Gameday First Play – Via Nebula

Posted on by Jesta

“No one can see very clearly inside the heavy fog, no one but the fog himself!”

~ Mehmet Murat ildan

Crafters, builders and carriers — your help is needed to dispel the mists of Nebula! The people of the valley will reward you handsomely if you harvest and exploit our many resources, open paths through the mists, and help our settlers build new structures. Cooperate temporarily with other builders in order to create paths and share goods, but do not forget your own objectives. Will you have a statue erected in your honour on the Nebula City plaza?

So the board is covered in fog…

Via Nebula Board

You’re trying to dig through the fog to build paths to transport resources to building sites to build buildings… Simple.

You have a player board, this stores all your bits and shows you the 6 actions you can take. On your turn, you can take any 2 actions…

Via Nebula Player Board

The first action is simple, place a worker from your board onto an Exploitation token. These tokens have a number of resources on them and a type, they’re also worth a number of victory points.

Via Nebula Exploitation

You take one of your two workers from your board, put it on the space a token is on, keep the token (for scoring) and put a number of resources on it of that type.

You only have 2 workers and you don’t get them back until the space empties of resources so be careful.

The next action is to place a building site token on a free building site space… These tokens are half a hex so you can have 2 on the same space, or two players can share a space.

The next two actions on the board are similar. The first is to explore by taking a blank meadow token from your board and placing it on a Fog space. This Fog space must be next to a ‘Thing’ (Worker, Building Site, Building etc) of your colour or next to another blank tile.

Via Nebula Meadows

You can also explore a Haunted space (The Fog areas with Trees) but this take 2 actions, your entire turn. (But it needs doing to get anywhere)

Your Meadow tiles are in 4 piles of 3 on your player board. Under each pile is an Explorer who is worth 2 points so the more you explore the more points you score.

With these meadows you’re building paths from resources to building sites. The 5th available action is to transport a resource to a building site. This can be done by tracing a path of COMPLETELY empty hexes from the resource to the building site.

Via Nebula Building Site

When you have enough resources on a building site you can perform the 6th and final action, build a building.

You start the game with 2 building cards in hand, each with a different resource requirement, point value and ability. There are also a number of building cards face up on the board.

Via Nebula Buildings

To build, you return the resources used from the building site to the supply, put the building site back on your player board, take a building from your player board and put it where the building site was. Simple.

Via Nebula Building

Any extra resources on the building site are placed on your player board in ‘Storage’. Each of these is -1 point at the end of the game.

This continues until a player has built 5 buildings and that triggers the end of the game and each other player takes 1 extra turn.

Then, any resources you have on an Exploitation or a building site you own goes into storage, then you score.

The player that triggered the end game gets 2 points on an ‘End Game’ card.
You score points on the Exploitation tiles and Building cards you have.
For every revealed Explorer on your player board you get 2 points each.
You lose 1 point per resource in storage.

Most points wins.

It’s a very good game. The theme is fun, the art is cute and all the components are nice. It’s not too taxing and is pretty to look at, my kind of game 🙂

There is a nice balance in game play where you want to build paths and exploit resources to help you build buildings… BUT! If you build a path that helps other players too, they will hopefully, maybe, build that path with you…

Also, if you place a worker on an Exploitation that benefits multiple players, you get your worker back quicker and can exploit another one. Those workers are TOUGH to get back and you only have 2, you want to have at least 4 or 5 🙂

So overall its a very enjoyable game… Top 10? Not yet, but it’s top 25 based on this first play. I’m looking forward to trying again, building more useful buildings, (I built a building for 5 resources that scored 0 points) not worrying about putting resources into my storage and hopefully scoring more points!

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