Siggil is a competitive card game for 2 to 4 players (or a solitaire card game for 1 player), ages 8 and up, designed by Henri Kermarrec, and published by Capsicum Games. Games are intended to last around 20 minutes.
Please bear in mind that this review will be mostly for the solo variant of the game, but the difference between the solo and multiplayer variants of the game are quite small.
Siggil consists entirely of cards, so setup is 50% shuffling and 50% setting up your Siggil layout.
Solo Setup: Shuffle all the suite cards together, then shuffle the Spirit cards separately. Lay the cards out in the pattern of your chosen Siggil, while adding a Spirit card to the Siggil every 7 cards.
Multiplayer Setup: Shuffle all the cards together (including Spirit cards) and lay them out in the pattern of your chosen Siggil.
The goal of Siggil is to unlock the Siggil seal and keep the spirits held inside from escaping.
Solo Play: Solo play consists largely of two repeating steps: 1. Select an available card (a card that is not covered by any other card) and discard it. 2. Select an available card and add it to your hand. This is the basis of play.
As Spirit cards become available, they are placed face up, outside the Siggil. Only three Spirits can be free at one time, so, if a fourth is freed, one of the other Spirits is discarded as it has successfully escaped.
Spirits are captured by playing sets of cards. In order to capture a Spirit, you’ll need to play a run of 3 cards that share the same suite as the Spirit or the same number as the Spirit (if you’re playing the difficult variant, you’ll need to use sets of 4 cards instead of three.)
Multiplayer Play: For multiplayer, players decide who goes first and then play proceeds clockwise. Each turn, players must take one available card from the Siggil and add it to their hands (which are kept secret from other players).
Once per turn, a player may play a set of cards to take control of a free Spirit that has been revealed from the Siggil. Players will need to play a set of 3 cards to take control of a Spirit (or 2 cards if you are playing with 4 players).
Players are able to steal a Spirit from other players by playing a set of cards on the Spirit in question, but it must contain one more card then the set played by the original player. The original player’s set of cards remains face up in front of them.
Players are also able to regain control of Spirits lost to other players. To do this, they must complete the initial set of cards played (or play an entirely new set) to obtain a set that contains one more card then the set played by the player who stole the Spirit from them.
Solo Ending: In order to win the game, you must either control all 7 Spirits with sets of 3 cards or you must control 6 Spirits with sets of 4 cards. There is little room for error in solo play as even the easy variant can easily end in a loss.
Multiplayer Ending: In a 2 player game, the player who controls 5 Spirits wins. In a 3 player game, the player who controls 4 Spirits wins. In a 4 player game, the player who controls 3 Spirits wins. If the above criteria is not met by the end of the game (i.e. cards running out with no clear winner) then the player who has the most Spirits under their control wins. In the event of a tie, the winner is the player who has the least cards in their hand.
Artwork and Quality of Game Components
The artwork in Siggil (which is done by the talented Maud Chalmel) is strikingly beautiful and is initially what drew me to the game. You can see what I’m talking about from the pictures above.
The cards are good quality, about what you’d get from any run of the mill deck of cards (if a little less sturdy). The box is excellent in terms of size and construction. It’s small enough to be unobtrusive on any shelf and doesn’t waste much space on the inside. The cover art (and my inherent dislike of tuck boxes) keeps me from saying that a tuck box would have been sufficient for storage purposes. This box will definitely protect your cards better.
Siggil is a fun, fast game and is easy to learn. I’m not keen on trying the multiplayer variant of the game, but I’ve grown pretty fond of the solo variant. It’s a good time killer and I don’t have any major complaints about it. If you’re looking for something that you could take with you on the go, or just a new game to add to your solo arsenal, Siggil may just be what you’re looking for.
One other thought, this game reminds me strongly of Mahjong. If you’re a fan of Mahjong, you’ll probably enjoy Siggil.