(War and Peace)
A game for 3-4 players, age 12+
Each player is a leading noble in a land where the king is old and childless. His successor will be whichever of the great nobles seems to the king to be best fitted for the task. The candidates gain favour in the king's eyes by being the dominant figure in solving the various problems, such as war and famine, which afflict the kingdom and by taking a leading role in the completion of the king's dream -- the building of a great cathedral.
These are all pictured on page two of the German rule book. The first picture shows the board, at the centre of which is the site for the cathedral. The remainder of the board is divided into four quadrants, each of which represents the estate of one of the players. Each estate has nine sites for peasant's huts. In the centre, near the cathedral, are three worker's huts. These will be occupied by peasants working on the cathedral. In the outer part of the estate is a block of six sites: these are for farmsteads.
The next picture shows the six pieces of the cathedral and how they fit together.
Third come the huts. These are in four colours, one for each player.
The fourth picture shows the cards and these fall into two sets. Those with blue backs are the resource cards. There are 68 of them, 17 of each of four types. Those with the Shield symbol represent knights; those with the Jewelled Cup wealth; those with the Stonemason's Hammer workers and those with the Barley food. The cards with the red backs are the agenda cards and again there are four types. In the order shown they are War, Taxes, Unrest and Famine. There are four of each type. One of the four Unrest cards shows a stone cross at the top of the arch.
The small round markers showing the king's seal are victory point markers. The red ones are each worth one; the blue ones five.
The larger scroll-shaped markers are Privileges granted by the king.
Finally there are four information charts, one for each player. The problems of the kingdom will be solved using the resource cards and the chart shows how effective each resource is at dealing with each type of problem. So, for example, a knight card is worth four points if the country is at war but only one if there is a famine. PREPARATION
(Before the first game the victory point markers, privilege markers and information charts will need to be removed from their surrounds.)
The board is opened out and placed in the middle of the table so that each player has their estate with its farms immediately in front of them. A picture of the noble's shield is on its owner's left.
Separate the cards into two groups -- the 68 resource cards and the 16 agenda cards. Shuffle the resource cards and deal 8 face down to each player. The remainder are placed in a face down stack next to the board.
Distribute the agenda cards as follows:
1) With four players: Shuffle the cards and deal them out to the players, face down. Each player receives four cards and takes them into their hand. The players now inspect their cards. Whoever has the Unrest card with the stone cross at the top becomes the King's Adviser. This player then places the Unrest card with the stone cross face up on the table.
2) With three players: The Unrest card with the stone cross is placed face up on the table. The remaining 15 cards are then dealt out, five to each player.
Each player chooses a colour and receives the corresponding six huts, two of which they then place on farmstead sites on their estate. Their other four huts are placed in front of them, next to the board. Important: On each estate, the three sites for cathedral worker's huts are left vacant for the time being.
Each player is also given an information card showing the agenda/resources points table.
The cathedral pieces, the victory point markers and the privilege markers are put in a convenient place near the board.
THE GAME SEQUENCE
The game is split into ``years'', each with four seasons. The player who currently holds the title of King's Adviser is the start player for the year. The holder is likely to change from year to year.
The nobles meet together to determine the agenda for the year. This is done using the agenda cards. The King's Adviser makes the initial choice by playing an agenda card from hand. The other players have the opportunity to change the agenda, but each change costs the player making it one of their privilege markers.
1) With four players, the King's Adviser is the player who held the Unrest card with the stone cross.
2) With three players, the oldest player is the King's Adviser. The King's Adviser starts the game. The Unrest card with the stone cross is the agenda card for the first year. It can not be changed, because at this stage nobody holds any privilege markers. This is all that happens in Winter of year one and the game moves to the Spring phase.
1) The King's Adviser chooses an agenda card from their hand and plays it face up on the table. If the King's Adviser has no agenda cards left, the next player in clockwise order who does still have an agenda card makes the choice.
2) The agenda card played can now be changed.
Special Rule: If a player owns a privilege but has no more agenda cards, they can nonetheless still change the current agenda. To do this they give up the privilege marker and pick the agenda card up from the table into their hand. Since there has to be a tabled agenda card, the player's left hand neighbour is obliged to play one of their own cards as a replacement.
The problem on the agenda card now has to be tackled and players vie for the credit that solving it will bring. This is done by bidding, using the resource cards. The values of the different resource cards are shown in the appropriate column of the information card. The player who bids highest will gain the reward.
1) The King's Adviser begins by choosing resource cards from hand as the opening bid and placing these cards face up on the table. The value of the cards is given on the resource/agenda table on the information cards.
2) The other players now take their turns in order. On your turn you can make a counter bid. This must be higher than the existing bid.
3) If you can not or do not wish to make a bid, you must pass. Once you have passed, you are out of the bidding round for this game year.
4) The bidding continues until only one player is left. Players still in the bidding may, when their turn comes round, raise their previous bid. To do this place the new cards below those of your previous bid. (Keeping the cards separate in this way is important, because when a player passes they may take back into their hand the cards that made up the last addition to their bid. The earlier cards, however, are lost and must be discarded.)
5) The player who wins the bidding must discard all the cards that were part of their bid. This player is now the new King's Adviser.
Klaus is the left hand neighbour of the King's Adviser and it is his turn to bid. The agenda card is Famine. Klaus's bid is three Hammer resource cards. This is worth 9 points.
The next player, Wolfgang, passes and Peter now comes in with a bid worth 12 points. Fritz, the King's Adviser, passes at this point, leaving just Klaus and Peter in the bidding.
Klaus now increases his bid by playing two Cup resource cards. Together these are worth 4 points and so Klaus's total bid now stands at 13 points.
Peter raises his bid to 15 points by playing a Hammer card.
Klaus raises again, this time by playing three Barley resource cards. These are worth 4 points each and so his bid now stands at 25 points.
Peter passes and picks up the Hammer card that was the last addition to his bid. The cards he played previously are lost to the discard pile. Klaus wins the bidding, becomes the new King's Adviser and discards all eight cards from his bid.
Had Peter outbid Klaus again and had Klaus then dropped out, Klaus would have returned the three Barley cards to his hand but would still have had to discard the three Hammers and the two Cups.
The Rewards of Victory
a) If the agenda card has the privilege symbol in its corner, the new King's Adviser receives one "King's Seal" (a victory point chip worth 1 point) and may select a privilege. If there are no remaining privileges of the type that the player wants, they may take one from an opponent. Privileges and victory point chips are kept in open view in front of you.
b) If the agenda card has the cathedral symbol in its corner, the King's Adviser builds a new section of the cathedral. The sections of the cathedral are built in the following order:
For building a section of the cathedral the player receives victory points according to the following table:
In addition to these points, the King's Adviser receives a further victory
point for each worker's hut that he owns.
The worker's huts belonging to the King's Adviser are now removed from the board and placed back in stock ready for later use.
The agenda card is now removed from the game.
The other players go away empty-handed.
Players use resource cards to build new farmsteads, reassign farmworkers to the building of the cathedral, raid the estates of other nobles and bribe opposition knights.
The King's Adviser begins and the other players then follow in clockwise order.
On their turn, each player can perform the following actions in any order they choose:
It is permissible to mix the actions. So, for example, you may first build a farmstead, then bribe a knight, then build another farmstead, etc.
1) Assign workers to the building of the cathedral
2) Build new farmsteads
3) Challenge opposition knights
Fritz owns two worker's huts and two farmsteads. An attack by Klaus forces him to remove one of them. He has to remove a worker's hut, because otherwise he would be left with two worker's huts and only one farmstead.
The Shield card played by the attacker is discarded.
4) Bribe opposition knights
The players gain income in the form of resource cards. A player who is poor and has a minimal income may get a bounty from the king. Being a king, he gets the money for this from his rich subjects rather than his own coffers.
1) Income: Resource Cards.
Beginning with the King's Adviser and proceeding clockwise, the players collect their income. The resource cards taken come from the face down deck.
2) The King's Bounty
Each player who has an income this Autumn/Fall of only one card (i.e. who has no additional income from either farmsteads or privileges) and who owns fewer than five cards in all, may apply for the ``King's Bounty''.
Each player who owns more than 10 resource cards must reduce their hand to 10 by discarding cards of their choice.
If the draw deck is exhausted, shuffle the discard pile and turn it over to form a new draw deck.
THE END OF THE YEAR
If the year is completed, immediately start the next one. See under ``Winter in subsequent years''.
THE END OF THE GAME
The game ends in the Spring in which the last section of the cathedral is built.
The player with the most victory points is the winner.
In the event of a tie, the tie is broken in favour of the player who owns the most resource cards.
Translation: Stuart Dagger, June 1999 VARIANTS (by Gerard Mulder)
1) A Long Term Strategy Variant
This is designed to give the player who builds the last section of the cathedral an increased chance of winning. The last piece will decide the game in about half the cases. This does not mean that the earlier part of the game is meaningless. Quite the contrary. During the game you will be trying to get yourself into position for the big hit and will also be looking to pick up some points along the way. In addition, you will need to bear in mind that the other players will also be manoeuvring for position.
2) A Social Variant
This is intended to make the game less harsh for beginners who find themselves playing against more experienced players.
Privileges may only be taken from other players if they have at least as many victory points as you do.
3) Combined Variant
You can also combine these two variants and add a further element to the mix by allowing players to choose their basic income cards instead of just drawing them from the face down deck.
This site is created and maintained by: Carl-Gustaf Samuelsson