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Ex Libris

Updated: May 15, 2018


The Short Story: Awesome

In Ex Libris, you are a collector of rare and valuable books in a thriving gnomish village. Recently, the Mayor and Village Council have announced an opening for a Grand Librarian: a prestigious (and lucrative) position they intend to award to the most qualified villager! Unfortunately, several of your book collector colleagues (more like acquaintances, really) are also candidates.

BoardGameGeek Rating: 7.4 MSRP: $47.99 Players: 1–4 Ages: 12+ Playtime: 30–60 Min Publishers: Renegade Games  Designers: Adam P. McIver  Year: 2017


You become a gnome that is fighting to be called the Grand Librarian. Use standard and special meeples to obtain books that are then shelved into your collection. Pass the Mayors Official Inspectors test — collect prominent works and avoid banned books. If your score exceeds the public library's score at the end — you win!


Everything is well made — from the location tiles, the many meeples, and the cards. The cards are well made, easy to shuffle and handle.


I enjoy the artwork. The cards have your standard fancy library books printed on them. Each book has a different [witty] title. The artwork really comes to life on the town board, rulebook, box, and location tiles.


Ex Libris is not a difficult game. It is remembering what each location tile allows your standard assistant and special assistant to do.


Moderate High

Our Reviews

My rating: 8.5 by Aaron Klaser

When I first saw this game, I over looked it. I thought it was some kind of dominoes with books type of game. I’m glade it was on the top of my wife’s Buy List thought because this game is great. It is quite a bit more strategic then I expected. I love the games Harry Potter like feel, make sure you take the time to read book titles, some of them are pretty funny.

Wether you’re playing the base characters with no abilities or you’re using the special characters with abilities, it’s an easy to play game with deep strategy. The game has a far amount of replay value as well. It roots lie in a worker placement game, with a kind of card drafting secondary mechanic. Each round, 3 of the 15 different actions are available, and one always stays available so by the end of the game you have many — many options to choose from. It also comes with many different types of characters, each with their own ability.

My one complaint is that round clean up and setup can be a bit of a bear. By the end of the game, there are lots and lots of cards that need to be removed and refilled even if no one used them. But this isn’t a deal breaker by any means.

At the end of the day, this game is worth it.

My rating: 9 by Beth Klaser

I added Ex Libris to my list of must haves just after it started hitting shelves. I had seen it but a few times — and each time I passed it up to grab something else. It wasn’t until Valentines Day that Aaron brought me Ex Libris. ❤

In the game you are a gnome that collects rare and valuable books. You and your fellow gamers are “fighting” for the title of Grand Liberian. The goal is to stabilize your shelves with a variety of books in alphabetical order— avoiding the books that have been banned as they because you to lose points.

I really like that the score pad is actually a dry erase board. That means I’ll never run out and have to use ugly little scraps of paper to keep score. It took me three games and looking over the rulebook to realize the green cube wasn’t the first player token but instead the The Gelatinous Cube. Ex Libris’ only downfall ? It takes up a decent amount of real estate on a kitchen table. It can be played on a coffee table — but it’s almost too close. This is a must-have.

But what does it all mean? Find out how we review the games we play!


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