Game rules

At lögum skal land byggja, en eigi at úlögum eyða
By law the land shall be built, and not by lawlessness laid waste


Assemble the six edge pieces into a hexagonal rim. Place a sea hex outside of this and a mountain hex in the center. Each of the players picks a set of wooden pieces of one colour, containing five ships, five horses (representing settlers) and nine houses. One ship from each is placed on the outer sea hex.

Each player is dealt two of each kind of resource card and then draws fate cards until finding one marked exploration at the top, discarding all except that one face up. The remaining and discarded fate cards are shuffled well and placed beside the playing area along with the resoure cards, terrain hexes, number markers and harbour markers as on the illustration below.

Access to information

It is recommended to keep the stacks tidy, as the remaining number of harbour markers, number markers and terrain hexes should be visible to the players at all times. It is not allowed to count the number of remaining resource cards in the stock, however.

In contrast to the mentioned pieces, the stock of white, red and black victory point tokens need not be within immediate view and reach of all players. The players are obliged to keep any victory point tokens received clearly visible in front of them at all times, and also to state the total number of resource cards or of fate cards if asked.

It is recommended for speed of play that players keep resource cards fanned and above the table when looking at them and fanned face down on the table when not, and fate cards individually face down on the table when not looking at them. This way the approximate numbers of cards are clear to other players at all times.

Turn sequence

Starting with a randomly selected player, the order of play proceeds clockwise around the table in player turns until victory conditions are reached. There is no concept of a complete round, so some players may get one turn more than others.

To speed play, it is suggested that the active player clearly marks the end of the turn by passing the dice to the next player. Until this, the dice should remain in front of the active player to remind everybody whose turn it is, something that might actually be forgotten during particularly complex Althings.

1 Harvest
2 Movement
3 Trade
  1. The player must roll the two six-sided dice.

    If the result is 7 the active player and any other players that do not have any fate cards draw one fate card each, and then the Althing is held (described after the other phases).

    Otherwise harvest is distributed among the players.

  2. The player may perform one of the following actions:

    Attempted movement into an unknown area results in an exploration roll which determines the type and possibly number token of the hex to be placed in this position. This is regarded as a move even if the unit is not allowed to enter the resulting hex.

  3. A: The player may trade:

    B: The player may build by returning resource cards from the hand to the stock, according to the building cost table.

    All building takes effect simultaneously at the end of the turn. This means that although it is allowed to trade and build in any order, the effects of one building action can not be used to fulfil the requirements for trading or another building action.


All hexes with a number marker matching the sum of the two six-sided dice may yield a harvest of resource cards of the type matching the terrain. If it contains a settler, the player owning it receives two cards. If not, the owners of any houses at the corners of the hex receives one card for each house.

If there aren't enough resource cards of one or more types for all to receive their due, famine strikes. In that case, none of the players receive any resources, and all cards of the affected types must be returned to the board. The active player should check that all 24 cards are returned.

Whenever hexes produces resources, one of them is aged: its number marker is exchanged with the next higher number from the stock. 6 is followed by 8 and 12 is followed by 2; if the next number is not available, continue aging until an available marker is reached.

The active player may play one fate card marked harvest to modify the result of the harvest.


In general ships may only move to neighbouring vacant sea hexes, and settlers only to neighbouring vacant non-mountain land hexes.

The outer sea hex is considered to be neighbouring all edge hexes, and to always be vacant (this is the only hex where there ever can be more than one unit at the same time). Moving to this hex immediately ends the movement phase.

Settlers may enter a neighbouring vacant mountain hex under either of the following conditions:

The same fate card can also be used to allow a ship to enter a vacant non-mountain land hex. Such a ship will still move as a ship, but is for all other purposes considered a settler.

A settler or ship that has been outlawed at the Althing will have a red victory point toked between itself and one of the settlements of another player. That player's units that might have entered that hex if it was vacant may do so, chasing away the outlawed unit. A fate card also allows chasing away a unit that is not outlawed (or is outlawed by another player).

A chased unit must move one step away under the normal restrictions, plus some more. It may not explore, go to the hex where the chasing unit entered from, chase other units or make use of fate cards. If no movement is possible the unit is taken out of play, and any red victory point tokens at its side are awarded to the players owning the adjacent settlements.

When an outlawed unit ends its movement on a non-mountain hex, each red victory point token beside it must if possible be moved along with the unit so that the token remains between the unit and a settlement of the same colour as the one it was originally adjacent to. If this is not possible, or movement ends on a mountain hex, the token is removed. If no tokens remains beside it, the unit is no longer outlawed.

The first move on the first turn must go to a non-corner hex on an edge where no other player yet has entered.

Fate cards marked movement can be played after movement have begun: if a ship discovers land or a settler mountains when exploring, the card that allows movement to such hexes can be played, and cards giving extra movement steps may be played after the normal one or two are spent.

1–4 sea 1 11
5 bog+1 2
6 field+1
7–9 pasture+1 7 12
10 forest+1 8
11+ mountain+2


Two ten-sided dice are rolled. Preferably custom dice should be made, but the prototype uses normal ones (one green and one red) and a mapping table.

The green die is modified by adding 2 for each mountain hex adjacent to the one explored and 1 for each other land hex, but never more than 4. The left part of the exploration table on the player aid cards shows the resulting terrain. If there are no more hexes of this type left, the green die is rerolled.

If the terrain is neither sea nor mountain, the red die shows which number token should be placed on the hex. For most rolls, the number is that of the die, but rolls of 1 and 7 results in 11 and 12 tokens respecively. If there are no more tokens of this value available, the number is aged as if harvested.

When discovering a hex with a number token, the player receives a resource card of the corresponding type. This does not cause the hex to be aged. If there is no such resource card available, or if the hex is a mountain, the player draws a fate card.

Fate cards marked exploration must be played before rolling the dice.


Four identical resource cards can be traded for one other resource from the stock. A player with a ship in a harbour, or a settlement beside one with no ship in, can trade two of the indicated resource for one other.

The active player may also propose trades with other playes. A legal trade involves two players who give the other at least one resource card, visible to all playes. An offered trade is binding if accepted before another offer is given or the trading declared to be over. Promises of trades later in the game – even later in the same phase – are discouraged, and not binding according to the rules.

Building costs
farm grain timber wool
from farm... town iron grain timber wool wool
settler iron grain
ship iron timber
harbour resource resource
aging resource


A settler or a ship may be converted into a farm at one of the corners of the hex it occupies for a cost of one grain, one timber and one wool. At least one of the three hexes the farm borders must be a non-mountain land hex. A farm may not be directly adjacent to another farm or settlement unless each of the two hexes that will be shared between them are either sea or mountain. The unit that builds the farm is removed from the board. Each farm yields one victory point.

A farm bordering at least one sea hex can be expanded to a town by placing a second house beside it, for a cost of one iron, one grain, one timber and two wool. A town gives its owner two resource cards when the number on an adjacent hex is rolled, and no settler occupies that hex. Each town yields two victory points, including the one for the farm from which it developed.

A farm or a town can build a settler or a ship on one of its three adjacent hexes provided that the unit could have moved to this hex under normal movement rules. A settler costs one iron and one grain, a ship one iron and one timber. Ships can also be built on the outer sea hex without using a settlement.

A ship situated on a sea hex inside the rim pieces bordering at least one non-mountain land hex may establish a harbor there, provided that there is none there already. Any harbour token available in the stock can be bought for two resource cards of the type indicated on the marker. The marker is placed on the hex just like number tokens on non-mountain land hexes.

A settler situated on a non-mountain land hex may age the number token as if the hex had yielded harvest by paying one resource card of the type produced in that terrain.

Each single unit may only perform one building action per turn. Thus a ship may not build both a harbour and a farm, a settler may not both age a hex and build a farm, and a farm may neither build more than one unit nor both build a unit and expand to a town. A town may on the other hand build up to three units if there is room for them.

An outlawed unit may build harbours or age terrain, but needs to get rid of all red victory point tokens beside it before it is allowed to build a farm.

All building takes effect simultaneously at the end of the round. Therefore the effect of any building may not be part of the requirement for another building or trading action. This means that farms may not build units the same round as they are built themselves, and conversely that units may not build farms the same round as they are built. A harbour may not be used for trade in the same round as they are built.


At the start of the Althing, any outlawed units are removed and each red victory point token beside them are awarded to the player owning the adjacent settlement. Fate cards that remove red victory point tokens may be used to prevent this.

During the Althing each player has the chance to bring to court any settlers who block their resource production and and ships that block their harbour trading options. The active player appoints a player who start the Althing round. This player may try all, some or none of the eligible cases in any order. This opportunity passes clockwise around the table once. Normally, the following player is chosen as the starting player, so that the active player gets the opportunity to try cases when the other players are depleted of resources from other lawsuits.

To try a case, one or more resource cards of the kind produced or traded on the hex in question must be played from the hand. After this either side may alternately add cards of this type so that their total number of cards becomes greater than that of the other side. When one side is unable or unwilling to play any more cards, the other side receives a white victory point token.

Either side may at their turn ask other players not yet involved for aid. To join a side in this way, a player needs to play at least one card in support, but all involved may continue to add cards. The last player to join a side is the only one that may ask further players to join this side, and is also the one that receives the white victory point token if they win.

If the defending side loses, the unit in question is outlawed. A red victory point token is placed between the unit and one of the settlements of the player who started the lawsuit. Regardless of who received the white victory point token, only this player can win the red one.

Each player against whom at least 3 possible lawsuits could be tried receives a black victory point token at the end of the Althing round if none of them have been brought to court.

Cards marked Althing can be played by all players during the Althing. If a suit is interrupted by such a card, the resources are still spent but nobody receives a victory point. If the Althing itself is interrupted, points for completed lawsuits are kept, but the current suit (if any) is interrupted, and nobody receives black victory point tokens.

During the Althing, no trading may take place, and no fate cards marked harvest may be played.

Victory points
1 1 No suits
1 2 Outlaw
1 3 Lawsuit
1 4 Farm
2 4 Town
0 5 resource Resources

Game end

The game is over when at least one player has at least twelve victory points at the end of any player's turn.

If two or more players have the same number of points, black tokens are the most valuable, followed by red tokens, white tokens and points for houses in that order. If everything else is equal, the number of remaining resource cards in the hand is the final tie-breaker; fate cards do not count.

As each player only have nine house pieces for building farms and towns, at least three points must come from the Althing. Winning lawsuits early in the game is thus very valuable.

Tor Gjerde <>