An Emperor's life is stressful and full of tough decisions. He absolutely needs a place of solace where he can relax and recover. A beautiful garden filled with paths, statues, and flora is just what he needs.
In Zen Garden, the players assume the role of architects working to build the most beautiful garden for the Emperor. To do this, they need to pay careful attention to the Emperor's preferences, while trying to stay one step ahead of the competition.
A turn in Zen Garden is simple: The first player selects one tile from the selection board, pays its cost, then adds it to their garden adjacent to a previously placed tile. Each player does this, then the board is refilled and a new starting player begins the next turn.
Zen Garden comes with five preference boards that determine which features of the garden score in that game. The boards selected (and their number) will greatly change the objectives players will strive for in that game.