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Fire Tower - Game Review

Great Gameplay Badge

Title: Fire Tower and Expansion

Designed By: Samuel Bryant and Gwen Ruelle

Art By: Kevin Ruelle

Published By: Runaway Parade Games LLC

Released: 2019 (Expansion 2020)

Player Count: 2-4 (solo mode available in expansion)

Time to Play: 15-30 Minutes

Ages: 10+

Jacqueline with Box


Looking for a new light-weight game to add to your game night rotation? "Fire Tower" is a blazingly unique game that combines strategy, aesthetics, and quick gameplay to ignite the interest of players across the board. This game puts players against each other as fire wardens trying to protect their own towers while directing the flames towards their opponents. It's a fiery battle filled with tactical decisions and stunning components that make each session both visually appealing and engaging. Players take turns using action cards to spread the fire toward their opponents and away from their own fire tower. The last player to have their tower burn down wins!

What's purr-ty cool:


For enthusiasts of tactile game pieces, Fire Tower shines brightly. The game features exquisite, chunky, translucent fire pieces that resemble real flames, enhancing the thematic experience of spreading fire across the board. They are both pretty to look at, and fun to play with in-between turns. The deluxe version raises the stakes with a hefty, ornate metal die that you use to determine which direction the wind is blowing. Furthermore, the expansion introduces an eye-catching central fire structure and large wooden fire hawk meeples that are not only functional but also my favorite addition to the game (see below for more about the fire hawks!). These premium components are typically reserved for heavier games, making Fire Tower a rare gem of a light-weight game that brings deluxe quality to a game that can hit my table more frequently.

Fire Tower Gameplay

Gameplay and Mechanics

Fire Tower is easy to learn yet still has many strategic decisions. It combines hand management and grid movement mechanics in a way that is both simple to understand, while still allowing the player a agency over how they respond to things happening in the game. The rules are straightforward enough to jump right into the fire without getting burned by complex instructions. Players find themselves constantly juggling offensive and defensive tactics, making strategic decisions to protect their own tower while ensnaring others in a fiery doom. This balance keeps the game intensely thematic; every choice feels grounded in the logic of fire combat. The swift nature of the game (15-20 minutes) ensures that it often reaches the table, serving as an excellent filler or a warm-up game during game nights.

Fire Tower Action Cards

Expanding on the Expansion

The expansion introduces several modular game add-ons. You can pick and choose which new features to include in each game. There are not only ways to spices up the solo mode but also new mechanisms to keep players in the game even after their towers have succumbed to the flames. The spirit of the wood is a new way to play, which gives players who have had their tower burned down, one final way to win. The standout feature, however, is the fire hawks. These new pieces add a fascinating layer of strategy as they spread or move fire from different the board. The thematic integration of real-world behavior of fire hawks—who spread wildfires to flush out prey—into the gameplay is both educational and immersive, enhancing the narrative depth of Fire Tower.

Solo the Spokescat cuddling the expansion box

In summary, Fire Tower is a game that combines simple strategy with high-quality components and fast-paced action, making it a standout title in any game collection. Whether you're a seasoned gamer or a casual enthusiast, Fire Tower promises an intense and fiery adventure every time it hits the table.

The cat's meow:

"I know another way to spread the fire, I will sit on the board and then the flames will go everywhere!" - Solo the Spokescat


Disclosure: Pudgy Cat Games was provided a copy of this game in exchange for a review, however, this review reflects the honest thoughts of the author.


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