Quick Learner's Guide
Copyright © 1994, 1995 Companion Games.
After playing several games using only the quick learner's guide and possibly the definitions, players should review the complete rulebook.
A number of galactic empires are fighting for supremacy. Starter Decks contain the cards needed to play one galactic empire. To win be the last remaining player.
The Sector HQ Card: This card is separated from the deck and set aside. It is only used as a location for keeping track of damage scored to the Sector HQ. It cannot be repaired. Cards may not be played on the Sector HQ.
The Reserve Fleet: A number of cards which can be brought into play more or less at will.
Creating the Reserve Fleet: Remove a number of cards from your deck equal to the number of players. They are not exposed to the other players until after the ante has been drawn.
Beginner's Recommendation: A T4, S3, T5, S4, C4...
Using the Reserve Fleet: As a Card Play, a player may swap a card from his hand with a card in his reserve fleet. The card placed into the reserve fleet must be of equal or higher strength then the card removed. This swap counts as 1 Card Play.
Getting Started / Ante: After you have created your reserve fleet, shuffle the remaining cards. The player to your left cuts your deck. Each player draws the top card as his ante. The player with the highest strength ante goes first. The second highest goes second, etc. The ante becomes the first card in the Discard Pile.
Beginning Play: All players expose their reserve fleets. Do not confuse the reserve fleet with the active fleet (formed by playing cards). All players draw 9 cards from their decks. The first player begins his turn by following the Player Turn Sequence.
Player Turn Sequence:
1 - Point Allocation Phase
2 - Engagement Phase
Play Cards Phase A:
Weapons Fire Phase:
Play Cards Phase B:
Discard Cards Phase:
Draw Cards Phase:
Cards Have Rules: Important! The rules on the cards take precedence over the rulebook!
Restrictions: Only terrain may be played on turn 1. Reserve
fleet swaps may also be made.
Turn 2 Restrictions: Any card types may be played on turn 2 except that a maximum of 1 ship, base or dragon may be played.
Positions of Cards Played: All cards with point requirements are played in the disengaged position. Cards without point requirements are played engaged.
There-and-back Mission: A there-and-back mission is a means for crew to assault opponent locations by transporting to there, making an attack and transporting back:
Effects of being Disengaged: A disengaged card may not take any action. Disengaged cards will block damage to the Sector HQ or terrain card which they protect. A disengaged ship or base can only operate its shields, conduct repairs via repair points and operate passive equipment. Engaged crew on disengaged cards do function.
Playing Reaction Cards: Only cards designated with an 'R/' may be played in reaction to an opponent player's actions on an opponent's turn. They cannot be played in reaction on your own turn unless reacting to an opponent's reaction card play. Reaction card actions occur just before the action they are reacting to.
A reaction card may only be played in reaction mode if one of its functions is used at the time it is played. Note: Reaction cards can only fire their weapons if played in an opponent's Weapons Fire Phase and only if those weapons do not need resource points.
In a reaction sequence, the most recently played reaction card will take its action(s) before previously played reaction cards.
Reaction cards already in play CANNOT react unless they actually state "As a reaction, ..."
How long cards remain in
play: Cards remain in play until the actions
of another player cause them to be discarded. Some cards are discarded after
- Any card which reaches a strength of ZERO is discarded.
- When a card is discarded cards played on or against it are discarded also (except ships and dragons in play on destroyed terrain cards).
- INTO: Players may only play cards into their own fleets.
- ON: Many cards are played on other cards. They become part of that stack of cards.
- AGAINST: Cards played on or to an opponent card are played against that opponent's card.
- CARD ACTIONS: Card actions can occur once each turn. Card actions are not Card Plays and do not count against a the Card Play limit.
Damaging the Sector HQ: A Sector HQ is destroyed by the 25th damage point. A Sector HQ may only be fired at if there are no ships protecting it. Only ship or dragon cards may fire at a Sector HQ.
Keeping Track of Damage: Damage to shields and damage to the ship itself should be tracked separately by using two different dice.
Kinds of Points:
Economy: Economy points can be used as supply, energy, ammunition, research, repair or healing points. This is declared during the Allocation Phase.
Supply: The consumables needed by units to function.
Energy: The power needed by units for operation.
Ammunition: Ammunition points are required to fire the heavy weapons listed at the bottom of ship cards. A maximum of 1 ammunition point may be allocated to each of these heavy weapons.
Research: Research points represent scientific study.
Repair: There are two types of repair:
Repair Point: A repair point may fix damage to a shield or strength point on a ship (but not a dragon), or a base. It may also be used to repair heavy weapons damage on a terrain, but not card damage to a terrain.
Healing Point: A healing point will 'cure' a point of damage on a dragon.
Command: Please ignore these for now, see the main rulebook after several games have been played.
Damage: Damage points cause one point of damage each.
Shield: Each shield point is eliminated by one point of damage. After the shields are gone, the unit may sustain structural damage.
Node: Node points are used only on Mechad ships.
- Energy allocated to the Mechad ship's electromagnetic field (EMF) is multiplied by the number of nodes on that ship to determine the strength of the EMF. The maximum strength of the EMF is twice the strength of the ship. The EMF strength represents the number of defensive points the Mechad ship has for that turn.
- A Mechad ship which is not engaged has a free EMF strength equal to its strength.
- Shield refits may not be applied to Mechad ships.
- The EMF will not block the function of transporters.
- When tracking EMF strength, it is best to "count down" by using a die to indicate the current strength of the EMF.
- The EMF may only be increased in strength by an amount equal to the strength of the ship. EXAMPLE: A strength 7 ship has an EMF at strength 7, it sustains 4 damage, during the next Allocation Phase it can be repowered to a maximum strength of 10 (not 14).
General Weapon Rules:
Card Damage is NOT Weapons Fire: Card damage is only indicated on the top right of a card with damage point symbols. Card damage is not weapons fire and only occurs in either of the Card Play phases.
Standard Targets: The following card types are considered standard targets and may be fired at with weapons: terrain, ships, dragons, bases and any cards which say they are destroyed by damage.
Non-Heavy Weapons: All non-heavy weapons can be fired if the card is engaged. They cost no points to be fired. Non-heavy weapons cannot damage terrain cards. All of these weapon types are distinct and different.
- Phaser: Each phaser causes 1 point of damage. They cost no points.
- Subspace Whip: Exactly the same as phasers.
- Physical Damage: Causes 1 point of damage each.
Heavy Weapons: The only weapons which can damage terrain. Each standard heavy weapon requires 1 ammunition point to cause 1 point of damage.
Special Ship Systems:
Mine Deployment System: Each MDS requires one mine card and one supply. An MDS permits one mine to be used each turn but the mine card is not discarded after use.