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Things to download:
The map above. Which needs to be stretched and printed large enough to fit on 2 pieces of paper.
a PDF of the following rules, which also includes the map (kudos to Stefan Engblom)
a ZIP of the cards
The story: Each player is a member of Woobieworld parliament, a kind government where everyone works together--until word spreads that Mount Saint Woobie, the volcano that created this island paradise, is about to erupt. Each member now uses his time and effort to coerce the populace into following him or her in the hopes that when the volcano explodes, all of Woobieworld in the ensuing panic will follow one leader to glory. And with that glory comes fame and fortune. Of course, hopefully the other members will be hopelessly crushed by the worshipping masses...
The object: Through playing of cards, each player alters the support of the populace in their favor. When four Mount Saint Woobie cards are drawn from the deck, the game ends, points are tallied, and whoever has the most points wins, and is declared a savior of the people.
Along with the cards (making sure that there are at least four Mount Saint Woobie
cards, and there should roughly be one for every twenty cards in the deck), you also need:
---Most art/craft stores and game stores will carry small colored glass beads. These work great for the colored support pieces. Also, you can typically find black glass beads at art stores, or at Target (for filling glass planters), to use as Anarchs. The industry tokens should be much larger, preferably completely different than the support as long as they come in the four colors. Use your imagination-paint some wood blocks or something. By the way, glass beads are infinitely cheaper at craft stores than at gaming stores; they make up for it by selling 'art supply boxes' at a huge add-on cost when you can get the same product at K-mart labeled as a 'fishing tackle box.'
Support -- there are five types of support in this game. They are the four colored support (red, yellow, green, and blue), and the Anarch support. These are counters representing how popular you are with various types of people in Woobieworld. Each kind of support represents a general type of political thought; but it's not really important to get caught up in that. What's important is the difference between the colored support and the Anarchs and their effect on the game.
The big thing is this: colored support is good; they provide positive points to your final score. Anarch support subtracts points from your final score (yes, your score can be in the negatives). Any card that states a change in colored support does not affect Anarchs, as Anarchs don't have any color. However, any card that affects a change to all support, do affect Anarchs as well as colored support.
As an example of this, just bit later in the rules you'll notice something called 'support phase' at the beginning of each player's turn. The rules say that one of the things you may do is to move a colored support from the unused pile to you home. Note, that it said colored, meaning any of the four colored type of support, NOT the uncolored Anarch support.
By contrast, looking through the cards, you might find cards that say 'remove 1/2 of all support from your home.' Since this card didn't specifically state what type of support, you can then remove any type, colored or Anarch, as long as you remove half of what you have on your home.
The other difference between colored and Anarch support is that while colored support is good; they don't exist in the wilderness outside of players' homes. In fact, they can only be in homes. Anarchs can exist in any area on the board, and through your gentle persuasion, hopefully will wind up in your opponents' homes, deducting points from their final score at the end of the game.
The pieces that represent the industries are really the heart of the game. It is around the industries that most of the actions take place, as these are the center focal points for most of the cards. If your home is not near any industries, not much is going to happen to you, good or bad.
The map consists of four bodies of water that surround the island, and thirteen land areas. Again, when reading the cards, watch for specifics. An AREA means any of the bodies of water and land areas; a LAND AREA and a BODY OF WATER mean just that; a MOUNTAIN AREA is an area with mountains; a COASTAL AREA is an area that is next to a body of water. Mostly, it's just a matter of common sense.
What isn't common sense, however, is the game term: NEIGHBORING, or NEIGHBORS. The concept of 'neighbor' in Woobieworld means any area that touches the chosen area (or the area that includes the chosen industry), and it also includes THE CHOSEN AREA. For example, you play a card that reads 'choose a Red industry. All neighboring homes lose Anarch support,' and you choose the Red industry in Woobania, not only do all homes that border Woobania lose their Anarch support, so does Woobania, if Woobania happens to be a home. This also applies to industries, support, specific land areas, etc. Anything that neighbors its same type also includes itself. Its actually easier in play that what it sounds. Honest.
Put all of the pieces into an area that will be designated 'The Unused Pile.' Shuffle the cards, and place it face down near the unused pile.
Each player gets dealt 4 cards to begin the game. Each player should keep his cards secret to the other players, but they dont have to. This is a politcal game, after all, and any kind of bluffs or feints are completely legal. If any player was dealt a Mount Saint Woobie card, he should mix it back into the deck and draw a new card.
Decide who goes first. Starting with that player, each player, going clockwise, takes one colored support piece and picks a land area to be his or her home.
Once everyone's homes have been established, the game begins. A player's turn can be easily decribed in four simple phases, which happen in this order:
The support phase gives the player two options. A player may take any colored support from the unused pile and place it on his or her home. Or, if the player wishes, instead of growing support in his or her home the player may move any Anarch support to any neighboring area, including a body of water (some Anarchs are pirates and have a natural calling to the sea). However, they arent stupid, and wont go sailing off the board to sure doom.
If a player has no support on his home when his turn comes around he or she MUST choose a colored support and place it on any land area, and start a new home.
The player may take an industry from the unused pile, and place it into any area. If there are no industries in the unused pile, then the player simply proceeds to play his card. Industries, once placed, are never moved again, except through the playing of cards.
The player plays a card. With some cards, the player cannot play a color specific card unless he has support of that color in his home. These cards are labelled at the top as (insert color here) ACTION, such as YELLOW ACTION, or BLUE ACTION. In the case of a YELLOW ACTION card, the player must have at least one yellow support in his home, and so on for the other three colors. A card that is merely labeled ACTION can be played without any type of check.
The cards themselves have four parts. In order, at the top they are labeled by the type of action they are, the name of the card, what the card does, and then possibly an amusing quote from one of the denizens of Woobieworld to give the card a little personal flair. But what's really important is what the card does, as described below...
The cards are very specific when need be, and if a card just reads 'an area,' or 'support' without any clarification as to type, you can then use the generalness of that sentence to your advantage. Remember, Anarchs are not considered as colored, but they are a type of support, and the concept of NEIGHBORING, or the act of BEING A NEIGHBOR, in this game not only means the areas or pieces that border the selected area or piece, but also includes the selected area or piece.
As you look through the cards, you'll notice some unusual notation. Getting familiar with this is easy. A phase like 'Your home gains +2R' means that you may take two red support from the unused pile and place them on your home. 'Y' means yellow support, 'B' means blue, 'G' means green, and 'A' means Anarch. In cases where multiple homes gain support, the homes gain support with whoever played the card and proceeds around the table in clockwise fashion. This continues until everyone has done the action written on the card, or the particular type of support (or industries) have 'run dry.' You CAN play a card, therefore, that will have no effect on the game assuming that the card talks about pieces that are currently unavailable.
You'll also notice some actions say something like 'lose -2G.' Some 'rule dictator' will declare that, algebraically, this actually means gain 2 green support ( - (-x)=+x). To those people, the response should be: GET A LIFE! It's a game, take it in stride. It's done that way for easier understanding of the cards at a glance. In general, + always means take from the unused pile, and - always means remove and place the piece in the unused pile.
If any card played mentions something like 'home loses half of all support,' and you have an odd number of support, you can round the loss down, meaning that you get to keep that odd-man out piece.
The actions described on the cards are designed to easily be followed by taking one sentence at a time, and performing the action described in each sentence before going on to the next sentence-action. So, let's take a look at an example:
Quicksand is a card that is an action, with no color specified, so you can play it regardless what type of support you have. The first sentence indicates that you must choose a coastal area. One of your opponents' homes is Doom Grove, and you don't like the way he's been stockpiling industries in his home (you read further down the card that this card removes industries), and it's also a coastal area. You laugh as you pick Doom Grove as the place that suddenly gets very soggy.
The second sentence states that all neighboring industries are removed from the board. You must take off any industries that might be in any bordering areas (Margaritaville, Woobania, Sulfer Springs, BamBooton, Cheeseport, and the Sea Of Despair). Also, remembering that neighboring also includes the chosen area, so those industries in Doom Grove also come off the board.
And now the third sentence. All neighboring homes lose -1 of each color for each industry that was removed. The Doom Grove player loses support, and so does everyone who's home borders Doom Grove. According to this, they lose 1 support for each industry removed. The 'of each color for each industry' is tough to figure out, but what it means is that the each piece of support removed must be of the equivalent color for each industry removed. In other words, if two yellow, two red, and one blue industry was removed, then two yellow support, two red support, and one blue support must be removed. If the home doesn't have any, say yellow support, then that part of the instruction is ignored. If it has 1 red, then it is removed, and the excess removal of the other red support is just forgotten. Any green or Anarch support isn't touched. Basically, a player MUST remove up to the allotted amount required as possible.
And so, with a smug smile on your face, your turn is over. Put this card onto the discard pile, and draw a new one.
As a final note, there are cards that will allow a player a choice between two different actions, separated by a big OR, as in 'do this' OR 'do this.' When playing this card, the player must choose which way to play it, and ignore the other possible action.
Due to the possible strange combinations that can occur with the board and the cards. Any confusing cards should be discussed, and slowly reasoned with common sense. If there is a disagreement of how a card should be read, remove that card from the game, and let the player draw a new one.
If a card contradicts any of the rules, follow the rules on the card. The card was probably meant to change the rules in some interesting, and possibly subtle, way. If you come across a card type not discussed here, follow the rules on the card; the deck of Woobieworld is constantly changing.
Draw a card from the deck. If it is a card that says to play on the table immediately, such as a Mount Saint Woobiecard, do so, and draw another one. Everyone should read the card that was played immediately, and understand the rules on them. Typically, whoever drew the card becomes the caretaker of that card, is responsible for it's actions. These cards are labeled at the top, not as ACTIONS, but as ENVIRONMENTS, as they can change the whole rule set of the game. Naturally, there are Action cards that can be used to deal with these.
Once there are four Mount Saint Woobie cards on the table, the game is over, and points are added up. If the game doesnt end, the player to left now goes, like any other standard game.
Points are figured by adding up how many of each color support a player has on his or her home, squaring that amount for each color, and adding all those totals together. Anarch support is counted, squared, and subtracted from the total.
Whoever has the highest score wins.
Normally, the game consists of one player taking his or her turn, doing all of the complete phase set, and then the player to the left goes. Once the amount of players hits over five, this slows the game down quite a bit, as a lot of thought goes into the balance of help me/screw opponent thinking starts. A lot of time is spent between ending your turn, and then starting your next turn.
Well, theres a solution to that. And it involves the numbers at the tops of the cards. Players turn arent taken in any set order anymore. All the major decision making for the players all take place at once. The flow of the game is controlled by cycles now. Heres how this works.
A cycles consists of everyone choosing a card, and placing it face down on the table. During this time, players are free to conspire as much as they want, trying to pull bluffs or fakes, whatever (no changing of cards please between players please!). Once all of the players have their cards face down on the table. They are all flipped up at once. Now, look at the numbers.
The play of the cycle is determined by whoever played the card with the lowest number. That person goes first. He performs his turn with the card he played as normal, discarding it as normal, possibly taking into consideration what cards will be played after he goes. Then, the player with the remaining lowest valued card goes next, and so on, until all players have played. A new cycle then begins.
If a player should happen to not be able to play his card due to requirements that he CANNOT MEET WITH THE USE OF HIS or HER SUPPORT AND INDUSTRY PHASES, then that player may put that card back into his or her hand and play one of the other three cards in his or her hand. Or that player can elect to play the card with no action taking place, discard it, draw a new one, and end the turn.
The goofy numbering scheme is left with a lot of holes for future cards to be added to the set at a later date, just if you were wondering.
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