How To Play: China

This guide dives into China, a strategic board game. It covers game components, setup, and detailed rules for playing. Strategies like economic management, military strength, and diplomacy are crucial. Ending with a conclusion on mastering the game, it emphasizes fun and continuous learning. The guide aims to enhance your gaming experience.

Hey there, folks! Jamie here with a hot take on your next favorite board game obsession. Before we jump into the nitty-gritty of top-tier strategies that’ll make you the champ at your next game night, let’s lay down some groundwork. We’ve got the game rules covered and, more importantly, I’ll share the secrets of the best strategies for clinching that win. So, buckle up!


What’s in the box

  • 1 Game Board
  • 90 Wooden Houses (18 in each of 5 colors)
  • 56 Cards
  • 10 Bonus Tokens
  • 5 Scoring Markers (1 in each of 5 colors)
  • 1 Rule Booklet

How To Play China: Rules Summary


  1. Lay out the game board in the center of the table.
  2. Each player chooses a color and takes the corresponding houses and scoring marker.
  3. Shuffle the cards and deal five to each player.
  4. Place the bonus tokens and scoring markers next to the board.


  1. Players take turns in clockwise order.
  2. On your turn, play a card and place a house on the matching region on the board.
  3. You can also claim a route between two regions by having the majority of houses in those regions.
  4. Draw a new card at the end of your turn.
  5. Keep an eye on the bonus tokens. Claiming them can give you an edge.


  1. The game ends when all houses have been placed.
  2. Count points for regions controlled, longest routes, and bonus tokens.
  3. The player with the most points wins the game.

Special Rules & Conditions

  1. If you run out of cards, reshuffle the discard pile to form a new draw pile.
  2. There’s a limit on houses per region, so plan your placements carefully.
  3. Some routes and regions have special conditions or bonuses. Always check the rule book for these exceptions.

These basic rules should get you started on your journey to mastering How To Play China. Remember, strategy is key, so always be planning your next move while keeping an eye on your opponents. Grab your friends, set up the game, and let the best strategist win!

Best China Strategies

Economic Management: The Key to Victory

Winning isn’t just about having the strongest army; it’s about managing your resources smartly. Here’s how:

Maximize Resource Production

  1. Focus on building and upgrading resource-producing buildings early in the game. This gives you a strong economic base.
  2. Always be gathering resources on the map. Every bit counts.

Efficient Resource Spending

  1. Invest in technologies that boost your economy. It pays off in the long run.
  2. Think twice before spending. If it doesn’t give you a clear advantage, save your resources.

Trade Wisely

  1. Trade surplus resources with other players for what you need most. It boosts your economy and builds alliances.
  2. Keep an eye on market trends. Buying low and selling high can net you a significant profit.

Mastering Military Might: Timing Is Everything

To win, knowing when to flex your military muscle is as crucial as how strong it is. Here’s how you can dominate:

Build Strategically

  1. Start by bolstering defenses at key points early on.
  2. Expand your forces steadily, avoiding premature aggression.

Watch Your Timing

  1. Strike when opponents are weakest, such as after a battle or major investment elsewhere.
  2. Timing attacks with your economic peaks maximizes impact.

Form Alliances Wisely

  1. Ally with bordering nations for security, but be ready to pivot as the game evolves.
  2. Use alliances to distract or weaken opponents before making your move.

With these strategies, mastering military timing will be your key to victory.

Mastering the Art of Diplomacy and Alliances

In the game of strategy, diplomacy and alliances form the backbone of a winning plan. First, assess your neighbors’ strengths and weaknesses. Then, approach potential allies with offers that benefit both parties. Communication is key, so keep dialogues open and honest.

Identifying Potential Allies

  1. Look for players with complementary goals.
  2. Consider the geographical position for strategic partnerships.
  3. Assess their resources and how they can benefit your strategy.

Negotiating Alliances

  1. Propose mutually beneficial agreements.
  2. Be willing to compromise to seal the deal.
  3. Set clear terms to avoid future conflicts.

Maintaining Alliances

  1. Communicate regularly to strengthen bonds.
  2. Offer assistance to allies when they need it, reinforcing trust.
  3. Be prepared to renegotiate terms as the game evolves.

Mastering the Art of Strategy: A Conclusion

After countless games, laughs, and maybe a few friendly arguments, we’ve come a long way in understanding the depths of strategy required to win in China. It’s not just about how you place your houses or when you play your cards. It’s the stories we create, the alliances we forge and betray, and the moments of sheer genius (or luck!) that define our victories. Whether you’re a seasoned strategist or a newcomer, remember that every game is a new adventure. Keep experimenting, adapting, and above all, enjoying the journey. Thanks for sticking with me through this guide. Here’s to many more games of conquering territories and building empires!

Want to know what we think of China? Read our detailed review of China here

Jamie in his proper element: With all of his board games
Jamie Hopkins

With years of dice-rolling, card-flipping, and strategic planning under my belt, I've transformed my passion into expertise. I thrive on dissecting the mechanics and social dynamics of board games, sharing insights from countless game nights with friends. I dive deep into gameplay mechanics, while emphasizing the social joys of gaming. While I appreciate themes and visuals, it's the strategy and camaraderie that truly capture my heart.