Azul designer’s Spiel des Jahres nominee Sanssouci finally coming to the US

Sanssouci, the 2014 Spiel des Jahres nominee from Azul designer Michael Kiesling, is finally coming to the US after soaring past its admittedly low goal for its Kickstarter campaign.

The game, which sees 2-4 players competing to create a flower garden for Prussian King Frederick the Great’s Sanssouci Palace, beat its $5,000 target in just under an hour, and has currently collected about $22,000 from over 500 backers.

Imperial Publishing said it has left the core gameplay of Sanssouci “essentially unchanged”, with some rules edits for clarity. The crowdfunding campaign includes two mini-expansions which were not part of the original 2014 release.

The new version of the game was initially published in 2022 by Chilean publisher Fractal Juegos in Europe and Latin America, but a US retail version never materialised.

Imperial Publishing is owned by Mayday Games founder and CEO Seth Hiatt, and has published games including Red Outpost and Escape From the Asylum.

Sanssouci designer Michael Kiesling scored a huge hit with tile-laying game Azul, which had sold more than two million copies by the latter part of 2021. The game has spawned a series of spin-offs including Azul: Master Chocolatier and Azul: Queen’s Garden.

Kiesling was co-designer on 1999 Spiel des Jahres winner Tikal with Wolfgang Kramer, and on Heaven & Ale with Andreas Schmidt.

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