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El Capitan - Expansion Rules

If you have played El Capitan a couple of times using the standard game board you may want to try it adding the extra city tiles. It is recommended to use only one of the three additional city tiles when you start playing with these.

Experienced El Capitan players however may use two or even all three additional cities, when playing with four or five players.

Additional Components
  • 3 special city tiles (Porto, Lisboa, Islas Canarias)

  • 1 black pirate ship (only used in combination with Islas Canarias)


The players select one or more of the special city tiles and place them adjacent to the left side of the game board on the table.

Porto always has to be at the same height (same line) as Marseille, Lisboa at the same height as Valencia and Islas Canarias at the same height as Tanger, no matter if you use only one, two or all three of the special city tiles.

In total you will have ten, eleven or twelve cities you can sail to and where you can build your warehouses and fortresses.

If you are using Islas Canarias, the black pirate ship is placed on the second harbor space of this city.

Sailing off the main game board

A city which is not situated on the main game board can be reached only by using a sea route card (with one, two or three seals). Furthermore the ship sailing there must start its journey in the harbor of a city.

Example: Starting in Valencia you need a sea route card with one seal at least if you want to sail to Lisboa; starting in Napoli, Marseille or Tanger you must have a sea route card with two seals at least.

From Constantinople or Alexandria you need sea route cards with a total of four seals at least, or you may use a city interconnection card first and then a sea route card.

At the beginning of the game or from the bank harbor you can not sail to one of these cities with just one sailing card.

You can leave a city off the main board only with another destination card or sea route card, except when you want to take a loan. In this case you can sail directly to the bank harbor as usual, without using any card.

You may sail from one city off the main board to another city off the main board with an appropriate sea route card. Sailing from Porto to Islas Canarias you would need a sea route card with two seals at least, for example.



The additional cities count towards proliferation, so it is possible to own warehouses in ten, eleven or twelve cities.

A player owning warehouses in ten cities is paid 75 Florin, in eleven cities 90 Florin and in twelve cities 110 Florin.

Proliferation Bonus

When checking for being the first, second, or third player having warehouses in nine cities in order to receive the proliferation bonus cards the additional cities are eligible as all other ones.


All players owning at least one operating warehouse (i.e. not shut down) in a city off the main board receive half the amount shown on the next free space of the U- track.

The player with the majority of warehouses (first rank) receives the full amount.

Special Rules for Lisboa

Build a Warehouse

If your ship is anchoring on the first harbor space in Lisboa you do not pay anything for building your warehouses in this city, but if you are anchoring on the second harbor space you have to pay 1 Florin for each warehouse you are building.

Immediate Payment

If you build a warehouse in Lisboa you are paid for it immediately. If, after building your warehouse, you're holding the majority you will receive the full amount as shown on the next free space, if you are not holding the majority you will receive half of this amount.

Example: Player Yellow is the first player to build a warehouse in Lisboa and places it on the second building site, she immediately is paid 4 Florin. Then Red builds her warehouse on the first building site (she has to build there) and is paid 4 Florin as well.

If Blue would build a warehouse - it has to be built on the third building site - she will receive only 3 Florin (half of 6).

Warehouse Shut Down

There are only two spaces in Lisboa which will cause a warehouse shut down.

Special Rules for Porto

Build a Warehouse and Fortress

Porto is the only city with three harbor spaces, so three ships can be in Porto at the same time. As in the basic rules you cannot move your ship to another unoccupied harbor if you are already anchored in Porto.

Only one player can build a fortress in Porto.

Warehouse Shut Down

Once a warehouse is shut down in Porto it can not be re-opened. Instead, it is removed from the game immediately.

This icon represents special warehouse shut down rules above

Special Rules for Islas Canarias

Together with Islas Canarias the pirate ship is introduced to the game. At the beginning of the game it is placed on the second harbor space.

Any harbor space containing the pirate ship blocks the entry of the ships of all players.

Sailing to Islas Canarias

When a player is sailing to Islas Canarias, she anchors in one of the two harbor spaces as usual, then must sail the pirate ship free of charge (without any cards or money) to some other city in the same turn, no matter where the pirate ship is currently anchored.

In this new city now harboring the pirate ship the player must collect a protective charge.

If the player wants to stay in Islas Canarias during her following turns and she would like to sail the pirate ship to some other city, she can do so but only by using a sailing card or by paying for it. In this case the player does not collect any protective charge.

Moving The Pirate Ship

The pirate ship can sail only to a city with at least one free harbor space. The active player decides if the pirate will be anchoring in the free harbor space or in the occupied one (in case there is one).

If he decides for the occupied one, the ship anchoring there is placed on the other, empty harbor space. The pirate ship is not allowed to change places within a city.

Collect Protective Charge

After a player has moved the pirate ship free of charge (without any cards or money) she collects a protective charge in the city where the pirate ship has just arrived.

For each building (warehouse, fortress) therein its owner has to pay 1 Florin in the first game phase, 2 Florin in the second game phase and 3 Florin in the third game phase to the active player.

The affected players have to pay the protective charge if they have the money. If a player does not have enough money, she just pays all her money without any further penalty.

Please note: A player landing in Islas Canarias may collect the protective charge first and then erect a building, or vice versa.

Move the pirate ship without collecting protective charge

All players may move the pirate ship once at any time during their turn, no matter where it currently is anchored.

To do so, she must use one or more sailing cards (either destination/ sea route cards or applicable city interconnection cards) or she pays 2 Florin for each step (from one city to an adjacent city). For moving the pirate ship players have to obey the rules as stated above "Moving the pirate ship".

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