10 Great Deck-Building Games Like Dominion


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Dominion was the game that got me hooked on board gaming. It wasn’t long until I was searching for more board games like Dominion to bring out on games night – and since you’re here you might be doing the same. Dominion has been called the granddaddy of deck-builders, cementing this genre of games as an engaging and accessible format of board games for newbies and regular gamers alike.

So our list of board games like Dominion is sticking closely to the deck-builder model that this game made popular and is still loved by gamers today.

10 Games like Dominion

Star Realms

Does Dominion in space sound like your cup of tea? Star Realms is a fast, 2-player deck-builder that is great for pairs looking for board games similar to Dominion.

Designed by Robert Dougherty and Darwin Kastle, Star Realms has players building a fleet of spaceships and space stations.

Star Realms has the simplicity of deck-building classics like Dominion, but enough strategy to keep regular gamers happy. Each turn you’ll pick up five cards from your deck and have the option to trade, attack your opponent, or gain more authority.

Star Realms even has a solo option where you can play against enemy cards. This inexpensive, lightweight deck-builder is essential if you’re looking for board games like Dominion.

Aeon’s End (2nd edition)

If you enjoy the deck-building via shopping element of Dominion and find intense, co-operative games fun too, Aeon’s End should be in your collection.

This 1-4 player game designed by Kevin Riley is a great deck-builder for players who want to work together and step up the difficulty level. Players are mages defending the city of Gravehold from a range of terrifying monsters.

Build up your spell and relic collection using gems and defeat the enemy before you or the city of Gravehold are destroyed. Each monster offers a different game and the variable turn order mechanic adds extra tension to each round. Become filled with dread as the monster sets his minions on you and the city and enjoy the satisfaction of defeating these creatures so that Gravehold can survive another day.

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle is a great, family-friendly deck-building board game like Dominion.

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This co-operative, 2-4 player game will transport you to Hogwarts to protect the school and vanquish You-Know-Who. Kami Mandell and Andrew Wolf’s board game adaptation of this classic tale has players take up the roles of famous characters from the series, build their collections of spells and magical items, and work together to defeat the Dark Arts at work at Hogwarts.

This game has a campaign element to it too – you can play through each of the films, with the game increasing in difficulty as you go. Whether you’re a fan of Harry Potter or a lover of games like Dominion, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle will provide plenty of enjoyment for all around the table.

Undaunted: Normandy

Bringing deck-building to the famous battles of WW2, Undaunted: Normandy is a two-player board game designed by Trevor Benjamin and David Thompson (I).

With a series of scenarios that ensure each game feels different, this wargame deck-builder has you and your opponent as American and German forces playing out battles on the board with an ever-changing deck of cards to ensure your victory (or defeat).

If you enjoy games like Dominion but are looking for something more competitive and with a distinctly historical theme then Undaunted: Normandy is a great, two-player board game to add to your library.

Clank!: A Deck Building Adventure

If you’re looking for board games similar to Dominion, Clank! could be your next obsession. You and up to 3 other players will sneak into a dragon’s lair, try to bag as many treasures as possible, and not make too much noise.

Once enough ‘clanks’ have happened, the dragon will wake up and fill the place with fire. In this deck-building adventure, designed by Paul Dennen, players must get resources, armour, and weapons to sneak and fight their way through this dungeon. A fun and light deck-building take on Dungeons and Dragons, Clank! is a great game for fans of Dominion.

Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game

Fans of sci-fi and the Alien movies franchise who are looking for board games like Dominion will find plenty to love in Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game.

This co-operative deck-builder, designed by Ben Cichoski and Daniel Mandel, allows up to five players to take up the roles of famous protagonists from the epic Alien movies. Like Dominion, you will build up your deck for victory but in Legendary Encounters, you will work with other players (or alone in solo mode) to defeat the aliens aboard your ship.

Working through each of the films in this franchise gives the game a campaign element, but there’s plenty of replayability here so that you’ll be bringing this game to the table again and again.

Ascension

Ascension is another classic deck-building board game like Dominion. From the designers of Magic: The Gathering, Justin Gary, Rob Dougherty, and Brian Kibler, Ascension combines fantasy with the smooth mechanics of a deck-builder.

This quick, 1-4 players game is easy to pick up whilst offering enough decisions for each game to feel different and rewarding. Purchasing cards to craft your deck, attacking monsters, and earning honour are the key parts of the game.

Twists on Dominion’s rules include an ever-changing marketplace and cards of certain factions that are strengthened when combined in your deck. All of this makes Ascension a fun upgrade from Dominion with more replayability – plus beautiful art by Eric Sabee.

Sorcerer City

If you’re looking for board games like Dominion and you also enjoy other classics like Carcassonne, then look no further than Sorcerer City.

This 2020 game by Scott Caputo may not be a deck-builder in the traditional sense, but your ‘deck’ of tiles that will be built up each round will offer the same feel of Dominion with a city-building element too.

You and up to five other players are rival wizards, building your own magical cities over five years (rounds). Each round you have two minutes to build your city using your deck of tiles, gaining points, and you will add more powerful city tiles to your deck as you go. Monsters lurk in the city too and can appear at any moment to derail your architecture.

Fans of Dominion will love this fantastical city-building game.

Mystic Vale

If you’re after a truly original board game, any fan of Dominion will be sure to love Mystic Vale. This 2-4 player deck-builder, designed by John D. Clair, transforms players into fantastical druids, determined to save their cursed forest.

In a fun take on the deck-building mechanic, your deck in Mystic Vale is improved not by purchasing new cards but by upgrading your starting cards. Extra tension is added when you’re forced to push your luck as you try to draw more cards at the risk of decaying the forest and ending your turn prematurely.

This beautiful and elegant game is a fantastic addition to any board game collection and sure to satisfy your need to find more games like Dominion.

7 Wonders

While some might call this a ‘card-drafting’ game rather than a ‘deck-builder’, if you’re after board games similar to Dominion the classic 7 Wonders is sure to excite all board-game lovers. Ruling over an ancient kingdom, players draft cards to control resources, develop the arts and sciences, and build the wonders of the ancient world.

Designed by Antoine Bauza and with stunning art by Miguel Coimbra, 7 Wonders has quickly become a board game essential. If you love the rewarding simplicity of Dominion’s deck-building mechanics and are still missing this classic from your collection, this game should be next on your list.

7 Wonders is a 3-7 player game, but if there’s just the two of you there’s also 7 Wonders Duel.

Deck-building board games like Dominion are popular with families, casual gamers, and competitive board game geeks alike. If Dominion is one of your first board games, as it was for me, this list will point you to a wealth of fantastic deck-builders.

And if Dominion is already a well-worn staple at games night and you’re looking for something new, these board games like Dominion will offer some fresh and exciting additions to your collections.

Are on the hunt for more games like Dominion? Have any recommendations that didn’t make the list? Let us know in the comments!

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Emily is a writer for Games Like This One. She is a regular table-top gamer who loves organising board game nights with friends. Some of her favourites include Everdell, Oceans, Clank!, and Gloomhaven.

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