Tigris and Euphrates

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Tigris and Euphrates is a ruleset currently in development in conjunction with Google Summer of Code 2008. This ruleset is an adaptation based on the board game Tigris and Euphrates by Mayfair Games.

For a quick guide to getting started with TaE, click here.

Note: Screenshots in this page are taken from the tpclient-pywx client.


This is an preliminary draft of the rules and may change as development progresses.


Humans have exploded in growth and expansion with the discovery of ancient alien artifacts in several solar systems scattered around an unexplored region of space. Colonists, scientists, and entrepreneurs alike are eager to explore the galaxy. You and the other players act out the parts of powerful corporations vying for control of the galaxy using strategy, leadership, conflict, and a little bit of luck. But only through the balance of resources and control of long forgotten artifacts can you achieve domination in this new frontier.

Object of the Game

In this game you are collecting four different types of resources. Your final score is the the number of resources of the type which you have collected the least of. So, if you have 4 of type A, 5 of type B, 1 of type C, and 20 of type D, your score would be 1! The winner is the player with the highest score at the end of the game

Initial setup

The play area is set up as a rectangular grid of solar systems. There are two types of solar systems: inhabitable and uninhabitable.

Also, at the start there are 10 solar systems which contain an ancient alien artifact. These systems have already been colonized by scientists.

When using tpclient-pywx, a quick way to get information on a system is to switch to "Resource View" by selecting "Resource" from the dropdown menu at the top of the screen. Then simply mouse over a system, and it will tell you whether it has been colonized, is inhabitable, or if it contains an alien artifact.
TaE uninhabitable.jpg TaE alien.jpg
An uninhabitable system A colonized system (colonized by scientists) with an alien artifact.

Each player also has a home system. Your system is highlighted in green and your opponents' systems are highlighted in red. This home system is only used to hold your fleets of ships and is not actually part of the game board.

Each player starts out with 12 fleets at their home system:

  • 6 colonist vessels which are used to inhabit uninhabited solar systems (these colonist ships are drawn at random from a pool of available colonist ships). Other players cannot see what type of colonist ships you have
  • 4 leaders, one for each type of colonist ship. These are used to control regions of colonized space
  • 2 bombers which can be used one time each to destroy a solar system.


All colonist fleets have a single order: Colonize. When a colonist fleet colonizes a system, it produces a resource for the player who owns the corresponding leader in the region (more about leaders and regions later). Colonist fleets are consumed when they colonize a system. At the end of each turn, each player's colonist fleet reserves are refilled to 6.

Colonist Fleet Can Colonize Resource Produced
Scientist Fleet Uncolonized, unoccupied, inhabitable, non-destroyed systems Technological Advancement
Merchant Fleet Uncolonized, unoccupied, inhabitable, non-destroyed systems Monetary Asset
Settler Fleet Uncolonized, unoccupied, inhabitable, non-destroyed systems Team of People
Mining Fleet Uncolonized, unoccupied, uninhabitable, non-destroyed systems Raw Material


Leader fleets also have a single order: Move. A move order causes the leader to occupy the specified system. This allows it to receive resources (and pass these resources on to the player who owns the leader) from new colonies which are built in its region.

Leaders can only move to systems which are uncolonized, unocupied, inhabitable, non-destroyed, and are adjacent to a system colonized by a scientist fleet. (adjacent means north, south, east, or west. NOT diagonal)

Leader Fleet Colonist Fleet which it receives resources from
Scientist Leader Scientist Fleet
Merchant Leader Merchant Fleet
Mining Leader Mining Fleet
Settler Leader Any fleet if the corresponding leader not is present in the region, otherwise Settler fleets


Bombers have a single order: Attack. Attack destroys the target system, removing any colony or leader in the system. The bomber is consumed after successfully attacking a system.


A region is an area of systems connected by adjacent (not diagonal) colonized or occupied systems. A single colonized or occupied system is also considered a region. Below are screenshots of a sample region (white outline added to highlight the region):

TaE region resource.jpg TaE region leader.jpg
Region in resource view showing colonized systems. Region in normal view showing systems occupied by leaders.

Regions may contain only one leader of each type! If more than one leader are in a single region, combat is triggered. Two regions may NOT be joined by a leader, they may only be joined by colonization.

Collecting Resources

When a system is colonized, the player who owns the leader of the corresponding type in the region of the new colony gets one resource from the colony. If no corresponding leader is present in the region, the resource goes to the player who owns the Settler Leader in the region.

Alien Artifacts

The only time this is different is with alien artifact resources. Alien artifacts are a "wild card" resource. At the end of the game they can count as any type of resource to help a player's score. Here is how alien artifacts are collected: at the end of a turn, if a region contains two or more alien artifacts, then the player who owns the Merchant Leader in that region receives one of the alien artifacts.


Combat occurs when there are two leaders of the same type in a single region. This can happen two ways: A leader moving into a region which already has a leader of that type, or two regions being connected forming one large region with conflicting leaders.

Internal Combat

Internal combat occurs when one leader is moved into an region where another leader of the same type already resides.

First, the initial strength of each leader is determined. The initial strength is the number of systems adjacent to the leader which contain a scientist colony.

For example, here is a screenshot of an internal conflict. The systems which were colonized by scientists are circled in blue to make it easier to see.

TaE internal.jpg

The "red" leader has an initial strength of 2. The "green" leader has an initial strength of 1.

After combat is initiated, the next turn each player with a leader in combat may send in reinforcements to bolster their strength. Scientist colonist fleets can be used to reinforce by issuing the reinforce order. Each scientist fleet you send in adds one to your strength.

The player with the highest strength at the end of the turn is declared the winner and gains one "Technological Advancement" resource point. The loser's leader is removed and sent to his home system.

External Combat

External combat occurs when two regions are joined together forming a region with more than one leader of the same type.

External combat is similar to internal combat with a few exceptions. Initial strength is determined by how many colonies of the same type as the leader are in the leader's region. For example, if leader A is a merchant leader and in an external conflict, then the number of merchant colonies in leader A's region is his initial strength. Similarly, reinforcements are added by colonist fleets of the same type as the leader.

The loser's leader and all colonies in the leader's region of the same type as the leader are removed. The winner gets one resource point of the same type as the leader for each colony and leader removed.

Game Ending Conditions

The game ends when one of two conditions is met:

  1. Two or fewer alien artifacts are left in the galaxy.
  2. The pool of civilian ships has been exhausted.

At the end of the game, the points are tallied as described above in the “Object of the Game” section, and the winner is announced.

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