter, and just like Cosmic Encounter has asymmetric alien powers that change up the game every time you play, Spirit Island does the same with spirits. The game feels practically brand new with every spirit you choose. I explain the game to new players as pandemic levelled up.

My only complaint really is the complexity. It both makes it really fun but also a potential barrier to entry for some, and certainly not a game for every situation. But I have to say that regardless, I still love it. It has jumped up to one of my favorite games even though I tend to prefer competitive games.

Steep learning curve for casuals

Coming from a casual boardgame enjoyer (who plays exclusively coop), this game is hard to learn, but hella good. If you're like me and take a while to get through rule books, I reccomend downloading the free official app (it only lets you play up to 5 turns) to get through your first few games with hand holding, then ditch the app and play it on the board like the chad you're meant to be.


Spirit Island

Peter LeBlanc
Spirit Island Solo

Always love getting my games from BGB. Have heard tons about Spirit Island, especially as a solo game, but had never tried it. What a fabulous game. I’ve only played three times - in the past week mind you :) but I find this game engaging and challenging. I especially love the ‘ravage-build-explore’ sequence of turn order, which forces you to plan well ahead to prevent chaos (and blight) on the island. I can see this one continuing to come to my table for quite some time.


There was a lot to take in at first, but I really enjoyed the game, once all players involved understood the rules.