Published by Kosmos
Designed by Klaus Teuber
English rules and cards translated by Peter Card 18th November 1999
[Translators Note: I have used "he" and "his" throughout, since there
are no compact gender neutral equivalents. ]
Set up the game following these instructions, so as to familiarise yourselves with the
game components and their fucntions. The actual rules come afterwards. Consult the
Glossary in the Almanac (Section 3), if questions arise during the course of the game.
First, unfold the gameboard.
There are 11 solar systems, each with 3 planets and 4 Alien Homeworlds. The 4 solar
systems at the bottom of the board are called "Catanian Colonies" (planets
marked with Greek letters). The players start here
Each player chooses a colour and takes his stock, consisting of:
3 Spaceport Rings
7 Trade Bases
Each player places 2 of his colonies and 1 of his spaceports on the circles (Colony
Points) between the Catanian Colonies, as shown in the illustrated "Setup for
A spaceport consists of a colony stuck together with a spaceport
ring. (see illustration)
Attention: In the 3 player game the 2 colonies and the single
spaceport of the 4th colour are placed as shown. However, they have no function except to
act as an obstruction.
Each player takes one of his colonies from stock and attaches any one of his
transports to the spire of the colony. A colony ship consists of a transport attached
to a colony. Each player places his colony ship on the space-point adjacent to his
spaceport, as shown in the illustrated "Setup for Beginners". New ships
lift off from here to colonise new planets.
New colonies and spaceports, amongst other things, or required to reach 15 Victory
Points and win the game. Each colony is worth 1VP, each spaceport is worth 2. This means
that each player starts the game with 4 VPs. Each player places their VP marker on the
"4" space of the VP track on the gameboard.
Building spaceships costs raw material cards. Only the colony ship you start the game
with is free. You receive most of your raw materials from the production chits on planets
you have colonised. Carefully remove the production chits from the sheet. (Translaters
note: When first playing the game) Place the production chits marked with Greek
letters on the reverse side on the Catanian colony planets, with the numbered sides are
face up, as shown on the illustrated Setup.
The production chits marked with the coloured spots on the reverse are placed with
the coloured spots showing and mixed. Each planet marked with a coloured spot is then
covered with a production chit marked with a matching coloured spot. These chits will
be turned face up when a player founds a colony on an adjacent colony spot. The
production chits marked with a white spot are kept in reserve and placed with the numbered
side face down near near the gameboard.
When the number of a production chit is thrown during the game, the owners of colonies
and spaceports on the planet with the chit will receive the raw material for that planet.
Now take the raw material cards. There are 5 different types, one for each planetary
type. Sort the raw material cards by type and put the 5 piles in the compartaments of
the cardbox. The cardbox constitutes the raw material stock, and is best placed at
one side of the gameboard.
Now each player takes a mothership and an endcap in their colour.Each
player puts his mothership in front of him, (not on the board) Sort out the cargo rings,
ship canons and drives, and put them in component box. Place the box beside the board.
At the start of the game, the motherships have no upgrades. However, during the
game the players can buy upgrades for their motherships. The illustration above shows
where they are attached.
The endcap, are mounted on the spike, in the player's colour
The silver fame rings are threaded onto the spike
The blue ship canons are mounted on the nose section
The copper cargo rings clip onto the central section
The yellow drives are mounted on the tail section
The function of the mothership is quite simple.The drives increase the speed of the
player's ships on the gameboard, the ship canons increase their fighting ability and the
cargo rings increase the trade capacity. Thus, the mothership shows the attributes of your
spaceships on the board.
Colonies and spaceports are not enough to win.If you found trade bases at Alien
homeworlds during the course of the game, you receive friendship cards and can gain
friendship discs (2 victory points) Sort the friendship cards by type . Lay the 5
cards for each race next to the corresponding Alien homeworld. The cards are laid face up
on the spaces with pictures of the Aliens. The Friendship discs are placed on top of the
When moving your spaceships, you can experience unexpected events. Shuffle the 32
event cards and stack them face down near the gameboard.
Events can increase your fame. Fame is represented by fame discs, which are stored in
the fourth tray of the component box. Each player takes one fame disc, and threads it
on the spike of his mothership
Each player takes a quick reference card, which summarises the main points of play.
To complete the setup, lay out the dice and construct the raw-material supply deck.
Take 12 cards from each of the 5 raw material piles, shuffle them together thoroughly, and
put the supply deck so created next to the cardbox.Each player now takes 3 raw
material cards from the supply deck.
Attention When you have played the game once or twice, you should
found your initial colonies and spaceport according to the Setup for Experienced Players (
see the Almanac)
Winning the Game
The first player to reach 15 Victory Points in his own turn, wins the game.Victory
Points are gained for building colonies and spaceports, among other things. A Victory
Point summary is shown on each side of the gameboards
Setup for Experienced Players (from the Almanac)
After preparing the game, each player founds two colonies and one spaceport, and places
a free colony ship next to the spaceport.
The production chits marked with greek letters on the reverse are placed face down and
The chits are placed on the planets marked with matching greek letters. Then the chits
are flipped over so that the arabic numerals are face up.
Each player founds two colonies and one spaceport on the Catanian colony worlds. It is
left up to the player whether he founds the spaceport first and then the colonies, or if
he builds the spaceport in the second or third place.
The founding takes place over three rounds.
Whoever threw highest begins, and places a colony or spaceport on any colony point. Then
the other players take their turns in clockwise order.
Once every player has placed a colony or spaceport, the player who placed last in the
round begins. He can only build his second colony or spaceport. The other players follow
in counterclockwise order.
Once the last player has placed his second colony or spaceport, he can place his third
colony or spaceport. Then the players go in clockwise order again, placing the third
colony or spaceport.
As soon as a player places his spaceport, in the first, second or
third round, he also places a free colony or trade ship on an adjacent spaceport point.
General Sequence of Play
Whoever throws highest starts the game. A player's turn consists of three phases
The player throws both dice. Planets bearing the number shown produce raw materials
Supplies from Earth
Trade and Building Phase - The player trades and builds
Flight Phase - The player moves his spaceships. When a player ends his Flight Phase, the
next player in clockwise order takes his turn
Sequence of Play in Detail
The Production Phase
1. Dicing for Production
The player begins by throwing both the dice for this turn's production
Each planet that bears a production chit with the number thrown produces raw materials
All players get the corresponding raw material from their colonies and spaceports sited
on colony points of a planet with the number thrown
"7" Thrown: When a seven is thrown, the earth requires
Each player with more than 7 raw material cards in hand discards half of them, rounding
up, and returns them to the stock.
The player who threw the "7" takes a card sight unseen from another player of
Example: The illustration shows the situation where the Red player has thrown an
"8". The yellow and blue players each receive carbon production
2.Taking Cards from the Supply Deck
If the player whose turn it is has fewer than 9 victory points, he receives a card from
the supply deck ( even if a "7" was thrown) IMPORTANT:If a player has
more than 8 victory point he doesn't get this entitlement. Should a player forget to take
a card from the supply deck, he can still claim it in the Trade and Building Phase. As
soon as he makes a mothership roll, he loses this right. If the supply deck is exhausated,
a new deck is made up with 6 cards from each raw material deck.
Trade and Building Phase
After the production phase, the player can trade and build in any order
Trade with other players
If a player wants to trade with the other players he announces which raw materials he
wants and which he is perpared to give in exchange. He can listen to offers from other
players and make counter offers. The rate of exchange ( for instance, one food card in
return for one, two or even two ore and one carbon ) is up to the players. IMPORTANT:
All trades must be with the player whose turn it is. The other players cannot
trade among themselves.
Trade with the Galactic Bank
The five raw material decks are known as the "Galactic Bank". Whoever wants
to trade with the Galactic Bank in their turn returns three cards of one type to the deck
and takes one card of another type.(Exchange rate is 3:1) IMPORTANT: The
"Trade Goods" raw material is a special case. It is traded at 2:1 Whoever has a
Friendship card from the Traders can improve the exchange rate with the Galactic Bank
If he wishes, a player can build as much as he likes in the Trade and Building Phase ,
as long as he has the necessary raw materials at his disposal and there are enough game
components. The construction costs are listed on the quick reference card that each player
has in front of him.
Spaceships (Colony and Trading Ships)
"Spaceship" is the general term for colony and trading ships
A spaceship always consists of a transport attached to a colony or a trade base.
To build a Colony Ship a player pays the necessary raw materials to the bank(raw
material stock). Then he takes a colony from his stack and afixes it to one of his
transports from stock. (the illustration shows Transport + Colony = Colony Ship)
To build a Trade Ship a player pays the necessary raw materials to the bank.Then he
takes a trade base from his stock and afixes it to one of his transports from stock. (the
illustration shows Transport + Trade Base = Trade Ship)
The player places the colony ship or trade ship on a vacant spaceport point adjacent to
his spaceport, or one of his spaceports if he has more than one.
A spaceship cannot be built(even if the player has the necessary raw materials) if:
All three of his transports are already on the board or ...
if the player has built all his colonies or trade bases or ...
if there are no vacant spaceport points
When a player builds a spaceship, he can launch it at once in the immediately following
If a player has more than one spaceship in play, it is always the spaceship whose
transporter has the fewest beads on its spike which is designated the "First
Spaceship" (Important for Event Cards) [Translators Note: You have to look carefully
to spot these]
Each player has a single spaceport at his disposal at the start of the game.A
player can only launch his spaceships from one of the two space points adjacent to his
spaceport (spaceport points) Therefore, during the course of the game, if the distance to
new planets is too great, it is sensible to build a second or third spaceport.
A spaceport is built by upgrading an existing colony. To build a spaceport, a player
pays 3xCarbon and 2xFoodstuff to the bank, takes a starport ring from his stock and afixes
it to one of his colonies.
A spaceport is worth 2 victory points(including the victory point from the colony), but
like a colony it only produces one raw material when the number of one of its neighbouring
planets is thrown.
Spaceport rings cannot be carried by transports.
Mothership Upgrades Each player can upgrade his mothership
with cargo rings, drives and ship canons, if he has the necessary raw materials (See the
construction costs on the quick reference cards) A player who has paid for an upgrade
afixes it to his mothership in the appropriate place
Each Drive increases the speed of a player's spacehips by 1.
Each Cargo Ring increases the cargo capacity of a player's spaceships by 1.
Each player can upgrade his mothership by a maximum of 6 ship canons, 6 Drives and 5
If a player has no spaceships in on the board, he does not get a Flight Phase,
and the turn passes to the next player. If a player does have spaceships, he now performs
a "Mothership Roll" to determine the speed. If he gets a black bead, an event
occurs. Then he moves his ship[s] on the gameboard, according to the Flight Rules (See
"Flight Rules" below), and can therby:
Explore planets with spaceships
Found colonies with colony ships
Errect trade bases with trade ships
First of all, the player determines the "Basic Speed" of his
spaceships by his mothership roll. He shakes his mothership, holding it upside down, and
then turns it the right way up again.Two beads will have fallen into the transparent
cylinder at the base of the mothership. On the quick reference cards, each bead colour
corresponds to a number.The sum of both numbers gives the "Basic Speed".There
are two possibilities
The black bead was not thrown
The basic speed corresponds to the number thrown. For example, a red and a blue
bead give a basic speed of "4"
The player gets the speed of his spaceships by adding the number of drives on his
mothership and the number of drives shown on any friendship cards from the Wise Race, to
the basic speed..
The speed applies to all the player's spaceships on the gameboard; that means that he
can move each of his spaceships - within the restrictions of the Flight Rules as many
space points as the previously determined speed allows.
Example: The yellow player has determined a speed of "4" for his
spaceships. He picks up a spaceship on the board and moves it 4 space points (see
The black bead was thrown This means that the player has an
event before moving his ship.
The player on his left takes the top event card from the deck and reads out the first
question, without showing the card to the other player
The player decides on his answer. According to the answer, the player on the left reads
out the result.The result is implemented, and the event card is returned to the discard
IMPORTANT: If a result mentions one of the player's
spaceships, it is always the player's "first spaceship"on the gameboard that is
effected (The transport with the fewest beads on its spike)
A player who successfully deals with an event might win a fame ring. These are
threaded onto the mothership's spike. On the other hand, fame rings can also be lost, if
the event goes easily for the player.
Every 2 fame rings are worth 1 victory point.
The basic speed is always "3" if a black bead is thrown.The number of
mothership drives and possibly those from friendship cards are added to the basic speed as
The player can now move his spaceships according to the speed, if the outcome of the
event does not dictate otherwise.
ATTENTION: The instructions of the two event cards that start
"Zahn der Zeit" (Wear and Tear) are followed one after another, and effect all
If a player moves his colony ship or trade ship during his turn onto a
spacepoint adjacent to a planet with a facedown production chit (marked with red arrows on
the illustration), he can inspect the face of the production chit.
If he moves his spaceship onto a colony point (space point marked with a circle), he can
inspect the production chits on both neighbouring planets.
Then he puts the production chits back face down, without giving the other players any
information about the chits.
After each exploration, he can move his spaceship further, if he has more movement
If a player ends the flight of one of his colony ships at a vacant colony
point, he first of all explores the production chits of the neighbouring planets.
If neither chit is a nest of pirates or an ice planet, he can found a colony. He
detaches the transport from the colony and returns it to his stock.
Next, he turns the production chits of both planets face up.
The colony is worth 1 victory point, and earns the player the raw material production
from both neighbouring planet, given the right dice rolls.
Once a colony has been founded, it cannot be changed back to a colony ship.
SPECIAL RULE FOR THREE PLAYER GAMES
Each planetary system has three colony points. In the four player game, a colony can be
founded on each colony point. However, in the three player game, only two colonies can be
founded. One colony point (it doesn't matter which one) must always be left vacant.
Founding Trade Bases
Each alien homworld is surrounded by trade points numbered 1 to 5
The first player to reach a particular alien homeworld with one of his trade ships can
found a trade base if the following conditions are fulfilled:
His trade ship is present at the trade point marked "1".
His mothership has at least one cargo ring.
If these conditions are fulfilled, he detaches his transport from his trade base and
returns it to his stock
For establishing the new trade base, the player receives the Friendship Discfor this
race. The disc is worth 2 victory points, so move the victory point marker up 2 spaces.
Also, the player inspects the 5 Friendship Cards for that race, selects one, and lays it
face up in front of him.The player immediately gains the advantage explained on the card.
The next trade base to be established at this alien homeworld must be errected on trade
point "2". The requirement is now that the player's mothership has at least 2
Trade bases "3" to "5" will be handled correspondingly. For each
newly founded trade base, the owner can take one of the remaining Friendship Cards, and
gain the advantage for it.
A player player loses the friendship disc if another
player has more trade bases at the homeworld of that race.If there is a tie, the player
occupying the lowest numbered trade point gets the disc.
Pirates and Ice Planets
Colonies cannot be founded at colony points with a pirate's nest or ice planet
on one of the neighnouring planets. However, if a player succeeds in defeating the pirates
or making an ice planet habitable, the pirate's nest or the iceplanet production chit is
swapped for a reserve chit(white spot on the reverse). he lays the pirates nest or ice
planet in front of him. It is worth 1 victory point. A pirate's nest is defeated if the
player moves one of his spaceships onto a space point or colony point adjacent to the
planet, and the number of his ship canons (mothership + friendship cards) is at least as
great as the number on the pirate's nest chit. An ice planet chit is removed if the player
moves one of his spaceships onto a space point or colony point adjacent to the planet and
his mothership has at least as many cargo rings as the the number on the ice planet chit.
When a player moves his spaceships, there are some rules to observe.
A player can leave movement points unused, or even not move a spaceship at all
During movement, space ships can revisit space points they left earlier.
Spaceships can jump over space points with opposing spaceships, trade bases, colonies,
or spaceports (but still pay)
Only one spaceship can occupy a space point.
Blockading is not allowed:
A spaceship cannot end its turn on a spaceport point of another player
A colony ship cannot end its turn on a trade point
If a colony ship ends its turn on a colony space, without founding a colony, the colony
point must be vacated next turn (if possible)
A trade ship cannot end its turn on a colony point
A trade ship can only end its turn on a trade point if the player's mothership has
sufficient cargo rings, and the player founds a trade base.
Tracking Victory Points
Each time that a player gains or loses victory points, he moves his victory
point marker the corresponding number of spaces up or down the victory point track.
A player ends the game and wins if he reaches 15 victory points during his
For a faster game, use the following rule.
Each player can take 2 cards from the supply deck in his turn, if he has less than 7