Azul: Beginner's Strategy Tips & Tricks

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Azul: Beginner's Strategy Tips & Tricks

Post by The_Board_Gamer »

1. Master the Art of Tile Drafting

Tip #1: Be Flexible with Your Tile Choices

One of the most important aspects of Azul is tile drafting. To draft effectively, you should be flexible with your tile choices. Rather than focusing on a specific color, consider the available options and the potential points they can earn you. This will help you avoid getting stuck with unwanted tiles or missing out on scoring opportunities.

Tip #2: Keep an Eye on Your Opponents' Boards

Another crucial aspect of tile drafting is monitoring your opponents' boards. If you notice a player struggling to complete a row or column, you can potentially block them by drafting the tiles they need. This strategy can be particularly useful in the later rounds when players have fewer options to recover from a poorly chosen tile.

2. Focus on Completing Rows & Columns

Tip #3: Prioritize Completing Rows & Columns

When placing tiles on your board, prioritize completing rows and columns. By doing so, you'll maximize your scoring potential, as completed rows and columns earn bonus points. Additionally, completed rows and columns provide more opportunities for adjacent tile placements, further increasing your score.

3. Capitalize on the Scoring System

Tip #4: Understand the Scoring Multipliers

Azul's scoring system includes multipliers for placing tiles in specific patterns or adjacent to existing tiles. Understanding these multipliers can greatly improve your strategy. For example, placing a tile horizontally and vertically adjacent to other tiles earns you additional points. Focus on maximizing these multipliers to optimize your score.

Tip #5: Utilize Negative Points to Your Advantage

Although negative points are generally undesirable, they can sometimes be used to your advantage. If you're forced to take a tile that doesn't fit on your board, consider whether the negative points are worth the potential long-term benefit. In some cases, a small loss in points may be worth it if it allows you to complete a high-scoring pattern later on.

4. Plan Your Moves Ahead

Tip #6: Anticipate Future Tile Needs

As you progress through each round of Azul, it's crucial to plan your moves ahead. Anticipating your future tile needs can help you make better decisions when drafting and placing tiles. By thinking a few moves ahead, you can avoid ending up with unwanted tiles and maximize your scoring potential.

Tip #7: Adapt Your Strategy Based on Tile Availability

Since the tiles available in each round are random, it's essential to adapt your strategy based on what's currently available. Be prepared to change your plan if you can't draft the tiles you need. By staying flexible and adapting your strategy, you'll be better equipped to handle any surprises the game throws your way.

5. Exploit End-Game Scoring Opportunities

Tip #8: Keep Track of the End-Game Bonuses

End-game bonuses can make a significant difference in your final score. Remember that you'll receive bonus points for each completed row, column, and set of five tiles of the same color. Keep track of these bonuses and aim to complete them before the game ends to maximize your score.

Tip #9: Watch for Opportunities to Block Opponents

As the game approaches its conclusion, keep an eye on your opponents' boards to identify opportunities to block them from completing their end-game bonuses. Drafting tiles that prevent them from completing rows, columns, or sets can give you an edge in the final scoring.

6. Practice Makes Perfect

Tip #10: Play Often and Experiment with Strategies

The best way to improve your Azul gameplay is to practice regularly. Each game will provide new insights and opportunities to experiment with different strategies. As you gain experience, you'll develop a better understanding of how to optimize your tile placement and scoring, ultimately leading to consistent victories.

For the full strategy guide, check out my blog on the topic :) ... n-at-azul/
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Re: Azul: Beginner's Strategy Tips & Tricks

Post by Majki1988 »

Nice details. Anyway in my opinion the best way to learn any game is play against better players. It will be rough for you at the begining but someday you also will be better player because they will teach how to play with each game ;)

If you ale already expert or master in Azul try to win my cyclical tournaments: God of Azul for both sides of boards: Color and Gray.

1st editions are already in progress. Next ones will always start next day After arena kick off season! Registrations starts 65 days before.

Try to beat the best players!
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Re: Azul: Beginner's Strategy Tips & Tricks

Post by DrRockenheimer »

A key point for beginners (related to Tip #1) is to get over the instinctive mindset that getting more tiles is always better. More tiles do help complete the longer pattern lines, but each completed pattern line is essentially worth the same on the wall because it just places one tile. So there are plenty of situations where picking 1 or 2 tiles, completing a pattern line, will be a better play than taking 3 or 4, leaving an uncompleted, not very promising pattern line.

Another key point (related to Tip #3) is that because a completed column is worth a lot more than a completed row (7 versus 2 bonus points), non-beginners will focus a lot on the columns, but often not the side columns (because less opportunities for horizontal linkage). Often there will be competition for completing the same column. Being in turn order behind someone trying to complete the same column is not a good place! Being flexible enough to go for columns that other players are ignoring can be a good choice, even if sometimes it means abandoning previous work.

The biggest bonus of 10 comes from getting all of one color, but leaves one vulnerable in that color. I'm at the intermediate level where I am still learning how to deal with that.

Good advice in any game on BGA is to replay games by strong players, from their perspective. Try to figure out what they were thinking when they made key moves. In Azul, if you have a dramatically bad turn, with a bunch of tiles on the floor for penalty points, replay the game to see if there was a defensive play available to you that could have avoided the setback.
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