In Kanagawa, players assume the roles of the disciples of Master Hokusai, an old artist who wants to teach people to make harmonious prints. Will you make the work of your lifetime?

Number of players: 2-4

Average duration: 30’

Age: 10+

MSRP: $30

Thumbs Up:

Gameplay: The game offers a variety of options, thus offering depth to the game, but the way the choices of one player affects yours, gives it a really interesting gameplay. Player interaction is tense, although not direct; the downtime between player turns is minimal, so you are always in game. 

Component Quality: IELLO always sets high standards when it comes to component quality and once more it does not fail to impress. Components which could be very simple, like the main board, which could be a cardboard, is a bamboo mat instead. This goes for many of the components of the game, and it really helps you feel like you are an artist, dealing with pieces of art. The art style is really appealing and actually adds to the gaming experience. Finally the insert holds everything into place.


Rules: Comprehensive rulebook, easy to learn, with many examples, well laid out. Makes the game very easy to both learn and teach.

Thumbs Down:

Luck vs strategy: To some extent, it could be argued that luck plays an important role in the game; however it can be mitigated if the players choose to push their luck when it comes to diploma tiles and act early instead of waiting for the right card to appear. 

Component Quality: Pen and paper is necessary to note down your score. The lack of a scoring pad is only mentioned because for the high component quality offered by the company, most would expect it in the game. 

Co-Mix Final Verdict:

A very fun game, that makes time flow by. Kanagawa is one of the games that make you want to do your best, become the best artist and make your prints stand out.


Who is it for:

Family Gamer:  Yes. Clearly a family game. Both kids and grown ups are going to enjoy the theme and gameplay of Kanagawa 

Social Gamer: No. The number of players make it unsuitable for social gamers. 

Strategy Gamer:  Maybe. Strategy plays its role in the game, although this cannot be characterized as a heavy strategy game. 


Hobby Gamer:  Yes. The way the theme is incorporated in the components of the game and the gameplay, will make even the most demanding very happy.

Hardcore Gamer: No. The fact that there is no direct interaction between players will discourage hardcore gamers.


Game Contents:


1 School Board

4 Starting Tiles

72 Lesson Cards

1 Grand Master Pawn

1 Assistant Pawn

19 Diploma Tiles

15 Brush Pawns

3 Storm Tokens

1 Rulebook


The review copy of this game was kindly provided by IELLO Games. No other compensation was received for this review.

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