As members of merchant families the players marry into other wealthy merchant families. They expand the trading routes of these families and establish trade relationships with other families. The player having gained the most victory points with relationships and goods will be the winner at the end of the game.
Each turn the players either marry into a merchant family or expand the trading route of a family (they are already married into).
To marry into a family, the player pays the cost of the family. Only two players may marry into each family. To expand the trading route of a family, the player must be married into the family and may pay for the route with the money of the family. The goal is to meet other families not met before (gaining trade relationship markers) and reaching goods spaces first (gaining good tokens).
If all families have established at least one trade relationship OR one family has established 5 trade relationship, the game ends. Each player scores his good cards with the corresponding good markers he has acquired, the trade relationship markers he has collected and his money.
Samarkand is a family game with its simple to understand rules and fast access to play.