Wingspan, the adorable bird-collecting board game by Stonemaier, has a number of expansions featuring new feathered friends. The base game has mainly North American birds, but the company plans to make a new box for each continent, and has created three so far. Here we’ll cover each and every Wingspan expansion, exploring their contents and gameplay tweaks, so you can find the one that’s right for you.
While you’re here, you might want to read our Wingspan review, to find out why the original game has a safe nesting grounds in our best board games list. Or check out some other top strategy board games like Scythe and Root.
There are currently three main Wingspan expansions, but Stonemaier recently revealed that designer Elizabeth Hargrave is working on a fourth, which likely won’t see a release until 2025. We’ll be keeping an eye out for more clues as they arrive.
Wingspan Asia is the third and currently the most recent Wingspan expansion, only released in December 2022. It adds a healthy 90 bird cards (the base game has 170), including the red junglefowl and the rook. However, it also includes a copy of many of the components that you’ll find in the base game – a new set of food tokens, bonus cards, and end of round objective cards, something the other Wingspan expansions doesn’t feature.
That’s because unlike the other Wingspan expansions, Wingspan: Asia is billed as a standalone game. You can play a solo or two-player game with just the cards from this expansion, or mix the cards in with the rest of your collection for a more varied experience. It also contains rules for a ‘Flock mode’ with larger groups of five or six players, which features simultaneous turns.
The two player mode uses a new board, where players place yin-yang symbols to set their own objectives. This adds a lot of variability to the game, intended to keep things fresh.
As a result of the extra content, Wingspan: Asia has a $10 higher price tag than the other expansions. If you own the base game already, it might not be the best starting point, unless you particularly want to play with birds from this region.
Along with 95 new bird cards featuring such critters as the adorable kiwi and the strange Southern Cassowary, Wingspan Oceania adds some new rules to change up and rebalance gameplay. This Wingspan expansion includes a new food type, nectar, which counts as any food type, but doesn’t persist between rounds,
The other big change in Wingspan: Oceania expansion is new game boards which let you spend food to reset the feeder or bird tray. They also rebalance the game, reducing the dominance of the egg-laying strategy, by making the grassland row a bit weaker.
Along with this you get 15 yellow eggs, and a handful of new bonus cards and end of round objectives. There’s also a new type of bird card with powerful abilities that only trigger at the very end of the game.
Wingspan: European is the first Wingspan expansion, containing new strategies to mix up the gameplay and add some variety. These cards are designed to increase interaction between players as well as strengthening the food caching and card tucking strategies. There are also a number of birds with a new type of power – end-of-round abilities, which require careful planning to make the most of.
Notably, of the three Wingspan expansions, Wingspan European has the fewest new birds, with just 81 bird cards (as well as new bonus cards and end of round objectives). While it’s still solid, the new birds like the common chiffchaff and carrion crow can sometimes feel a bit lost in the mix.