At the dawn of the Sixteenth Century, colonists are flocking to the New World. Each player will lead a colony, producing resources needed to expand the colony, form shipping routes, send out conquistadors to acquire gold, and increase their religious power to recruit and train new monks. After three games rounds, each of which represents a year, the player whose colony is the happiest (whomever has scored the most happiness points) is declared the winner!
Santa Maria is a dice-drafting, engine building Euro game in which each player is establishing and maintaining a colony in the New World. Created by Eilif Svensson and Kristian A. Østby, Santa Maria challenges players to think strategically and plan carefully to generate the most happiness points and have the happiest colony at the end of three rounds. Build the best colony and reap the rewards in Santa Maria!
Running a Colony
During a round of Santa Maria, players have multiple actions at their disposal that will help push them toward their goal of making a happy colony. They can expand their colony by adding new buildings, activate a single building in their colony, activate a row of buildings in their colony, and a few other free actions (like buying and selling resources) before retiring at the end of the round.
When players wish to expand their colonies, they have a couple of options. They can either choose to spend two wood resources to buy a double expansion tile, or spend two wood and a grain resource for a triple expansion tile. Ten tiles (5 of each) are available each round and won't be replenished until the next round.
Players can activate single buildings in their colony by paying coin from their supply and placing it on the chosen building. The first building they choose to activate costs one coin, and each building after costs an additional coin (two for the second, three for the third, etc.). Once a building has been activated this way, it cannot be activated for the rest of the round.
Players can choose to activate an entire row of building by using one of their dice. The number and color of the die will indicate which row or column in can activate, and the player will activate each building in that row or column, placing the die on the last building in that row or column so it cannot be activated again that round. White dice are drafted from a common pool each round and each player may take up to three during a round. Each player starts with one blue die and gains more by advancing up the religion track.
A Year Well Done
There are a few free actions players can take in addition to the ones listed above, such as selling and buying resources, but when a player is out of moves, they retire, placing their player marker on one of the bonuses on the common board and receiving income based on their acquired shipping tiles.
Check out The Dice Tower's Review of Santa Maria!
Received a Dice Tower Seal of Excellence!
Build a Better Colony!
Get ready to settle the New World and build the happiest colony you can! Get your copy of Santa Maria today!