Home ยป How to Play Carcassonne

How to Play Carcassonne

by UrgentRCM

Carcassonne is a great game for beginners and family members alike. Its strategy lies in reducing risk and maximizing point expectations with careful tile placement. There’s a natural temptation to rush to complete cities, but doing so can limit your points later on. Additionally, monasteries require eight correctly placed tiles surrounding them to score, limiting your options for scoring on future turns.


Carcassonne is one of the most popular modern board games. Its popularity is due to its simple gameplay and a wide variety of game options. The game is a clever tile-placement game, but it also has a lot of luck involved.

A player’s turn begins by placing a meeple on any unclaimed tile. After that, he or she places a new tile on the board and selects whether to place a follower on it. Followers can be placed on roads, cities, farms, cloisters, and bridges. The number of followers on a completed feature determines its score.

There are several official expansions for the game, adding many new tiles and rules. Inns and Cathedrals, for example, add new buildings and a large figure that can block paratrooping.

There are also many fan-created expansions that offer different gameplay and strategies. These include South Seas, a tropical-themed game that introduces resource elements to the game. Another fan-created expansion is Over Hill and Dale, which combines the known rules of Carcassonne with a 2v2 mechanism for cooperative play.


Designed by Klaus-Jurgen Wrede and first published in 2000, Carcassonne is one of the most popular modern board games. It is a tile-laying game that invites players to dispute a medieval landscape of roads, cities, monasteries, and fields. The players compete to claim these scenic features using their little humanoid tokens called meeples. Each feature earns the player points when completed, and the cleverest placement of meeples will lead to victory.

Your turn in Carcassonne is simple: place your tile next to existing tiles on the growing communal landscape. The meeple on the tile determines which feature it will add to the qwirkle game: Roads earn you one point for every tile that makes up that road, while cities earn you points for each complete city. Monasteries and farms earn you more points per tile surrounding them.

Clever placement of meeples can deny your opponents’ progress or even steal points from them. For example, you cannot add your meeple to a feature that another player already controls, but you can use your meeple to connect adjacent features, thereby denying the other player points for those connected features.

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Once a player plays a tile, they may place one of their meeples on any city, road, field or cloister portion it contains (unless that portion has already been claimed). Each completed feature scores a specific number of points.

The game is rebalanced in this way so that there’s indirect competition through the exploitation of shared landscape features, rather than a game of direct competitive out-competition. However, this does mean that there are a few areas of cognitive complexity in the game – such as the conditionals that determine who can be placed on a particular feature based on prior occupancy, or the way in which farmers score.

There are several official expansions to the Carcassonne set, which add new tiles and figures. These may be used alongside the base game, although some rules are different. These include Inns and Cathedrals which introduces new buildings and figures, the Princess and Dragon which adds new tiles and figures, and the Tower which adds a vertical element to the game. Some expansions add extra rules, such as a “pig” figure which increases the value of a field it is placed in, or a dragon figure which protects followers from being claimed by another player’s followers.


Since Carcassonne’s initial release, a variety of expansions have been created to add new elements to the game. These expansions often change the rules or add new aspects, but they also allow players to tweak existing strategies.

The most popular addition is Inns and Cathedrals. It adds new meeples (called followers) and a few new tiles. It also introduces the count meeple, which can be placed on a city to steal points from an opponent, and a bridge that allows you to span cities, roads, and monasteries.

Another popular expansion is Traders and Builders, which adds new roads and fields. The expansion also includes a new player figure, the mayor, who can be placed in a city and counts as one follower per pennant when the city is scored. It also includes a wagon and a barn to help you take control of farmland.

Before starting, shuffle the land tiles and place them face down on the table. Each player gets eight meeples in their color and places one on the 0 space on the scoreboard.


There are a number of expansions available for Carcassonne, and each adds a new element to the game. Some expand the landscape and some extend the scoring possibilities. The game is accessible to a wide range of playstyles, from aggressive road warriors to city people and farm lords. The game also supports cooperative and non-combative strategies.

The most popular expansion is Inns and Cathedrals, which provides a number of interesting new options. It includes a mayor that counts as one follower per pennant in a city, a wagon that moves from an unfinished field to a city when it is completed, and a barn that lets you recall your farmer meeples and secure fields.

In addition, this expansion increases the scoring potential of roads by doubling their value when they connect adjacent tiles. It also introduces a new element to the scoring system, wherein players with followers in a field are awarded points for the cities they have built adjacent to the field. This makes it a little easier to steal a city from an opponent, and sabotage their fields.

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