Forbidden Island Board Game: Rules, Target, Series, Expansion

forbidden island

Forbidden Island: Overview

Forbidden Island is a board game where, instead of beating your opponents, the players need to work together to win the game. It can be played by a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 4 players, and it’s suitable for an age range of 10+.

Forbidden Island: Content of the box

Forbidden Island board game (price: $19.99) comes in a small box that includes:

  • The game’s manual, which includes all the rules and the setup
  • Game pieces
  • Tiles
  • Gem pieces
  • Gamecards
  • Water meter with water meter marker

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Forbidden Island: Rules

In Forbidden Island, the board game is made of tiles. The tiles create the Island where the game takes place.

During the game, the Island that is created at the beginning will sink gradually, and the object of the game is that players to work together to prevent it from sinking.

But how do you play? Each player takes the role of an adventurer. Each adventurer has some power that is known to themselves and the rest of the players. When it’s their turn, players can move their pieces (pawns) over the tiles; when they are on a tile, they can make from 1 to 3 actions. The most important action is to shore up a tile so it doesn’t flood and then sink.

The amount and type of actions you can do when it’s your turn depends on your assigned role. To enrich the game and make it more challenging, there are also treasures spread through the Island that you can find, exchange, or use.

How does the Island sink?

In the box, you’ll find the water meter. As the marker goes up along the water level, the tiles that bring the number corresponding to that level will sink. So, for example, when the water level increases to three, all the tiles bringing the number 3 will sink.

Forbidden Island: Target

Before the island is completely flooded, the players must have collected all the treasures, move to the Fools’ Landing tile and call the Helicopter (discarding the helicopter lift card) to save the team. If this is accomplished, congratulations, you’ve won the game.

Forbidden Island: Series

The success of Forbidden Island brought the creators to design what was called “a sequel” to the first forbidden island game. It’s called Forbidden Desert, and as its name suggests, it sets up in a desert. It’s not only the setting that changes but – even though the mechanism and rules are similar to the original Forbidden Island – Forbidden Desert has some increased difficulty.

There is also another sequel called Forbidden Sky. In this one, players need to manipulate circuitry to activate a rocket and escape a floating platform during a thunderstorm.

forbidden island series

Forbidden Island: Expansion

There are no official extensions for the Forbidden Island boarding game. However, there is one expansion called “La Expansion Prohibida” (the prohibited expansion) that is fan-made and was originally released as a promo item for a Spanish conference.