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Rise of Babel Board Game Review

Bible themed games have really been peaking my interest as of late. Between The Flood – the same design team as Rise of Babel – and Ezra and Nehemiah, the world of Bible based games has been pretty good. In our first impressions article for Rise of Babel, we said that the game was pretty strong, although we questioned how it would hold up after a dozen or more plays. Now that we’ve had more time with the game, we wanted to let you know how we feel about it.


A copy of the game was provided by the designer for the purpose of this review. This copy will be sent to another reviewer after we are finished with it. If you haven’t yet, please read our first impressions article here ,  although some of it might be rehashed below!

In Rise of Babel, players will be competing to bring resources to the Tower of Babel, and nearby towers, in order to score points. Items will move between the player board – market and storehouse – to the tower through a variety of methods, but almost always that will revolve around using a deck that players will build as the game goes on. Players will be trying to create specific patterns for specific goods in order to score points. For example, links between Tar tiles, or diagonal rows of stone.

The game ends after three rounds, with the main tower having more and more spaces to be filled as each round passes.

What we initially loved about Rise of Babel was the variety of ways you could get your resources from your board to the tower. While the elephants you control and the wagons you can attach to those elephants is a good way to move mass amounts of goods from your camp to the tower, cards might also give you abilities that could instantly get things to the tower, remove things from the tower, and much more. The card buying mechanic, and making your starting deck better, is really intriguing. With so many great cards to purchase and use, players will often be fighting over what face-up cards are available. This is only one way this game has some great player interactions.

See, in Rise of Babel, cards generally have two purposes, but you can only use one. Do you use the powerful ability of a card, or perhaps instantly move a tile to the tower? Or do you instead use the cards as a couple gold pieces which will allow you to purchase a card you really want. Let’s be fair, it’s probably going to be gone by your next turn!

That decision space, despite just being between two options, is really great in my opinion. And the balance on the cards is really strong. I thought perhaps some cards would obviously have one option drastically better than the other, but I don’t think that was ever the case. Many of the cards are circumstantial, so it’s better to purchase a card that has two abilities you could use often, as opposed to a card with one ability you might want to use. Balancing which cards fit your strategy and which cards don’t is something you learn as you play more games. This does, however, result in an obvious advantage to returning players. This isn’t a knock, however, as I think this could be argued for most games.


The amount of setup here is a bit much in my opinion, and the look of the game could be daunting to some. However, rest assured that after the initial teach, Rise of Babel is a game that flows VERY well. The turn-to-turn actions become very fluid, and within a few games we were moving through our turns at a really good pace. There may be some who despise the randomness of what resources you pull from your bags to refill your board, but I think that keeps players from honing in on one strategy game-in and game-out. The randomness of the bag pulls requires players to adapt their strategy accordingly.

You cannot bank on a stone-based game if your player board is full of tar!

Ultimately, Rise of Babel is one of our favorite games we’ve played in 2024, and with the Kickstarter campaign ongoing we cannot wait to get our hands on a copy of the game. If you enjoy a mixture of tile placement and deck building, Rise of Babel might be the game for you!


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blank Adam Roffel has only been writing about video games for a short time, but has honed his skills completing a Master's Degree. He loves Nintendo, and almost anything they have released...even Tomodachi Life.

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Twitter: @AdamRoffel