The game takes place over the next 70 years. Each game length is determined by the number of Edicts that are issued and fulfilled during the game. A short game might consist of 5 Edicts, equivalent to a span of 15–20 years. A longer game could be 8 Edicts. The length of game should be determined by players at the start but a short game lasts for around 100 minutes. An exceptionally long game, like the conquest of the whole solar system, will be epic in length.
THE GAME BOARD
KEY GAME COMPONENTS
Each player takes control of an organisation and the associated board. The boards contain deployment racks for a range of space vehicles and facilities necessary to explore, exploit and expand operations across the solar system. Every organisation has a unique set of in-game bonuses that are triggered when deploying, in addition to two specialist abilities that give each organisation an edge.
The primary means of travelling to new regions of space. Your exploration ship can also deploy orbital platforms directly into orbit around planets, among moons, and lesser solar bodies.
Heavy duty haulage vehicles for exporting depleted resources back to Earth. Each organisation has a fleet of cargo vessels that are deployed immediately to where they are required and may use all available transit routes to return to Earth.
These are the cornerstone of all surface operations on planets, moons, and lesser solar bodies where resources may be located. An orbital platform is essential for conducting extraction activities and while a player may use the services of another player’s orbital platform, cost implications make this a disadvantageous option.
These are the massive machines used to extract resources from a location. Extraction rigs are built in the huge construction yards on Earth and launched into Earth orbit before beginning their journey to a mining location. Extraction rigs can also be built at colonies, shortening transit time, and thereby increasing organisational efficiency.
Capable of handling any form or resource to be extracted, the rigs are key to expanding resource gathering and revenue generation.
After an excavation field has been depleted and the resource tile despatched to Earth an organisation may choose to build a colony on the location. Colonies are an important element of expansion, allowing for the deployment of extraction rigs to the immediate sector rather than starting their journey in Earth orbit. They also generate a tax income from other organisations who are present in the sector.
Off world research will open future opportunities and discoveries. Built on the site of depleted excavation sites, research stations are important for ultimate victory.
The game is advanced by completing Edicts. Each Edict specifies how many resources (depleted Excavation tiles) must be delivered to Earth for the Edict to be fulfilled. When an Edict has been fulfilled it is discarded and, following a Recruitment phase that enables players to strengthen their executive team and add greater abilities, a new Edict is revealed. Once all Edicts are completed the game ends and the player with the most Victory Points wins.
Starting the Game
Players deploy their starting spacecraft and constructs in the inner solar system excluding the
asteroid belt since the technology does not exist at the start of the game to reach to reach such a distance.
Players receive Solar Credits from the United World Bank as indicated by their organisation’s Start & Funds. Players also receive a financial exploration subsidy from the UWB calculated as follows.
Once all constructions are in place the game can begin.
Progressing the Game
Edict uses an ongoing action-selection mechanism for progressing the game. Players take it in turn to undertake one of the four Mission Control department actions and resolves their turn in sequential order first choosing Mission Control department not used on a previous turn, then taking the actions available depending on the skill level of the department’s executive. Play continues clockwise until the Edict is fulfilled.
Concepts Involved in Gameplay
Exploration includes revealing the hidden extraction tiles of the outer system.
Resources are gathered by an extraction rig located on an extraction tile. Alternatively, depleting the tile and exporting it to Earth can earn income or be used to invest in Future Technologies.
Investment in Future Technologies earns longer term rewards.
Investing resources in Propulsion Technology enables players to travel further and more economically, both essential if one is to have a chance of winning.
Investment in constructions; orbital platforms, extraction rigs, colonies and research labs increase an organisation’s capabilities and bring additional In-game Bonuses as revealed by the deployment racks on a player’s organisational board.
Travel is conducted using several different methods. At the start of the game all movement is localised between adjacent sectors. As capability increases movement can include use of the Solarlabe that allows point to point movement anywhere in the solar system. Finally, there are Gravitational Assist Routes (GARS) enabling immediate low-cost return travel to Earth from remote locations in the solar system. The cost of travel is dependent on the level of propulsion technology a player has, so one should remember to make a resource investment in this field.
Recruitment is one way a player can increase their management ability to carry out more actions in a turn. Executive profiles determine an executive’s capabilities so recruiting, or investing in executive skills, is important in order to stand a chance of winning. Greater Skills open up greater opportunities. Loyalty is also an important influence on an organisation, making it easier to recruit good talent while also being a positive for long term success in achieving goals and success.
Politics is never far beneath the surface of human endeavour and in the game exists as Politic cards and Political Influence where former executives can be employed in a new role to benefit the organisation.
Solar Events represent the inherent unpredictability of working beyond the safety of Mother Earth and as such throws up risks and opportunities to players during the game.
Winning is determined by the number of Victory Points a player achieves through the combination of fulfilling Edicts, earned income, accumulated resources, technology achieved, political capital attained, feats and goals, and research labs constructed.
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THE EVOLUTION OF
The solarlabe is a direct descendent of an Astrolabe, an ancient astronomical device that equates to a handheld model of the universe, itself derived from an invention of the Greek Hellenistic age. In 1901 a metal device known as the Antikythera mechanism was recovered from an ancient shipwreck and is thought to be the first analogue computer. The design has been refined over the centuries to become the astrolabes of the second millennia.
The modern solarlabe is used in the game Edict for calculating efficient point to point travel over solar distances between planets and moons and providing a fuel cost calculation. Use of this mechanism is dependent on accurate location fixing within the solar system and beyond.
The Antikythera Mechanism and Postulated Inner Workings, circa 200 BCE
Astrolabes showing simplified design, yet complex workings developed by the Second Millennium
The Solarlabe showing efficient, simplified design for 21st Century travel calculation