How to play Machi Koro? [Step-by-Step Guide]

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how to play machi koro-step-by-step

The Machi Koro, which is a fast-paced board game that is close and pops up with Japanese culture as well as the spirit of the game. The Machi Koro experience will give you an entertaining, relaxing, and fun time with friends. If you do not know how to play Machi Koro, let’s find out with Janbox now.

how to play machi koro

Elected as the new mayor of Machi Koro City, you shoulder the responsibility of building a strong and growing city in the region. To achieve Machi Koro’s target, you need to collect or even rob money from your neighbors by rolling the dice.

I. Basic concepts to understand

1. Types of cards

To know about Machi Koro’s instructions, you must first understand the cards. There are two basic types of cards in Machi Koro: establishment cards and landmark cards.

1.1. Establishment cards

These are cards that help you collect money to buy new items and landmarks for your city. On the building cards, it is printed numbers or a sequence of numbers, this is the point that you need to reach when rolling the dice to activate the building. Also below there is a coin line chart, this is the total amount you need to spend. Small establishments will have low construction costs and low profits. Large establishments have large construction costs and a high number of nodes, but they bring in large profits.

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Establishment cards are divided into 4 types of collectibles:

Blue (Primary Industry): take money from the bank in any turn.

Green (Shops, Factories, Markets): Take money from the bank in your turn.

Red (Restaurants): Take money from the person who rolled the dice.

Purple (Major Establishment): Take money from all players for the turn.

In some cases, building cards can be activated with just 1 roll of the dice. When this happens, the order of activation will be red, blue, green, and purple.

1.2. Landmark cards

At the beginning of the game, you will be given some landmark cards in advance, and during the game, you can buy more. The landmark cards will help you increase your bonuses and benefits when playing.

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Station: allows the player to roll the dice 2 times instead of just one.

Shopping Mall: brings more coins to owners of restaurants and cafes.

Amusement Park: if the player rolls both dice with the same number of buttons on both, the player will get an extra turn.

– Radio Tower: allows the player to roll the dice 1 more time on each turn.

>>> Read more: Jinsei game | Special board game in Japan | Gameplay

2. Card resolution order

Multiple cards can interact with each other triggered by the same roll of the dice. The cards occur in the following order:

– Red (restaurant)

– Blue and Green (main and minor industries)

– Purple (main establishments)

3. Game content

  • 8 Starting Establishments
  • 16 Landmarks
  • 72 Establishments
  • 12 Major Establishments
  • 42 Plastic $1 Coins
  • 24 Plastic $5 Coins
  • 12 Plastic $10 Coins
  • 2 Oversized Dice
  • 1 Rulebook

II. How to play Machi Koro? 

It takes about 30-40 minutes to play the game Machi Koro, and it also needs 2-4 players to start the game. Regarding Machi Koro’s how to play, at the beginning of the game, each person will get 2 building cards, and 4 landmark cards, including 1 Train Station, the remaining cards are arranged to form a market for shopping at a later stage. 

At the same time, each person is given 3 coins, the remaining money is placed in the middle of the table to form a bank. When there are enough cards and money, players proceed to play Machi Koro according to the following stages:

Roll the dice

Each player rolls the dice 1 turn to activate their work. When the player successfully activates the Train Station building, the player can roll the dice twice. When rolled twice, their values are added together.

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Collect coins

When you have rolled enough dice to activate the building and meet the construction cost, you will receive money from the building. The amount of money collected corresponds to what type of building you build, namely purple, blue, green, and red buildings.

Transfer coins between players

If this player lacks the other player’s money but is unable to pay it off, then that player just needs to pay all the coins he has. The remaining missing amount does not need to be paid, because the amount in the game cannot be negative below 0.

For example, Player A has a green Bakery and a red Cafe, when the dice are rolled 3 buttons both works are activated. At this point, player A has to pay 1 coin to all players because the red card is activated first, but player A does not have money, there is no need to pay this debt. Then, by activating the green leaf at the same time, person A receives 2 coins from the bank but does not need to pay.

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Building new establishments

When it’s your turn, you can buy establishment cards from the available supply. You just pay the price printed in the lower-left corner of the card and place the card in front of you. Your city just keeps growing. This will make sense for the next roll of the dice and even bring you more money.

You can’t construct a building if the playing cards are bought out. When finishing a landmark, flip the cardboard face up.  The landmark’s effects are now active.

Machi Koro (2)

Link to order products from Japan:

III. How to Win?

The game continues in rounds, with each roll of the dice, the player’s fortune will increase (or decrease). At the start of the game, everyone will receive the same four landmark cards (Train Station cost 4, Shopping Mall 10, Amusement Park 16, Tower Tower 22). 

The first person to pay the cost of all four of these and unlock them to complete Machi Koro’s target wins the game. It’s noted that they don’t have to be done in any order, you can unlock the Radio Tower first if you want to. Unlocking these is like buying any other card.

>>> Read more: How To Buy Japanese Pokemon Cards Easiest?

IV. Conclusion

machi koro

To sum up, Machi Koro is a popular board game worldwide, because of its simple and easy game rules. Hopefully, the tutorial on how to play Machi Koro above will help you somewhat understand the rules of the game. And if you wonder where to buy Machi Koro, please do not hesitate to visit our Janbox website for advice on purchasing and being able to own this game set as soon as possible.