by Jonathan Leistiko
Area Shangzhou-Gold (64 new sectors!) just opened for development on CyberNet. Your corporation has obtained partially-exclusive initial development (and exploitation) rights to this potentially lucrative market. Your goal? Secure your company’s control over the area by either controlling all four Critical Nodes, laying exclusive claim to more than half of the sectors (33+), or accumulating enough Clout to pay off the regulating officials.
Put the chessboard where everyone can reach it.
Shuffle the tiles together and place them in a stack, face-down. This is the stack.
Claim a set of tokens. This is your personal Clout bank. These will also act as your agent markers on the board. Put your home node on the board – not in one of the four corners, but in one of the four spaces diagonally adjacent to a corner.
Trading and Deal-Making:
You may transfer Clout and tiles to other players at any time. When you transfer Clout to another player, it turns into Clout of their color.
1) Collect Income
2) Bid for Oversight
3) Display Available Sector Zoning Templates
4) Bid for Templates
5) Apply Templates
6) Expand and Dispute Control
7) Check for Shangzhou-Gold Control
8) Relinquish Unspent Funds
Each player gets four Clout.
For each Production sector on the board, distribute three Clout to players with agents in that sector as follows: – Give one Clout to each player, starting with the player with the most agents on downward, until you’ve disbursed three Clout. Re-start with the top player if you get to the bottom and still have Clout to give out. If there’s a tie for the last Clout, no-one gets it.
- Ex: Red has 3 agents, yellow has 0 agents, green has 4 agents, and blue has 0 agent in a Production sector. Green gets a Clout, then red, then green again. Blue and yellow get nothing.
For each Commerce sector on the board, roll a die and distribute that much Clout to players with agents in that sector as you would for a Production sector.
- Ex: Red has 4 agents, yellow has 3 agents, green has 2 agents, and blue has 0 agents in a Commerce sector. You roll a 4. Red gets a Clout, then yellow, then green, then red again. Blue gets nothing.
Bidding for Oversight:
Each day, you have the opportunity to petition (bribe) the Shangzhou-Gold Oversight Commissioner for priority access and control. Hold a secret, simultaneous bid for oversight of the Shangzhou-Gold development project. Hide zero or more Clout in your hand, then reveal it once all players have concealed bids. All Clout bid id lost, with the highest single bid getting to determine turn order in each phase this turn.
Display Available Sector Zoning Templates:
Place the top four tiles of the stack face-up where everyone can see them. These are the templates that are up for bid this turn.
Commerce – Disburse 1 die of Clout (per Collect Income).
Production – Disburse 3 Clout (per Collect Income).
Public – This space has no special effects.
Storage – You may keep one unspent Clout for every agent you have here during the Relinquish Unspent Funds phase. The player with the most agents on a Storage space may prohibit any player with fewer agents on that space from using that space.
Restricted – Per Legal Code CN-113.d.1, Agents are prohibited from entering a Restricted sector.
Hacker – When you buy this tile, keep it until you want to trigger it. When you do, remove this tile from play. Remove a non-home, non-critical zoning template from the board.
Virus – When you buy this tile, keep it until you want to trigger it. When you do, remove this tile from play. Remove all agents in one sector from the board. Resume play.
Critical Nodes – If you’re the only player with agents on all four critical nodes when checking for Shangzhou-Gold control, you win the game – even if other players would win with other victories.
Bid For Templates:
Starting with the player chosen by the Overseer and proceeding the same way, take turns bidding for templates.
On your turn you may: – Place any amount of Clout on any template that’s up for bid. Your final amount of Clout on that template must be greater than any other player’s Clout on that same template.
Or… – Pass your turn. You may not bid again during this phase.
Bidding ends when all players have passed. Check each template. The player with the most Clout on a template loses the Clout but gets the template. All remaining Clout returns to its owner. Templates without bids leave play.
Starting with the player chosen by the Overseer and proceeding the same way, take turns placing templates.
If you have a template and it’s your turn, place your template face-up in a sector that does not have a template in it yet.
This phase ends when all players have placed all templates.
Expand and Dispute Control:
Starting with the player chosen by the Overseer and proceeding the same way, take turns expanding and disputing control. You expand by placing Clout in a space. Each Clout you place becomes an agent.
On your turn you may: – Place up to three Clout in one or more spaces. Valid spaces are: spaces where you already have agents spaces adjacent to spaces where you already have agents (diagonals are not adjacent) your home sector spaces adjacent to your home sector
Or… – Engage one opponent’s agents for control of a sector. Starting with your opponent, take turns removing one of your agents from the contested sector until one of you has no agents left. – Ex: Yellow has 2 agents and blue has 1 agent in a Public sector. If yellow engages blue in a control dispute, blue will lose one agent and yellow will lose none. If blue engaged yellow instead, yellow and blue would each lose one agent.
Or… – You may pass your turn. You may not act again during this phase.
This phase ends when all players have passed.
Check for Shangzhou-Gold Control:
Relinquish Unspent Funds:
Return all unspent Clout to the bank. You may keep one unspent Clout for every agent you have at a Storage sector. The player with the most Clout at a Storage sector can veto the banking of any agents at that Storage sector.
This is a game I made for one of the monthly Game Design Showdowns on the Board Game Designers’ Forum. If I remember correctly, the requirements were that the game have tiles, a cyberpunk theme, and property control.
I’m a little sad to be putting this up right now for several reasons:
a) It still needs play-balancing. I don’t think it’s quite right yet. Please feel free to tweak and alter the game to make it play better (then let me know what you did!).
b) I really wanted to put up a Halloween-themed game for October.
Why am I putting this up despite these concerns? Because I’ve been very, very busy and I figure it’s better to put it up than to miss a month. I didn’t like putting last month’s game up late, even though I had a good reason for it. My intent is to hit my “15th of the month” date for the next six games at least. Why six games? ‘Cause that brings us up to 100 games total.