Yesterday I bought the Carcassonne board game and it comes with the mini-expansion The River.

I read the rules but they don't clarify whether the removed/replaced first tile is removed from the game or mixed with the other tiles for future use after the 12 river tiles are played.

What do you do with the original game's start tile when playing The River?

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    Jan 9, 2014 at 17:21
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2 Answers 2


If you're playing with the River (or the River II) don't play with the start tile from the basic game - it has a different coloured back and so will stand out during the tile draw.

  • So what do you start with? And what are the ramifications of starting with the original tile verses the accepted alternative? And what should happen to the original tile?
    – corsiKa
    Jan 9, 2014 at 18:39
  • 4
    @corsiKa The entire point of the River mini-expansion is that it provides an alternative start (you start with one end of the river and build the river from there, before using the regular tiles). Not playing with the original start tile means just setting it aside (as opposed to mixing it in with the bag of other tiles for the rest of the game).
    – Cascabel
    Jan 9, 2014 at 19:28
  • @corsiKa, it is exactly as Jefromi explained. You start with the spring end of the river. Jan 10, 2014 at 9:48

I accept the answer, but doing a little bit research, I found in the Complete Annotated Rules the following:

The original starting tile can either be mixed into the stack of river tiles, or placed as soon as the river has been completed, and is treated like a normal tile.

And an additional house rule:

Mix the original starting tile (without a river) in with the river tiles. If it is drawn then it acts like a 'bonus' tile that can be placed anywhere.


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