Botmegistus, The Solo Opponent
Botmegistus is a virtual opponent that allows a player to play Trismegistus solo, playing against the virtual opponent. "You" refers to the lone human player throughout these rules.
Setup for Solo Play
Set up the main game board, and your components, for a 2-player game, with you being first player. Put the 4 specialization cards aside for now, they will be needed later.
Give Botmegistus its tracker card (place it nearby the board somewhere). Shuffle the Automa basic cards into a draw deck, and place it face-down near its tracker card. Give Botmegistus 1 Ethereal Die token and 2 Gold (kept on its tracker card until used).
Do not give it a player mat, Formula tokens, starting Essences or starting materials (other than the Gold noted above and per the difficulty level). Do not give it a starting selection of Artifacts, Publications or Experiments;
After you have selected your starting Artifact from your starting hand of two, give Botmegistus the starting Artifact you reject. Then, find the Automa personality card matching the symbol on its starting Artifact and shuffle it into the Automa draw deck.
Return the other three personality cards to the box as they will not be used this game; Note: for your first game against Botmegistus, you might want to skip this step and play without the Automa personality cards. See Adjusting Difficulty for further details.
Roll one of the unused dice twice and advance on the tracks rolled: If it rolls , advance up the respective Earth/Fire/Water/ Air Mastery track (matching the Essence on the rolled symbol's bowl). If it rolls or , it goes up its lowest track.
You play as normal.
On Botmegistus' turn, flip the next card from the Automa deck face-up, to determine what it does this turn. If the draw deck ever runs out, shuffle all the used Automa cards together to form a new draw deck.
Advanced Planning Variant
Once you played against Botmegistus a few times, and wish to have greater predictability in your opponent's behavior apply this variant. At the beginning of the game reveal 2 cards from the Automa deck and place them side by side. On Botmegistus' turn, roll the regular six-sided die.
On a roll of 1, 2, or 3 use the left card to determine what it does this turn. On a roll of 4, 5, or 6 use the right card to determine what it does this turn. Then discard the used card and replace it from the deck. All other rules apply unchanged.
General note: Botmegistus only ever gains Experiments, Artifacts and Gold, and occasionally Ethereal Die Tokens. Any other resources, it ignores.
If Botmegistus does not have a die on its tracker card, it drafts one now, based on the color/symbols shown on the active Automa card, but also following the priority list below:
Take one of the following, whichever has the highest potency:
- A die with a symbol of the same color, Botmegistus will set it to the symbol (left- most if multiple) shown on the card.
- A die with the symbol (left-most if multiple) on the card of the same color.
- (If there are two symbols on the card): A die with the right symbol on the card of the same color.
If none of the above exist, take whichever has the highest potency: ().
- A die with a symbol of a different color, Botmegistus will set it to the symbol (left- most if multiple) shown on the card.
- A die with the symbol (left-most if multiple) on the card of a different color.
- (If there are two symbols on the card): A die with the right symbol on the card of a different color.
If none of the above exist, take the die with the highest potency, of the same color.
If tied, .
Cards that show "max" instead of a die symbol instruct Botmegistus to take the die of that color with the highest potency. If that happens to be , Botmegistus will set it to . If no dice of that color exist, use a different color using the above color priority.
Place the drafted die on the appropriate spot on the potency track. If Botmegistus has any Ethereal Die tokens left, and it drafted a die with potency less than 5, it spends 1 Ethereal Die token now to increase the potency of the drafted die by 1.
Botmegistus spends as much potency as shown on its card (which will be 1, 2, or 3). If it does not have enough potency to match the amount shown on the card, it just spends all it has (it still performs its action even if it could not spend the full potency amount).
Performing its action
Botmegistus now performs the action indicated on its card, which will be one of the following:
A. Basic Cards:
it gains an Artifact
it moves up on the indicated track(s), either the specified tracks, or the Mastery track it is currently the lowest on.
it takes an experiment (or 1 gold if it already has 2 incomplete experiments)
it gains 1 gold (place 1 material on its tracker)
B. Specialization Cards:
it gains 1 Artifact and 1 Gold
it scores 5 Victory Points and gains 1 Gold
it moves up on each of its Mastery tracks by one step
it takes an Experiment (or 1 Gold if it already has 2 incomplete experiments), then move up its lowest track twice (re-evaluate lowest after the first one is applied)
C. Personality Cards: (1 In Play Per Game)
If Botmegistus is equal to or lower than you on the Earth Mastery track, it moves up twice on the Earth track.
If it is already higher than you on that track, instead it scores 5 Victory Points and gains 3 gold.
If Botmegistus is equal to or lower than you on the Water Mastery track, it moves up twice on the Water track.
If it is already higher than you on that track, instead it scores 5 Victory Points and moves up one on each of the Fire, Earth and Air tracks.
If Botmegistus is equal to or lower than you on the Fire Mastery track, it moves up twice on the Fire track.
If it is already higher than you on that track, instead it scores 10 Victory Points.
If Botmegistus is equal to or lower than you on the Air Mastery track, it moves up twice on the Air track.
If it is already higher than you on that track, instead it scores 5 Victory Points and gains 1 Artifact.
Gaining an Artifact
When choosing which artifact to take, Botmegistus will pick an artifact matching its current die color. From those, it will pick the one with the most elemental symbols. If tied, roll the regular six-sided die. On a roll of 1, 2, or 3 take the artifact on the left. On a roll of 4, 5, or 6 take the artifact on the right.
Place the chosen artifact tile face-up near its tracker card.
Gaining an Experiment
Botmegistus can hold up to 2 incomplete experiments. If it cannot take another experiment, it gains 1 Gold instead (as noted on the cards).
When choosing which experiment to take, it acquires from the board section corresponding to its current die's symbol. If there is more than one experiment to choose from that section, choose using this priority list:
- An experiment of a type (Earth/Fire/Water/Air) it does not yet have;
- An experiment it can immediately complete (including spending gold to make up any missing mastery requirement); If it can complete both experiments, it takes the one worth the most Victory Points;
- The experiment for which Botmegistus is closer to reaching the experiment's mastery requirement;
- The experiment with mastery requirement that you are already exceeding, or the closer to reaching;
- The experiment worth the most Victory Points;
- The left-hand experiment.
Moving up a Track
If wanting to move up on its lowest track and there are multiple tied tracks available, it moves up the track according to this priority:
Closest to the next bonus space with a bonus token still on it;
Furthest ahead of you on the same track;
Closest behind you on the same track;
Left-most valid track.
If it needs to move up multiple lowest tracks, re-evaluate which is lower after each movement.
If Botmegistus reaches a Bonus space with a Bonus token on it before you do, it gains a benefit immediately:
Gains an Ethereal die token;
Moves up 1 on a track on which it is closest to one of its incomplete experiment's mastery requirements, or its lowest track if it has no incomplete experiments;
Scores 5 Victory Points immediately;
If Botmegistus has the Moving up a Track action but is already at the top level of the indicated track, Botmegistus will instead move up a different track according to the earlier priority list.
After performing its action, check whether Botmegistus can complete any of its incomplete experiments. To complete an experiment, it ignores all material requirements and instead only has to comply with the Mastery requirements.
If it has any gold available, it can spend 1 Gold per requirement level it is short on to make up the difference. Spent Gold is returned to the supply.
It can complete both experiments at once, if possible. If it could potentially complete either experiment, but not both at once (i.e. spending Gold to make up the difference would allow it to complete one, but then it would not have enough to complete the other), it prefers to complete the one with a type (Earth/Fire/Water/Air) it does not yet have, or (if tied) experiment worth the most Victory Points.
Botmegistus does not gain any benefits from a completed experiment, other than end-game Victory Points. Tuck any completed experiments partially under its tracker card (so you can still see the experiment type).
Opponent Reactions Phase
You may react to Botmegistus' action, as per normal rules. Botmegistus never reacts to your action.
Lab Clean-up Phase
Once it has performed its action (and possibly completed any experiments), if the die used would move down to 0 potency, move that die into the Used Die section of its tracker card.
If it now has 3 dice in the Used Dice section of its tracker card, it passes (move its Turn Order marker to the next available New Turn Order position, as per core rules).
If any player markers (including Botmegistus') are now on or above Bonus tokens on any Mastery tracks, remove those Bonus tokens as they will not be available any more.
End of the Round
Do end of round cleanup for you, and the board, as usual.
Ethereal Die Tokens
At the end of round 1, give Botmegistus 2 more Ethereal Die tokens (which it can use in any of the forthcoming rounds). At the end of round 2, give Botmegistus 3 more Ethereal Die tokens.
Adding a Specialization Card
At the end of round 1, check which elemental type it has the most elemental symbols of (symbols are on artifacts, plus each completed experiment counts as one; select randomly among tied symbols if any).
Shuffle the specialization card of the matching type into the remaining cards in the Automa draw deck (do not shuffle the discards into the deck at this point).
At the end of round 2, add a new Specialization card in the same way as above, but ignore the elemental type of the card Botmegistus gained in round 1 (that specialization card stays in the deck).
Final Scoring Changes
You score as usual.
Before final scoring, draw 2 random Masterpiece experiments. If Botmegistus has reached the required mastery level for either of them, it will immediately complete the one with with the most Victory Points from those it can complete (the other is discarded). It does not spend gold to reach the requirements.
Botmegistus then scores:
The Victory Points listed on all its completed Experiments;
The Victory Points listed for reaching any of the Victory Points spaces on any Mastery tracks;
3 Victory Points per elemental symbol on its artifacts;
3 Victory Points per remaining unspent Ethereal Die token it has;
Count how many Formulas it could unlock: Each type (earth, air, fire, water) of completed experiment (including the Masterpiece) counts as 1, plus it can spend 2 gold to increase the Formula count by 1, as many times as it can afford, up to 7.
It then scores Formulas as per core rules;
If it has any gold left over after spending any to boost the Formula count, it scores 1 Victory Point per remaining gold.
If you beat Botmegistus' score, you win!
- Botmegistus starts with an additional Gold at setup.
- Botmegistus starts with a random incomplete starting Experiment.
- Botmegistus starts on level 1 of all Mastery tracks (not level zero, as you do), on top of the additional rolls.
- Roll dice 4 or more times instead of twice at setup to determine starting Mastery track advancements for Botmegistus.
- The Personality cards trigger their scoring ability even if you are equal to Botmegistus' Mastery.
- At the end of the game draw 3 Masterpiece experiments (instead of 2) when choosing a Masterpiece for Botmegistus to try completing.
- Allow Botmegistus to spend gold to complete a Masterpiece experiment"
Use any or all of these options to make your own life harder:
- Make Botmegistus the starting player, but do not gain an Ethereal die to compensate.
- Remove an additional white die at setup (playing with 5 black, 4 white, and 4 red dice).
- Draw only 1 starting publication and/or 1 Masterpiece experiment at setup and play with those
Use any or all of these options to decrease Botmegistus' Victory Point-scoring capabilities:
- Botmegistus starts with one fewer Gold at setup.
- Do not roll dice at setup for starting Mastery track advancements for Botmegistus.
- Do not add a Masterpiece experiment at final scoring to Botmegistus' Laboratory.
- Do not use Specialization cards.
- Do not use Personality cards.