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El Grande (ELG) Email GM   Updated June 8, 2023
Class B: Beginning Players Welcome You may play if you have read the rules, played previously, or participated in a scheduled demo. Be on time for the scheduled demonstration. The GM will remain for only 15 minutes if no one is present.
Schedule  GM: Rob Flowers (18th Year)
Round Day Start Time Duration Location
Demo 1/1FSa201Exhibit Hall Annex Table #2
Heat 1/3FSu132Alpine
Heat 2/3Mo112Alpine
Heat 3/3Tu182Alpine
2023 Tournament Format Heats Most Wins - Points

The German Invasion of Spain ... Euro style

El Grande is a multiplayer game of territorial control. The map depicts Spain, divided into nine provinces into which players place their forces. While there is no combat, players select option cards which can rearrange the forces on the board or make parts of the board off-limits.

Players bid for the order of choosing these option cards, but the higher bids carry the penalty of giving fewer troops. Thus, the game is a balance between resource acquisition and use; players must know when to 'lay low' in order to restore their forces. It is equally important to give other players good reason to do things which help your cause while they optimize their own scoring.

The tournament will have three Heats. Up to 25 players will advance to the Semifinal; be sure to check the event Kiosk for your status following each Heat. Winners of Semifinal games will compete in a five-player Final game.

All games will be limited to two hours, including Semifinal and Final Rounds.

This is a B level event. If you have not played the game before, be sure to attend a teaching session before you sign up to play.

Tournament Format:

  1. No expansions – this tournament uses the base game only.
  2. Game Size - Default game size will be 5 players, with 4 player games as necessary.
  3. Table Assignments
    • Players who have set up their own games will play at their table
    • To save time, all other players will be randomly assigned to tables; however, please alert the GM if team members or acquaintances are assigned to the same table. The GM will switch players as necessary between games.
  4. Seating Order and Start Player - Players will be assigned an order around the table when handing out table assignments. First player is then randomly determined.
  5. Game Length:
    • Rounds for ALL games will be 2 hours.
    • If the game is starting to run long, the GM will remind the players of the time limit. If turn 9 has not started by 12 minutes before the end of the heat, the GM (or assistant) will first ask all players if they are willing to play past the end. If all agree, play will proceed. If any object, the current turn will be the last. After the end of the turn, all provinces will be scored. The Castillo will be scored twice without any movement of pieces. Tiebreakers will apply as per usual. In addition, the GM will ask all players to fill out a ballot identifying the slowest player. Should one player be chosen unanimously by the opponents, he/she will be considered to have finished last.
  6. Score Sheet:
    • At the completion of your game, please fill out the top part of the table score sheet in its entirety. All information is important for determination of tiebreakers and advancement.
    • -
    • The bottom part of the score sheet is only needed if players are tied in score:
      • Most cabs in court
      • Most cabs in provinces
      • Highest unused power cards (compare each – thus a 13, 12, 7, 6, 5 beats a 13, 12, 4, 3, 1).
      • Random
  7. Advancement:
    • The Heat, Most Wins - Points Standard Tiebreakers will be used for advancement
    • The Semifinal will admit no more than 25 players. Note, the list will be limited to those who have 20 Total Points or more.
    • The GM will post a list on the Kiosk as soon as possible after each heat to show the top player rankings. Be sure to check the Kiosk if you are interested in advancing. No-shows in the Semifinal and Final will be filled with the players next in order.
  8. Unsportsmanlike Behavior
    • We are here to run a good, fun, and competitive tournament. If you witness anything that may constitute unsportsmanlike behavior (which may include verbal abuse, cheating, and even excessively slow play), please alert the GM immediately. Outcomes may involve as little as a warning up to ejection from the game and a ban from future tournaments.
  9. Tiebreakers for sixth place finish (out of the five second place finishes in semi-finals):
    • Smallest (point) gap behind first place
    • Best record according to advancement criteria in 7) above

Rule Clarifications:

  1. The Default Ruleset will be the Decennial Edition, with exceptions as listed below.
  2. The correct total number of Caballeros for each color is 31, which includes the cube used for scoring. At the beginning of the game, you should have 2 on the board (plus your Grande), 7 in the court, 21 in your provinces, and 1 on the scoring track. (NOTE: The Decennial Edition has extra pieces for the expansions)
  3. The number of Caballeros in players’ provinces is not open knowledge. Players are permitted to cover or otherwise conceal their province pieces (usually, putting them in a pile is sufficient). Number of pieces in court is open knowledge.
  4. Veto cards: No “partial vetos” will be permitted. A Veto, when executed, cancels the entire special action it is applied to. LIMITED negotiation is allowed between the veto card holder and the current player, provided it is brief and does not hold up the game.
  5. Cards in the 2 stack: all cards in the 2 stack that remove pieces from the courts or the board affect your fellow players ONLY, and do not affect the player who executes the special action.
  6. If, when required to remove Caballeros from a region by means of the “secret” disk, the player chooses the King’s region (or a region with none of the player’s pieces), then another region must be selected. The targeted player must remove the required number of Caballeros from a legal region which has the fewest of his own Caballeros.
    If there is a tie between two or more legal regions for fewest Caballeros, the player who is executing the action card may pick between the tied regions. This could occur during the 2 stack action cards for removing 2 or all pieces from a region. The same applies if 2 caballeros were required to be removed, and the affected player chose a province with only 1 caballero when another province with 2 or more was available.
  7. Special Rule for Heats only: If the first card in the 2 stack is “send all caballeros from your court to the provinces”, then any player (before bidding begins) may ask for a reshuffle. That card is taken out of the deck, the next card selected, and then the card is reshuffled into the rest of the deck.


  1. Most Wins (e.g., total in all heats entered)
  2. 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
  3. GM Specific Tie-breaker - None Specified
  4. High dice roll.