by Jonathan Leistiko
Accumulate Prestige by casting complex spells.
If playing with player-created spells, have each player write about six spells on index cards. Set these Spell Cards aside as the Spell Deck. If playing with pre-made Spell Cards, just set them aside as the Spell Deck. Example Spells
See the example spells below.
Creating Spells: With respect to Spell Components, spells may only specify Spell Component color and sequence; they may not specify orientation or size as requirements. Note that sequence is important. Red, Yellow, Blue is not the same as Red, Blue, Yellow.
Place the Casting Field where everyone can reach it. Set the Prestige Certificates and Essence Pool nearby. You do not start with either of these in your possession.
Set the Spell Components in a line next to the Casting Field. This is the Cauldron. Have each player take three randomly-selected large Spell Components from the Cauldron.
Shuffle the Spell Deck. Deal out a line of eight spells (Only deal out four spells for a short game. Deal out twelve spells for a long game). This creates the Spell Line. Place all Moon Crescents on the first spell in the Spell Line.
Choose a player to go first.
On your turn:
Play passes clockwise.
The game ends when there are no Moon Crescents in play. The player with the most Prestige Certificates at the end of the game wins.
SpellStackers: Pieces may occupy the same space. Spells may require this.
Accelerando: At the end of the Contribute phase, you may spend two points of Essence to place an additional Spell Component on the Casting Field. You may not do this more than once per turn.
Duel: The goal of the game is not to accumulate Prestige, but to defeat your opponents by reducing their Essence to zero. All players start the game with 5 Essence. When a spell would normally award Prestige, it awards Essence instead. You should create more Essence draining / gaining spells.
Extra Credit: Keep the Prestige Certificates face-down during the game. When tallying points at the end of the game, count cards with 2-10 as one point, royal cards as 2 points, and aces as three points. The player with the most points wins.
Double-Plus Extra Credit: Keep the Prestige Certificates face-down during the game. Before tallying points at the end of the game flip the next Prestige Certificate face-up. This is the Marker. All Prestige Certificates that match the suit of the Marker are worth double. The player with the most points wins.
Bippity, Boppity, Blue: Move up to three blue Spell Components of any size from the Cauldron to your Apothecary.
Friend of Jack: Take up to three Prestige Certificates from one player. Gain no additional Prestige for casting this spell.
Requirements: One Essence
Might: Double your Essence, or gain four Essence, whichever is less.
Requirements: One Essence
Translocation: Select 2 pieces on the Casting Field. You may swap their positions.
Requirements: 2 Essence
Telekinesis: Move one piece adjacent to the green piece in this spell (other than the yellow spell component) to a vacant space up to n spaces away.
Requirements: n Essence
Implode: Return the piece in the space marked “xxx” to the Cauldron.
Requirements: 1 Prestige Certificate
Reverse Time: Roll the Knucklebone. Move a Moon Crescent back that many spaces.
Requirements: 6 Essence
Subtle Drain: Take 1 Essence from another player.
Killing Time: Return all pieces in this spell except the white one to the Cauldron. Remove a Moon Crescent from the game.
Requirements: 6 Essence
Quick Fingers: Put a randomly selected piece from your Apothecary on the Casting Field. If you spent 3 Essence, you may also take a randomly selected large piece from the Cauldron and put it in your Apothecary.
Requirements: 1 or 3 Essence
Inspired by a comment by Brandon from the Monday Night Games Night group. Conceived and drafted on 02/05/2004.
First playtest on 02/09/2004. Changed piece removal to reduction. Redrafted on 02/10/2004 and 10/19/2004.
Note that you don’t have to use the colors specified, as long as you have 6 different stashes. You’d have to change the colors required by the pre-made spells, though. Also note that you don’t have to play with 6 stashes. You could play with four stashes if you don’t have six. You’ll have to modify the spell deck to omit any colors you’re not using. Keep in mind that reducing the number of spells makes it easier to cast spells on the field.
I’m not so happy with the sample spells that I’ve included with this game. To tell the truth though, I really didn’t want to include any sample spells. I’m fond of 1,000 Blank White Cards, , and other games that reflect the idiosyncracies of their players. I deliberately picked somewhat lame spells in the hope that that would encourage you (the players) to make your own, better spells. On that note, if you do create spells and you’re willing to share them, please contribute below.