OBJECTIVE OF LORDS OF WATERDEEP: The objective of Lords of Waterdeep is to be the player with the most Victory Points after eight rounds of gameplay. 

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 to 5 Players 

MATERIALS: 1 Gameboard, 1 Rulebook, 170 Game Pieces, 121 Cards, 33 Wooden Pieces, 100 Adventurer Cards, 5 Player Mats, and 1 Storage Tray 

TYPE OF GAME: Set Collection Board Game 

AUDIENCE: Ages 12 and Up 


Lords of Waterdeep is a deceptive strategy game that is perfect for those who have always pictured themselves as lords or ladies. The players attempt to take control of Waterdeep, each with their own intentions for the town. Players may hire agents to do their dirty work as they play politics with the others. Who will win control of this great city? 


To begin setup, each player will choose a color to represent them, collecting a player mat and agents of the same color. The agents will be placed on the pool of the player’s mats. Each player will then place one of their agents on the fifth space of the rounds rack, and they will place their score markers on the first place of the scoring track.  

Shuffle the building tiles, drawing three of them to place in the spaces of the Builder’s Hall. The rest of the tiles should be placed in a pile on their assigned space beside the Hall. Next, divide all of the adventurer cubes and place them between all of the players, within reach of everyone. Players are only allowed to hire a maximum of the number of adventurers found in the piles.  

The Lord cards are then shuffled, and one is dealt to each player. The players should attempt to keep their cards hidden from the other players. The Quest cards are then shuffled, with one being placed in each space of the Cliffwatch Inn. The remainder of the cards are placed beside the Inn, in their assigned space. Two intrigue cards are dealt to each player, again, keeping them hidden from the other players.  

The player who was last in another city gets to be the first one to go. The players will collect their cold, with the first player getting four, and each player getting one more piece than the previous. The players will store their gold in their Tavern on their player mat. If any decks become exhausted, the players may shuffle the discard pile and place it back in its assigned space. The game is then ready to begin! 


The game is played over the course of eight rounds. During each round, the players will take turns going left around the group. Each player will assign their Agents various tasks. At the beginning of each round, the players will take the Victory Points from the round tracker space, placing one token on each of the buildings found in the Hall.  

There are numerous start-of-round actions that may take place, depending on the buildings and cards that the players hold. These will take place before anything else, and then the round may proceed like normal. During their turn, the players may assign and agent and/or complete a quest if they have enough agents to assign, but if they have an agent, then the players are not permitted to skip their turn. In order to assign an agent, the player will place them in an empty space of a building, ensuring that there is not an agent there already. The player will then complete the actions found on the space that they chose.  

After the player assigns an agent, they may complete a Quest. Each Quest has a required number of adventures that are needed in order to complete it. Players do not have to complete a quest if they decide to not to, but they may only complete a maximum of one Quest during their turn. Once a player has chosen to complete a Quest, they will remove their chosen adventures and gold from their tavern, returning them to the supply.  

The players will complete what is required on the Quest card. Some Quests are mandatory, which the players may play onto other players in order to limit their actions. In these cases, the players must complete these Quests in order to complete any other Quests. Other Quests are Plot Quests, which are important to the success of the players’ ability to run Waterdeep, providing them with effects that are long-lasting. 

The round comes to an end when all of the Agents have been reassigned. The players will then collect their Agents, returning them to their pools. Whoever has the First Player Marker will begin the next round. The game continues in this manner for eight rounds of gameplay. 


The game comes to an end after right rounds of gameplay. At the end of the final round, the players will complete their final scoring. Each player will tally their Victory Points and advance their score marker if needed. The players will earn one Victory Point for each adventurer in their Tavern and every two gold. The players will earn a predetermined number of Victory Points for their Lord card, and this total can be found on the card.  

After the players have tallied their points, the winner is determined. The player with the most Victory Points becomes the winner! If there are two or more players that tie for number of Victory Points, then the player with the most gold will win the game! 

Ellie Phillips
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