Sky Towers Review

Sky Towers
EX1ST GAMES
2021
Charles Ward
Charles Ward

Sky Towers is a free print-and-play game designed by Charles Ward. In it, towers rise up into the sky attracting a variety of valuable kites!

Jess
Jess
Sky Towers isn’t a complex game at all, but I think it’s got charming art and has some clever design choices. Also I love a good hand management game, so let’s take a closer look!

Sky Towers cards and instruction booklets

In Sky Towers, each player must try to collect as many kites as they can on their completed towers. A tower is only completed if it adds up to exactly 21.  At the beginning of the game, each player will start with 5 cards and on their turn they can take 2 actions. The actions are Play, Draw, and Return.

Sky Towers cards in tower

The Play action lets you start a tower or add a card from your hand to your current tower. You can never have more than 1 tower at a time (except in a 2 player game).

Hand holding cards

Any time you add a card to your tower, you must follow the placement rules: You cannot play a card that matches the top card of another player’s tower to your left or right and you cannot ever add a card that would make your tower go over 21. Also, if the card you play has an effect on it, the effect must be resolved before the game continues.

Jess
Jess
Those are the clever bits of Sky Towers – the way you need to take your neighboring towers into account can affect what cards you play, and the card abilities can sometimes make it dangerous to, say, have a big pile of cards in your hand when someone plays a 5 to their tower and forces everyone to discard down to 5 cards in-hand.

When you use a draw action you can take the top card of the deck and add it to your hand.

The Return action lets you take back into your hand all cards from your incomplete tower. This gives you a chance to reset if the cards just are not going your way, or if you want to strategically rebuild your tower.

 

Sky Towers goal cards

Once your tower equals 21 points, you add it to your score pile and it no longer blocks your neighboring players when placing cards. If your tower matches the requirements of a bonus card you can claim it (from either the table or another player).

goal attained

Once the last card of the deck is drawn, all players have 1 final turn. During this turn, they can each take 3 actions, after which the game ends. Whoever has the most kites on their finished towers and bonus cards wins! If there is a tie, the game goes to the tied player with the most pink flags.

Sky Towers is a super quick-playing game with cute art and a light theme. There isn’t a lot of strategy to sink your teeth into, but if you want a game that is easy to teach, accessible to a wide variety of players, and fits in your pocket, then Sky Towers is a nice choice.

Sky Towers will be published in 2022 by EX1ST Games, but, until then, you can try the game for free here.

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