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Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar box image

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar is a worker placement game where players place and remove workers on a rotating gear to gather resources, build buildings, and advance their civilization over a 26-round cycle.

7.86 / 10
BGG Rating
published year
2 - 4
player count
2 - 4
Recommended player count
90 mins
play time

How Complex is Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar?

3.67 / 5

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar has a moderate complexity level due to the rotating gear mechanic and various paths to victory, but is easy to learn with experience.

How much Luck is involved in the gameplay of Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar?

1 / 5

Luck plays a minor role in Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar as players have control over their worker placement and resource management, but some luck is involved in the random starting wealth tiles and starting player order.

How much Player Interaction does Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar offer?

3 / 5

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar offers moderate player interaction through blocking and competing for resources and buildings, but players can also focus on their own strategies without much interference.

How much Replayability does Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar offer?

4 / 5

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar offers high replayability due to the various strategies and paths to victory that change each game.

Why you should play Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

Unique mechanics

Tzolk'in features a unique gear system that adds a new level of strategy to the game. Players must plan their moves carefully to ensure they are maximizing their resources and taking advantage of the timing of the gears.

Thematic immersion

The game is set in the Mayan civilization and features beautiful artwork and components that transport players to another time and place.


With multiple paths to victory and different strategies to explore, Tzolk'in offers a high level of replayability. No two games will be exactly the same.

Strategic depth

Tzolk'in is a game that rewards careful planning and strategic thinking. Players must balance short-term gains with long-term goals to succeed.

Engaging gameplay

Tzolk'in is a game that keeps players engaged from start to finish. With a variety of actions to take and decisions to make, players will be constantly challenged and entertained.

Why you should avoid Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar


Tzolk'in can be a complex game to learn, especially for new players. The gear system and multiple actions can be overwhelming at first.


Tzolk'in is a longer game, with an average playtime of around 90-120 minutes. This may not be ideal for players looking for a shorter game experience.

Analysis paralysis

With so many options and strategies to consider, some players may find themselves suffering from analysis paralysis, taking a long time to make decisions and slowing down the game.

Overall, Tzolk'in is a great game for players who enjoy complex strategy games and are willing to invest the time to learn and play. However, it may not be the best fit for players who prefer shorter, simpler games or who are easily overwhelmed by complexity.

Where to play Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar online?

Where to find the Rules of Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

Check the rules of Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar in a PDF file.

You can also find the community-driven rules summary, player aid, etc., in the Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar files section on the BoardGameGeek website. You need an account on BGG to download files.

Beginner Strategies for Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

These strategies are for players who have either not played or played one or two games of Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar.

Plan ahead

The game is all about planning ahead and making the most of your turns. Worker placement is key in Tzolk'in, and it's important to plan your moves carefully. Try to anticipate what your opponents might do and plan accordingly.

Focus on resources

Resources are essential in Tzolk'in. Try to collect as many resources as possible, especially corn, which is used to feed your workers and place them on the gears.

Use the gears wisely

The gears are the heart of the game. Try to use them to your advantage by placing your workers on them strategically. Remember that the longer you leave your workers on a gear, the more powerful the action will be.

Build monuments strategically

Monuments are a great way to score points in the end game. Try to build the ones that will give you multiple victory points when possible.

Pick the starting wealth tiles strategically

The starting tiles provide various bonuses and can be used to jumpstart your strategy. Make sure you choose one that complements your overall plan.

I hope these strategies help you get started with Tzolk'in!

Advanced Strategies for Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar

Don't neglect the temples

The temples are another important aspect of the game. Once you climb enough, they provide you with resources and give you corn when you go begging by moving you one step down in a temple. Try to climb as much as possible on the temple steps.

Advance in relevant tech tracks & construct buildings

Advancing in tech tracks gives you permanent benefits while taking certain actions. Constructing buildings gives you a one-time bonus like resources or climbing steps in a temple etc., Make sure you utilise them during the game.

Use starting player space to your advantage

You can place your worker on the starting player space to gain multiple benefits. For example: to get all accumulated corns, to advance the calendar 2 days at a time to gain the action you want on a gear. Hence, try to time the use of it when it benefits you.

Experiment with different strategies

Tzolk'in is a complex game with many different strategies to explore. Don't be afraid to try new things and experiment with different approaches to the game. You might discover a new strategy that works well for you!

Keep an eye on the endgame

The game ends after 26 rounds. Make sure you have a plan for the endgame and try to maximize your points in the final rounds.


Worker Placement
Turn Order: Claim Action
End Game Bonuses



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