Wingspan – How To Play

Hi and welcome to Watch It Played my name
is Rodney Smith and in this video we’re
going to learn the one to five-player game
Wingspan, designed by Elizabeth Hargrave and
published by Stonemaier Games who helped sponsor
this video. As bird enthusiast you’re keen
to attract a variety of different to your
aviary but will you focus on their colors,
their eggs, the size of their flocks? Will
they be forest dwelling or perhaps prefer
the wetlands? Believe me there will be no
shortage of choices. So join me at the table
and let’s learn how to play. To setup find
the one-hundred and seventy bird cards that
all share this back. On their fronts you’ll
find a uniquely illustrated, different bird
on each one and you’ll shuffle all of these
together into a face-down deck. Nearby place
the included tray and place three birds face-up
into it. Then find the cards with this back,
known as the bonuses, which should be shuffled
into a face-down deck nearby as well. You
can also use the included storage trays to
organize the decks on the table. Now set-up
these egg and food tokens, which I have organized
into the included storage containers. You’ll
also find instructions for how to build this
bird feeder dice tower that you’ll set within
reach of all the players. Then toss these
food dice into the back of it where they’ll
be displayed here. This is the double-sided
goal board and you can play with either side
face-up. For a less competitive game use this
blue side and for a more competitive one you
can use the green side. Then find these double-sided
goal tiles and, without looking at them, shuffle
and place them with a random side face-up
into the spaces of the goal board, here, returning
any extras to the box. Now give each player
their starting items and this includes a player
mat, eight action cubes in their chosen color,
and one of each type of food token. Then deal
everyone five bird and two bonus cards. Now
examine your bird cards and pick which ones
you want to keep and for each one you do you
must discard one of your food tokes. So, in
other words, if I wanted to keep these three
I’d return some combination of three tokens
back to the supply. Then any birds you discard
are placed into a shared discard pile in the
center of the play area. From your two bonus
cards one to keep, discarding the other into
a separate discard pile. Finally select a
first player randomly and give them this first
player token and that’s the set-up. In Wingspan
players will by trying to satisfy a variety
of personal and public goals by gathering
birds into their aviary which will provide
them with points and other unique benefits.
The game is played over four rounds and, during
each round, players will take turns, starting
with the first player and then going clockwise
around and around the table. And on your turn
you’ll perform one of four possible actions.
One option is to play a bird from your hand
and birds are placed onto your board in one
of three known as the Forest, Grassland, and
Wetland habitats represented by the symbols
that you’ll find here. In the top left-hand
corner of each bird card it will show you
which habitat it can be placed into. If it
shows more than one symbol then you can pick
anyone of those rows to assign it to. There
may also be food costs here. These are the
types of food tokes that you must spend from
beside your board, returning them to the supply,
to put that bird into your aviary. If a food
cost looks like this then you can spend any
type of food token to pay that cost. If you
see this symbol then that means that there
is no food cost to pay. If there’s a plus
symbol then you must pay all of the food shown
but if you see a slash then you pick only
one of the food types to pay. As you’re
reminded of here you can also spend any two
tokens as any one token that you need. So,
if I need to pay a fish but didn’t have
one, I could spend these two tokens instead.
Just keep in mind that you can only do this
kind of exchange when playing a bird not at
any other time when food tokens may need to
be paid. Once you know you’ll be able to
pay any costs you then perform the action
by placing one of your cubes into the play
a bird row here at the top of the board, above
the left-most empty column of the row that
you’ll placing the bird into. You then pay
the food token cost and place your bird into
that empty space. If it has a power printed
here that starts with “when played” you
may use that power, resolving its effect.
For example, in this case you can draw two
new bird cards in any combination of either
the face-down deck or the three face-up ones.
The birds have a variety of effects and we’re
not going to go over all of them in this video
but there is an appendix book included in
the game that details all of those powers
if you have any questions. With your bird
played then slide your cube all the way to
the left to indicate that your turn is over
and then the next player goes. Now, once you
have a bird in a row the next time that you
want to place a new bird in that habitat you’ll
put your action cube above the column of the
next available space. And you’ll notice
that each of these has one or more egg symbols.
This means that you must also discard that
number of eggs in addition to the other costs
of the bird. We’ll see how eggs are added
to your birds later but just note that any
egg cost can be played from any card, anywhere
in your aviary, returning it to the supply.
Now, though, let’s look at a different action
called “Gain Food”. To do this one you’ll
place an action cube into the left-most exposed
slot of the “Gain Food” row of your player
mat and then resolve the symbols there. For
each die you see you’ll pick one to remove
from the birdfeeder tray and then collect
a food token with the same symbol and add
it to your personal supply. One die face shows
symbols for both invertebrate and seeds but
if you take this die you pick only one of
the type of tokens to collect. Over the course
of the game there’s no limit to how many
food tokens a player have but they must remain
easy for all players to see. And in the rare
event that the supply runs out just use a
suitable replacement. When taking this action
if the space that your cube went into shows
this option then you can also choose to discard
one bird card from your hand to pick an additional
food die from the feeder. You may only do
this once during an action and the card you
discard must come from your hand, not from
the board. If the bird feeder is ever empty
then you’ll take all the dice and throw
them back in. Also, if you’re about to gain
food for any reason and all the dice remaining
in the feeder show the same type of food symbol,
even if it’s just a single die, then at
that point, before taking any food, you can
choose to throw all five dice back into the
feeder. Now, for the purposes of checking
for matching die faces, this one showing two
food tokens counts as its own unique face.
Going back to our aviary I should point out
that you don’t need to have a bird in the
row to take this action. You would, instead,
just go here and then gain a single food.
That said, the more birds that you have in
row, the better this action becomes. With
three birds in this habitat taking the gain
food action will instead allow you to pick
two dice from the bird feeder and give you
the option to trade in a single bird card
to gain a third. If, instead, the row was
completely filled then you would place your
cube here and gain these listed rewards. Either
way, after you have gained the rewards of
the space your action cube was placed in you
then move your cube from right to left one
card at a time, activating any bird effects
here with a brown “When Activated” power
in that row. These powers are always optional,
you do not have to resolve them but with careful
placement of birds in your habitat it can
make the actions you take uniquely powerful
each time. Again, we won’t go over all the
various powers found here as they are explained
on the cards and in detail in the appendix,
if you have questions, but there are a couple
I’d like to quickly mention. If you see
this symbol the bird’s power relates to
it being predator. And if an effect ever tells
you to cache a food token you place it on
the bird itself. It will then be worth points
at the end of the game, however you cannot
spend cached food tokens to pay the cost for
birds. If an effect tells you to tuck a card,
it means to place it face-down under the indicated
bird. This relates to that birds flock and
it will be worth points at the end of the
game. After going through your row and activating
any “When Activated” effects that you
wish to, leave your cube on the far left space
of the action to end your turn. Now, while
the other two actions in the game, “Lay
Eggs” and “Draw Bird Cards”, provide
their own unique benefits from the spaces
where your action cube is placed, they work
the same as gaining food. You’ll place a
cube in the left-most available space, gain
the reward there and then work your way to
the left, triggering any “When Activated”
bird effects that you want to in that row.
To lay eggs you’ll gain a number of eggs
from the supply as shown here and their color
doesn’t matter. You then place them on one
or more birds in your aviary that has space
for them but where they’re located doesn’t
matter you just have to ensure that you don’t
exceed a bird’s limit for eggs, which is
shown here. For example, this bird can hold
up to three eggs while this one can hold up
to five. If you would ever gain more eggs
than the capacity of the birds that you currently
have then any excess eggs lost and if the
space that you put your cube into shows this
option then you may return any one single
food token from your supply to gain one additional
egg. And like food tokens there’s no limit
to the egg supply. In the rare event that
you would run out just use a suitable replacement.
By their limit you’ll also find a nest type
symbol and certain goals or other effects
may refer to one of the five different types,
either platform, bowl, cavity, ground, or
wild which counts as all of the previous types.
The final type of action that you can perform
is to draw birds and for each of these symbols
in the space where your action cube is placed
you take a card from either the face-up display
or the top of the bird deck. If the space
also has this symbol then you can return a
single egg from anywhere in your aviary in
order to draw one more card. And a player
can have any number of cards in their hand
but when taking new cards from the display
do not immediately replace them. Only once
you’ve finished drawing and activating “When
Activated” power effects that you wish to
from this row will you then draw new cards
to replace any that were taken during this
action. Also, if these decks run out re-shuffle
the discard pile into new ones. And those
are all the four possible actions. You just
choose one on your turn with a cube, perform
it, and then the next player goes. I should
point out, though, some birds have a pink
“Once Between Turns” power. As explained
on them these are triggered by actions other
players take on their turns and are resolved
at that time but these can only be activated
once between your turns. As an example, let’s
say we had a three player game and this person
performed an action which then triggered this
effect. The player here could choose to resolve
it, which in this case would give them an
invertebrate token, however if the next player
also took an action which would normally trigger
this effect it will not happen because this
has already been resolved once between turns.
Only after this player has completed their
next turn will this effect become active again.
With the actions and effects understood the
players will continue taking turns until they
have used all of their action cubes. That
will bring you to the end of the round where
the players will perform four steps. First,
they will take back all of the cubes from
their board then you’ll score the end of
the round goal by looking at the board here.
At the end of the first round this is the
goal that will be scored and each of these
is explained in the appendix if you need assistance.
But, as an example, this one means you’ll
check to see how many birds you have in your
aviary with a bowl next that also contains
at least one egg. The player with the most
birds who satisfy that condition would place
their cube in the first place position, the
second most goes here, and so on. In the case
of ties put the tied players’ cubes into
the tied space and skip the other space that
they would normally have claimed. So, in a
three player game where these two players
had tied for first, their cubes would go here
and the player with the next most would go
here. In order to score a position you must
have at least one the targeted items from
the goal, otherwise your token will go here.
And if you finish in fourth or fifth place
you must also put an action cube here. In
this way everyone will have one less action
cube to place in the next round. And at the
end of the following round, after this goal
has been scored, everyone will lose another
action cube and so on, meaning that as each
round advances you’ll have fewer and fewer
actions you can take. If you’re using the
less competitive blue side of the goal board
then, instead, you’ll place your cube on
the space that matches the number of times
you accomplished the objective. For example,
if I had three bowl nests that had at least
one egg on them then I would place my cube
here. And if another player had the same they
would put there cube here as well. In this
way ties on this side of the board do not
effect where other players add their cubes.
You’ll just notice that, at most you can
score these goals five times. After resolving
the goal, discard all face-up birds in the
tray and replenish them with new ones drawn
from the top of the deck then pass the first
player token clock-wise and begin a new round.
The game will continue like this until the
end of the fourth round where you will use
this included pad to calculate the final scores.
First, add together the point value of all
of the birds within your aviary which is shown
beside this feather symbol. Now, reveal your
bonus cards and gain points based on whether
or not you fulfilled their conditions. You’ll
start with one of these but various bird effects
may allow you to gain more of them that you
will also score at this point as well. Next,
check the goal board and score points based
on the location of your cubes there. On this
green side, if you’re tied with another
player add together the values from the space
you are in and as many spaces as the number
of cubes that tied, dividing the total by
the number of tied players rounding down.
So in this case we have two players tied so
we would add together seven and four to get
eleven, divide by two, and round down giving
each of these players five points. If you’re
playing on the blue side, players just gain
the points showing in their space and, at
most, you can gain five points per goal. Now
give yourself one point for every egg you
have on your birds, another point for every
cached food token, and a point for every card
you have tucked under any of your birds. You’ll
add all your points together and the player
with the most wins. In the case of a tie the
tied player with the most unused food tokens
wins, and if there’s still a tie the tied
players share the victory. And that’s everything
you need to know to play Wingspan. Now there
are also rules and components for playing
solo but I’ll leave those for you to discover
on your own. Otherwise, if you have any questions
about anything else you saw here feel free
to put them in the comments below and I’ll
gladly answer them as soon as I get a chance.
You’ll also find forums for discussion,
pictures, other videos, and lots more over
on its page of Board Game Geek, which I’ll
put a link to in the description of this video.
But until the next episode, thanks for watching.


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