This is the Kingdomino vs Santorini game comparison showdown. Besides the fact that both of these titles are abstract strategy games that are great for 2 players, there really isn’t too much to compare between them. They both do fall into the rare category of light with minimal decisions that have big satisfying consequences. We dive deep into both. Learn a little about the games then check out our Kingdomino vs Santorini notes and final verdict.


About Kingdomino (2017): The game uses tiles with two sections, similar to Dominoes. Every turn, each player will select a new domino to connect to their existing kingdom, making sure at least one of its sides connects to a matching terrain type in play. The order of who picks first depends on which tile was previously chosen, with better tiles forcing players to pick later in the next round. Your goal is to make touching groups of the 6 different types of terrain with as many crowns as possible.

FOR MORE: Kingdomino Page | How To Play Kingdomino | Kingdomino Review | Games Like Kingdomino | Buy Kingdomino on Amazon

About Santorini (2016): You are constructing multi-level buildings on the glorious island and the first player to reach a certain level wins. You have only two things to do each turn, move a builder and build up. The first player to get a builder on top of a 3 story structure wins, and they must climb to it via a 1 and then a 2 story building. The key is if you are not strategic in how you do it, your opponent can block you, or worse yet, beat you there. For 2 – 4 players, games run about 20 minutes.

FOR MORE: Santorini Page | How To Play Santorini | Games Like Santorini | Buy Santorini on Amazon


Theme: If abstract strategy games have any story at all, there is never much of it, and that is the case with these two. If you are looking for a deep story, these are not it. Kingdomino has a broad medieval kingdom vibe and Santorini has the backdrop of the beautiful Greek island is named after. Santorini definitely wins as the little buildings are thematic and adorable.

Gameplay: The games are very different. Kingdomino is about drafting and bring pieces into a personal grid to make sets and patterns. In Santorini everyone is working within the same tight grid and there are no pieces to take, it is all about actions you take as you move. They are only similar in that space is filling up and you need to masterfully work it.

Mechanics: Drafting and set collection drive Kingdomino, while Santorini harkens back to Chess or Go. Santorini is a true showdown where space will fill up and you need to be ten turns ahead to make sure it ends up in your direction. It is like tic tac toe meets and epic adventure like The Odyssey or Back to the Future.

Time Commitment: Both games are very quick and close to around 20 minutes each. Both are limited rounds of going back and forth, which tend to be on the shorter side.

Player Count: Santorini says it can be for 2 – 4 players, but you really shouldn’t bother outside of 2 because this really is a showdown, chess-like game that is all about back and forth, mono e mono.

Cost: Santorini has a much more elaborate series of components, so you would think it would be expensive, but you can generally get it for a good price.


Verdict For the Shelf: Kingdomino (50% of the time) and Santorini (50% of the time). This is a coin flip, these are both very different games that are hard to compare. Both are at the top of their class, so you are getting quality out of both. They are both great games so your really cannot go wrong.

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