Over three thousand years ago, the Lazax ruled the galaxy. But after many millennia of control, the Lazax grew complacent with their position over the other races. The six great races of Sol, Hylar, N'orr, Hacan, Letnev, and Xxcha began to chafe under the rule of the Lazax Empire. And so when a trade dispute over the Quann wormhole resulted in the Sol armada acting against the Letnev, a flame spread like wildfire throughout the galaxy, igniting a civil war between races that had only tenuously been held back by the Lazax rule. In the centuries that followed, the Twilight War eradicated the Lazax race and turned back thousands of years of progress. The great races retreated to their home planets to rebuild, and once the Galactic Council was once again able to meet, it was a shadow of its former strength. And now, thousands of years later, after the long era of the Dark Years, the time is right for a new race to step up and become the rulers of the galaxy, and the guiding hand for all races within its domain.
Twilight Imperium is a boardgame of galactic empire-building on a large scale, often described as a 4X game given physical form. Players build ships, conquer planets, research technology, and engage in trade and diplomacy, all in the pursuit of earning victory points toward claiming the Imperial Throne of Mecatol Rex and rule over the entire galaxy. For this game, we will be using the Shattered Empire expansion with its replacement strategy cards along with the optional rules Custodians, Tactical Retreat, and Racial Techs.
Rules and Utilities
Base Set Rules
Shattered Empire Rules
Previous Games on PA: Game I
, Game II
, Game III
), Game IV
, Game V
Players may post actions in bold using their race's color. Except for conversations between teammates and those initiated by the host, all inter-player conversation must be done in-thread. If you have need for clarifications, feel free to ask in bold darkorange
In order to claim the Imperial Throne of Mecatol Rex, players must accumulate 9 victory points (VP). VP are earned by fulfilling Objective cards: at the start of the game, each player has a hidden Secret Objective that only they may fulfill; over the course of the game, cards will be revealed from the Public Objective line that all players may fulfill. As soon as any player has completed 9 VP worth of Objectives, the game ends immediately, even if another player could have gained more VP later in the round.
General Game Flow
The Public Objective line is comprised of 6 Stage I cards and 4 Stage II cards. At the start of the game, cards are randomly selected, revealed in a line (Stage I cards first, followed by Stage II). Among the Stage II cards is "Imperium Rex", which acts as a bit of a game clock: if it is revealed, the game ends immediately and the player with the most VPs wins. In case of a tie, ties are broken in order by number of Objective Cards fulfilled, number of planets controlled, number of reserve Command Counters, and number of allocated Command Counters. If none of these measures break the tie, then the game ends in a draw.
The game is played over a number of rounds, typically 5-10 in total. Each round is divided into three parts: the Strategy Phase, the Action Phase, and the Status Phase. In the Strategy Phase, players select Strategy Cards: this determines the special action that player may take during the round as well as play order. The bulk of activity takes place in the Action Phase: here players may deploy abilities specified by their choice of Strategy Card, activate systems for unit movement, space combat, invasion of planets, and building of new units, or to play certain action cards. Once everybody has passed their turns in the Action Phase, the Status Phase allows for players to score victory points by claiming objectives and refreshes the board setup for the next round of play.
In the Strategy Phase, players select Strategy Cards for the round. Each Strategy Card has a special ability and determines play order in the Action Phase. Starting from the player with the Speaker token and moving clockwise, each player will choose a card; each card may be selected by at most one player.
At the end of the Strategy Phase, there will be two unselected Strategy Cards. A Bonus counter will be added to each card as incentive for selection in future rounds. When a player selects a Strategy Card with a Bonus counter, they immediately exchange each counter for either a Trade Good or Command Counter.
Starting with the player with the lowest-numbered Strategy Card and moving up in number, players take actions sequentially until all players have passed. There are four different types of actions that players can perform: the Strategic Action, Tactical Action, Transfer Action, and using Action Cards that are played as actions. Details about the first three actions are contained in the following sections. The fourth is straightforward: the acting player declares the card they wish to play. For expediency in the forum game environment, players do not need to declare use of the Action Card, wait for others to declare, and then actually play the card. (Please note that the two-step declare-then-play protocol still applies for other phases of the game, including the Strategy Phase, Status Phase, and battles.)
If a player does not wish to make any more actions during the round, they may pass their turn. Players must
use the Strategic Action specified on their Strategy Card before ending their turn for the round. Players who have passed their turn will still be able to participate in secondary abilities from other players’ Strategic Actions, but take no further actions in the Action Phase. Players may pass their turn.
Sabotage Runs optional rule will be used.
Gen. Synthesis tech revival for Ground Force units will only be done at the end of invasions.