You must activate the magic gems in the temple chambers in order to banish the curse, and you have only ten minutes to do so before the temple collapses. Don't sit still for a second - start running now and you might just escape!


Components

  • 6 main chamber tiles
  • 25 dice - 5 for each adventurer
  • 13 basic chamber tiles - without purple mask and/or treasure icon
  • 5 adventurer figures - 1 of each player color
  • 5 adventurer tokens - 1 of each player color
  • 1 gem depot (for the magic gems)
  • 1 CD containing soundtrack and audio introduction
  • 25 magic gems
  • 1 Rule book
  • 1 Supplement for the 2 modules "Curses" and "Treasures"
  • 1 Supplement for the expansion "The Sand of Fortune"

Object of the Game

Escape is a real-time board game. Instead of playing the game in rounds, each player rolls his five dice as quickly and as often as he can without waiting for his teammates!

Players have only ten minutes to escape from the collapsing temple, so don't dawdle. Every second you delay brings you a step closer to being entombed.

While searching for the exit, the players will discover new chambers - but they'll need the right combination of adventurer, key and torch icons to enter and explore these chambers.

Some chambers contain magic gems, and players must use their dice to activate as many gems as possible in order to break the curse blocking the exit. The sooner they find the exit chamber and the more magic gems they activate, the easier it will be for them to escape.

Watch out, though, as twice during the game a gong will sound throughout the temple heralding a count- down. Hurry back to the starting chamber as only this location is guaranteed to be safe. Fail to make it back in time, and you lose one of your precious dice.

Be sure to coordinate your actions and look out for one another as some tasks can be completed only collectively. What's more, even if only one player fails to escape the temple in time, all of you have lost the game!


Setup

1. You will need the 6 main chambers and the 13 basic chambers (that is, all the chambers without the purple mask and/or treasure icon). Set aside the starting chamber and exit. Mix the remaining chamber tiles face down, then stack them as a draw pile.

Place the starting chamber in the center of the playing area, then place 2 randomly drawn chamber tiles next to it, as shown in the illustration below. Finally, take the top 4 tiles of the draw pile, shuffle them together with the exit tile, then place them on the bottom of the draw pile.

Exception: If you are playing alone or with a second player, insert the exit tile in the middle of the draw pile.

2. Use the chart at right to determine how many magic gems to place into the gem depot.

Then place 2 additional magic gems next to the depot.

  • 1 & 2 players: 7 gems
  • 3 players: 11 gems
  • 4 players: 14 gems
  • 5 players: 16 gems


3. Each player selects his color, then takes 5 dice as well as the appropriately colored adventurer figure and adventurer token. All players place their figure on the starting chamber and keep their token in front of them. This will help you to identify your fellow players quickly.

Exception: If you are playing alone, take 7 dice instead of 5.

The CD contains an audio introduction to the game (in 3 languages) and 2 versions of a ten-minute soundtrack. The audio introduction provides a summary of Escape, and we suggest you listen to it before your first game.

When playing the game, choose the version of the soundtrack at random or select the one that you prefer. Your soundtrack choice will not affect the length of the game as the playing time on both is identical. For your first game, we recommend track 1.


The Temple Chambers

Each chamber of the temple has different features:

Magic gem icon

One or more players must roll the indicated number of die icons in order to activate the magic gem.

Some chambers have no gem icons, while others show 1 or 3 gem icons.

Entrance

A new chamber from the draw pile must be placed next to an entrance on a face-up tile.

Die icons with a red frame

A player must roll these icons if he wants to enter this chamber.

Stairway entrance

This is the chamber's entryway; when this tile is added to the temple, the stairway must connect this tile to the temple.


The Die Icons

Each die shows five different icons:

Adventurer (x2):

You need this if you want to move from chamber to chamber or discover new chambers.


Key And Torch:

You may enter certain chambers only by rolling keys or torches; you will also need these icons to activate the magic gems.


Black Mask:

If you roll a black mask, you are under a spell and the die is accursed. Place this die aside; you may use it again only after the spell has been broken.



Example: Ani has rolled a golden mask and may now add her two dice with the black masks to her next roll.

Golden Mask:

A golden mask breaks the spell on up to two black masks. With the spell broken, the player may now use these dice again.



Example: Ani has rolled two black, masks and must place both dice aside. For the time being, she has only three dice left to roll.

Adventurers who are in the same chamber may help one another. For example, if a player rolls a golden mask and doesn't use it for himself, one other player may use it to break the spell on up to two of his accursed dice.



Example: Ani (red) has rolled one golden and one black mask. Because Frank (blue) is also in this chamber and worse off, she decides to let him use the golden mask. On his next roll, Frank rolls all five of his dice, while Ani can roll only four.

Note: With each golden mask, you can help only one other player. Helping one another this way does not change ownership of the dice!


The Actions

Using various dice combinations, the players may per- form different actions.

  1. Enter a chamber
  2. Discover a new chamber
  3. Activate magic gems
  4. Escape
  5. Provoke a turn of fate

After a player has performed one action, he must re-roll all dice used for this action. A player may put aside any dice not used for an action and use them for a later action.

At any time, a player may re-roll any dice he set aside previously (other than black masks, which can be used again only with the help of a golden mask).

The actions in detail:

1. Enter a chamber

A player may enter a chamber only if its entrance is not blocked.



Example: Frank may enter only the chamber shown on top because the left entrance is blocked by a wall and there is no adjoining chamber at the right entrance - at least not yet.

In order to enter a chamber, the player must roll the icons shown in a red frame inside the new chamber.



Example: Frank has rolled his dice and uses the two adventurer icons to enter the next chamber.

2. Discover a chamber

A player inside a chamber with one or more unblocked entrances that don't already connect to other chambers may discover a new chamber.



Example: Frank is inside a chamber that has two entrances without an adjoining chamber. Therefore, he could discover two new cham- bers.

A player must roll two adventurer icons in order to draw one new chamber from the draw pile and place it next to his current chamber. The new chamber's stairway entrance must join the current chamber's entrance.



Example: Frank uses two adventurer icons and connects the stair- way entrance of the top chamber from the draw pile to one of the entrances of his current chamber.

3. Activate magic gems

You will find two types of chambers in which you can activate magic gems:



A player inside a chamber containing one or more magic gem icons must roll the required number of torch or key icons in order to activate the number of magic gems shown. After a gem has been successfully activated, take a gem from the gem depot and place it on the appropriate gem icon.



Example: Frank has rolled 4 torch icons and activates the magic gem inside his current chamber. He removes one gem from the depot and places it inside the chamber.

Several adventurers inside a chamber containing one or more magic gem icons may join forces in order to obtain the required number of key or torch icons.

Note: You may cooperate to activate 1 gem. You must cooperate to activate 2 or 3 gems.



Example: Ani (red) and Frank (blue) together have rolled 7 keys and decide to activate 2 magic gems. They place 2 gems from the depot on the corresponding gem icon inside their chamber.

If at least one of a chamber's gems has been activated, no adventurer may activate any further gems inside this chamber.

Example: Two of this chamber's gems have been activated, so players cannot activate any more gems here.


4. Escape

A player can escape only if he is inside the exit chamber.

In order to escape, a player must roll as many keys as the number of gems in the gem depot plus one. Each player must roll the required number of key icons by himself!



Example: Frank has rolled the 3 keys required and thus can escape from the temple.

After a player has escaped, he no longer needs all of his tools, so he can give one of his dice to any adventurer still inside the temple. This adventurer may use the die immediately.



Example: Frank has managed to escape and gives one of his dice to Ani (red), who can use it immediately.


5. Provoke a turn of fate

If there are too many accursed dice in play, players may transfer one of the two gems lying next to the depot to the depot. Then, all adventurers may re-roll all of their accursed dice (black masks).

Players must reach this decision unanimously! A turn of fate can be provoked only twice during the course of the game.

Note: Do not use the turn of fate too lightheartedly because each additional gem makes it harder to escape.



Example: With black masks slowing their pro- gress and hastening their doom, the adventurers take a chance with fate, freeing their black masks from the curse while decreasing their odds of making it out alive. One additional gem is placed on the depot, then all players may re-roll their black masks.

The Adventure Starts

When all players are prepared to begin, insert the CD into your CD-player and start playing one of the soundtracks.

After a short introduction, the game begins with the command "Escape!" Immediately start rolling your dice and do not forget that you have only 10 minutes to escape! to the mechanisms of the game.

Hint: For an easy start, we re- commend playing your first game without the soundtrack for a few minutes in order to get accustomed

The Soundtrack

During the soundtrack, you will hear 3 countdowns. The first starts with the bang of a gong and ends with a door being slam- med. The second countdown starts with two bangs of a gong and ends with a door being slammed.

These two countdowns indicate that you need to rush back to the starting chamber. Any adventurer who doesn't make it to the starting chamber before the door slams shut loses one of his dice for the rest of the game. Return any such lost dice to the game box.

After the door slams shut, you can continue to explore the temple, proceeding from the chamber where you're currently located. The third count- down starts with three bangs of a gong and ends with the sound of the temple collapsing; this signals the end of the game after exactly 10 minutes.



Example: Ani (red) came close but failed to make it into the starting chamber before the door slammed shut. Thus, she must play with one less die for the remainder of the game. (If Ani doesn't make it back to the starting chamber in the second countdown, she will lose a second die).


End of the Game

The game ends after 10 minutes - that is, at the end of the third countdown. If any adventurer is inside the temple when it collapses, then all players have lost the game!


For a more challenging game

Players may agree before the start of the game to increase the number of gems in the gem depot. If all players manage to escape from the temple before it collapses, they have won the game as a team! There are two variants:

  • Experts: 3 additional magic gems.

  • Professionals: 6 additional magic gems. The action "Provoke a turn of fate" is no longer available.


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