MEEPLES IN PARADOX
25 Meeples (5 of each color)
95 Resource Cards (19 of each resource)
30 Butterfly Effect Cards
25 Machine Cards
12 Secret Agenda Cards
In Meeples in Paradox, you take the role of a time-travelling nation from 10,1000 A.D. You have begun claiming bodies in the solar system for terraforming and colonization. Unfortunately, resources on Earth are too sparse to colonize all of the planets and moons. That’s why each of you went ahead and set up headquarters at various times in history to collect resources from the past.
Your time-travelling agents will venture to other times and collect resources that will be used to build machines. But watch out! Other players are willing to thwart your advances by sending your time into chaos!
Collect resources, build machines and fend off competing nations to secure your foothold in the cosmos!
Pledging your Allegiance
Pick the color you would like to represent in the game. Players start the game with one meeple agent, but can eventually recruit five agents.
Picking your Stronghold
Each player will pick a Location Deck and place the deck in front of them that can be harvested by them or other players. It makes more sense if the players sit in chronological order, but it isn’t necessary for gameplay. If there is ever less than five players, some Location Decks will simply reside between active players as a landing space for agents. Harvesting resources from these locations is what will allow your agent to both utilize the market and recruit more agents.
Setting up the Market
There are two decks that make up the market as well as 12 Agenda Cards. The Butterfly Effect Deck consists of events that were supposed to happen in Earth’s history that are at risk of never happening due to the time travel paradoxes. The Machine Deck consists of machines you will need to terraform and colonize other worlds.
12 Agenda Cards will give players endgame points if they succeed in fulfilling the card’s requirements. Players have the opportunity throughout the game to purchase agenda cards as they come up in the Market.
Randomly divide the agendas into 2 groups of 6 cards and shuffle them into each deck.
Place each deck in the center of the table and draw the top three cards from each deck to create the market. Agenda Cards are always placed in the market face down while Butterfly Effects and Machines are placed face up. All cards will have a specific combination of resources required to purchase. As players buy these cards from the market they will be immediately replenished.
Taking a Turn
Players can perform a number of basic actions in their turn.
- Move their agent to a Location Deck. Players may only move each of their agents to one adjacent location per turn. Whenever an agent moves to another time, automatically collect a resource from that Location Deck if able and place it beneath the agent. Without machine augments, each agent may only hold one resource.
- Purchase ONE card from the market.
- Trade with other players
- Reset the Market. This can happen once per turn.
Each agent can only move once per turn. In a pickup-and-deliver fashion, agents will travel to another time, collect a resource card, and bring the resource back to the respective controlling player. Whenever an agent arrives at your time with a resource, you may take it into your hand as a free action. You begin the game with a max hand limit of five resources. At the end of your turn, if ever you have more than your max hand size, discard down to the appropriate amount of cards.
The trade of resources only takes place between players’ hands and can happen throughout a player’s turn. Trade can only be conducted with the currently active player. Feel free to make empty promises to secure the best trade deals.
Buying from the Market
Anytime during their turn, a player can purchase one card from the market using the resources in their hand. Each card displays the resource cost on the card. Whenever a card is purchased, another card is immediately replaced by the respective deck.
Resetting the Market
Players may at any time play three of the same type of resource to reset the market. When this happens, all cards in the market are moved to the bottom of their respective deck and 3 new cards from the top of each deck take their place.
Buying machines are the primary source of points in the game. A player may purchase one Machine OR Butterfly Effect per turn if they have the resources in hand to pay for it. When a player acquires his or her fifth machine, the game immediately ends.
Buying Butterfly Effects
Butterfly Effect cards are attacks against opposing players, blocking all players from one resource while simultaneously blocking one player from all resources. The purchasing player must have an agent without a resource on the table. Alternatively, the purchasing player may simply discard an agent’s held resource to allow it to move.
When you buy a Butterfly Effect card, immediately play it against the opposing Location Deck denoted by the color of the Butterfly Effect card. The resources used to purchase the Butterfly Effect are placed beneath the card and the purchasing player’s agent is placed on top.
For as long as a Butterfly Effect card is in front of a player, no time traveler from any time can enter the time period. Additionally, time travelers already in that time period can only leave empty-handed as they run for safety (They can optionally hang on to the resource and wait out the effect).
On their turn, players can resolve a Butterfly Effect by playing the matching resources directly from their hand onto the effect. As players play cards, remove the matching resource from under the Butterfly Effect card and return both cards to their appropriate pile. As a last resort, the affected player may remove one resource from the Butterfly Effect once per turn.
When the Butterfly Effect is resolved it is placed in front of the opposing player who initially purchased the card as a victory point.
End of Game
The game ends immediately when a player buys their fifth Machine. At this time, each player reveals their Secret Agendas if they had any. Follow the instructions on the card based on succeeding or failing the required task. Each Machine is worth the amount of points depicted on the card. Butterfly Effects are all worth 1 point. Add points to determine the winner.