Lucky Numbers board game review

Lucky Numbers board game
More than just luck needed to do well.

When playing with family, we like games that have a good balance of both luck and strategy. We enjoy having to make interesting choices during a game but also like an element of luck to keep things interesting.

So when a game has “Lucky” in the very name, should we shun it?

Don’t be too quick to do so!

At least, you shouldn’t do so with Lucky Numbers by Tiki Editions.

That’s because Lucky Numbers has great choices throughout to keep players engaged and having fun.


How to play Lucky Numbers

Lucky Numbers is a simple game to learn and understand.

The goal of the game is to be the first player to fill their board with numbered clovers. The catch is that each row and each column must be arranged in ascending order.

Lucky Numbers board game
A 4-player game is ready to begin.

The game comes with 4 player boards and 4 sets of clover tiles numbered from 1 to 20. The number of sets of clovers to be used in a game is equal to the number of players. So with 2 players, you’d just use 2 sets of clover tiles.

To begin, each player takes a player board and orients it so the ladybug is in either the upper left or bottom right corner. That way, the highlighted clovers on the board go from the upper left corner to the bottom right corner. The clover tiles are placed face down and shuffled around on the table.

Each player draws 4 clovers and places them face up on their board in the highlighted diagonal spaces. They’ll place these clovers in ascending order.

Lucky Numbers board game
Place the starting tiles on the diagonal in ascending order.

On a player’s turn, they may either take a face down clover or a face up clover from the table. (Note that there won’t be any face up on the table at the start of the game.)

If they take a face down clover, they’ll reveal it and may place it on their board. If they take a face up clover, they must add it to their board.

Lucky Numbers board game
Where should I place this clover?

When adding a clover to their board, the player can add it to an empty space or replace an existing clover. However, the number on the clover placed must fit in ascending order in both the row and column in which it’s placed.

If they exchange the clover with a clover already on their board, they place the discarded tile face up on the table. Thus, a player that follows may choose to take that face up clover on their turn.

Players continue taking turns in clockwise order until one player completely fills their board. That player is the winner!

Lucky Numbers board game
I filled my board first!


One variant is called “Michael’s Setup” (named after the designer). If players want to add a bit more risk to their games. Instead of placing their starting 4 clovers in ascending order, players just draw 1 clover at a time and choose on which starting diagonal space they want to place it. Once a tile has been placed, it may not be changed. Thus, the starting lineups may be a bit tougher to work around.

Another variant is called the Bruno variant. While playing with this variant, when a player places a clover diagonally adjacent to a clover on their board with the same number, they may immediately take another turn.

Lucky Numbers board game
This is a tricky starting layout. Some of those will definitely need to be swapped out during the game.

Players can also play Tournament Mode. In this mode, players play as many games as there are players. Players record their score at the end of each game. The winner scores 2 points and the other players each lose 1 point for every empty space on their boards. After all games are played, the player with the most points wins.

In addition, a player may play in solo mode. The game comes with 40 puzzle challenges to attempt. The player takes one set of clovers and arranges them on their board as indicated by the challenge. Each puzzle displays the maximum number of moves a player can make to get each row and column to be in ascending order. The only available moves for a player are to swap two orthogonally adjacent clovers or two clovers on borders directly opposed on the board.

Lucky Numbers board game
Can you solve this puzzle in less than 5 moves?


Can the whole family enjoy Lucky Numbers?

Lucky Numbers is a great game the whole family can enjoy playing. The recommended ages are 8+, but we’d recommend it being a great way for younger kids to learn about numbers as well.

Like we said in the beginning, Lucky Numbers has a good balance of luck and strategy that we enjoy in family board games. Obviously, there’s the luck with which face down numbers you draw. But choosing wisely on where to place them is where the game really shines.

Lucky Numbers board game
I could grab a face up clover to fill a space.

Inevitably, you’re going to draw numbers that don’t fit ideally where you’d like them to be. But knowing which numbers are still in play, you can get a feel for the probabilities on drawing the numbers you’ll need to fill certain spaces. And keeping an eye on your opponents’ boards is helpful too. Because there just may be some numbers they’re going to need to discard that you may be able to pick up. So you may want to leave a space open for when that happens.

As the game goes on, your options will decrease – making your choices a bit more tricky. And we love that tension.

Of course, I shouldn’t really say “tension” because it’s such a light game that there aren’t any dire consequences. But whenever you’re hoping for certain numbers to fit specific spots, you’ll feel a bit of that pressure when you draw your next clover.

Another great thing about the game is that we can play it very quickly. Turns clip right along and before you know it, someone’s board is full. That’s why we like playing the tournament mode – because a single game just isn’t long enough. Plus, playing a series of games and keeping score helps to minimize the “lucky” run one player may have in a single game.

Lucky Numbers board game
The different sets of clovers are colored differently to help sorting for the number of players.


How does Lucky Numbers score on our “Let’s Play Again” game meter?

Lucky Numbers board gameLucky Numbers scores very high on our “Let’s Play Again” game meter.

Because it’s such a quick game, we’ve never played just one game. And even when playing Tournament Mode where you play a series of games, we typically roll into another tournament round.

It’s also super simple to set up. So when we’re looking for a quick game that we can just grab and play, Lucky Numbers is right there.

For a light and quick family game, we’d definitely recommend Lucky Numbers!

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