The game is played in a 20x20 board with each player trying to place twenty-one distinct shapes on it while blocking others from playing their own pieces. The starting piece starts on a board's corner and every subsequent player piece must touch only the corners of previous pieces.
When a player cannot make a legal move, they forfeit their turn. The game ends when no one can place a piece, and everyone subtracts points based on the number of squares left and adds points if all pieces were played. The player with the highest amount wins.
List of games in the series:
- Blokus (2000)
- Blokus Giant
- Rumis/Blokus 3D note (2003)
- Travel Blokus/Blokus Duo (2005)
- Blokus Trigon (2006)
- Blokus Junior
- Blokus Puzzle (2019)
- Blokus Dice Game (2019)
Blokus provides examples of:
- Abstract Strategy Game: Players take turns placing pieces of their colour, aiming to control as much of the board as possible. There is no randomness.
- Crossover: The PSP game Blokus Portable: Steambot Championship features characters from Steambot Chronicles.
- Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Blokus Puzzle has three sets of puzzles categorized in different colors:
- Blue cards: The players uses their set pieces to connect two blue pieces.
- Yellow cards: The player starts from the blue piece and uses their set pieces to cover all of the star spaces.
- Red cards: Legally place all set pieces on the board without covering the "X" spaces.
- Compressed Adaptation: Travel Blokus/Blokus Duo shrinks the board into a 14x14 grid so that two players can play with twenty-one pieces rather than fourty-two. The major gameplay difference is that the starting piece must cover a specific starting square near the center rather than on the board's corner.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: It is pretty easy for three players to gang up and block their opponent from placing any of their pieces.
- Exact Words: Only the player's respective pieces must touch their corners. However, they can touch their opponents pieces from any side and are able to slide past their opponent's gaps.
- Foil: Unlike Tetris, where pieces must line up to each other to score points, Blokus has pieces attached to their corners and thus leaves gaps in between.
- Flawless Victory: Playing all of their pieces earns 15 points. Doing so while placing the small piece last gives an additional 5 points.
- Market-Based Title: Rumis was renamed Blokus 3D for brand recognition. The Inca motif is entirely removed. Blokus 3-D does have a benefit of having a sturdier lock-on board and stencils so pieces don't move around.
- Misbegotten Multiplayer Mode: The original Blokus is primarily made for four players. In two-player, each take control of two colors at once. In three-player, the fourth color is shared among the three (but does not count for points) by alternating turns placing a piece. Blokus Duo and Blockus Trigon were made specifically for these respective player setups, although the latter can be played with four without hassle.
- Oddball in the Series: Surprisingly, not Blokus Dice Game as the game follows the original's rules even though pieces are picked by dice rolls. Blokus 3D, being created by Stefan Kögl under the name Rumis, has player place blocks in a way that their faces touch each other without leaving gaps in height.
- Player Elimination: Because pieces placed on the board stay there for the entire match, once a player has no legal moves, they forfeit their remaining turns.
- Solo Tabletop Game: Blokus Puzzle is sold as a simple player game and thus has only 21 pieces in the box. The solo player solves 48 puzzles using the original game's rules.
- Scoring Points: Players lose points per every square of their unused pieces. The only way to earn points is to play all of their pieces.
- Top-Down View: Player earn points in Blokus 3D by viewing the number of squares seen from above then subtracting by one point per leftover piece.