The 17th Century: Not an easy time for farming
Central Europe, around 1670 A.D. The Plague, which has raged since 1348, has finally been overcome. The civilized world is revitalized. People are upgrading and renovating their huts. Fields must be plowed, tilled, and harvested. The famine of the previous years has encouraged people to eat more meat (a habit that we continue to this day).
Players start the game with a farming couple living in a simple two-roomed hut. During the course of the game, these families have abundant possibilities to improve their quality of life by building up their home, improving their fields and breeding their animals. In each of the game’s 14 rounds, each of a player’s Family members may take exactly one action. They can generate building resources such as Wood and Clay, add more people to their family, and ensure that they are fed. In each round, each action can only be taken by one Person – players will miss out if another player chooses the action first. A new action becomes available in each round. You must plan to grow your family at the right time – but not too soon, because even the next generation must be fed. Growing your family is important, though, because it allows you to take more actions as they become available. At the end of the game, the winner is the player who has established the best farmyard. Victory points are awarded for the number of fields, pastures, and fenced stables, as well as for Grain, Vegetables, Sheep, Wild Boar and Cattle. Players lose one point for each unused farmyard space. Additional points are awarded for extension and renovation of the family’s home, for the number of Family members, and for played Occupation and Improvement cards.
All games will be four-player games, if possible.
NEW to 2023: Three-player games will be used to balance the number of entrants for each heat, with the table(s) utilizing the three-player format to be determined randomly. The Occupation card from the 4-player game will be used in place of the Occupation card from the 3-player game. Additionally, any time the “Take One Building Resource” action is taken the player doing so receives one food.
Please note Start Player is determined PRIOR to the draft for all games (heats and elimination rounds).
Sixteen (16) players will advance to a Semi-Final round to be comprised of four (4) four-player games. Advancement to the Semi-Final will be determined using the following Heats Most Win – Points standard tiebreakers format.
The semifinal tables will be seeded based upon performance during the three (3) heats. The top four (4) qualifiers will be placed into Group A, positions 5 through 8 into Group B, positions 9 through 12 into Group C and positions 13 through 16 into Group D. One qualifier from each Group will be drawn randomly and placed at each semifinal table.
All ties during elimination rounds will be resolved by the following methods:
- If one of the tied players started the game in Seat 4, that player wins all tiebreakers.
- Most food leftover at the end of the game. Note: During elimination rounds you MUST ensure all conversion of any goods to food MUST be made prior to final breeding. Once final breeding has occurred following Round 14, the final state of your board cannot be modified.
- Fewest begging cards.
- Fewest negative categories.
- Most scoring categories that the player has achieved the maximum value.
- Total card points (point value of the cards plus bonus points).
- Reverse turn order from the start of the game.
Note: Scoring categories are Fields, Pastures, Grain, Vegetables, Sheep, Wild Boar, Cattle, and unused spaces.
Any ties encountered playing Revised Agricola will be settled using the tiebreaker format found in the published rules of the game.
During the heats, tables may choose any format of Agricola as follows:
- EIK, with all three (3) decks shuffled together
- EIKWm, with all four (4) decks shuffled together
- EIKWmFr, with all five (5) decks shuffled together
- Revised Agricola, using any/all of the Revised cards that are available (Note: copies of games will not be provided. Players must bring their own copies.)
The default choice will be Original/Classic EIK format unless players unanimously agree to play another version of any of the options above. This also holds true for the Semifinal and Final rounds.
Note that the decision to continue running the tournament using Classic Agricola as the default is based on two pieces of data:
- Each year, the entry pool is asked if they prefer Classic Agricola, Revised Agricola or indifferent. Thus far, the overwhelming majority still prefers Classic Agricola. With the introduction and development of Revised Agricola at Board Game Arena, this may change in future years as Revised Agricola obtains greater exposure.
- As event success is dependent on players bringing their copies of the game, as of 2022 there are not enough copies of Revised Agricola being brought to the tournament to make Revised Agricola the default version to be played.
Each player will be dealt seven (7) Occupation cards. Each player will choose one card and pass the remaining Occupation cards to their right. This will continue until each player has selected seven (7) Occupation cards. Players will then be dealt seven (7) Minor Improvement cards. Each player will choose one card and pass the remaining Minor Improvement cards to their left. This will continue until each player has selected seven (7) Minor Improvement cards.
All questions regarding card rules or combinations will be clarified by the GM (or one of the assistant GMs). Decisions may be based on information contained within the Agricola compendiums available on the internet for all decks used in the tournament.
The following errata will be observed in tournament play:
- Moldboard Plow may be used twice per game rather than once
- Brushwood Roof has a prerequisite of two (2) Occupations played rather than one (1)
- Swineherd text should read that when a player takes wild boar, they receive an additional wild boar.
- Note: The following cards are banned from use in the tournament and must be removed prior to the start of the draft:
Original/Classic Agricola:Braggart (E Deck, Occupation), Ratcatcher (E Deck, Occupation), Chamberlain (I Deck, Occupation), Taster (I Deck, Occupation), Wooden Hut Extension (I Deck, Minor Improvement), Lover (K Deck, Occupation), Wet Nurse (K Deck, Occupation), Reed Hut (K Deck, Minor Improvement)
Revised Agricola: Caravan (Minor Improvement)
If there are any tied scores for a win during the heats, all tied players will earn credit for a win. Likewise, if there are ties for the remaining positions, all tied players will receive points for their finish as previously specified.
HEATS: MOST WINS - POINTS (HMW-P):
- Most Wins (e.g., total in all heats entered)
- Total Points – Players earn the following pints in each heat they entered:
- 1st Place - 1,000 points
- 2nd Place - 100 points
- 3rd Place - 10 points
- 4th Place - 1 points
- All other places - 0 points
- e.g. player has a 1st, 2nd, and 4th in three heats: total points would be 1,101
- GM Specific Tie-breaker - Highest score in a heat, followed by next highest score in a heat, followed by next highest score in a heat
- High dice roll.