The year is 1123. A new count has been given dominion over the settlement of Blankenburg. People are coming to the town from the surrounding countryside in hopes of a better life. You have seen an opportunity to make your fame and fortune as the town is built.
In Builders of Blankenburg you are competing to construct the town and earn the most prestige while doing so. Each player takes on a persona which provides a unique benefit during the game. You begin the game with some basic resources and a small amount of silver. While all structures can earn you prestige, only building what the town's citizens demand will earn you the silver necessary to bid for and purchase more resources. Each turn consists of four phases:
- Bidding (the primary means of gaining resources)
- Building (constructing and occasionally demolishing)
- Income (gaining silver for the structures you own)
- Marketplace (an opportunity to buy plans and resources)
The game introduces the citizen track, a growing group of town folk that allows all players to see which structures will earn them income. It also serves to signal the end of the game once the town is full. The town is split into four districts, each limited in size and awarding bonuses at the end of the game for anyone who controls more of a district than their opponents. If there are no other plots on which to build, the game also ends. Beware, while the citizens are known, the best laid plans can be ruined by events and visitors to the town. The player with the greatest prestige at the end of the game is declared the winner.