Anno 1503: Rules

Kosmos, 2003, designed by Klaus Teuber, translated by Pitt Crandlemire   

... bold seafarers dare far out onto the open sea in the hope of finding wealth and fame. Those who manage a safe return speak of rich, fertile islands where no man has previously set foot. Not long after, the first pioneers reach the new islands. Inspired by the desire for a new and better home, they clear the countryside and build the first meager huts. Soon, they experience a modest level of prosperity and then declare themselves "Settlers" with pride. More islands in the vicinity are discovered where spice, tobacco, and cotton thrive. Trade in these commodity will soon lead the settlers to become prosperous citizens and wealthy merchants. 

Game material  
- 1 gameboard  
- 90 commodity cards  
- 4 home islands (large player tiles)  
- 32 island tiles  
- 28 inhabitant tiles, 7 per player  
- 14 public building tiles  
- 16 coat of arms tiles, 4 per player
- 8 wooden ships, 2 per player  
- 1 die   

Set-up
The gameboard is laid out. It shows a rich island world that will be discovered in the course of the game.    

The island tiles are sorted into 3 stacks according to the number of islands displayed on their back (2, 3, 4). In the 2-player game, you use only the 2 stack. In the 3-player game, you also use the 3 stack. In the 4-player game all island tiles used. 

Each of these stacks is shuffled by itself, then the island tiles are placed face-down on the gameboard on the spaces marked with the same number of islands. 

Some tiles will be left over. They are placed face-down - without being disclosed to the players - as a reserve stack next to the gameboard. Each player then chooses his playing color and gets in this color: 

4 coat of arms tiles                                      2 ships                                    7 inhabitant tiles 

The inhabitant tiles have 2 sides and either show the combination of Pioneer/Settler or Citizen/Merchant. 

[Pioneer/Settler                Citizen/Merchant]

Each player takes a home island, sets it in front of himself, and places one Pioneer and one Settler on the two red bordered spaces. 

Each player puts one of his ships on the start space on the gameboard. Each player starts the game with 7 gold pieces and indicates this by placing his smallest coat-of-arms tile on the "7" space on the gold track on the gameboard. 

The public building tiles have a brown background. In the 2-player game, the tiles with a 3 or 4 on the back are removed, in the 3-player game only the tiles with a 4 on the back are removed. In a 4-player game, all the tiles are used. The tiles are placed face-up next to the gameboard where they can easily be seen by all. 

The commodity cards are sorted by type and placed face-up in individual stacks next to the gameboard. Each player gets one stone and one wood card as his starting capital. 

Stone                      Wood                      Tool                      Cloth                      Spice                      Tobacco 

It goes like this
Each player has different production places on his home island that produce the commodities wood, stone, tool, or cloth with a corresponding die roll. Using these commodities, each player can build ships, settle additional pioneers on his island, or develop pioneers into settlers. In order to play ANNO 1503 successfully, however, settlers must advance to become citizens or even merchants. Accomplishing this requires spice and tobacco. There commodities cannot be found on the home islands but, rather, on the small islands on the gameboard. Thus, it is necessary to build ships in order to take possession of the most lucrative islands. In order to win the game, you need to get 3 of the 5 possible victory points. So, for example, you get one victory point for having 3 merchants, amassing a treasury of 30 gold pieces, or for constructing 4 public buildings.   

The course of the game
Each player rolls the die. The player with the highest number begins. On his turn, a player executes the following actions in order. 

1. Production die roll for all players  
2a. Placement and development  
2b. Sell and/or buy commodities  
3. Move ships and discover islands   

Actions 2a and 2b need not be played in order. You can, for example, buy a commodity, move a ship, and then sell a commodity. 

Important: At the end of his turn (and only then) a player may not possess more than 5 commodity cards. If he does have more, he must discard the excess cards of his choice. Once a player has finished his turn, play passes to the left. 

The actions in detail

1. Production die roll for all players 

The active player rolls the die. Each player now looks on his home island to see which commodity is displayed next to the number rolled. Each player - not only the active player - now takes a card of the corresponding commodity from the commodity stacks. If a question mark is displayed next to the number rolled, the player may take any one commodity card - including tobacco or spice. If a 6 is rolled, the players get no commodities. Instead, an event takes place (see step 3). 

Example:  
A 4 was rolled. The player gets a cloth. If a 1 had been rolled, the player would have been allowed to take any one commodity. 
 

2a. Placement and development  
Place a ship  

A player desiring to build a ship pays (discards) one cloth, one wood, and one tool and then places the ship on the start space on the gameboard.   

Place a pioneer  
A player desiring to settle a pioneer on his home island pays (discards) one wood and one tool and then places one of his pioneers (1) on the unoccupied green space that borders his most recently placed inhabitant.    

Develop inhabitants  
All other types of inhabitants cannot be placed directly. They come into play only through "Development". A Pioneer tile is developed into a Settler through payment (discarding) of 1 cloth and 2 stone (the Pioneer tile is then turned over to its Settler (2) side). A Settler is developed into a Citizen through payment (discarding) of 2 spice and 1 stone (the Settler tile is removed from the gameboard, returned to the player's stock, and then replaced with a Citizen (3) tile). A Citizen is developed into a Merchant through payment (discarding) of 2 tobacco and 1 spice (the Citizen tile is then turned over to its Merchant (4) side). 

Example:  
A player develops a settler into a citizen. He discards 2 spice and 1 stone, returns the settler tile to his stock, and replaces it with a citizen tile. 
 

Note: Any player who currently has any combination of four pioneers and settlers in play on his home island cannot, at that time, settle another new pioneer. He must first develop one of his settlers into a citizen, which allows him to get back one of his pioneer/settler tiles, which he can subsequently place as a settler by paying a wood and a tool. 

Cost overview  
The costs for placing a ship or pioneer, as well as the development costs for a settler, citizen, or merchant are displayed on the overview on the home island. So, for example, the development of a pioneer to a settler costs 1 cloth and 2 stone.   

[Placement cost  
Ship  
Pioneer (1)  
Development costs  
Pioneer to Settler (2)  
Settler to Citizen (3)  
Citizen to Merchant (4)] 
 

2b. Sell and/or buy commodities  
The commodities in ANNO 1503 serve two purposes. First, commodities are needed to place pioneers and ships, as well as to develop inhabitants. Additionally, you get gold through the sale of commodities to your inhabitants, which you can use to buy other, desperately needed commodities. 

Note please: Purchase, sale, or trade of commodities between players is not allowed . 

Sell commodities  
Once per turn, a player can sell one type of commodity to each inhabitant settled on a space on his home island. The type of commodity that can be sold to that inhabitant is shown on the inhabitant's tile. So, for example, you can sell tool, stone, or wood to a pioneer, cloth to a settler, spice to a citizen, and tobacco to a merchant. The selling price corresponds to the number on the tile. Sold commodities are then returned to the appropriate commodity card pile. Then the player's coat of arms tile is adjusted accordingly on the gold track. 

Example  
A player needs gold and would like to sell as many of his 5 commodities as possible in order to get it. To the pioneer, he can only sell either the tool or the stone. He sells the stone. Then, he sells his cloth to the settler and his two spice to the citizen. He gets a total of 6 gold and moves his coat of arms tile 6 spaces forward on the gold track. 
 

Buy commodities  
Twice in his turn a player may buy any one commodity card for 6 gold pieces. For example, a player needing spice moves his coat of arms tile 6 spaces back on the gold track and then takes a spice commodity card from the stack. The purchase of a commodity is independent of the player's inhabitants.   

3. Move ships and discover islands  
The action points available to a ship depend on the number of players. In a 2-player game, a player gets 2 action points for each of his ships, 3 in a 3-player game, and 4 in a 4-player game.   

Rules for ship movement:  
-        
A ship is only allowed to move orthogonally (up/down, left-right), not diagonally, and only onto an adjacent sea space.
-        
Ships may not be moved onto island spaces.  
-        
Each move onto an adjacent space costs one action point.  
-        
There may be any number of ships in the same space.  
-        
If a player has two ships in play on the gameboard, each of his ships gets the full complement of allowed action points.   

Discovery:  
When a player moves his ship next to an island tile, he may then look at the tile (discovery). He should not share the information with the other players. The act of discovery (looking at the tile) costs one action point. If the player is not interested in the tile, he may place it face-down back on the island space. If he still has action points remaining, he may continue moving his ship, as well as discovering other island tiles. 

However, if he would like to use the tile, his journey of discovery ends and he returns that ship to his stock. 

Note please: A ship is only allowed to move next to an island space, never onto an island space or an island tile.   

Example:  
It is a 3-player game. The Red player has 3 action points available to his ship.   

1st action point
He moves the ship to the right one space.   

2nd action point
He discovers an island, but decides he doesn't want to use it so he puts the tile back face-down.   

3rd action point
He moves his ship 1 space further to the right. On his next turn, he can discover the tile in the 3 island space.   
 

Use of island tiles
There are 3 different types of island tiles. The Branch Office shows a commodity, the Trade Agreement is marked with "-1", and the Treasure displays a chest.   

Branch Office                       Trade Agreement                           Treasure 

A) Branch Office  
To use a branch office, take possession of it and place it immediately above an available gray stone bridge on your home island. 

When the die number of the bridge is rolled, you can take either the commodity shown on your home island for that number or the commodity shown on the branch office connected to that bridge. Thus, a branch office should, if possible, always be placed at a bridge where the commodity it generates differs from that generated by your home island. 

Since your home island has only 4 gray bridges, a maximum of 4 branch offices can be placed there. Should you happen to discover 5 branch offices, you can not take the 5th one you discover nor exchange it with one you already have.    

B) Trade Agreement  
Trade Agreements are placed to the right of an available brown wooden bridge. Each trade agreement reduces the purchase price of a commodity by one gold. Thus, a player who has placed 3 trade agreements can, during his turn, buy 1 or 2 commodities for 3 gold each instead of 6 gold each. Since there are 3 brown bridges, a maximum of 3 trade agreements can be placed.   

C) Treasure  
If a player wants to use a treasure, he immediately implements the benefit shown on the tile. 

Depending on the tile, the benefit is to either develop one of his inhabitants one step or increase his fortune by 12 gold (see also the overview on the last page). The treasure tile is then removed from the game. 

Note please: As with the other island tiles, when a player uses a treasure, his ship is removed from the board and placed back in his stock. 

Example:  
The player has a spice branch office and 2 trade agreements. On a die roll of "3", he may take either spice or wood. His two trade agreements allow him to purchase a commodity for 4 gold instead of 6 gold. 

The public buildings
For every pioneer he places after the third (i.e. in a green space that has a brown space below it), a player may select a public building and place it at no additional cost immediately below the pioneer he just placed. Two buildings of the same type may not be placed, however. If there are no more public buildings available, he may not place pioneers any longer. The benefits of the individual buildings are described in the overview on the last page.   

Example:  
A player settles a new pioneer (his 5th). He selects the "Church" public building and places it below his newly placed pioneer. He could not have selected a second school since he already had a school in place. 
 

The events
If a player rolls a "6", there is no production. Instead, the player rolls again. The newly rolled number results in an event:   

1, 2 - Pirate: Each player must pay one gold for each island tile he has lying on his home island. If a player doesn't have enough gold to pay the pirate, then - and only then - the player must remove a branch office or trade agreement of his choice from his home island. In this case, he pays no gold at all. If you can pay, however, you must do so instead of removing an island tile. The removed tile is shuffled into the rest of the tiles in the reserve. Then, the top tile of the reserve stack is placed face-down on the farthest available island space from the start space on the gameboard. The number of islands shown on the island space and island tile is no longer relevant. 

3, 4 - Fire: Each player must pay 1 gold for each inhabitant he has lying outside the red-bordered safety area on his home island. If a player doesn't have enough gold to pay for the fire, then - and only then - the player must remove his most recently placed inhabitant. It doesn't matter if that is a pioneer or a developed inhabitant. When a player is forced to remove an inhabitant, he pays no gold. If you can pay, however, you must do so instead of removing an inhabitant. 

If the inhabitant being removed was associated with (immediately above) a public building, that building is removed and put back in the general stock. 

5, 6 - Golden Times: Each player may take any one commodity from the commodity stock. 

Example:  
The player has 3 island tiles and two inhabitants outside the red area. On a Pirate event he would have to pay 3 gold, on a Fire event he would pay 2 gold. 
 

Victory points
The victory point spaces on the gameboard show the 5 possible ways in which victory points can be achieved. Whenever a player has 30 or more gold, 4 branch offices, 3 trade agreements, 4 public buildings, or 3 merchants, he marks the corresponding victory point space with one of his coat of arms tiles. 

Note please:  
Victory points can be lost during the game. For example, if a player subsequently has less than 30 gold or loses a branch office, a trade agreement, or a public building as a result of an event, he would also lose the corresponding victory point.   

The number of public buildings, branch offices, and trade agreements is not sufficient to allow all players to achieve all the possible victory points associated with them. Only the victory points for 30 gold and 3 merchants are always attainable by all. 

End of the game
When a player, on his turn, achieves his third victory point, the game ends and he has won. 

Overview of the public buildings
Big Branch Office:
Once during his turn, the player may draw one commodity card at random from another player's hand. He must then pay that player 2 gold.   

Fire Brigade: When the "Fire" event happens, this player's inhabitants are protected. He does not pay any gold. 

Smithy: When the "Pirate" event happens, this player's island tiles are protected. He does not pay any gold. 

Church: When the "Golden Times" event happens, this player gets two commodities of his choice instead of only one. 

School: Each time this player sells one of his pioneers a tool, a wood, or a stone, he gets 2 gold (instead of 1 gold). 

Bath House: Each time this player sells one of his merchants a tobacco, he gets 6 gold (instead of 4 gold). 

Restaurant: Each time this player sells one of his settlers a cloth or one of his citizens a spice, he gets 4 gold (instead of 2 gold for cloth or 3 gold for spice). 

Shipyard: This player has double the normally available action points for each of his ships. 

The treasure tiles
Develop an inhabitant one step   
You get 12 gold

Distribution of island tiles

2:  6 x Contract, 1 x Upgrade, 1 x Gold, 4 x Spice, 3 x Tobacco, 1 x Cloth
3:  2 x Contract, 1 x Upgrade, 1 x Gold, 1 x Spice, 1 x Tobacco, 1 x Stone, 1 x Tool
4:  3 x Contract, 1 x Upgrade, 1 x Gold, 1 x Spice, 1 x Tobacco, 1 x Wood   

Distribution of public buildings

2: Fire brigade, Smithy, Church, School, Bath house, Restaurant, Shipyard
3: Big branch office, School, Shipyard
4: Big branch office, Fire brigade, Smithy, Restaurant

 

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