Review: Raiders of the North Sea

Today’s review is of Raiders of the North Sea, the second game in the North Sea trilogy by Garphill Games. It plays 2-4 players, however there are two expansions on Kickstarter right now that will expand the game by one player for each expansions you use, up to a total of 6. Raiders is a worker placement game with a unique twist. All the workers exist in a shared pool on the board. Each turn you’ll place a worker on the board, and take a worker from the board. You’ll spend your turn placing a worker and taking the actiIf you took it off one of the locations in the Village, you’ll perform a second action. This way you always have one worker in your area at the end of the turn.

The board is divided into two areas, the village and raiding locations. The village is largely used to take actions that give you cards, let you play cards, and then get supplies like silver and provisions. The raiding locations are where you then take those supplies along with hired crew members to attack a location like the Harbour, Monastery, Outpost, and Fortress.

The game ends once one of three things occurs. Either the Offering stack is depleted, there are no Valyries on the board, or only one Fortress still has resources on it. Once that happens all players get one more round, and then the game is over and players count up their final points from the various point tracks and offerings they collected. Whoever has the most points wins.

This is my favorite of the North Sea games. It was the first one I played, and also the one with the most depth. When I heard there were two expansions coming out to Kickstarter it was a no brainer backing and I backed it in the middle of the night because it went up according to New Zealand time.