The world in 2030. Along with the United States, Russia and Europe, the new great powers China, India and Brazil have appeared on the horizon, in order to participate in the global race for power and influence.
But ultimately, these six.states are only puppets in a treacherous game, because their fates are controlled by powerful international investors operating in the background.
Each player takes on the role of such an investor who is on the constant lookout for the maximum return on his investment, and therefore tries to obtain a ruthless control of individual great powers.
But his control of a state may also slip away, so that changes constantly occur, and new strategic constellations and conflicts arise.
Imperial2030 for two to six.players combines economic calculus and military skids to a unique strategy game without any luck of dice or cards.
- 1 gameboard
- 54 bond cards of the six nations
- 90 flags in 6 colors (15 per nation)
- 6 nation flag cards
- 1 investor card
- 130 Bank notes
- 1 instruction booklet
- 1 quick intro
- 48 armies in the six nation colors
- 48 fleets in the six nation colors
- 24 factories (12 brown armament facilities and 12 light blue shipyards)
- 18 octagonal markers in the six nation colors
- 1 turn maker (wooden pawn)
The Game Board
There are six Great Powers on the game board: Russia, China, India, Brazil, United States and Europe. These Great Powers are also referred to as "nations".
The players take the roles of International investors who reside in Switzerland and control the government of these nations. Therefore, Switzerland is a neutral region that armies cannot enter.
Nation Markers: A nation marker for each nation is placed into the middle of the rondel, and a second nation marker is placed on the first space of the scoring track ("0"). (The third marker is only necessary when playing a variant explained below)
Factories: Each nation starts with two factories placed onto the square cities on the game board: a brown army armament facility on the brown squares and a light blue shipyard on the light blue squares. The 12 factories that have not yet been built are placed next to the game board.
Bonds: The 54 bonds are sorted according to their nations in six piles in ascending order (lowest value on top). Each pile is placed inside its nation's treasury on the game board.
Bank: The money is sorted and placed next to the game board as the bank.
Distributing The Bonds
The starting money and government(s) handed out to the players depend on the number of players.
4 To 6 Players: Each player receives 13 million (1 x 5 million, 4 x 2 million) from the bank. The six nation flag cards are randomly dealt to the players so that each player gets one card.
3 Players:: Each player receives 24 million (2 x 5 million, 7 x 2 million) from the bank. The nation flag cards of India, Russia, and China are randomly dealt to the 3 players. Each player then receives the matching nation flag card:
- United States to India
- Brazil to Russia
- Europe to China
2 Players: Each player receives 35 million (3 x 5 million, 10 x 2 million) from the bank.
The nation flag cards of China and Russia are randomly dealt to the 2 players. Each player then receives the two matching nation flag cards:
- Europe and Brazil to China
- India and United States to Russia
The initial distribution of the bonds is shown on the backs of the nation flag cards. Each player takes the bonds shown on the back(s) of their card(s) from the bond pile and pays the corresponding price into the treasury of that nation.
When all initial bonds are distributed among the players, each player will have 2 million remaining - the rest will be in the nations' treasuries.
Each player keeps the nation flag card(s) that he has been dealt. This indicates that he has given the highest contribution to the nation and therefore forms that government.
With four or five players, not all nation flag cards are distributed initially. The remaining card(s) is/are given in each case to the player(s) who own(s) the "2 million" bond of this nation (since they have the highest credit sum). If none of a nation's bonds have been distributed, its nation flag card remains in the bank for the moment.
Finally, the investor card goes to the player seated to the left of the player who controls Russia. If there is none, the investor card goes to the player to the left of the player who controls China.
Tip for 2 or 3 players:
When distributing the nation flag cards, there is a hint printed on the backside of each card:
- 3 players: cards with matching numbers
- 2 players: cards with matching letters
Using this hint, you can distribute the nation flag cards to the players without having to refer to the rulebook.
Variant for Experienced Players:
This variant for bond distribution increases the strategic possibilities and is therefore recommended for experienced players.
Each player gets the following starting money from the bank:
- With six players, 13 million
- With five players, 15 million
- With four players, 19 million
- With three players, 25 million
- With two players, 37 million
Choose a start player. This player has first choice for a Russian bond. If he decides to take one, he chooses one Russian bond from the bond pile and pays its amount into the Russian treasury that is on the game board.
Then in clockwise order, all other players may also decide to select one remaining Russian bond and pay its amount into the Russian treasury.
After Russia, the same is done for the Chinese bonds. The player who is sitting to the left of the starting player is the first one allowed to choose a Chinese bond. After that, all other players in clockwise fashion are allowed to select any available Chinese bond (one per player).
Then bonds are given in turn to India, Brazil, the United States, and Europe in the same way. The price of the bond chosen must be paid into the respective treasury.
After every player had the opportunity to select bonds from each nation, the game can start.
Object of the Game
According to their economic power (factories) and their military strength (occupied sea and land regions), the nations collect power points over the course of the game.
As soon as a nation has reached 25 power points, the game ends and the final scores are calculated. Players receive for each million of their bonds one victory point. The goal of the game is the get the most victory points.
The six imperial Great Powers (nations) operate on the game board. The players are investors who grant bonds to these nations.
The player who has granted the highest credit amount (i.e., total purchase price) to a nation controls the government of that nation and decides the actions on the game board. This player is referred to as, in short, "the government of the nation".
Regardless of the number of players, all six Great Powers (nations) take part in every game.
Selecting a space on the rondel
A nation's turn consists of choosing a space on the rondel. In a nation's first turn, the nation marker is placed on any space of the rondel. All following turns are chosen on the rondel by moving the nation marker clockwise; remaining in the same space is not allowed.
The nation marker may be moved to one of the three spaces ahead at no cost; for each additional space past the first three the player who leads the government of that nation has to pay to the bank: (1 + Power Factor on scoring track) in million.
At the beginning, the Power Factor for each nation is zero, therefore each additional space costs 1 million paid tot he bank. If for example a nation has reached 17 power points and the Power Factor therefore amounts to 3, each additional space costs 4 million etc.
The maximum move on the rondel is six spaces.
Example: China has 11 power points and is standing on the Investor space on the rondel.
In order to choose Taxation on the next turn, China must move forward 4 spaces.
The Chinese government (player) would have to pay 1+2 = 3 million to the bank. In order to move from Investor to Factory, the government would have to pay 6 million to the bank, etc.
Treasuries / Start Of The Game
The treasury of the six imperial nations and the individual cash of the players have to be kept strictly separate. The players hold the treasuries they control in trust.
They are not allowed to dispose of the treasuries personally nor lend or give away money from the treasury. However, they are allowed to give personal cash to the treasury at any time in order to support it financially.
Each player may check the contents of all treasuries at anytime for control purposes, but he may keep his own, personal cash secret from the other players.
Players are not allowed to lend or give money away to one other. They are also not allowed to trade bonds among each other or to relinquish them in any other way except as stipulated in the rules.
Start of Play
Russia begins the game; after that, the nations move clockwise according to the order of their national treasuries on the edge of the game board (1. Russia, 2. China, 3. India, 4. Brazil, 5. United States and 6. Europe).
The turn marker is used in each case to indicate each nation's turn. In case a nation has not been granted a bond, it has no government yet. In this case, the turn of this nation is skipped.
At the start of the game, the investor card goes to the player seated to the left of the player who controls Russia. If there is none, the investor card goes to the player to the left of the player who controls China.
Spaces On The Rondel
The function of the spaces on the rondel is explained in the following passages.
The nation is allowed to build one new factory. Armament facilities may only be built in brown cities whereas shipyards may only be built in light blue cities. A factory may be built only in one of the nation's own cities if there are no hostile armies (standing upright) in its home province. Only one factory may be built in each city.
The nation pays 5 million into the bank and the appropriate factory is placed on the game board in the chosen city.
Example: Europe has factories in Paris and London. Therefore on the Factory space, a factory can be built either as a shipyard in Rome (light blue) or as an armament facility in Berlin (brown). To do that, 5 million must be paid from the treasury to the bank. (As an example if there were a hostile army in Berlin, only a factory in Rome could be built).
Each armament facility and shipyard of a nation may produce one army or one fleet respectively for free. Factories in a home province in which hostile armies (standing upright) are present cannot produce.
Nor can the occupying force itself produce in an occupied foreign factory. The new armies and fleets are placed on the game board in the home province of their factory. It is unimportant how many military units are already present in that region.
Example: Europe owns factories in London, Paris and Rome. There is a hostile Chinese army (standing upright) in Paris, and a friendly US army (lying down) in London.
When on the rondel "Production" space, Europe can place a fleet in London and Rome, but no army in Paris.
Import - Maneuver
The nation may buy military units for 1 million each from the bank. The number of military units, however, is limited to three in total. The military units may be placed in all home provinces that do not have hostile armies (standing upright).
Fleets, however, may be placed only in light blue cities (harbors). Deploying several military units in the same home province at the same time is allowed.
Example: China imports one fleet and two armies, paying 3 million from its treasury into the bank. All three military units are placed in Shanghai. It would also have been possible to deploy the armies in any of the other three Chinese home provinces, but not the fleet.
This turn is conducted in three steps. First the fleets are moved, then the armies, and finally flags are placed in newly occupied regions.
All fleets of a nation are allowed to move to an adjacent sea region (to cross a blue sea border). After their production or their import, fleets stay in the harbor. Consequently, their first move is always to the sea region that is adjacent to the harbor. Once fleets are at sea, they cannot return to a land region.
Example for maneuvering fleets: The fleet from the North Atlantic can either move into the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Guinea, or into the Mediterranean Sea.
The fleet lying in the harbor of London can only move into the North Atlantic. As an alternative, any fleet may stay where it is.
If a fleet moves to a sea region in which fleets of other nations are present, it turns into a battle if at least one side demands it. In a battle the fleets are destroyed 1:1 and both removed from the game board.
If a fleet enters into a region with more than one nation's fleets, the government of the maneuvering fleet may choose which of the fleets in the region it wants to destroy. If the invader wants to stay friendly, however, he has to offer the opportunity for a battle to each other fleet present in the sea region.
Therefore the other fleets are asked one after another if they want to do battle. If no side declares directly after the movement that it wants a battle, all fleets remain peacefully lying next to each other in the same sea region.
Fleets of the active nation that do not move can also battle fleets of other nations that are in the same sea region.
Example of a fleet battle: If the blue fleet moves to the Caribbean Sea, Blue can decide whether the fleet should fight.
If it does so, Blue can also decide whether its fleet fights against the green or the red fleet.
If Blue does not want to do battle, the blue fleet moves to the Caribbean Sea and asks if anyone wants to fight. If, directly after this move, neither Red nor Green want a battle, all three fleets remain in the Caribbean Sea.
All armies of a nation are allowed to move to an adjacent land region. Alternatively, they can also be transported overseas via their own fleets (convoy). In doing so, they may cross one or more adjacent sea regions provided the nation already has a fleet in that region.
Each fleet may convoy only one army per turn. A sea convoy is only possible if an army is in a land region that is adjacent to a sea region, or at least reaches this region by rail (see next paragraph).
After the convoy, the army must be in a land region again. A fleet that moved during the fleet movement phase in the same maneuver turn, can still be used to convoy an army.
Example of sea transport (convoy): One army from Vladivostok may, via fleets, land in Indonesia.
Alternatively, it also could land in the Philippines, Indochina, Shanghai, Beijing or Korea.
In these cases, however, the second army can no longer be convoyed over the China Sea since the fleet there has already been used for convoy by the first army.
But the second army could land in Japan, for example, since there is another fleet in the Sea of Japan that has not yet convoyed any army. (To reach Korea, there is no convoy necessary).
Rail transport: Each nation has an internal rail network within its home provinces that ends at its own national borders. If hostile armies (standing upright) are present in a home province, the rail network in this home province is suspended.
Before or after their normal move, armies may be transported by rail within the country at will.
Example of a rail transport: The Indian army from New Delhi could move freely by rail to Kolkata and then use its maneuver turn to invade either Indochina or Chongquing. Another possibility would be to move by rail to any coastal province and then use a sea convoy by fleet to any region surrounding the Indian Ocean.
The army from Afghanistan however has no such opportunity, since it has no direct connection to the fleet. If this army would move into India, then it could get to each other Indian home province by rail.
But its "Maneuver" turn would then be done, and it could neither leave India over a land border nor convoy to another land region by means of the fleet in the Indian Ocean.
Battles: A battle between armies is conducted in the same way as a battle between fleets, i.e., the active nation may destroy armies in land regions 1:1. Armies of foreign nations can call for a battle if their land region has been invaded.
Fleets and armies can battle against each other only if the fleet is still in the harbor. In this case, an invading army can attack the fleet or the fleet can call for a battle.
Entering provinces of other Great Powers:
If an army moves into the home province of another Great Power, the government of that army has to decide whether the army is hostile or friendly. A hostile army, placed standing upright in the province, blocks the province (no production, no import, no building of factories, no taxation, no rail). A friendly army, however, is laid on its side and leads to no constraints.
If a nation has only one factory left that is not occupied by hostile armies (standing upright), the province of this factory may not be entered by hostile armies. Armies of other nations that enter this province are laid down on their sides.
Destroying a factory: A foreign factory may be destroyed by three armies if no armies or fleets of the defender are (any longer) in the home province. The foreign factory and the three armies are removed from the game board. Exception: If a nation has only one factory left that has not been occupied by hostile armies (standing upright), this factory cannot be destroyed.
Example of the destruction of a factory: There is one shipyard in Murmansk, and one fleet still lies in this harbor.
First, a blue army may move from Berlin to Murmansk and battle the fleet (both the invading army and the fleet are removed).
The armies from Rome may go to Berlin by rail, then they may move to Murmansk along with the army from Berlin. Now three blue armies are standing in Murmansk and may destroy the factory. In this case, both the three armies and the light blue shipyard are removed from the game board.
A nation's flag is placed in newly occupied land or sea regions that don't contain foreign military units. Home provinces of foreign nations cannot be assigned flags.
A flag remains in a region until the region is occupied exclusively by another nation. As the result of a battle, it may happen that an inactive nation winds up occupying the region exclusively; in this case the previous flag is removed and replaced by a flag of that nation.
If a nation has put all 15 flags on the board, it cannot acquire any more tax regions. If this nation occupies new regions exclusively, flags of other nations are removed without being replaced. As soon as one of its 15 flags is available again, the nation may place it in this empty region.
Special Map Conditions:
Canals: The Canals of Panama and Suez allow passage by fleets. Thus a fleet from the Caribbean Sea may move directly into the North Pacific, or from the Mediterranean Sea directly into the Indian Ocean and vice versa.
But if Colombia (for Panama) or North-Africa (for Suez) is marked with a flag, the owner of that nation controls the passage through the canal and may prevent or allow a fleet to move through.
Armies may be convoyed through canals as well, as long as the nation controlling the canal with its flag allows it. At the beginning of the game there is no flag, and therefore no restriction for using the canal.
Example for using a canal: The Suez Canal is controlled by the United States.
If they agree, Europe can move its fleet from the Mediterranean Sea into the Indian Ocean.
If in addition the fleet from Rome enters the Mediterranean Sea, Europe could then convoy its army from Paris via both fleets to Mumbai, for example, in order to occupy the Indian shipyard.
But again, the convoy of the army is only possible if the U.S. agrees to that particular movement as well.
The earth is a sphere: The sea regions are connected with each other from East to West. To the right is depicted the left area of the game board, showing parts of North and South Pacific.
The arrows indicate that the North Pacific is adjacent to the Sea of Japan (SJ), as well as to the China Sea (CS). Therefore fleets may move from the North Pacific directly to one of these two sea regions or vice versa, and there are no restrictions on the convoying of armies along that route as well.
Respectively the South Pacific is adjacent to the China Sea (CS) and the Tasman Sea (TS). However, there are no such connections on the map from North to South.
Islands: Only the named 5 islands/archipelagos of Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand are land regions and can be occupied with armies. Other islands, such as Madagascar, are simply ignored. The only island that can be entered from several sea regions is Indonesia: the convoy of armies is possible from the Indian Ocean, Tasman Sea, or China Sea.
No entry: The white polar regions on the Northern edge of the game board cannot be entered, nor can the neutral territory of Switzerland where the banks reside.
This turn is conducted in three steps. Steps two and three are also executed when the "Investor" space on the rondel is not landed on but is only passed over. In this second case, the action determined by the space landed on is completed first.
1. Paying Out Interest
When the Investor action results by the nation marker landing on the space, each player who has granted bonds to the nation gets paid interest by the national treasury.
If the treasury does not have enough money to pay all interest for its bonds, the player who leads the government must turn down his own interest, completely or partly, and, if necessary, must complete the payment of interest to others from his personal cash.
2. Activating The Investor
The player who is holding the Investor card (Investor) gets paid 2 million from the bank and then may invest in any nation. He may only select from the bonds that are available in the nation's bond repository, and may choose whether to take one new bond or increase one existing bond of the same nation.
A new additional bond is paid in full to the appropriate treasury, and the player takes the bond card. If an existing bond is increased, the card of the lower value bond is returned to the nation's bond repository and the new higher bond is taken out.
The player must pay only the difference in value between the two bonds into the nation's treasury.
Example: A player returns the Chinese 4-million bond and takes the Chinese 12-million bond from the repository. He pays the difference of 8 million into the Chinese treasury.
3. Investing As Swiss Bank
Each player who has a Swiss Bank and does not hold the investor card at the same time is also allowed to invest once. Investing with the Swiss Bank is done in the same way as if the player holds an Investor card, but without collecting two million from the bank.
If several players have a Swiss Bank, investing is done in the order of play (clockwise), starting from the player currently with the Investor card.
At the end of the Investor turn, a check is made to see if there will be any changes of government. In this context, the sum of all bonds of a player in the pertinent nation will determine the government of that nation.
If, due to the allocation of bonds, a new player has achieved the highest credit sum (a tie is not sufficient), he takes over the government of that nation and is given the nation flag card. If several players achieve the same highest credit sum, the player first in seating order, counting from the player with the investor card, takes over the government.
If a player does not control any government, he gets a Swiss Bank instead. Ownership of a Swiss Bank continues as long as the player does not control a nation. If he takes over a government again, he has to return the Swiss Bank.
The owner of a Swiss Bank may force nations on the rondel not to pass over Investor if its government intends to do so. However, this can only be done if the treasury of that nation has sufficient money to pay out all interest.
Finally, the Investor card moves clockwise to the next player.
This turn is conducted in four steps.
1. Tax Revenue
The national taxes come from two sources:
- 2 million per unoccupied factory
- 1 million per flag.
A factory is unoccupied when there is no hostile army in the home province of the factory. The maximum possible tax revenue is 23 million (8 million from 4 factories plus 15 million from 15 flags). The tax revenue is paid from the bank into the national treasury on the game board.
2. Soldiers' Pay
The treasury has to pay one million in soldiers' pay for each of its armies and fleets to the bank. If the treasury is empty, no more payments are made.
3. Success Bonus
The government (player) receives a success bonus from the treasury. The bonus is shown on the middle line of the tax chart: 1 million with at least a tax revenue of 6 million, 2 million with at least a tax revenue of 10 million etc.
If the soldiers' pay was so high that the treasury does not have enough money to pay the bonus, the bonus is reduced to what is available - perhaps to zero.
4. Adding Power Points
Based on its tax revenue, the nation gains additional power points as shown on the last line of the taxation chart (i.e., power point gains are independent of soldiers' pay or success bonuses).
The newly acquired power points are added to the previous point standing on the scoring track at the upper edge of the game board.
As soon as a nation has reached a total of 25 power points, the game ends. If it happens that in this last turn of the game the Investor space on the rondel was passed over, no more investments are executed anymore (i.e. omit steps 2 and 3 of the Investor turn).
Example: The United States selects the Taxation space on the rondel.
The tax revenue of 11 million (3 factories and 5 flags) is paid from the bank to the treasury.
Because the United States owns two fleets and one army, its treasury pays 3 million back to the bank.
As shown on the tax chart (middle line), the bonus to the government is 2 million The player leading the U.S. government receives 2 million out of the national treasury.
The tax chart shows "+4" points (bottom line). Accordingly, 4 points are added on the scoring track for the United States.
End of the Game
As soon as a nation has reached 25 power points, the game ends.
A player's final score is the interest of their bonds multiplied by nations' Power Factors on the scoring track, plus cash on hand.
The players add up the values of all their bonds and, after that, add all their cash. Each million equals one victory point. The player with the most victory points wins the game.
In case of a tie, the player who has the higher credit sum in the nation with the most power points wins.
If there is still a tie, the credit sums in the nation with the second most power points are compared for highest, and so on.