6 Billion: Rules

A game by Board Not Bored Games Pty Ltd. Designed by David A. Coutts.  Inspired by Marshall T. Savage’s book, "The Millennial Project"

You can find a good example of play at the official site.

 

1.0 Introduction

United Nations Population Fund* issued Press Release OBV/53 POP/675 dated 9 July 1998.

In it they stated that it took until 1800 for humanity to reach 1 billion, and that by 1930 our population had doubled to 2 billion. Then it only took a further 30 years to reach 3 billion and fourteen years later, in 1974, we reached 4 billion. In 1987 we reached 5 billion.

"In 1999, the population of the world will be twice what it was in 1960."

The United Nations Population Fund announced that 12 October 1999 is…

"The Day Of Six Billion."

This means that in 1999 our population has doubled since 1960 - only 39 years!

The rate of population doubling is predicted by all the experts to slow down, to "stabilise", by 2050. The UN prediction is a stable population of about 9.5 billion between 2050 and 2070. But the population won’t stop doubling, it will just take longer to double. It is troubling to consider that if 1 is doubled just 10 times the result is 1024. So, in time, our 6 billion will become over 6 trillion, and then more… Where will they live?

Population is the solution, not the problem. Human energy and resourcefulness will take us into space.

This is the premise for the game 6 Billion™. A combination of 2 to 5 Player factions and the Neutral faction(s) compete with each other to see who will best expand throughout our Solar System. A game of 6 Billion™ always begins with the Earth’s population on 6 billion (6,000,000,000), divided between 3 to 6 factions. Players score points for controlling planetary resources and achieving their hidden agendas. A treaty is assumed to exist between these competing factions, but not for long…

6 Billion™ has no definite time scale. A turn represents the amount of time it takes for a population to double, and so a turn could represent decades, or even centuries. Hence, population doubling is automatic, up to a point…However, not all populations double at the same rate. And don’t forget, the Neutral faction(s) are there for all to exploit. What does a faction represent? Good question.

A game ends when one of the factions (including a Neutral faction), reaches a population of 1024 billion in the Asteroid Belt or Earth, or all population tracks are populated. A typical game should take about two to three hours.

There are no major catastrophes (eg. Alien invasion, supernova, meteors, the final plague) in this game; the game is deliberately optimistic. Mind you, if you’re the sort of player that prevents a 512 doubling to 1024, then what do you call that? Certainly not friendly. Still, at the end of the game, count the population of our Solar System and then consider any alternative to this future that our children might face…

*The United Nations Population Fund has no association or affiliation with 6 Billion™ , or with Board Not Bored Games Pty Ltd

2.0 Game Contents

1 Solar System map
1 Discovery Track (Further Reading)
1 Distance Chart (Card Distribution)
6 Hidden Agenda cards
13 Discovery cards
91 Playing cards
6 Sets of 16 playing tokens
(1 colour represents 1 faction)
1 Rules booklet

3.0 How To Start

3.1 How Many Players?

  • If there are 2 players then they each control 1 faction and there is 1 Neutral faction. All factions begin with 2 billion on Earth and only 3 sets of tokens are used.
  • If there are 3 players then they each control 1 faction and there are 2 Neutral factions. Each faction starts with 1 billion on Earth, and only 5 sets of tokens are used. (OK, so that makes 5 Billion)
  • If there are 4 players then they each control 1 faction and there are 2 Neutral factions. Each faction starts with 1 billion on Earth, and all of the sets of tokens are used.
  • If there are 5 players then they each control 1 faction and there is 1 Neutral faction. Each faction starts with 1 billion on Earth, and all of the sets of tokens are used.

3.2 Setting Up

Players select their faction’s colour, and mutually agree on which colour(s) represent the Neutral faction(s)

  1. Separate the cards into 4 piles, based upon what is printed on their backs: Hidden Agenda, Discovery, blank (the main playing card deck), Colony 2 (also considered playing cards).
  2. Remove Optional Discovery cards from Discovery deck (unless using Discovery Track Rules)
  3. Shuffle the Discovery deck.
  4. Place a token for each faction in play on space "1" (or "2" in a 2 player game) of the Earth population track (see 6.3) , as indicated in How Many Players? (3.1)
  5. Place 1 token for each faction (Neutrals and players) into a cup.
  6. Place 1 token of each colour on the start space of the score track (except for Neutral factions).
  7. Shuffle the Hidden Agenda cards and deal one, face down, to each player. Place unused Hidden Agenda cards, unrevealed, to one side.
  8. Place Discovery Track aside (unless using Discovery Track Rules). If using Discovery Track rules, place 1 token of each colour on the zero space of each of these tracks (except for Neutral factions).
  9. Deal one "Colony 2" card to each player, then shuffle any spares into the playing card deck. This card is held in the player’s hand.
  10. After shuffling the playing deck deal 5 playing cards from the deck, face down, to each player. Each player’s hand now comprises 6 playing cards.
  11. The remaining playing cards form the play deck. From this deck deal 3 cards, face-up, next to the play deck.

4.0 Turns

A game of 6 Billion™ will have an indeterminate number of turns, but see Game End (5.0).

At the start of each turn draw the turn order tokens from the cup and place them, in the order drawn, onto the turn order track on the map.

The faction with Turn Order position 1 will start the turn, Turn Order position 2 will go next, and so on…until all factions have had a turn (including Neutral factions).

When all factions have had their turn then place the tokens from the Turn Order track back into the cup.

4.1 Player faction

A player’s turn is comprised of the following steps:-

  • Free doubling (other players can interrupt with Cancel cards, and Response cards). See 7.0.
  • Migrants and Colonies for that Player faction move from holding boxes (see 6.2) to population tracks (see 6.3).
  • May play and resolve one or two Action Cards. See 11.1 and 12.0.
  • May discard one playing card (Action, Cancel or Response). See 11.4.
  • If the number of cards in hand is less than player’s maximum then draw up to hand maximum of 6 cards. Each time a player draws a card they may select one of the 3 face-up cards (which is then replaced from the play deck), or a random card from the top of the play deck. See 11.5.

4.2 Neutral faction

A Neutral faction does not receive or use any cards.

A Neutral faction’s turn is briefer than a Player faction’s turn:-

  • Determine who will control the Neutral faction this turn. See Neutral faction rules, 10.1.
  • Free Doubling (players can interrupt with Cancel cards, and Response cards). See 7.0.
  • Migrants and Colonies for the Neutral faction move from holding boxes (see 6.2) to population tracks (see 6.3).
  • Controlling player creates a Migrant from a population token belonging to the Neutral faction. See Neutral faction rules, 10.2.

5.0 Game End

The game ends immediately when either of the following occurs:-

Any faction has a population token in either the Asteroid Belt or Earth 1024 space.

OR

All population tracks have at least one population token on them.

The faction whose turn it is does not complete its turn. Then the scores are tallied and the highest score wins.

6.0 The Map

6.1 Turn Order / Score Track

The Turn Order track is used, each turn, to record the turn order for that turn. At the start of each turn draw the turn order tokens from the cup and place them, in the order drawn, onto the turn order track on the map starting with position 1. See rules for Turns (4.0). Play hint: use the dividing line to indicate that a faction has had its turn.

The Score Track runs around the edge of the board. At the start of the game place a token for each player on the START place. See rules for Scoring  (13.0).

6.2 Holding Boxes

The 1 and 2 boxes are the holding boxes for colonies and migrants, and are colour-coded to match the corresponding population tracks. A population token is placed here as a result of the play of New Colony (see 12.1), Migrants (see 12.2) and Discovery (see 12.3) cards, as well Neutral Migrants (see 10.2). See 8.1 for an overview on creating colonies and migrants.

The first billion colonists are always placed on the '1' space in the holding box for colonies, and the first billion migrants are always placed on the '1' space in the holding box for migrants. If placing the second billion colonists, or migrants, simply move the token from the '1' space to the '2' space. The token remains in the holding box until that faction’s next turn, when it is placed (after Free Doubling) on the appropriate population track. A token on a '1' space in a holding box becomes established on the '1' space of the population track for that holding box, and a token on a '2' space in a holding box becomes established on the '2' space of the population track for that holding box.

Note that the Pluto and Mercury holding boxes (which only have a '1' space, but also have the 'X2' indicator) require a player to accumulate 2 tokens on the ‘1’ space before a token is placed on that faction's next turn (after Free Doubling) on the ‘1’ space of the appropriate (Pluto or Mercury) population track. If a faction has only 1 token in total on the holding boxes (colonies plus migrants) for Pluto then they cannot become established on Pluto and must wait, in limbo in the holding box, until a 2nd billion joins them. The same applies for Mercury.

It is not permitted to exceed the 2 limit for colonies or migrants. Hence, the total limit per faction per holding box is 4 (colonies plus migrants).

See the Variant Rules at the official site for a way to use the Earth holding box.

Mars Example: Carol has 32 billion on Earth. She plays a New Colony (Distance 2) to send colonists from Earth (the Earth token is not halved) to Mars, placing a token on the 1 space of the holding box for Mars colonies. If she played a second New Colony card she could take a second billion from Earth (again, the Earth token would not be halved) and would move the token in the holding box for Mars colonies from the 1 space to the 2 space.

Pluto Example: John has played 2 New Colony (Distance 6) cards to send colonists on Neptune (reducing the population from 4 to 2) to Pluto. Place 2 tokens on the holding box for Pluto colonies. On John’s next turn, if they both survive, John will remove the 2 tokens and place 1 token on the 1 space of the Pluto population track.

Mercury Example: Fred has an established colony on Mercury. John sends 1 billion migrants there from Earth (halving his 2 to a 1), playing a Migrants (Distance 12). On John’s next turn these migrants must wait in the holding box, and do not become established. They stay this way until a 2nd billion joins them.

6.2.1 When There Are Three or Four

Given that a player can only play 2 Actions per turn, normally a player is unlikely to get more than 2 billion (colonies plus migrants) into any one holding box. However, New Colony and Migrants cards playable on "Another Player" can (on rare occassions) cause a player to have 3 or even 4 billion in one holding box. Similarly, because a Neutral can send up to 2 billion Migrants in a turn (see 10.2), New Colony cards playable on "a Neutral Faction" can (on rare occassions) cause a Neutral to have 3 or even 4 billion in one holding box.

If a faction starts its turn with 4 billion in one holding box, then (after Free Doubling) they are removed from the holding box and placed on the 4 space for the appropriate population track (or the 2 space for Pluto or Mercury).

If , at the start of a faction’s turn, that faction has a total of 3 colonies and migrants for the same holding box then (after Free Doubling) they are removed from the holding box and placed on the 2 space for the appropriate population track (or the 1 space for Pluto or Mercury).

Uranus Example: Simone, at the end of her turn, has 2 billion on Uranus. Simone is winning, so Carol (who controls the Neutrals this turn) sends 2 billion Neutral Migrants on the Neutral's turn from their Earth colony of 32 billion (which doesn't have to reduce), and places a token on the 2 space of the Uranus migrants holding box.

Then, on Carol's turn, she plays a New Colony (Distance 6 - Neutral faction) on the same Neutral. Carol and the Neutral are tied on Saturn in first place, so this time she takes 1 billion from the Neutral's Saturn colony (reduced from 4 to 2, so 1 is wasted) which scores her 2 points and puts her in first place on Saturn. A Neutral token is placed in the 1 space of the Uranus colonies holding box.

Her hope is, to make this a perfect turn, that one of the remaining players this turn will also play a New Colony card for the same Neutral to make the Neutral's total 4 on the Uranus holding box.  If this happens then, assuming all 4 billion survive, the Neutral would become established on the Uranus population track on 4 (and so would compete closely with Simone's current 2 billion). If the Neutral is still on 3 in the Uranus holding box then, when the Neutral's turn comes round again, the Neutral would only become established on the Uranus population track on 2.

Pluto Example: The Neutral faction is alone on Pluto on 1. During John's turn he plays 2 Migrants (Distance 12) to take 2 billion from Uranus (reducing them from 4 to 2), and placing 2 tokens in the migrants half of the Pluto holding box. Then it is Fred's turn, during which he played New Colony (Distance 6 - Another Player) on John's Neptune colony (reducing it from 2 to 1), places 1 token in the colonies half of the Pluto holding box and scores 3 points for himself. During John's next turn, if all 3 tokens have survived in the Pluto holding box, he will only be able to place a token on the 1 space of the Pluto population track (effectively, 1 billion is wasted and Fred got 3 points for nothing!).

6.3 Population Tracks

The name of the planet, or Asteroid Belt, is listed with its sequence in the Solar System. E.g. Saturn is 7th in sequence from the Sun.

Each faction is allowed only one population token per population track, which cannot be removed. It is not possible to exceed the last number of any population track.

6.3.1 Growth Limit

For each population track there is one number in a circle. This is the growth limit for free doubling. This limit does not apply to any doubling due to the play of an Action Card, and does not affect the arrival of  Colonies / Migrants.

There is no growth limit for free doubling in the Asteroid Belt.

Design Note:- The population track represents population in the same orbit around the Sun as the planet, including any moons which orbit that planet, and the surface of the planet where appropriate. The Asteroid Belt, of course, encircles the Sun.

7.0 Free Doubling

7.1 When

During the Free Doubling phase, a player must apply free doubling to eligible population tokens for his/her faction. This is done by moving a token one space clockwise along its population track.

7.2 When Not

Once the growth limit is reached for a population track then no further free population doubling is allowed on that population track. This is determined as follows:-

  • A token on the population growth limit, or beyond the limit, counts a "1"
  • A token 1 space before the limit counts as "1/2"
  • A token 2 spaces before the limit counts as "1/4"
  • All other tokens on that population track count as "0"

Add these simple fractions together. If they equal or exceed "1" then the token attempting free doubling does not double.

Saturn Example One: A token is on 32(counts as 1) - Free Doubling is no longer allowed.

Saturn Example Two: 2 tokens are on the 8 (count as 1 / 2 each) - Free Doubling is no longer allowed.

Saturn Example Three: Red token is on the 8 (counts as 1 / 2) , Black token is on the 4 (counts as 1 / 4) and Orange & Pink tokens are on the 2 (counts as 0). Free Doubling is still allowed.

Saturn Example Four: Red token is on the 8 (counts as 1 / 2) , Black & Orange tokens are on the 4 (counts as 1 / 4 each) and Pink tokens are on the 2 (counts as 0). Free Doubling is not allowed.

7.3 Free Doubling Procedure

Free doubling can be cancelled by another player’s Famine or Pestilence Cancel Card. You must ask whether any such cards will be played before applying each free doubling, the controlling player deciding the order that this is done. Once the controlling player has moved on to the next eligible token it is not permitted for any player to then play a card affecting the free doubling of the previous token of the controlling player for the remainder of this turn.

8.0 Creating Colony and Migrant Populations

8.1 Overview

Colonies and Migrants, when created, are always placed on a holding box (see 6.2) before becoming established on a population track (see 6.3). The rules for Turns (see 4.0) explain the sequence in which this occurs. Colonies and Migrants can be created as follows:

8.2 Generating a population

A token on a 2 space can be halved (by moving it back 1 space) to generate 1 billion population.

Halving a token on a 4 space generates up to 2 billion population.

However, if a faction has a token in an 8 or 16 space then 1 billion population token may be generated from this space without halving that token. Hence the pale blue colouring of the 8 on all population tracks. If a second billion get their population from the same token on an 8 or 16 space (in the same player turn) then that token is halved. A maximum of 2 billion are generated (any excess are lost).

A faction that has a token in a 32 space (or more) can generate up to 2 billion population without halving that population token. Hence the orange colouring of the 32 on all population tracks.

If it is possible to generate 2 billion population (by halving a 4, or from a 32 or more space) then the controlling player can decide whether to, in fact, generate 1 or 2 billion.

Mars Example One: Bert plays a New Colony (Distance 6) from Mars, dropping back his token from 2 to 1. He sends them to The Asteroid Belt, putting a token in the 1 space of the holding box for Asteroid Belt colonies. Bert’s still has a 2nd Action available.

Mars Example Two: Carol plays a New Colony (Distance 6) from Mars to The Asteroid Belt. She doesn’t have to drop back because she’s on the 16 space on Mars. If Carol now played a 2nd New Colony card from Mars she would have to drop back from 16 to 8 after all (and she would move her token from the 1 space to the 2 space of  the holding box for Asteroid Belt colonies)

Mars Example Three: Suppose Bert has colonies on Earth (on 8) and Mars (on 4), and Tom has a colony on The Asteroid Belt on 4. Bert plays New Colony (Another Player - Distance 6) on Tom, and Tom’s Asteroid Belt colony drops back from 4 to 2 (1 is lost). Bert scores 3 points. They are sent to the 1 space of the holding box for Mercury colonies. Then Bert plays Migrants (Distance 12) and drops his token back from 4 to 2 on Mars, sending them to 1 space of the holding box for Asteroid Belt migrants. (A better idea would have been to send his Migrants from Earth, where he wouldn’t have had to drop back!).

Mars Example Four: Bert has a colony of 32 on Mars. He uses it to generate Migrants (Distance 12) to Venus (colonised by Fred last turn), and a New Colony (Distance 2) to Mercury. Bert places a token on the 1 space of the holding box for Venus migrants, and a token on the 1 space of the holding box for Mercury colonies. Bert's Mars colony remains on 32.

8.2.1 Creating Colonies and Migrants Together

It is legal to play both a New Colony card and a Migrants card for the same faction at the same holding box. The two ‘1’ population tokens would combine into one ‘2’ population token once established on the population track (except Pluto and Mercury - a token would be placed on the 1 space of the population track).

Earth Example: Fred sees Bert has just colonised The Asteroid Belt, so Fred can now send Migrants there. It’s now Fred’s turn. Fred drops back from 4 to 2 on Earth, and plays a New Colony (Distance 2) and a Migrants (Distance 12) at a cost of 1 billion each. The New Colony goes to The Asteroid Belt (within a distance of 2 from Earth), and so do the Migrants (within a distance of 12 from Earth). Fred now has a token on the 1 space of the Asteroid Belt colonies and a token on the 1 space of the Asteroid Belt migrants. On Fred’s next turn., if they have both survived, Fred gets a colony established on the 2 space of the Asteroid Belt population track.

8.3 Distances

New Colony and Migrants cards are limited in their use by the distance printed on them. These distances refer to the distances between the planet/asteroid sites - see Distance Chart. A colony or migrant token can be placed up to and including this distance away from its point of origin. It is not possible to combine cards to increase the distance of any New Colony or Migrant card. Only numbers in black on the Distance Chart are in range (red numbers are out of range).

Design Note:- Don’t forget, given the possible time scales involved, distance itself is not a limitation to colonisation of any site in our Solar System. Migrants cards typically have longer distances on them. This does not represent better spaceships, but attempts to reflect the pattern of colonisation followed by migration.

9.0 The Opening Treaty

If a player has only one population token on the Earth population track, and no population token on any other population tracks (not holding boxes), then any Action or Cancel cards played that affect that token can only be played with the consent of the player that owns that token. This rule does not apply to Neutral factions.

If the owning player does not consent then the card just played must either be discarded or placed back in the player’s hand (the player that played the card can choose). Such a card is not considered to have been played in either case.

Earth Example One: Mercury has an established colony (on 1) from Fred. Simone has colony (on 8) established on Earth (her starting colony, in fact), and she has a token on the 1 space of the Mars colonies holding box. Carol has only her Earth colony on 4. Fred wants to play a Migrants (Another Player - Distance 6) on Carol to force her to drop back on Earth. Lee has 2 established colonies, Earth (with 4) and Venus (with 8).

To save time with individual requests, Fred asks whether anyone is interested in his playing the card on them. Lee says yes (though Fred doesn’t need his permission), and so does Simone (Fred would need her permission). Carol refuses. Fred decides to play the card on Lee, allowing Fred to drop Lee back on Earth (from 4 to 2). He sends the 1 billion to Mercury and gains 3 points.

Earth Example Two: John has just his Earth colony (on 64). John is way ahead of everyone else on Earth. John gives Fred permission to play a Double (Another Player) on John’s Earth colony. Lee, struggling on 16 on Earth and it’s his Hidden Agenda, cannot play the Death card without John’s permission (there is no point in asking…). John is doubled to 128 and Fred gets 3 points.

Earth Example Three: John has just his Earth colony (on 64). Fred has a colony just established on Mars on 1 (and his Earth colony, on 4) - it is Fred’s turn. Fred plays a Double card on his own Mars colony, but John plays Death card. Fred doesn’t have a Power Politics to stop the Death (so he doesn’t double his token after all) but he does have a War card, which he plays on John. Fred doesn't need John's permission as War is a Response card. John must halve his one and only colony, on Earth, from 64 to 32. An expensive exchange for John!

10.0 Neutral faction - Migrants

The "Neutral Faction - Migrants" rules only apply to Migrants generated during a Neutral faction’s turn, and do not apply to Neutral New Colony cards played during a player faction’s turn nor to Migrants for player factions.

10.1 Who Controls The Neutral faction?

Whenever it is a Neutral faction’s turn it is necessary to determine who controls the generation and placement of the Neutral Migrant, placement of Neutral tokens from the holding boxes, and Free Doubling of any existing tokens for that Neutral faction.

Whoever has the least population tokens on population tracks will control the Neutral this turn. In the case of a tie then, from the tied players, the player with the least New Colonies and Migrants in holding boxes has control. Count the number of tokens, not the actual population. If there is still a tie then, from the tied players, the player with the least victory points has control. If there is still a tie then, from the tied players, the player with the next turn has control. Finally, for any remaining tied players, use a random method.

Play Hint: There is usually no need to bother with deciding who has control of the Neutral(s) on turn one - their one token must attempt Free Doubling and they cannot migrate anywhere as there are normally no established colonies other than Earth.

Example One: The Neutral faction is going last in the turn. John, Fred and Bert each have 3 established colonies, Carol and Simone have 4 each. Out of John, Fred and Bert, John and Fred have no tokens in the holding boxes, Bert has 1. John and Fred are tied on 6 victory points, and both have had their turn before the Neutral. John takes a token for himself and Fred, mixes them behind his back and lets Fred choose. Fred picks John’s token, so John controls the Neutral.

Example Two: Bert controls the Neutral. Bert chooses the order of the Free Doubling, and Bert chooses the order that tokens become established from the holding boxes. The Neutral is on 512 on the Asteroid Belt, and has a few other tokens eligible for Free Doubling. Bert chooses to Free Double the Neutral on the Asteroid Belt first, hoping to draw out a Pestilence or a Famine. Bert doesn’t want the game to end just yet. He succeeds, and a Pestilence from another player stops that Free Double. The other Free Doubles all succeed.

The game seems very close between Bert and John. Bert proceeds to the Neutral faction’s tokens in the holding boxes. There are 3 tokens - 2 tokens on Mercury colonies, and 1 on Neptune colonies. Neptune is the last population track to be colonised, and the game will end when this token becomes established. Bert decides first to let the Mercury tokens become established as a single token on Mercury (on 1) as this ties with John’s colony on Mercury (and it is John’s Discovery card, so he effectively just lost 2 points!). The Neptune colony is established - the game is over before the Neutral generates its free migrant. Bert wins the game by 1 point!

10.2 Creating Neutral Migrants

Only 1 Migrant token can be created per Neutral faction, per turn. The controlling player now decides from where the Migrant is generated. The Migrant must then be placed in a holding box to compete with a faction on any population track of the controlling player’s choice. There must be a population token on the corresponding population track for the selected holding box. The Distance rules (8.3) do not apply.

It is possible to generate a single token of 1 billion or 2 billion population, subject to the rules for generating a population (see 8.2).

This Migrant does not require the play of a Migrant card - there are no Neutral Migrants cards!

It is possible that a Neutral Migrant cannot be placed (due to the lack of other faction population tokens on population tracks, or the Neutral is already present on all eligible population tracks, or the Neutral faction cannot halve a token).

Example: It is a 3 player game with John, Bert & Carol plus 2 Neutrals. The Neutrals are 4th (Pink) and 5th (Orange) in the turn order, and it is determined that John will control them both. We’ll ignore what happens in the Free Doubling and holding boxes for this example, to concentrate on generation and placement of Migrants.

Pink has a token on Earth (on 64), ahead of all the players. John is last on Earth (his Hidden Agenda is Mars), so doesn’t mind keeping the Neutral ahead on Earth (it might deny the other players points - double points if 1 of the other 2 players have Earth as their Hidden Agenda). However, the only place where Pink doesn’t have an established colony is Venus and John is in joint first place (with Orange) on 4. He decides to only generate 1 from Pink’s Earth token to go to Venus (he could have generated 2) and puts a Pink token on the Venus migrants holding box.

John moves on to Orange, who has numerous colonies to choose from. John decides to generate a colony from Venus, dropping Orange back from 4 to 2 and putting himself in clear first place! Orange can send up to 2 billion to other player’s colonies at Pluto, or Neptune. John sends 2 billion Migrants to Neptune, as Bert is only on 1 there and Bert appears to be winning…John puts a token on the 2 space of the Neptune migrants holding box.

11.0 Card Play

11.1 Action Cards

11.2 Cancel Cards

11.3 Response Cards

11.4 Discarding

All discards are face up and open to inspection by the other players. However, it is not permitted to look through the discard pile.

A player may only discard 1 card per turn. However, a player must do so after all Action Cards are played and before drawing new cards.

If you cannot, or choose not to, play at least one Action Card during your player turn then you must discard your entire hand. If an Action card is played and is cancelled by another player then the player of the Action Card does not discard his/her entire hand.

11.5 Drawing New Cards

12.0 The Cards

12.1 New Colony / New Colony In Trouble

Play of a New Colony card allows a faction’s token to be placed (at a cost of 1 billion population per card) on the Colonies holding box, providing the faction does not already have the maximum of one token per population track at that site. The New Colony card will indicate whether it affects the Player faction, Another Player’s faction, or a Neutral faction. The player of the card, in all cases, decides from where the New Colony is generated and in which holding box the token is placed (subject to all rules for Creating New Colonies and Migrants - 8.0).

A "New Colony In Trouble" card can remove 1 New Colony population token from any holding box. A colony established on a population track is going to survive until the end of the game and cannot be eliminated.

Design Note:- A New Colony in a holding box is simply a colony doing it’s best to survive the first decades of settlement to become a viable colony.

12.2 Migrants / This Is Our Home

Play of a Migrants card allows a faction’s token to be placed (at a cost of 1 billion population per card) on the Migrants holding box, providing the faction does not already have the maximum of one token per population track at that site. A Migrants card can only be played if there is a population token of another faction on the population track. The Migrants card will indicate whether it affects the Player faction, or Another Player’s faction. There are no Migrants cards for Neutrals.The player of the card, in all cases, decides from where the Migrants are generated and in which holding box the token is placed (subject to all rules for Creating New Colonies and Migrants - 8.0).

A "This Is Our Home" card can remove 1 Migrants population token from any holding box (provided that you have a token on the corresponding population track). Migrants established on a population track are going to survive until the end of the game and cannot be eliminated.

12.3 Make A Discovery, and Discovery

Play of a Make A Discovery card allows a player to draw a Discovery card from the Discovery Deck which is initially placed face-down in front of that player. If the player already possesses a Discovery card then he can choose either the newly drawn card, or the existing Discovery card (whether it is face-up or face face-down), and place it at the bottom of the Discovery deck keeping the other card. A Make A Discovery card may not be played during the first 2 game turns.

Discovery cards provide 2 benefits:-

Example: John has Pluto as his face-down Discovery card. On his turn John reveals Pluto (which counts as 2 Actions), placing 2 tokens on the holding box for Pluto colonies.

At the start of his next turn (after Free Doubling), these 2 tokens have survived, and he removes those 2 tokens and places a token on the 1 space of the Pluto population track. He then plays a Make a Discovery card, and draws Venus. He decides to put Pluto at the bottom of the Discovery deck, and keeps Venus. His 2nd Action is to reveal Venus and place a token on the 1 space of the holding box for Venus colonies. At the end of the game John still holds Venus and is 2nd,  scoring 2 points doubled to 4. He is also 2nd on Pluto, but only scores 2 points.

12.4 Double

A Double card allows a player to nominate one of that player’s tokens and to then double it. Some Double cards apply to "Another Player", or to a Neutral.

A Death card or a Famine card cancels all the effects of a Double card.

12.5 Recycle

Play of a Recycle card allows a faction to double its lowest valued token. In the case of a tie then the player of the card chooses. A Recycle card cannot be cancelled.

After the population token is doubled, immediately shuffle the Recycle card, the discard pile, the 3 face-up playing cards, and the play deck together. Then deal out 3 face-up cards.

12.6 Death

Death is a Cancel card. Death cancels the effects of a Double card.

12.7 Pestilence

Pestilence is a Cancel card. Pestilence cancels the effects of a Free Double attempt.

12.8 Famine

Famine is a Cancel card. Famine cancels the effects of a Free Double attempt, or it can be used to cancel the effects of a Double card. It is removed from play if successfully used (the Famine takes effect).

12.9 Save Our Souls

Save Our Souls is a Cancel card. Save Our Souls cancels the effects of a This Is Our Home card, or a New Colony In Trouble card.

12.10 Power Politics

Power Politics is a Response Card. As such it must be played in response to a Cancel Card, or another Response Card.

Any player can play a Power Politics card in any faction’s turn.

12.11 War

War is a Response Card. As such it must be played in response to a Cancel Card, or another Response Card.

Any player can play a War card in any faction’s turn.

Example: Player A attempts to double a token. Player B plays Death and cancels this action. Player C responds by playing Power Politics to cancel Death. Player B plays War against Player C (even though it was Player A's turn).

13.0 Scoring

A player can score points during the game by playing Action cards for a Neutral faction, or Another Player. A player can also score points at the end of the game for their position on each Population Track. Also, see Discovery Track rules (14.1).

Note that 50 is not the maximum score. When you get to 50 put your token on the Start space, and continue scoring from there. Your original 50 still counts towards your score.

13.1 Neutral faction

The Neutral faction does not score any points for itself. However, it does count as a player in determining points for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

There are a some cards that allow a player to affect a Neutral faction. If you play such a card then you score the points denoted on the card, even if the action on the card is cancelled

13.2 Another Player’s faction

There are a some cards that allow a player to affect Another Player’s faction. If you play such a card then you score the points denoted on the card, even if the action on the card is cancelled.

13.3 Player faction - Population Tracks

A Player faction can also score points at the end of the game by controlling planets and the Asteroid Belt. Control is determined by being furthest along the population track.

Each Planet Site, and the Asteroid Belt Site, have scores for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places as shown on the Distance Chart.

If a position is tied then reduce the score for that position by 1 for each additional player (to a minimum of 1), and then each player on that position scores those points.

It’s a good idea to score points site by site, in order (Mercury, Venus, Earth etc).

Venus Example. Venus normally scores 4   2  1. Tokens are as follows:
Green on the 8
Black & Red on the 4
and Orange on the 2.

This is scored:  Green 4, Black & Red 1 (2 each minus 1 for each extra token in the same  place) and Orange scored 1. If any of these factions is Neutral, their score is not recorded (e.g. if Red is Neutral, do not record the Red score).

13.4 Hidden Agenda

Hidden Agenda cards allow a player to double (after all adjustments) the points he/she scores for one of Earth, Mars, and The Asteroid Belt. There are 2 cards for each. Unused cards are only revealed at the end of the game.

Each player is dealt 1 Hidden Agenda at the start of the game which is never changed during the course of a game. These are kept face-down in front of each player and are only revealed at the end of the game. They are not part of the player’s hand.

Earth Example. Earth normally scores 8  4  2. Tokens are as follows:
Black (Hidden Agenda) and Pink (Neutral) on the 128
Green on the 64
Red, Blue (Hidden Agenda)  and Orange (Neutral) on the 16

This is scored: 
Black 14  (8 minus 1 {because of Pink} = 7, doubled to 14 for Hidden Agenda)
Green 4 
Red 1 (2 minus 2 {because of Orange and Blue}, but a minimum of 1)
Blue 2 (2 minus 2 {because of Orange and Red}, but a minimum of 1, then doubled to 2 for Hidden Agenda)
The scores for Pink and Orange, both Neutrals, are not recorded.

13.5 Discovery

Discovery cards allow a player to double (after all adjustments) the points he/she scores for one of Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. There is only 1 card per population track for these planets. They are not part of the player’s hand. Also, see the following Discovery Track Rules.

Venus Example (continued from 13.3): Suppose Black had the Discovery card, face-up or face-down (it doesn't matter), in front of him when the game ended. Black would therefore double his score to 2.

14.0 Discovery Track Rules

14.1 Optional Discovery Cards

The idea of the Optional Discovery Cards is to allow players greater scope in the goals that they set for their factions:-

      Dollar - Who can deny the power of wealth?

      Smiley - Isn’t happiness the true goal?

       Leaf - The other goals are OK, but aren’t they at the expense of the all other living things?

You decide!

If all players agree then, during the set-up of the game, ensure that the Optional Discovery cards are included in the Discovery deck, and that the Discovery Track is placed next to the map.

As the Discovery Track indicates, playing a card with one Dollar or one Smiley symbol on the discard pile gains that faction a corresponding place on the Discovery Track. This counts as an Action (even for Cancel and Response cards played in this way). To gain one space on the Discovery Track for the Leaf symbol requires the play of two cards (each with one symbol) onto the discard pile, which counts as two Actions (Exception: Recycle Action card counts as 1 action - it has 2 symbols). When a card is played in this way, such an Action cannot be cancelled.

Note that the player must choose between playing a card as normal, or for the stated Dollar, Smiley or Leaf symbol. It is not possible to use a card for both purposes together. If playing a card as a symbol then ignore the instructions on the card (for example, Famine is not removed from play if played as a Smiley, and Make A Discovery can be played as a Dollar on turns 1 and 2).

When using these Discovery Track Rules, players are allowed to keep 2 Discovery cards in front of them and can score from 2 Discovery cards at the end of the game.

At the end of the game these 3 tracks are scored in the same way as a population track.

14.2 Discovery Card Powers

As noted on the Discovery Track, a player in clear 1st place on any of the 3 new Discovery tracks gains the use of a special power. If 2 or more players are tied in first place then nobody gets to use the special power for that track. If using the Discovery Track rules then these powers are used each turn to alter the turn order. This is done immediately after the turn order is determined.

Note, it is recommended in a 2-player game that the Leaf special ability is restricted to allowing a token to moved up or down 1 space on the Discovery Track.

Example:


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Last modified: July 15, 2000

 

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