Each of the players, in turn, puts a layer of cards in the card box, the last player placing a covering layer. Then, using the little spade provided, each player tries to uncover as many cards as possible with plus points. These plus points are worth money. The winner is the player with the most money at the end of the game.
Contents of the box:
6x 16 playing cards
12 scarab cards
6 barricade cards
50 silver coins
20 gold coins (1 gold coin = 5 silver coins)
Playing the game for the first time:
Break the cards carefully out of their frames and sort them into groups according to colour. There are 16 cards of each colour. Each player gets 2 cards bearing a scarab, 1 card with a lid, 1 gold coin and 5 silver coins.
One player runs the bank.
Place the open board on the table and put the card box next to it.
Phase 1: placing the layers
There are 6 different layers regardless of the number of players. Each layer has a different colour (the higher the level, the lighter the cards) and consists of 1 6 cards. The players decide who lays the first layer. The next layer is laid by the player on the left, etc. The bottom layer differs from the other layers (see illustration I on page 11). In the lowest layer lies the mask of Tutankhamen.
The second third, fourth and fifth layers cannot be placed at random in the tray. It is therefore handy to refer to the drawing II on page 11. This is an example of the middle layers. As you see, on these layers there are, on each, one snake and two obelisks. When you lay these layers, the snake and the obelisk must continue to form one whole figure. The snake may be upside down but its head, body, and tail must make up one whole figure. The obelisk can vary in length, but each obelisk must have a head and a foot. In each layer there are six obelisk cards. So you can lay one obelisk of two cards and the other one of four, or you can make each of them three cards long. The obelisks, too, may lie upside down or horizontally in the tray.
And so on round the table, the player placing the top layer also adding the covering layer, which contains no treasure. Each player then turns the card box round without the other players looking, and finally the board is placed over the box.
Phase 2: the digging begins...
The player on the left of the one who laid the top layer starts the dig. Thereafter the turn passes clockwise. A player may dig anywhere, raising cards using the spade. Only the top card in a space may be lifted, the card beneath it then become available. Once a card has been raised it is out of the game. A player may dig as many cards as he likes but must stop when a penalty, card is exposed. A player can choose to stop digging at any time, or not to dig at all, passing his turn.
Using the spade
Hold the hand with the palm uppermost, place the handle of the spade between index and middle finger and place the thumb over the hole at the top of the spade. The spade is now ready for use. Place the suction cap on a card and lift it up. If you want to drop the card remove your thumb from the hole in the spade.
The aim, of course, is to collect as much treasure as possible. The value of each piece of treasure is indicated by a number on the card. But be careful! There are hidden dangers. There are also cards with penalty points.
All plus points collected during a turn are paid out in coins, one silver coin for each point. The coins are put to one side for the player to collect at the end of his turn. If, however, the player uncovers a card with a penalty point, then his turn is over, he forfeits all the coins won in that turn and must also pay the number of penalty points indicated on the card. If the player cannot pay, then he is out of the game.
Faience vase = 3 points and you decide to dig further. Then you find a bracelet=2 points. You take the risk and turn over one more card: a chest decoration = 3 points. Now you stop. You are paid 8 silver coins. If your last card is not a chest decoration, but rather a mosquito =-1 point. You must stop; all of your plus points from this turn are gone and you must pay 1 silver coin.
Take care! You only get points (and thus money) for cards you reveal and not for exposed cards you lift up.
Alabaster Vase: The Egyptians were fond of using alabaster, which is fairly easy to work, for small sculptures or for household ware. This one comes from the grave of Tutankhamen. Cairo, Egyptian Museum.
Chest Ornament: This complex Chest Ornament is made of gold, lapis lazuli and other semiprecious stones, and represents five scarabs showing the Sun God Chepre. The links are vultures and the fastening cobras. It comes from the tomb of Tutankhamen. Cairo, Egyptian museum.
Bracelet: This bracelet belonged to Queen Ahotep, mother of Kamose and Ahmose, 17th dynasty. Cairo, Egyptian Museum.
Faience Vase: Egyptian faience is made up of fine quartz sand covered with a layer of glass. This piece is in the form of an open lotus flower. Detroit, Clark Museum.
Necklace: Scarab pendant, from the tomb of Tutankhamen. Cairo, Egyptian Museum
Horus, the Falcon God: This silver cult image of Horus, the Falcon God was made at the close of the 6th century BC. Munich, State Museum of Egyptian Art.
Tutankhamen: Around 11 kilos of pure gold, semiprecious stones and enamel went into the making of this mask which covered the face of Tutankhamen. The archaeologists who uncovered the tomb all died mysteriously. Whoever reveals the mask during the game is penalised - or is there something else...? Cairo, Egyptian Museum.
Cobra: Egyptian cobra or Uraeus snake. According to surviving documents, Cleopatra used such a snake to kill herself in 30 BC.
Mosquito: Mosquitoes, carriers of many diseases including malaria. A member of the expedition which opened the tomb of Tutankhamen died of malaria.
Obelisk: Obelisk, from the Greek meaning "roasting spit", is a tall column which tapers to a point, usually covered with hieroglyphics and which had a function in the cult of sun worship.
Scorpion: Scorpions are nocturnal creatures, hiding themselves by day under stones. A sting by some types of scorpion is justifiably greatly feared. A sting from the Androctonus australis, which is found in the Sahara, can kill you within 7 hours.
Every player has two scarab cards and a blockade card.
These cards have the following functions:
Scarab card: Although we might say: What a nasty beetle!, the Egyptians thought differently. They believed the beetle reproduced itself and attributed divine powers to it. (Scarabs therefore bring good luck). A player who plays his scarab card at the start of his turn doubles the points of cards disclosed. This 'doubling' applies for the whole turn, but includes penalty points!
Example: You have played your scarab card and reveal:
- An alabaster vase = 1 x 2 = 2 points
- Horus =-5 x 2 = 10 points
- The cobra =-2 x 2 = -4 points
You forfeit all your points and you must pay four silver coins.
Blockade card: This card can only be played at the end of a turn. The player places the blockade card in a space of his choice in the card box. It means that no one else is allowed to dig at that spot. When the player who played the blockade card has his next turn he can then continue digging at this spot, the card is taken out of the game and the blockade is lifted.
END OF THE GAME
The game is over when all cards are revealed.
The player with the most money is the winner.
It is useful to keep the example on page 11 with you to see which points are in which layer. Obviously it is important to remember which cards have already been "raised"!
Storing the cards:
It is handy to sort the used cards during play and placing them in the box compartments. When the game is over, you are then ready for the next round.
If you wish to store the game, put the special cards into the box, so that they are separated from the other cards.
Copyright 1992 by Koninklijke Hausemann en Hötte nv, Amsterdam
This site is created and maintained by: Carl-Gustaf Samuelsson