Alter Ego v6.0 - rules post (simultaneous play)

Alter Ego
By Seth Jaffee – Rules v6.0 (8/11/15)
A cooperative deck learning game of vigilante heroism
You won't see Crime City on any map, but that's how people have come to know your hometown. Sadists, Anarchists, and Masterminds each carving out portions of the city they call their own. Hundreds of innocent bystanders caught up every day in their turf wars, or held under their oppressive thumbs. Precious few have the time, the money, the guts, or the wherewithal to do anything about it. You're one of those few... Of course it means you'll have to give up that happy home life, or that cushy job. The paper paints vigilantism in a negative light - you'd be viewed by the community as a monster. But your city bleeds... the city bleeds and it calls your name. Will you answer?

You're a vigilante hero, one of the few in Crime City who have come together to put an end to the reign of terror the city's been trapped under. Banding together, you'll fight through a swath of henchmen in order to find and defeat several Arch Villains. But in order to become stronger as a hero, you'll have to neglect some parts of your Alter Ego life - your family, your job, and your community.


50 Hero cards (10 ea. of 5 types)
75 Alter Ego Cards
- 25 Family Cards
- 25 Job Cards
- 25 Community Cards
XX Henchmen Cards
10 Character cards

4 Player boards
9 Arch Villain Cards (3 types)
XX Equipment Cards
15 Civilian (CIV) Tokens (5 each of 3 types)
XX Teamwork Tokens
40 Arch Villain / Penalty Tokens
XX Money tokens
XX Nemesis Cards

1. Sort the Civ tokens by type and create pools of each. Also create a pool of Teamwork tokens.
2. Place the 6 starting henchmen into play (3 of them take hostages – see Patrol phase). Shuffle the remaining Henchmen cards to create the henchmen deck. Place this deck in the middle of the table.
3. Randomly choose 1 Arch Villain of each type. Those will be the Arch Villains used this game, put the rest back into the box. Place the indicated number of Arch Villain tokens on each Arch Villain card based on player count.
4. Shuffle the Equipment cards into a deck and deal the top 3 cards into a face up supply.
5. Sort the Hero cards by type and place them in face up stacks in the center of the table, accessible by all players.
6. Give each player a Player board and a random Character card. Your Character card indicates how many of each Alter Ego card (Family, Job, and Community) and how many Hero cards (if any) to use in your starting deck. Sort the rest of the Alter Ego cards by type and place them in face up stacks alongside the Hero cards.
7. Place your Character card into your “display” area above your player board. Shuffle your deck and deal 4 cards face up into your display as well. Leave the remaining cards in your deck beside your player board. Note: it is helpful to sort the cards in your display into columns above the corresponding sections of you player board.
8. Deal each player 1 Nemesis card. Keep your Nemesis card hidden from other players. [<- any="" don="" game="" have="" i="" in="" nemesis="" span="" stuff="" t="" the="" yet="">

: In order to make it easier to describe the steps of the turn, the term Trophy will be used. A Trophy is an icon on a Henchman card that you have defeated.

Player Turns:
Players take turns simultaneously, resolving each phase together. Each turn consists of the following phases, in order:
1.       Income phase: Collect income from your Job:
* Collect $1 for each $ icon on cards and trophies in your play area. You may spend these $s to buy or activate Equipment any time during your turn – see Equipment and Events.
* If there are no JOB cards in your play area, place a penalty token on the Income phase of your player board.

2.       Support phase: Gain support from your family, allowing you to draw cards from your deck:
* Draw 1 card from your deck for each Family icon on your player board, cards in play, and trophies in your play area. Shuffle your discard pile and create a new deck as needed.
* If you have at least 3 Teamwork icons in play, then you may collect 1 Teamwork token from the supply.
* If there are no FAMILY cards in your play area, place a penalty token on the Support phase of your player board.

3.       Patrol phase: Patrol the streets and look for wrongdoers. On your turn you must bring a henchman into play:
* All conversation must cease between the time you draw henchmen cards and the time all henchmen are revealed for the turn.
* Draw 1 Henchman card for each Community icon on your player board, cards in play, and trophies in your play area.
* Choose 1 of the drawn Henchman cards to put into play, and return the rest to the bottom of the Henchmen deck. All players reveal their choice simultaneously.
* "Call the Cops" - If you have at least 3 Badge icons in play, then you may remove 1 Henchman card in play from the game. Any hostages on that henchman are considered rescued and are returned to their supply pools. No player takes the Henchman card into their play area, any trophy on that Henchman card is lost. Note: You may call the cops either BEFORE drawing henchmen cards or AFTER henchmen are revealed and fully resolved.
* If there are no COMMUNITY cards in your play area, place a penalty token on the Patrol phase of your player board.

Resolving henchmen: Whenever a henchman enters play it takes some civilians hostage! Place CIV tokens on the Henchman card as indicated. If a CIV token must be taken but the supply is empty, then the game is over and the Villains win!

In addition, many henchmen are affiliated with one or more Arch Villains. Whenever a henchman enters play, check to see if it has any Arch Villain icons. For each such icon, remove an Arch Villain token from the matching Arch Villain card. When the last Arch Villain token is removed from an Arch Villain card, that Arch Villain will come into play at the end of the round and terrorize the city until it is defeated! (See Arch Villains – below).

4.       Fight phase: It's time to fight some crime!
* Hero and Character cards in your display, Equipment, and trophies you have collected can provide Fight icons.
* Fight icons may be spent to rescue CIV tokens currently being held on Henchman cards. To rescue a hostage, you must spend all of the icons depicted on the Henchman card at once. The rescued CIV token is returned to the supply UNLESS that henchman’s Arch Villain is in play. See Arch Villains below.
* You may engage each Henchman card only once per turn, so you can only rescue 1 hostage per turn from any given henchman.
* You may "request help" from your fellow players. Spend 1 Teamwork token in order to add a player to your “team” for the turn. Combine your symbols with that player’s symbols for the turn. This way two players can work together to defeat henchmen.
* You may spend additional Teamwork tokens to add additional players to the “team” for the turn.
* Each Teamwork tokens spent also provides a Fight icon of any type!
* If the last CIV token on a henchman is rescued, that henchman is DEFEATED, and you may keep that henchman card in your play area as a trophy and gain the printed benefit.
* If a “team” of players defeat a henchmen, then the players decide which team member gets the trophy.

Equipment and Events
* Any time during your turn you may spend $s to buy or activate as many Equipment cards as you can afford. When buying a new Equipment card, place it into play. When buying a new Event card, place it into your hand (discard pile?). In either case, immediately refill the supply from the Equipment deck.
* You may spend 1$ to cycle 1 Equipment/Event card from the supply to the bottom of the deck and replace it.
* You may spend 2$ to cycle all 3 Equipment/Event cards from the supply to the bottom of the deck and replace them.
* At any time during your turn you may play an Event card out of your hand and resolve its effect. Place it into your discard pile afterwards.

5.       Recoup phase: After you're all spent from fighting crime, you get a chance to recuperate and plan your next turn.
* Discard all cards in your display.
* Check your player board for penalties! If none, choose any Hero or Alter Ego card from the supply stacks and place it face up in your display. However, if you have 2 (3? # based on player board?) penalty tokens in any phase, then you MUST choose that phase's card from the stacks (rather than any card you want). Then discard those penalty tokens. If you have too many tokens in multiple phases, then you must take cards of each of those types from the stacks.
* Play cards from your hand face up to fill up your display. Base display size is 5 cards, though this can be increased by equipment in play or henchmen you have defeated.
* Discard the rest of your hand. You will have no cards in hand until your next Support phase.
* If an Arch Villain has zero Arch Villain tokens on it, that Arch Villain comes into play at this time, taking hostages as normal (See Arch Villains – below).
Play continues with all players moving on to the next round.
Arch Villains:
When Arch Villains come into play, they take hostages just as Henchmen do. Place CIV tokens on the Arch Villain card as indicated. If a CIV token must be taken but the supply is empty, then the game is over and the Villains win!
While an Arch Villain is in play, Civ tokens rescued by defeating henchmen affiliated with that Arch Villain are removed from the game instead of returned to the supply. Civ tokens rescued from the Arch Villain card or from unaffiliated henchmen are returned to the supply as normal.
[I expect each Arch Villain to have game text. Maybe
Sadist abilities would kill off Civilians like this, removing them from the game; while the Anarchist abilities would change up the rules; and the Mastermind abilities would make the game become harder by removing options from the players.]

Game End:
Once an Arch Villain enters play, the game ends when all Arch Villains in play are defeated. So if it takes too long to defeat the 1st Arch Villain, another may enter play as well! The Heroes have saved Crime City from the clutches of evil and everybody wins!


… The Heroes have saved Crime City from the clutches of evil! Any player who has defeated their Nemesis wins a Personal Victory, while all players win a Cooperative Victory.


If all players have defeated their Nemesis, then the Heroes have saved Crime City from the clutches of evil and everybody wins! Otherwise, the Nemeses who were not defeated rise up and overtake Crime City!

Currently my thought is that the Nemesis card simply states a specific deck configuration (minimum numbers of certain cards), and if your end game deck meets that configuration, then you have what it takes to defeat your Nemesis.
Another option is to not have Nemesis cards at all.

Remember: If at any time a CIV token must be taken but the supply is empty, then the game is over and the Villains win!

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