Our Story

Contact Us

10 Best Tiny Epic Games

10 Best Tiny Epic Games

Tiny epic games are so tough to talk about because they only share one thing in common: size. They’re the perfect complement to a picnic, tailgate party, or a short flight because they can fit nearly everywhere. Scott Almes’ tiny epic series is difficult to rank, but we’re doing it anyway! Our numero uno pick tops our list of the best tiny epic games ranked, and boy, it is the cream of the crop. 

Let’s dive into what makes the best tiny epic game!  

Our Top Picks – Best Tiny Epic Games


Tiny Epic Dinosaurs

Best Tiny Epic Game Overall: Tiny Epic Dinosaurs

Tiny dinosaurs wreaking havoc all over your epic island? You betcha! Collect, breed and create endearing dinosaurs in this tiny epic game.

Tiny Epic Tactics

Most Strategic Tiny Epic Game: Tiny Epic Tactics

Take command of a Fighter, a Wizard, a Rogue or a Beast in this clever tiny epic game. Strategize and execute cunning maneuvers in this dice-based game of high and low terrain.

Tiny Epic Pirates

Most Thematic Tiny Epic Game: Tiny Epic Pirates

Sail all over the Seven Seas in this rollicking adventure for the brave. Take control of the ship’s wheel! Plunder and blackmail! Rifle through shipwrecks and search for buried treasure in this pirate-themed tiny epic game.

Tiny Epic Quest

Best Tiny Epic Game for FamiliesTiny Epic Quest 

Channel your inner Link as you embark on multiple quests across the Mushroom Kingdom. Toss your newly discovered weapons onto the 3D Item Rack, or snap them onto your meeple and set out for the next temple! 

Tiny Epic Galaxies

Best Dice-Rolling Tiny Epic Game: Tiny Epic Galaxies

The stars are but a twinkle in your eye as you zip through space on your mission of galactic domination. Will your die roll reveal as many rewards as you want? If your reputation isn’t worth bragging about, the amount of dice you can roll will be severely limited. Become famous and the universe will be yours. 

Our Top 10 Tiny Epic Games


Tiny Epic Zombies

Escape from a zombie horde

Players: 1-5 // Game time: 30-45 minutes // Age: 14+ // Difficulty: Easy

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Imagine the “Before Times.” You are stuck in a shopping mall full of zombies trying to devour you. You have a simple choice- to work with others to defeat the flesh-eating creatures, or go it solo. There’s no Walking Dead faction drama in Tiny Epic Zombies.

There are five ways to play Tiny Epic Zombies– you can play it 1) solo, 2) semi-cooperative vs a zombie player, 3) 100% cooperative, 4) all-out competitive or 5) competitive vs a zombie player game, which gives you a ton of flexibility. You set up a three-by-three grid of double-sided cards to function as your shopping mall, with some “survivor” Meeples plonked down for you to rescue! 

Depending on the number of players, you get a character card, life token, ammo token and what’s called an “ITEMeeple” of your choice. Tiny Epic Quests introduced ITEMeeples, which give you the chance to outfit your character with some awesome gear. In semi-cooperative play, one player becomes the zombie boss, prompting some fun hide-and-seek player interaction. 

It’s rare for games to really pin down a good balance between semi-cooperative, cooperative or competitive play. That fine balance is what makes Tiny Epic Zombies so great.

Who This Game is For

The zombie content is going to be a turn-off for many, as the artwork isn’t appropriate for younger audiences. That’s a big reason why Tiny Epic Zombies ranks lower on our list of best tiny epic games, but we do enjoy the mechanics of the game itself. Players who love semi-cooperative or cooperative games like Pandemic or dungeon-crawlers like Gloomhaven will likely enjoy this game.

Buy Tiny Epic Zombies on Amazon

There are two versions of this game- Tiny Epic Zombies or Tiny Epic Zombies Deluxe. The Deluxe version includes 5 extra search cards, 4 extra player cards, 2 extra weapon items and a service dog meeple. If you need the extra stuff, get the deluxe version- it is 15 bucks more than the regular version, though. For us, the regular version was just perfect!

Tiny Epic Western

Duel your way through the Old West

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-45 minutes // Age: 14+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Lookin’ to make your way in the world, pardner? Ya gotta become the best gunslinger outta there, don’t ya know? Gamble, fight, duel and influence others using law, money and force as you travel across the Old West in Tiny Epic Western.

Love playing out your Calamity Jane fantasies? Tiny Epic Western is going to be in your wheelhouse. There’s so much to love in this underrated and oft-overlooked game:

Playing Poker

You go up against other players in a game of three card poker! Whoever wins the hand wins the whole pot- prompting lots of fun player interaction along the way. 


One of the best things about gunslinging is… dueling! Duels allow you to take over certain spots previously occupied by others- if you win the duel! You can reroll the dueling die roll as often as you like, spending your resources to do so. 

Worker Placement

As in many other worker placement games, where you place your workers is important. You can gamble for resources, but that’s not the only winning strategy out there! 

Who This Game is For

This is a great game for people who don’t like how arbitrary placing random meeples in games can seem. This is a Western game through-and-through that really brings it through thematically by blending worker placement with other Western-themed gimmicks like poker and dueling to bring the cows home.

If you’re experiencing fantasy or sci-fi theme burnout, Tiny Epic Western is the solution to all of your troubles! We rank it further down our list because of two things: 1) it’s so different from other tiny epic games- this one is for someone who doesn’t mind trying something completely new, and 2) it features tired caricatures of Western characters with limited diversity.

Buy Tiny Epic Western on Amazon

As with many variations of Western-themed media, there are overt stereotypes here. There are only two female characters in the base game. Native Americans are also depicted in a stereotypical manner. Springing for the Deluxe version adds one more female character to the game, but doesn’t change any of the existing stereotypes.

Tiny Epic Mechs

Strategic action planning with mechs

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-60 minutes // Age: 14+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Fast forward a thousand and ten years into the future, and you are now a M.E.C.H. (Mechanized Entertainment Combat Hero)! In Tiny Epic Mechs, you are part of a battle royale tournament full of competitors in an arena high atop the roof of AughTech headquarters! Claw your way out with your tiny bionic arm- if you can.

A fast-paced player vs player game that rewards clever planning and programming, Tiny Epic Mechs takes you through epic battles, pitting you against a variety of pilots. Your ultimate goal is to accumulate the most Victory Points at the end of the six rounds. Gain victory points by gaining control of zones and the Mighty Mech! You program your Power Suit to take certain actions via action cards. You’ll be able to:

Deploy Defensive Turrets and Offensive Land Mines

With the credits and/or energy you accumulate, you’ll be able to deploy a turret or mine. Other players who land on them will be wounded!

Collect Resources and Gear

Just like Tiny Epic Zombies and Tiny Epic Quest, you can pick up ITEMeeples, which allow you to kit out your suit with powerful weapons- but you’ll need credits or energy! Everyone starts out with one energy sword, pulse pistol, grenade launcher, riot shield and one secret weapon- but your weapons will become more advanced as you progress!

All of the thirty-two weapons in the game follow a basic Weapon Triangle (武器の三すくみ, Buki no San-sukomi). Area weapons counter ranged ones, while ranged ones are stronger against melee weapons and melee weapons come out on top against area weapons. 

Power Up

Everyone’s gotta rest. You can heal up a bit, or jump right into your Power Suit, Power Rangers style- don’t forget to yell “DRAGONZORD!” as you morph! 

Snag the Mech Suit

While all players have their respective Power Armors, there’s only one Mighty Mech all players vie for control of- KO another player to gain control! 

Who This Game is For

Fans of Mechs vs. Minions or Scythe will absolutely think this one is the absolute best tiny epic game out there. Tiny Epic Mechs suffers from the same malaise that affects Mechs vs. Minions – all your careful planning and programming goes down the drain the instant your opponents catch on to what you’re doing. If you love that unpredictability, though, this game is for you.

Buy Tiny Epic Mechs on Amazon

As is par for the course for nearly every other tiny epic game, Tiny Epic Mechs has a deluxe version. That version includes 2 additional pilot cards, 4 additional loot crate tokens and a spotlight mini-expansion. If you’re really into battle tactics and action programming, pick up the Deluxe version- we played through the regular version with no complaints, though!

Tiny Epic Kingdoms

Expand your realm while fighting off evil minions

Players: 2-5 players // Game time: 15-30 minutes // Age: 8+ // Difficulty: Easy

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

A blade of grass moves.

A kingdom grows.

Clearer still grows the picture.

Who are you, dear adventurer? 

Tiny Epic Kingdoms is all about exploration, expansion, exploitation and extermination (hallmarks of “4X” games) on a tiny scale! You begin your journey with a small group of loyal followers with unique knowledge- your goal is to protect your soon-to-be-great realm.

Rumor spreads throughout the kingdoms. Your closest advisor informs you that there are three ways to rule over all kingdoms: 1) the placement of all your meeples, 2) reaching the zenith of your knowledge (by making cutting-edge advances in magic) or 3) through completion of your Tower, the apple of your eye. Did we mention there’s magic?!

Resources are plenty- there’s food from the plains, ore from the depths of the mountains, and mana floating through the forests. You can patrol, quest, build, research, expand or trade as the leader of your own faction! Each faction in Tiny Epic Kingdoms has its own advantages and disadvantages.

In our two-player playthroughs, we felt like there were some decidedly overpowered tribes. For instance, the Shapeshifters were too random in their characteristics, making it difficult to win with their faction. We did enjoy playing as Satyrs and Lizardfolk, though. The variety in faction selection makes this game immensely replayable. Oh, and watch where you tread. Entering a territory occupied by another player will initiate a clash you’ll need to resolve somehow!

Who This Game is For

Where Tiny Epic Kingdoms falls short, perhaps, is the thematic continuity. This game isn’t about providing color or a great story- the kingdoms are just there. The fun here lies in the many forms of player interaction- you start forming alliances and fleshing out strategies that best fit your faction. 

This is a great way to get fans of Settlers of Catan into strategically deeper games, while still maintaining a light touch. 4X games are known for their heavy-handed approach, and this game excels in avoiding that entirely. Pack this for your next backpacking trip if you’re into Twilight Imperium.

Buy Tiny Epic Kingdoms on Amazon

We played the regular version of Tiny Epic Kingdoms, and as per usual, there’s a deluxe version for $15 more. The Deluxe version is tough to find, so stick with the regular second edition. There’s also a Tiny Epic Kingdoms Heroes’ Call expansion that adds new heroes, factions and war towers. If you’re a solo player, definitely pick up the expansion, as it’s the only way to play the game solo.

Tiny Epic Defenders - 2nd Edition

Defend your kingdom from forces of evil

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30 minutes // Age: 8+ // Difficulty: Easy

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Plonked back in the world of Tiny Epic Kingdoms, you’re now trying to defend your kingdom from tons of invaders trying to overrun your fortifications! With Tiny Epic Defenders, not only are you responsible for your realm, you’re also on the prowl- you need to become the world’s numero uno defender!

While Tiny Epic Kingdoms focused on bringing epic 4X combat to the table, Defenders focuses on a very specific element- area control. Here’s the twist- you’ll have to work with others to win!

As a cooperative game, Tiny Epic Defenders hits it out of the ballpark. Perfect for families with players of all ages, you succeed as a cohesive team- you can play this one solo or with up to four players. You choose whether or not to defend certain areas, or let them be razed by the opposing horde! You’ve gotta keep an eye out for the threat level- think of it as DEFCON status. You automatically lose if your capital city’s threat level goes above 7. 

Part of the fun is the unique player powers assigned to everyone as you battle against a random deck of enemies. You’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel as you progress through attack rounds and move your meeple around the board to ward off skirmishes. Oh, and you are blocked by a huge behemoth of a creature- the “Epic Foe.” Defeat the “Epic Foe” to win the whole game! 

We loved playing with Artifacts, power-up items you can use to enhance your character’s abilities. As with Tiny Epic Zombies and Tiny Epic Quest, you use ITEMeeples to add those items to your meeple. 

If you’ve ever played with others who take forever to decide what to do on their turn, leaving you sleepy, this is the game to get. The randomly generated turn deck really injects unpredictability and randomness, keeping you on your toes. Players might all take their turns before the enemies do, or maybe the enemies will launch an offensive first! Tiny Epic Defenders keeps you guessing. 

Who This Game is For

Families of various ages, along with new player groups, will whiz around the board in Tiny Epic Defenders and come back for more! If you enjoy well-designed cooperative play with just a hint of random turn-taking, this game is right up your alley. We could see Pandemic fans enjoying the lightness of this game. If you already play Gloomhaven on repeat, you’ll likely skip this one- this will be too light for you to properly enjoy. 

Buy Tiny Epic Defenders: 2nd Edition on Amazon

Tiny Epic Defenders is a great game to play solo or with others- but what if you want more? We heartily recommend the Tiny Epic Defenders: The Dark War expansion, which adds more complexity, new ways to win, new territories and even more content! We enjoyed the expansion’s campaign mode, which gives you a storyline to follow as you defend your realm! 

Sail your way to hidden treasure!

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-60 minutes // Age: 12+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

You’re a regular Anne Bonny, aren’t ya, scurvy dog?

Here’s an orange- actually, take the whole sack with you. Ya gotta ward off the scurvy spreading throughout these seas, now that you’re the captain of yer own piratin’ outfit! 

In Tiny Epic Pirates, guide your ship and crew through the crashing waves as you fight, plunder and trade to your hard heart’s content! Repeat your daily affirmations- you are strong, you are cunning and you are the most scary pirate of all of the seas! 

Tiny Epic Pirates is a rollicking adventure on the high seas. We are partial to anything, ANYTHING pirate-related, so this game was on our radar for quite a long time! When we finally sat down to play, we discovered a ton of fun things, like: 

Rondel Action System

At the beginning of every turn, you move your Captain token around your ship’s wheel (rondel), choosing which action you’d like to perform. The wheel is divided in several actions: plunder, trade, crew up, search or attack! 

Plundering allows you to blackmail settlements via heavy handed negotiations and promises, but you’ll come away with valuable booty! 

Trading is basic, with certain goods being traded in certain ports- you’ll grab gold if you offload your cargo at the right ports of call. As you would think, crewing up allows you to add another member to your trusty crew. The shifting value mechanic reminded us of the fiddly nature of the tiny epic game designer Scott Almes’ early game, Harbour

When you crew up, you gain certain advantages in combat and you actually extend the abilities of your ship’s wheel. We found ourselves crewing up more times than necessary just to unlock new features on the ship’s wheel- that’s one of the most powerful strategies in Tiny Epic Pirates

You can also search high and low for ancient treasure, or salvage shipwrecks for parts to use or trade on the market. The chances of finding valuable treasure are somewhat low (at least in our playthroughs), but the allure of uncovering a trove of diamonds is difficult to pass up. 

Attacking merchant ships or opposing pirates will up your street cred, and you’ll sail away with a good amount of gold or cargo you can offload at a nearby port. 

Secret Island Hideaways are super important in Tiny Epic Pirates, as you use them to bury treasure. Once you’ve buried three different treasure chests, you’ve won the game! In our case, burying treasure required a good amount of gold, so striking a balance between plundering and trading was beneficial.

We didn’t like that the win condition was all about… just burying treasure. Burying treasure is far from the most fun you can have as a pirate- what about your infamous reputation? Your legendary status doesn’t matter, except in the case of a tie- then the player who has the best status will win. The fact that one player had a nonexistent rep and still won the game was slightly disappointing, but everything else about this game had us clamoring for the next playthrough.

Who This Game is For

We’re huge pirate buffs, so the bar was really high for us- and it will be for any other pirate fan, too. If you’ve played Merchants and Marauders, you’ll enjoy Tiny Epic Pirates thematically but it will likely be too light for you. Get Merchants and Marauders: Broadsides for a light game instead.


Buy Tiny Epic Pirates on Amazon

If you love Black Fleet’s cargo-hopping, or Harbour’s shifting trade value system, definitely pick up Tiny Epic Pirates – there’s even an expansion that adds a spooky ghost ship for a harder challenge!

Set out on a grand adventure with your companions!

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-60 minutes // Age: 10+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Welcome to a magical place- the Mushroom Realm! The realm in the center of Tiny Epic Quest looks different every single time you play- because it is

The modular map looks different every single time- a randomized card order makes it feel like an open-air market, where anything could happen. You’ll be able to explore the Shadow, Forest and Desert Temples, among many others- by landing on various spots on the map, you’ll attack enemies, learn certain spells, heal or power up. Rolling dice will help you or harm you, so there’s absolutely an element of luck running through the veins of Tiny Epic Quest

Can we talk about the art that is Tiny Epic Quest? The artwork and illustrations by Miguel Coimbra draw you in with bright colors inspired by the early 8-bit versions of the Legend of Zelda series. This is arguably the game’s greatest pull- the look and feel encourage discovery and exploration. 

You do need daylight for that, though. The game is divided into two phases- day and night. You’ll explore near and far, travel to villages that welcome your help, discover Legendary items, add spells to your library and brave danger (in the form of ghastly goblins and treacherous Temples) in order to secure valuable artifacts! You compete directly with other players by racing through Temples to pick up Legendary items. The catch? Only two heroes can be in a temple at once! We particularly loved adding legendary Items to our very own Item Rack, perfect for ITEMeeples you add to your character as you progress. 

Whoever said the journey is the destination was absolutely right. You’ll journey using your ol’ feet, your trusty horse (who looks suspiciously like Epona from the Legend of Zelda series), raft (a difficult ride) or ship and- wait for it- by gryphon. Astounding! We found that the horse was the most reliable method of transportation, but that’s probably because we loved imagining her whinnies as we rode across the Mushroom Realm. Night brings danger, and during the night you’ll likely be holed up in a village or taking charge of a quest.

Winning the game is a bit simplistic- closing the evil portal to the goblin kingdom will win the game. You can also just go all out and slay every last goblin to claim victory. The randomized game map that creates the Mushroom Realm will have you coming back for more and more… but after seven plays, we felt like our own gameplay fell into the same old rut. We largely kept to our preferred winning strategies, and that made the game feel just a little less open and lustrous. On our eighth playthrough, we completely switched things up by going for different winning strategies and scored less points at the end- but had more fun! 

Who This Game is For

Tiny Epic Quest is fourth on our list because it requires you to consciously decide to mix things up as you complete each playthrough. We would have liked to see a better variety of characters, but the emphasis here is really on the versatility of the game board itself. There’s a lot to love here, though- if you enjoy games like Descent or video games like the Secret of Mana series, you’ll enjoy this one thoroughly.

Buy Tiny Epic Quest on Amazon

The Deluxe version sometimes goes out of stock, so if you have the choice, go with the regular version, which will still give you hours of tiny epic goodness!

Tiny Epic Tactics

Navigate the game box's terrain with a ragtag crew of heroes

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-60 minutes // Age: 10+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

Tiny Epic Tactics is one of the best tiny epic games out there because it takes the epic feeling of military tactics and strategy and packs it into a crazy small box, using some ingenuity.

In Tiny Epic Tactics, you choose randomly from four characters. A Fighter, a Wizard, a Ranger and a Beast all have their own powers, with unique advantages for movement, attacks or support. As always, balance is key in group cohesion. We played cooperatively as a Ranger and Beast pairing and found it to work very well. Solo, cooperative and competitive forms of play make this game a versatile tiny beast. Once you’ve assembled your group of adventurers, it’s time to survey your terrain! 

Every tiny epic game has its own gimmick (like ITEMeeples), and Tiny Epic Tactics is no different. You use five tiny Evergreen Woodlands boxes and the interior of the game box, along with a scroll with a map on it, to create the battleground your characters traverse.

The difference in height between various boxes and surfaces give you advantages in battle. Hills give you more oomph for ranged attacks, forests give you added defense and towns give you much-needed replenishment. The included cloth mat is a fantastic addition, but in our experience it slides around too much when playing with a larger, less careful group. We ended up putting the cloth mat on a placemat to minimize the sliding- that did the trick!

As your rounds progress, you can choose to move or attack in three ways- up close and personal (melee), ranged (bow and arrow) or using magic! You can push your character to their limit and take two actions, but you’ll be weakened for your next turn, so strategy is key. You’ll need to take in account the fact that your opponents can counter-attack your attacks immediately!

Attacks are dependent on the number of dice you roll and what results you get. If you don’t like luck-based games, Tiny Epic Tactics may not be for you. At the conclusion of your turn, you’ll gain access to a tactics card, which allows you to attack, move or heal. If you play your tactics cards right, you can really come out ahead. It’s all about thinking three, or even four steps ahead!

Who This Game is For

If you’re a big planner or love to develop long-term winning strategies, this game is going to be fantastic. Run out and buy a copy of Tiny Epic Tactics RIGHT NOW. If you’re looking for something with more of a theme, there are other tiny epic games that are dripping with theme.

Buy Tiny Epic Tactics on Amazon

All of our complaints with Tiny Epic Tactics terrains are addressed in the Tiny Epic Tactics Maps expansion, which converts the tiny woodlands boxes into either the Winter Highlands or the Savage Wastelands. You can even mix the three environments together to get a completely different game!

Tiny Epic Galaxies

Players: 1-5 // Game time: 30-45 minutes // Age: 8+ // Difficulty: Easy

Publisher: Gamelyn Games


You’re in the middle of a humongous galactic empire. You’re completely in control- until you’re not! 

In Tiny Epic Galaxies, you must expand your empire’s influence and reputation via galactical domination. You wrest control of planets and their varied resources with your ever-growing armada of sleek spaceships.

Before we dive in, we need to tell you that Tiny Epic Galaxies is consistently ranked as one of the ultimate best tiny epic games in the entire, well, tiny epic series. That’s high praise, and we absolutely agree! Let’s run through why this game is so great: 

Space Exploration

If you’ve always wanted to be a space colonialist, this is your chance. You’re rewarded for colonizing and gaining control of planets. As you go along snapping them up, you move up your colonization track and gain victory points. Victory points are important because as soon as you rack up twenty-one points, you’re appointed the victor! And psst, there are hidden goals you’ll want to check out as you race across the galaxy. 

Dice Rolling

Custom dice in such a tiny package? Yes, please! There are seven customized dice in the box, but you can’t use them all at first. Increase the number of dice you can roll by upping your galaxy’s strength. Using more dice will allow you to perform more things. You’ll move your spaceship, use certain planetary powers, advance your culture or increase your energy resources. You also have the ability to advance your political or economic influence via a simple die roll. Sounds simple enough, right? There’s a catch, of course! Opponents can spend valuable resources and follow your actions, performing them at the same time. Yowza! 

Different Styles of Play

Tiny Epic Galaxies plays well with multiple player counts- you can play it solo and have as much of a satisfying experience as when you’re jostling with four other players at the table. This game does have a good amount of randomness (both die rolls and card draws are random) which is going to be a turn-off for some. 

Thematically On Point

There’s no question that you are in the final frontier here. The artwork definitely focuses on the sci-fi quality of it all, making it thematically solid. If you’re a big sci-fi buff, you’ll enjoy Tiny Epic Galaxies and the theme should appeal to a wide variety of players. There’s nothing terribly original about it, but that brings us to: 


As with every single other game in the tiny epic series, this is all about portability and packing a punch. If you’re looking for the best tiny epic games out there, you’re likely looking for a game that has tons of replayability, is easy to teach and learn and fits in your back pocket. Tiny Epic Galaxies fits the bill with flair.

Who This Game is For

If you enjoy space flight and colonization but don’t have the time to play a game for more than 45 minutes, Tiny Epic Galaxies will itch your itch, no question. This game is perfect for Star Realms players! The biggest caveat for this game is that it’s not as meaty or deep as some players want. If you think that might be you, check out Roll for the Galaxy, another dice-rolling game that offers deeper play in the same amount of time with a bigger package.

Buy Tiny Epic Galaxies on Amazon

Tiny Epic Galaxies is one of Gamelyn Games’ biggest successes. There’s a deluxe version here. The Tiny Epic Galaxies: Beyond the Black expansion is here. And a spin-off geared towards families and solo players, Tiny Epic Galaxies Blast Off!, is here. There’s even an Ultra Tiny Epic Galaxies version, which takes tininess to a ridiculous level (the perfect birthday gift for your pet hamster).

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs

Herd tiny dinosaurs through the cycle of life- and profit!

Players: 1-4 // Game time: 30-60 minutes // Age: 8+ // Difficulty: Medium

Publisher: Gamelyn Games

It’s clear what the best tiny epic game is out there- and the winner is Tiny Epic Dinosaurs! It was released in 2020, making it one of the most recent additions to the tiny epic series.

**tiny rawrrrr** 

Just like in Jurassic Park, there are scientific breakthroughs that bring back dinosaurs from the dead. Humans must learn to live with dinos, and the tiny dinos have to adjust! Of course, humans figure out a way to profit from this new reality- and yes, Tiny Epic Dinosaurs has dino-themed theme parks. A little bit too on-the-nose, no?

Instead of breeding cattle, ranchers raise tiny dinos for the theme park industry. As an independent rancher, you play through six rounds of buying, breeding and offloading dinosaurs for profit. Private contracts (orders for certain dino types) need to be completed at the same time you complete public contracts, requiring strategic planning.

There are fifteen different breeds to look after, in seven phases: 

First Iteration

Collect resources found in open spaces on your ranch.

Second Iteration

Assign your ranchers to work sourcing new dino additions, improving perimeter security by building barriers, grabbing supplies and contracts, and researching new breeds and technologies in your very own research lab! Researching is super important in Tiny Epic Dinosaurs because you might come up with a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious dinosaur that no one’s seen before! We got one weird dinosaur type. It wouldn’t be any fun for us to reveal what we got- so find out for yourself! 

Third Iteration

Boring, but the ranchers just come on home to rest, whether they’re out in the paddocks or on medical leave as a result of an injury!

Fourth Iteration

Certain dinos and barriers are rearranged to ensure all dinos are safe (from each other, presumably). 

Fifth Iteration

FEEDING TIME!!! Toss goats out to hungry carnivore dinos. Throw leaves out to herbivore dinos. If you don’t, they just might escape!

Sixth Iteration

If they’re sharing an enclosure, every pair of matching dino breeds will procreate and you’ll have baby dinos! 

Seventh Iteration

When the six phases are complete, rinse and repeat. Pick up your new contract and research cards and advance a marker to indicate how many rounds you’ve completed. 

At the end of the game, you tally how many dinosaurs you have, along with the number of private and public contracts (represented by certain cards) and throw in any scientific research breakthroughs there- they’re all worth a certain amount of victory points. Whoever has the most points wins! 

Tiny epic games are known for their portability, varied gameplay options and appeal to a spectrum of players, from newbies all the way through to advanced players. Tiny Epic Dinosaurs is the best tiny epic game Gamelyn has released because it streamlines everything and puts it in a tiny epic package that’s perfect for the theme.

It’s very rare for a single tiny epic game to appeal to everyone, but Tiny Epic Dinosaurs does! Strategy is a huge component of this game, but it’s so well-designed that there’s no question you’ll be putting this on the table for years. Many other tiny epic games suffer from dry or redundant thematic content, and this one breaks the mold- it’s a fresh take on a tired genre. 

Who This Game is For

If you enjoy Agricola or Great Western Trail (we talk about that game in our guide to the best deck building games), you’ll love this lighter twist on a “set collection” game. It’s poised to become a huge hit with young families, due to the adorable dino content, but is serious enough to appeal to more advanced players. If you’re looking for another solid dino-themed game, try Dinosaur Island

Buy Tiny Epic Dinosaurs on Amazon

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs Deluxe is a decent, but ultimately not necessary investment- for about 11 bucks more, you get four lab mats and microscopes, along with nine beakers, four research cards and two unique dinosaurs. We played with the regular version you can find on Amazon and found it to be fun, entertaining and satisfying- we don’t have expansion envy at all.

That’s A Wrap!

For a tiny epic game to be successful, it has to be replayable, no matter the trip you take it on. Whether you’re backpacking in Yellowstone or kayaking to an island off the coast, you’ve got to enjoy the tiny epic game you bring with you. That’s the beauty of tiny epic games. As you can see, tiny epic games are diverse. The only thing they have in common, really, is their size!  

One tiny epic game we didn’t get to play, but want to give a shout-out to is: 

Tiny Epic DungeonsCurrently available only as a late pledge, this brand-new tiny epic game from Gamelyn Games is all about dungeon crawling. We didn’t care for the cover artwork for the box itself, as it depicts women in a negative manner. The game itself seems to be in the vein of Clank! A Deck Building Adventure, so if you enjoy dungeon crawlers and video games like Uncharted, you’ll likely enjoy this one! 

Enjoy your next (tiny) epic adventure- we’re rooting for you, whatever game you choose! 

We are supported by readers like you. If you click on a link and make a purchase, we could get a small commission. Learn more.

You Might Also Like..

What We're Talking AboutHOT OFF THE PRESS
The Latest from Dice and Mice