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In an ancient world forgotten by time, enormous titans terrorize the land. The five tribes have been fleeing from them for as long as anyone can remember, but things are about to change.

Growing city-states pledge to end the reign of terror, determined to take on the titans and make the world a safer place for everyone. Each city-state competes to attract the tribes, eager for the strength of the combined peoples, with the hope that the titans can be defeated once and for all.

Players compete to grow the largest and most influential city-state by managing citizens, wealth, and military, and by defeating titans. Players take turns sending citizens to take special actions or using military cards to attack titans.

Players can purchase empire cards, which give more citizens, money, and abilities. After six rounds, the player with the most influential city-state wins.


  • 1st Player Token
  • 68 Coin Tokens
  • 22 Knowledge Tokens
  • 16 Knowledge Tokens
  • 2 Action-Cover Tokens
  • 1 Round Marker
  • Game Board
  • 8 Starting Military Cards
  • 4 Starting Titan Cards
  • 15 District Cards
  • 85 Empire Cards
  • 25 Military Cards
  • 35 Titan Cards
  • 8 Wooden Player Cubes
  • 20 Citizen Tokens
  • 8 Starting Empire Cards
  • Score Pad
  • Sticker Sheet
  • 4 Player Boards
  • 3 Custom Dice
  • 40 Ambrosia Pieces
  • Rulebook

Object of the Game

The goal of the game is to collect sets of tribe banners. Each empire card has one or more tribe banners. Tribe banners can also be gained by defeating titans.

After six rounds, players gain victory points for sets of tribe banners and other special abilities, and the player with the most victory points wins.

  1. Separate the cards by type (labeled on the back of each card).

  2. Place the coin, knowledge, ambrosia, tokens on the side of the board.

  3. Place the round marker on the start space.

  4. Shuffle the district cards and place them in a deck face down on the board. Turn the top card of the deck face up.

  5. Shuffle the three decks of titan cards (1, 2, and 3 stars) and place them face down on the board with the top card of each deck face up.

  6. Place 1 ambrosia token each on the Learn, Rebuild, and Expand actions. Cover the Explore and Grow action spaces with these two tokens so they are hidden.

  7. Shuffle the military deck and place it face down on the helmet symbol. Draw cards equal to the number of players and place them face up in a row to the right of the deck.

  8. Shuffle the empire A deck and place it face down on the building symbol on the board. Draw cards and place them face up in a row to the right with: 4 cards for 2 players, 5 cards for 3 players, and 6 cards for 4 players.

    Shuffle the empire B deck and place it to the side until round 4. Place the empire C deck in a face-up pile on the board; players can look through this pile at any time.

  9. Give each player a player board (this contains their capital city) and their starting titan (the titan art matches the art on the player board).

    Place the "Fishing Dock" and "Wheat Fields" starting empire cards to the right of the player board and the "City Guard" and "Militia" starting military cards to the left. Give each player 6 coins and their matching citizen tokens with numbers 1, 2, and 3.

    Place a cube on the left-most space of the capacity track (space 4) and the left-most space of the income track (space 5).

    Note: Use the side of the player board that does not have the city-state name or special abilities if this is your first game.

  10. Give the 1st-player token to the player who has most recently won a game. In turn order, player 2 collects 1 extra coin and players 3 and 4 collect 2 extra coins.

    If you prefer, use a random method to decide first player.

  11. Place unused citizen tokens, player boards, cubes, and starting cards, (military, empire, and titan) in the box.

Game Play

The Ancient World is played over the course of six rounds. Each round has 3 phases (prepare, player actions, end of round), executed in order as follows:


  1. First, advance the round marker on the round track. If this were the first round, you would move it to the circle with a letter "A". If this were the second round, you would move it to the circle to the right (with the ship symbol), and so on.

    Some rounds add a new action or new effect to the game (listed in the round track). Follow the directions depending on the round:

    • Round 1: Use the empire A deck.
    • Round 2: Reveal the Explore action and place one ambrosia on the action space.
    • Round 3: Reveal the Grow action and place one ambrosia on the action space.
    • Round 4: Switch to the empire B deck.
  2. Refresh Card Decks

    (Skip this section on the first round) Remove any remaining empire cards in the card row and place them in a discard pile to the side of the board.

    Draw new cards from the current empire deck (A deck for rounds 1-3; B deck for rounds 4-6) and place them face up on the board in the empire card track. Draw 4 cards for a 2-player game, 5 cards for a 3-player game, and 6 cards for a 4-player game.

    Remove any remaining military cards in the card row and place them at the bottom of the military deck. Draw new cards from the military deck equal to the number of players and place them face up in the military card track.

    If the empire deck is ever depleted, shuffle the appropriate discard pile to refresh the draw deck.

  3. Draw Titans:

    (Skip this section on the first round) If any player does not have a titan card on their player board, they must draw a new one and place it face up on their player board.

    A titan card on a player's board is called a "threatening titan", and represents a titan directly threatening their city-state.

    Players draw in turn order. Players draw from one of the titan decks depending on the round.

    • Round 2: One-star titans
    • Rounds 3-4: Two-star titans
    • Rounds 5-6: Three-star titans

    Remember to draw threatening titans from the bottom of the pile.

    Players draw from the bottom of the appropriate titan deck (not the face up titan at the top of the deck).

    In the rare case that a titan deck is depleted, players draw from the next-highest available deck. Example: On round 4, the two-star titan deck only has one face-up titan card. Player 1 draws this titan. Player 2 draws a three-star titan.

Player Actions

Starting with the first player (the player with the first-player token) and continuing in clockwise order, each player may take one action per turn until all players have passed. The available actions are:

A. Place Citizen

A player may place one of their citizen tokens on an action space on the board. The player places the citizen as illustrated in the example to the right, just above the parchment in a row so that nothing is covered. When a player places a citizen token on an action, they perform the action immediately.

If a player places a citizen on an action space that has another citizen with a higher skill number (even one that they previously placed), they must pay 1 coin to the supply. If the player cannot pay the coin, then they cannot place a citizen there.

Ambrosia: As soon as the player places their citizen on the action space, they may collect any ambrosia tokens there. They may use these and any +other ambrosia they have in the current action.

A player may place a citizen on an action space, choose not to perform the action, and still claim the ambrosia.

Empire Cards: Alternatively, a player may place a citizen token on an empire card they own that has an action. Unlike actions on the board, empire card actions may only be used once per round, and only by the player that owns the card unless stated otherwise.

B. Attack a Titan

A player may choose to attack one titan card. They may attack the top card in the 1, 2, or 3-star piles, or any threatening titan card on any player board (even other players' boards). They may only attack one titan per turn.

To attack, the player must pay coins to one or more military cards they own. Players may pay coins to multiple military cards in the same attack action. However, they may only use military cards which have not yet been used in the round.

When a player uses a military card, they place their payment in coins on the name area of the card. This indicates that the military card has been used this round and may not be used again until the next round.

At the end of each round, any coins on the name area of the card slide down to the picture area of the card. This is important because the cost to use a military card is equal to one more coin than is already on the card.

For example, to use a military card with no coins on the card costs 1 coin. To use a military card with 3 coins on it costs 4 coins.

Once a player pays a military card, they have temporary access to all attack symbols and abilities on the card as well as legacy abilities on retired military cards below it. This temporary access lasts for one attack action, not the entire round.

To defeat the titan, the player must have an attack value equal to or higher than the titan defense value (listed on the titan card). There are two types of attack value: swords and arrows. If the titan card shows swords and arrows, the player may count all their swords and arrows in the attack. If the titan card shows only swords, the player may only count their swords.

Attack value is gained from military cards used in this attack action as well as from empire cards, defeated titans, and district cards the player owns.

For example, if a player pays the army pictured above right, they pay 1 coin and have an attack value of 5 (for swords and arrows) or 2 (for swords only). If they also have an empire card with a sword symbol, they add it in for free and their total attack value is 6 (for swords and arrows) or 3 (for swords only).

When a player defeats a titan, they take the card and put it to the right of their player board in the row of districts and titans. They turn the next card in the titan deck face up (if they attacked a titan on a deck).

If the player attacked a titan on a player board, that space remains empty until a new titan is drawn in the prepare phase at the beginning of the next round. If the player attacked a titan on another player's board, they gain any ambrosia on the card up to the number of tribe banners on the titan.

Example: Miriam attacks the titan on Tom's board. The titan has five ambrosia but only two banners, so Miriam takes two ambrosia and discards the other three. Players do not collect ambrosia when defeating titans on their own player boards.

Damaged Empire Card

As a last step, the player must roll the damage dice, which represent damage dealt by the titan to the player's city-state. The player must roll one die per banner on the titan card. The effects are described below:

  • Titan Symbol: 1 empire card is damaged per titan symbol. The player chooses 1 empire card they own to flip face down. This card does not grant its abilities until it is repaired. If the player has no empire card that they can damage, nothing happens.

  • Coin Symbol: An immediate effect takes place as detailed at the bottom of the defeated titan card. These effects are described on page 15.

  • Blank: No effect.

A player may attack multiple titans in the round (not in the same turn), as long as they have at least one unused military card (a military card with no coins on the name area of the card).

A player may not attack without paying at least one military card. For example, a player may not attack a titan simply by combining swords and arrows from their empire cards.

Titan cards grant abilities, tribe banners, and capacity when defeated. In story terms, this represents that when a city-state defeats a titan, more tribes flock to the capital, and new lands open up for development.

Titan Damage

When a player rolls a titan symbol on a damage die, that player must damage one of his empire cards by flipping it face down. This means that the card does not give any of its abilities until it is repaired.

If a player damages a card with a food, the player does not need to place a citizen in the starving box immediately. The only time players check for starvation is at the end of the round.

If the player damages an empire card that gives an extra army, the player must immediately discard any military cards in any armies that exceed the limit (including retired military cards).

Do not count income, food, card actions, attack bonuses, etc. from a damaged card until it is repaired. Players do not need to discard any citizens gained from damaged cards.

When a player rolls a coin symbol on a damage die, check the effect at the bottom of the titan card and apply it.

  • Lose a coin: You must pay a coin to the supply (if you have it).

  • Put 1 coin on 1 army: Take one of your coins and place it on the picture section of one of your active military cards.

  • Lose X ambrosia: You must pay ambrosia to the supply (if you have it).

  • Lose 1 retired military: You must discard one of your retired military cards. If you have no retired military cards, this has no effect.

  • Discard all stored: If you have any stored empire cards, you must discard them.

  • Lose 1 district: You must discard one of your districts. If this decreases your capacity below the number of empire cards you currently have, you do not need to discard your empire cards. You cannot buy new empire cards until you gain unused capacity again.

If you have no district cards, this has no effect.

Example: Tom has six capacity and six empire cards. He loses a district and now has only three capacity. He does not discard any of his empire cards. But if he wants to build a seventh, he will need to increase his current capacity from three to seven or higher

Citizens on Damaged Empire Cards: If a citizen is on an empire card action and that card gets damaged, keep the citizen on the damaged empire card until the end of the round.

C. Build Stored

A player may build one empire card that they have stored at the bottom left corner of their player board. The player does not need to use a citizen to do this, but it does take an action. Building empire cards is described on page 10.

D. Pass

If a player cannot or does not wish to attack a titan, build a stored empire card, or place a citizen token, they must pass. Once a player passes, they cannot take any more actions that round. Simply skip players that have passed until all players have passed.

Capital City

The Capital City on each player board contains some of the resources that each player starts with. The capital city cannot be damaged by a Titan.

District Cards

General Note on Timing: If a card gives a reward (such as a coin) if you perform a specified action, gain that reward AFTER you have completed the action.

Repair Empire Card Ability: Repair 1 empire card right before you collect income, right after you confront your threatening titan.

End of the Round

When all players have passed, the round ends.

Game End? If six rounds have passed, the game ends and players do not collect coins, knowledge, or ambrosia. Do not refill the board, but players must confront any threatening titans remaining on their player boards AND they must also feed their citizens.

  1. Confront Titan:

    First, each player must confront their threatening titan (the titan card on their player board), if they still have one. Players cannot attack titans at this time, but each player must now roll a damage die for each banner on their threatening titan and apply the effects.

    Threatening Titan

    Alternatively, a player may placate the titan by feeding it ambrosia in order to avoid rolling the damage dice. The ambrosia cost is equal to one more than is already on the card. If there is no ambrosia on the titan card, the cost is equal to the number of banners of the titan.

    A player must pay the full amount of ambrosia required to avoid rolling the damage dice. (They cannot pay one ambrosia to a three-banner titan and only roll two damage dice).

    Threatening titans remain on player boards even after damage dice have been rolled or players have fed ambrosia to the titans. Ambrosia used to feed a titan remains on the titan card until it is defeated.

    Example: Miriam decides to placate her threatening titan by feeding it ambrosia. There are already three ambrosia tokens on the card. Miriam places four more ambrosia tokens, bringing the total to seven. She does not have to roll the damage dice this round.

  2. Collect Income:

    Each player collects coins, knowledge, and ambrosia for each coin, knowledge, and ambrosia symbol with a green arrow that they own on their player board and cards.

    Note: Keep track of your coin income on the track at the bottom of your player board to make this step easier.

    Also, players slide any coins that are on the name section of their military cards down to the picture section of the card (thus allowing the cards to be used again on the next round).

  3. Reset the Board:

    First, place new ambrosia on the board depending on the number of players:

    2Place 1 on each action with no citizens
    3Place 1 on each action with 1 citizen or fewer
    4Place 1 on each action with 2 citizens or fewer

    Note: Do not place ambrosia on covered action spaces.

    After placing ambrosia, players reclaim all used and any new citizen tokens and place them on their respective player boards.

    The player with the first-player token flips it so that the side with the hand symbol is face down.

  4. Feed Citizens:

    Finally, players check to see if they can feed all of their citizens. If a player does not have a food symbol for each citizen token that they own (remember to include the food in their capital city), they must place any unfed citizen tokens to the left of the player board, in the "starving/new" area.

    The player may choose any of their citizens to place in the starving area. Citizen tokens in the "starving" area cannot be used in the next round.

    At the start of the game, each player has one food from their capital city and one food each from their two starting empire cards-enough to feed their three starting citizens.

    The next round now begins, starting with phase 1.

End of the Game

After six rounds, the game is over. Players now count up victory points.

First, each player loses 2 victory points per starving citizen, and 1 victory point per damaged empire card.

Damaged empire cards are now all repaired in preparation for scoring in the next two sections.

Each player scores victory points for each color of tribe banner they have on empire cards and titans, up to a maximum of 6 banners per tribe. Any banners over 6 in any color do not score victory points.

BannersVictory Points

Finally, each player gains bonus victory points from all special empire cards they have, as described by the scoring text on each card.

The player with the most victory points has the most powerful city-state and is the winner!

If players are tied, the player with the most coins wins. If players are still tied, the player with the most combined empire, district, and defeated titan cards wins.

If players are still tied, the player with the most knowledge tokens wins. If players are still tied, the player with the most ambrosia tokens wins.

Victory Point Symbol

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