Fine porcelain! Bolts and bolts
of fabric! Spices for sale!
Background: These are the sounds you hear as you walk through
the Italian marketplace. In Medici, you are a merchant
owner whose job is to buy the most valuable loads for your ship
and to increase the value of your goods by dominating the associated
commodity markets. However, your ship can only carry a maximum
of five loads of goods at a time. Therefore, you have to be careful
in your bidding at the auctions where one, two or three loads
are available for purchase as a lot. The other merchants are
also bidding for these valuable goods - driving up the price
of the more valuable lots. Once you have purchased your five
loads, you are finished buying for this session. When the session
ends, the merchants sell the loads on their ships. The more valuable
the items you are carrying, the more florins you
will receive, and the higher your share in each of the five different
commodity markets, the greater your reward.
Object: After three buying sessions, the game ends
and the merchant who has the most florins wins.
Rules: Each turn the active player turns cards from
the deck face up, one at a time. The dealer decides to stop turning
over cards after one, two, or three cards have been revealed.
Most of the cards contain one of the five commodities (colors)
and a value of 0 to 5. There is also one special, colorless card
with a value of 10 (representing gold). While this card increases
the value of your load, it does not help you corner any of the
commodity markets. When the dealer is finished turning up cards,
the revealed cards are auctioned off amongst the players. Each
merchant gets one bid on the revealed cards, starting with the
player on the dealer's left and ending with the dealer. The high
bidder takes the cargo and adjusts his money marker. The deal
then passes to the left and the process continues. Repeat until
all of the players have five cards or the deck is exhausted.
Once the buying session is complete, the merchants sell their
cargoes. Each player totals the value of the cargoes carried
on his/her ship. The merchant with the greatest total value receives
30 florins, the next highest merchant receives a lesser amount
of florins and so on to the merchant with the lowest value who
receives no florins. Then the players adjust their commodity
market markers by one step for each associated commodity purchased
in this buying session. Then merchants with the greatest and
second most of each commodity receive 10 and 5 florins respectively.
In addition, if a merchant has purchased six or more of any commodity
cumulatively over the three buying sessions, the merchant will
receive bonus florins during the payment for the individual commodity
as shown on the board.
Format: Players may participate in as many of the four
heats as desired. All games will have 4, 5, or 6 players (with
most having 5 players and a preference for 6 players over 4 players).
All winners advance to a 16-, 20-, 25-, 30-, or 36-player semi-final
late Sunday morning. The semi-final size is the minimum needed
to accommodate all heat winners who are present. Should more
than 36 winners be present, standard HMW tie-breakers will be
used to pare the semi to 36 winners. A few second place finishers
will likely advance to fill in the remaining spots; second place
finishers will be compared based on their percentage of the winner's
final score [and, if necessary, by the preceding intermediate
score(s)]. Winners and top alternates will be listed on the kiosk
following each heat. The Final immediately follows the semi-final.
No alternates will advance to the Final under any circumstances.
Time: Each heat will last 55 minutes. There will be
no announcements. Pairings will be assigned exactly two minutes
after the designated starting time. Do not be late. Late arrivers
will be assigned to tables only if they can find four additional
players. Such games will still be held to the time limit. No
one advances from games whose paperwork is not turned in 55 minutes
after the designated starting time. To assist players in finishing
on time, the following policies are in force during each game:
* If a player leaves the game table for any reason that player's
moves are skipped until s/he returns. While being skipped, a
player passes on all bidding opportunities and does not draw
cards. Please remember to visit the restroom before the game.
* On his/her turn, a player must announce the start of an auction
by placing the deck of cards in front of the next player to the
left and stating, "Your bid", "Go", "What
do I hear for this fine lot," or something similar.
* Negotiations are prohibited. Table talk is OK provided it does
not slow down the game and does not make agreements.
* The GM will announce the 20- and 35-minute marks. Games which
have not finished the first and second buying sessions respectively
should pick up the pace substantially.
* The GM will also announce the end-of-game 53-minute mark. All
bidding ceases immediately - with the current loads going unsold
- and final scoring begins. The winner of the game should turn
in all player records.
* Keep in mind that an individual player's total playing time
for the entire game should be roughly nine minutes! Decide what
you are willing to bid before the option comes to you.
* If any player is perceived as taking a long time for any action
(more than 7-9 seconds for a bid or more than 15-20 seconds to
draw from the deck and start an auction), the player who perceives
the delay should obtain a timer from the check-in table. Each
will be set to 4:00 minutes. Do not argue with a slow player
or make accusations. Thereafter, whenever the player with the
timer notices that the slow player is drawing or bidding or stopping
game play in any fashion, s/he will press the start button. When
the slow player finishes, the player with the timer will press
the stop button. All other players at the table will ensure that
the timer operated per these rules. No time expires from the
timer when the slow player makes a bid before the timer has been
started. If the timer should expire, the slow player is finished
playing - and may make no more bids nor take any additional turns
and may only observe the remainder of the game (and may not interrupt
in any fashion). Reduce the timer to two minutes if picked up
after the 35-minute warning. Return the timer to the check-in
table at the end of the game.
* The player whose turn it was should adjust the buyer's money
marker and commodity market markers once the auction is complete
while the player whose turn it is now is drawing cards. Unpurchased
loads should be set aside face down in such a way that the number
of such cards can be observed. Optional: The players in a game
may agree that a single volunteer will handle all recording with
the markers throughout the game.
* The GM and assistant GMs may assign timers or penalties in
any game perceived as proceeding slowly or even remove a player
from a game altogether. The timer may be assigned with any amount
of time remaining the official believes is appropriate. Any decision
can be appealed - and will be decided by two other officials
(with the original decision being the tie-breaker). Such a decision
process occurs while the timer of the player making the appeal
Version Differences: Rio Grande Games released an American
version of the game which has a few differences from the German
version. How the differences are handled is specified below:
1. For simplicity, all players begin with 30 florins no matter
how many players are in the game.
2. The American version has an extra 5-florin bonus space on
the third highest level of each of the commodity markets which
is not present in the German version. In the tournament, the
5-florin bonus will not be paid.
3. The payment for total cargoes will follow the German rules.
They are as follows:
3rd 4th 5th 6th
4 Players 30 20 10 0 - -
5 Players 30 20 10 5 0 -
6 Players 30 20 10 10 5 0