- 1 double-sided Main Game Board
- 4 sets of components (1 per player)
- 44 wooden Resources
- 65 Terrain Tiles
- 20 Bonus Tokens
- 33 Buildings Cards
- 1 First Player Pawn
Place the Main Board
1 in the middle of the table, with the relevant side up (2-player game or 3/4-player game). Each player takes a matching set of components (River Board, Boat and Pioneers) and places their Boat and River Board with the relevant side up (2-player game or 3/4-player game) in front of them 2.
Then place 4 of your Pioneers on your Boat and the final one on the second round spot on the right hand side of your River Board (it shows a Pioneer symbol)
Shuffle the Terrain Tiles and put them facedown on the matching spot of the Main Board
4 (we suggest you make 2 shorter piles to avoid the Tiles accidentally getting knocked over, but this does not have any impact on gameplay).
Draw enough Terrain Tiles to cover the spots featuring a setup symbol and matching the number of players then lay them down on those spots faceup
There will be one more than the number of players and they will be used before the game actually starts.
Shuffle the Building Cards and put the deck on the rightmost island of the Main Board. Then draw and place one of those cards faceup on each spot on the island
Next, place resources on the corresponding islands on the Main Board depending on the number of players (with less than 4 players, put the remaining resources baCk in the box, they will not be used this game)
Take the Bonus Tokens (in a 2-player game, only take the ones with 2 dots on the front) and make two piles with them. Put all the "0" Tokens faceup in a pile on the right spot and sort the others into descending order.
Place them faceup in a pile on the left spot (with the "6" Token on top)
Finally, give the First Player Pawn to a randomly chosen player
9 and you are ready to begin!
Object of the Game
In this game, you are sending your Pioneers up a large river, gathering resources and constructing new buildings along the way. The player with the most impressive settlement at the end of the game will be declared the winner.
Before the game starts, each player gets to select a beginning Terrain Tile.
Starting with the player seated to the right of the First Player, then going counterclockwise, each player takes one of the faceup Tiles and places it in the first spot of their River Board (in the top left corner). The remaining Tile is removed from the game.
Then draw and reveal enough Tiles to cover all the spots of the island corresponding to the number of players.
Tile effects will be explained in more detail later in the rules. For now , just note that some of them will produce resources (resource pictured in a circle) while others will allow you to store resources (warehouse symbol) and some will do both.
There are also Meadow Tiles which have special effects and which will be detailed at the end of the rules.
The game takes place over several rounds where players take turns (in clockwise order from the First Player) moving one of their Pioneers from their Boat to one of the islands on the Main Board, performing the associated action.
Once all Boats are empty, the round ends and a cleanup phase occurs. Play then continues with a new round until one of the game end conditions is reached.
Note: At some point in the game, it is possible that all players will not have the same number of Pioneers on their Boats. In this case, when it is your turn and your Boat is empty, your turn is simply skipped.
This means that it is possible for the same player to get several turns in a row at the end of a round.
A Player's Turn
The first thing a player may do during their turn is to trade Resources for Food. Simply return any 3 Resources to the supply to take 1 Food (you can do this more than once if you have enough Resources and there is enough available Food).
Then you must take a Pioneer from your Boat and place it on a spot on the Main Board, performing the related action.
Placing a Pioneer
There are 3 different categories of spots on the main board where Pioneers can be placed:
All actions are mandatory. You cannot place a Pioneer on a spot if you cannot perform that particular location action.
Performing the Location Action
The action you can take depends on the location where you have placed your Pioneer.
Claim a Terrain Tile
Pick one of the faceup Terrain Tiles and place it on the next free space progressing up the course of the River on your River Board.
If by placing a tile you cover production or storage symbols, these are lost. However, if resources were located on the covered storage symbols you can move them to any other available spot (even on the Tile you just placed).
You cannot choose this action if your River Board is complete (12 Tiles) or if you already performed it twice this round.
Wood, Stone and Clay all work the same way. Pick as many resources of the chosen type as the number of Production Symbols of that type visible on your River Board.
Note: In 3 and 4-player games, the first Pioneer placed on a Production island grants an extra resource as shown on the board.
The taken resources need to be stored on your River Board (each warehouse allows you to store 1 Resource of any type).
If you don't have enough room, you can either forfeit some of the resources you just took or throw away possessed resources by placing them back on their respective islands.
In order to produce Clay, you place a Pioneer on the Clay Island . In this 4-player game you have 3 Clay Production Symbols and you are the first player to produce this resource this round so you can take 4 Clay.
Unfortunately, you only have 3 empty Warehouses left. You can either take 3 Clay or return a Stone to take all 4 of them.
Food is a wild resource that can replace any one of the other resource types. You can take 1 Food by placing your Pioneer on the Food Island. Remember that you can also get Food by trading Resources at the beginning of your turn.
Resources are limited. You cannot produce more Resources than what is available on an Island. If there is no more Food, you can still put a Pioneer on the Food Island and take 1 Resource of your choice from the appropriate island.
You can only choose this action if you get at least one Resource (either because of your Production Symbols or thanks to the extra Resource you get as the first Pioneer bonus).
Reserve a Building
Pick one of the faceup Building Cards and place it facedown in front of you. This will allow you to construct it later at a reduced cost.
You cannot choose this action if you already have 2 facedown cards in front of you.
Construct a Building
By placing a Pioneer on this spot, you can construct 1 Building from among the faceup cards on the Main Board or one you reserved earlier.
In order to construct a building, pay the Resources depicted on the Building card by returning them to their respective islands. Do not forget that Food is a Wild resource. It can be used instead of any other type.
If you construct a reserved Building, you benefit from a reduced cost of 1 resource of your choice.
Slide the Building Card under the right side of your River Board to keep victory points secret, then take the next available Bonus Token. Put it facedown on the highest available spot on your River Board.
The second Bonus Token you take will entice an additional Pioneer to join your expedition. Remove the extra Pioneer from its spot and place it on your Boat. It is now available for you to use during your next turn of this round (even if you were the last player).
When the first pile of Bonus Tokens is exhausted, continue taking Bonus Tokens when you construct Buildings, even if they are worth 0 points. This will help to track the end game conditions. Also, one of the Meadow Tiles can give those Tokens some value at the end of the game.
If you no longer have any available Bonus Token spots, you may still construct Buildings but you don't get the associated Tokens anymore.
You cannot choose this action if you cannot afford to construct a Building.
Take the First Player Pawn
Simply take the First Player Pawn and put it in front of you. You will start the next round.
You can secure the First Player spot by sending a Pioneer here even if you already own the First Player Pawn. If nobody sends a Pioneer here, the First Player Pawn stays where it is.
Swap Terrain Tiles
Swap two Terrain Tiles on your River Board. This will affect the final scoring (see below).
If there are resources on the swapped Tiles, they stay in their warehouse and move with the Tiles.
When all Boats are empty, the round is over. Before starting a new round, follow these steps:
Remove any remaining Terrain Tiles from the island, then draw enough Tiles to refill the required spots. In case there is not enough Tiles left to fill the board, shuffle the discarded Tiles to form a new stack in order to refill the remaining spots.
Leave remaining Building Cards in their spots and draw new ones to replace any that were built or reserved.
Each player takes their Pioneers from the Main Board and puts them back on their Boat.
The first player starts a new round.
Important: On the River Boards there are 4 special framed Terrain Spots. If you have covered any of these spots during the previous round one of your Pioneers decides to settle here.
Place one of your Pioneers on the Pioneer shape on the settlement lying instead of putting it back on your Boat. It will stay there till the end of the game and you do not get to use it anymore.
End of the Game
When someone has 5 Bonus Tokens on their River Board (4 in a 2-player game) or has claimed their 12th Terrain Tile, it triggers the end of the game. Complete this round, resolve one last Cleanup Phase, and then proceed to final Scoring.
Players add the scores of their Bonus Tokens and Buildings. Add the following bonuses:
The player with the highest score wins the game. In case of a tie, tied players share the victory.