the box of Age of Wonders Planetfall.the box of Age of Wonders Planetfall.

Game Summary

  • Publisher: Arcane Wonders
  • Ages: 12+
  • Player count: 2-6
  • Playtime: 20-40 minutes
  • Mechanics: Drafting, worker placement, resource management
  • Released: November 29, 2023

Game Overview

Age of Wonders: Planetfall takes some elements from the video game of the same name, available on STEAM and console and turns it into a light drafting game that does not require any background to play and enjoy the game. The game plays over rounds with a field of cards placed along the Operation board. While there are quite a few pages to the rule book, that is due to the cards types being explained in detail. The game play is very streamline and does not take long to learn.


Age of Wonders: Planetfall plays over seven rounds, and each round players explore a different planet. These planets are represented by unique decks with art specific to each planet. 

Each round has four to five steps per round, (depending on the round)

  • Discovery: The Planet Deck for the round is dealt to the Operation Board. The number of cards dealt varies depending on the player count.
  • Income: Certain cards generate income, such as annexed sectors, and some technology cards. The ability of the Commander resolves in this phase if applicable.
  • Exploration Part l: Players take turns selecting a card based on the order of initiative. Which is based on the placement of the ship token.  After all players select their cards or location (if they choose an operation slot), cards resolve from left to right and top to bottom. The location selected by each player determines their order of selecting the next time. . 
  • Exploration Part ll: Players select a second time either a card or operation slot. Again the locations resolve from left to right and top to bottom.
  • Migration: Players collected and discarded the remaining planet cards.

Earning points and Winning the Game

The player with the most victory points wins the game. As you draft cards some give you points right away. There is also a goal card for the game, which players randomly pick at the beginning of the game. Players get additional victory points if they complete the goals.

Age of Wonders – The Video Game

Age of Wonders Planetfall began as a video game in 2019. The first game of the Age of wonders series released in 1999. There have been multiple releases between the two. With the most current video game in the series Age of Wonders 4 releasing in 2023 as the sixth game of the series. Age of Wonders Planetfall is a turn based strategy game released on STEAM, PS4, X Box One in August 2019 where players control one of six factions

Family Gaming Assessment

I played Age of Wonders Planetfall with my two boys, who are veteran board gamers, and they picked up the mechanics and the steps of the round very quickly. The longest part of teaching the game was to go over the different types of cards. Because none of us had any connection to the video game we were curious how we would connect with the board game.

After the first round we quickly got the flow of the game and experienced how entertaining it was.  Before playing, I was wondering how steep the learning curve would be. With all the mechanics incorporated, Age of Wonders Planetfall it sounds like it would be a challenging game to learn and play. Quite the opposite was true. The mechanics and directions on each turn are very streamline and clear making it a good entry weight game.

Besides being easy to learn, the game was very engaging and there is a lot of replayability. The entire planet deck is not used in each round regardless of player count. Since the cards are dealt at random there is always some variation on the resources and choices available. Even without a connection to the video game, we were quickly pulled into the rounds, and were eager to complete each round to explore the next planet.

Final Thoughts

Age of Wonders Planetfall is a great family weight game. It makes the mechanics of drafting, worker placement and resource management easy to understand for players new to the mechanic. Age of Wonders Planetfall could be an entry game into these mechanics. Plus, the seven rounds played very quickly making it easy to get it to the table. Age of Wonders Planetfall is a great addition to any family’s board game collection.

By Linda Wrobel

Managing Editor: Board Games Mother, Educator, and Board Game Editor.

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