Author: Klaus Teuber

Publisher: Goldsieber 1997

Deutscher Spiele Preis



Lowenherz (=Lionheart) is a game for 2 to 4 players and itīs situated in England in the Middle Ages. Each player assumes the role of a local Lord who tries to enlarge his land by building walls around it and by conquering the lands of other players. At the beginning, each player places 3 castles with 3 knights next to them all over the map. When the game starts, the player whose turn it is turns around the action card for this round which shows 3 different actions which are available this round. Possible types of actions are:

  • Placement of walls to fence in some land.
  • Placement of a knight or conquering land.
  • Collecting Income.
  • Drawing a politics-card.
Each player now may chose one of the actions given on the card and perform it in turn. If two or more players chose the same action, they have to figure out who may perform it by offering Gold to the other player. If they cannot agree on a certain sum, it comes to a contest in which each player secretly bids an amount of Gold. The player bidding the highest sum win, must pay the Gold to the Bank and may perform the action.

At the beginning, the players try to get as much "Placement of Walls" as possible, in order to build a complete wall around one or more of their castles. Whenever a castle is completely fenced in, the player collects victory-points depending on how many land-spaces are fenced in and whether there are any additional cities belonging to this lands. When a player has built 3 such areas, he may place no more walls, but he must conquer additional land. When conquering, he may add 2 land spaces to one of his areas and he gets 2 vicory-points for each space he conquers and additional points for cities. If a player tries to conquer land belonging to an other playerīs area, he must have more knights in his area than the other player in his, otherwise he will not be able to conquer land of this area. In case a player can conquer land from an other player, the victory-points markers of each player are adjusted accordingly.

An unpredictable element in the game are the politics-cards. There are four kinds of them:

  • Peace - Two areas must hold peace until the owner of one of them pay 10 Gold to the Bank.
  • Defection - One player loses a knight to an other player.
  • Gold Treasure - A greater amount of Gold which might be used during the game.
  • Vicory Points - Additional Victory Points given at the end of the game.

The game ends when the action card "Death of the King" is turned around. Now the player with most Victory Points is the Winner.

When looking first at the game you get a feeling like with other Goldsieber-Games. The game is simply looking great with its variable map and itīs playing pieces. Most parts are designed to look like pictures from the age in which the game plays. The rules are not too hard to understand also one or two questions where left open, but these can be decided on by the players before starting the game. The gameplay itself is fluently and easy to understand.

To my mind the game has the problem that the player doesnīt get too involved in the game actions. On the gameboard the players practice something like a "Wall-Chess", moving walls back and forth and placing knights to defend or attack. I think that the Title "Lionheart" doesnīt fit to the game. For me, this title implies some great action around King Richard Lionheart, with chivalrous Knights, Tournaments etc. But in this game, the player doesnīt get personal with the role he plays. Each player just puts up his areas and tries to defend and enlarge them, but I think a title like "The Lords of England" would have been a better one. To sum it up, I can only say that the game is interesting, but I have played many more involving games.

Looking for this game? Visit Funagain Games!

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Copyright © 2006 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany