Elementalist

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Under development


This game is currently under development, in the Initial Design stage. Feedback is strongly encouraged! Feel free to give comments on game design or structure on the talk page.

Elementalist
Tanis Kint
Use the elements at your disposal and wage epic war against an opponent!
:Players Players: 2 - 2
:Time Length: Medium?
:Complexity Complexity: Medium-High
Trios per color: 3
Number of colors: 5
Pyramid trios:
Monochr. stashes:
Five-color sets: 3
- - - - - - Other equipment - - - - - -
Setup time: 2-5 min
Playing time: 10 min
0.167 Hr
- 30 min
0.5 Hr
Strategy depth: High
Random chance: None
Game mechanics: Direct conflict
Theme: Mystical
BGG Link:
Status: Initial design (v), Year released: 2010
Made October 2010


Elementalist is a game inspired initially by Magic: The Gathering, but with Icehouse Pyramids (obviously, or else I suppose it wouldn't be on this wiki.) As the players, you take the role of a powerful elementalist wielding the four basic elements, Fire, Air, Earth, and Water, against an equally powerful opponent. Your victory depends on your wits and careful choice of spells at your disposal.

Setup

As part of the setup, each player constructs their "deck" (now referred to as a "stack") Set out all of the pyramids, except the black ones (I like to stack them by size/color), and "roll" one of the small black. Whoever it's pointing to gets to choose first. They choose a pyramid, adding it to their point total. Each pyramid adds to the point total equal to its pips, i.e. a small pyramid adds one point. You may not exceed 24 points. The next person then chooses.

After each player has set up their stack, gather up the remaining colored pyramids, plus the three small black ones, one medium black one, and one large black one, and set them aside. These become damage counters (also doubling as the discard pile). Give a large and a medium black pyramid to each player. Then each player arranges his or her stacks into four trees by color (they may be missing sizes or have more than one), with the largest pyramids on the bottom, and the smallest ones on the top, then hides them from the opposing player. The black pyramids should be on their sides in front of their respective player. You are now ready to begin playing!

Gameplay

Each player starts with 10 life. Players take turns casting spells to hinder their opponent or help themselves. Each players' turn consists of four phases: the Cast Phase, the Toggle Phase, the Attack Phase, and the (optional) Toggle Phase 2. Each pyramid color represents an element.

  • Red - Fire
  • Yellow - Air
  • Green - Earth
  • Blue - Water

Cast Phase

In this phase, the current player draws a pyramid from the top of one of his/her trees without showing it to the opponent, and either:

  • If it's a small or medium, he/she may place it under one of their black pyramids. Only smalls can go under the medium one. You cannot store more than one pyramid under a black one. It becomes a "flash" to be used on a later turn, at any time, based on it's color:
    • Red: Adds the number of pips of the flash to any attacking elemental's power until the end of the turn.
    • Yellow: Stops any one attacking elemental from attacking, provided it is the same size or smaller than the flash. Immediately turn the target pyramid upright into defense position.
    • Green: Adds the number of pips of the flash to any defending elemental's power until the end of the turn.
    • Blue: Cancels any one pyramid, provided it is the same size or smaller than the flash. The countered pyramid immediately goes to the damage counters.
  • Or they cast it immediately, it which case it can be one of three things.
    • Elemental: Place the pyramid in defense mode (standing up). You may not have more that four elementals on the field at one time. Elementals are described further in the section labeled "Combat."
    • Spell: Has a specific effect, based on it's color:
      • Red: Adds the number of pips of the spell to any attacking elemental's power until the end of the turn.
      • Yellow: Makes an elemental unblockable for the turn, provided the elemental is the same size or smaller than the spell.
      • Green: Adds the number of pips of the spell to any defending elemental's power until the end of the turn.
      • Blue: Fuses two elementals into one. This is fairly complicated.
        1. Choose an elemental under your control the same size or smaller than the spell.
        2. Choose another elemental under your control one size category smaller than the first elemental chosen. If the first elemental was small, choose another small elemental.
        3. Place the second elemental chosen on top of the first elemental chosen. The new elemental has power equal to the combined power of it's two elements, and has the strengths and weaknesses of both elementals.
          • Example: A large earth elemental has been fused with a medium water elemental. The resulting elemental's power is five, is strong against fire and water, and weak against air and earth.
    • Source: Only large pieces can be played as sources. They confer the same bonus as a small spell onto any elemental, but they're permanent (as such, blue sources are useless).

When you cast a spell or flash, place it in front of the elemental it's targeting (except for blue spells), pointing away from it's caster. Sources should be played behind the elemental. At the end of the turn, remove any and all spells in front of an elemental. If you do not have any spells left, you may take a flash you have saved under a black pyramid, and cast it in any other way.

Toggle Phase

In contrast to the cast phase, this phase is short and sweet. Every elemental can be toggled once per turn, toggling between defense and offense mode. Elementals are cast in defense mode. You may toggle your elementals at either of the toggle phases, but any one elemental can only be toggle once per turn.

  • Example: Player A has two elementals in attack mode, and one in defense mode. He wants the one in defense mode to attack, and one of the attacking ones to become defensive. He toggles the defensive one to attack mode, and then toggles one of his attacking ones in to defense mode. Then he moves to his attack phase. The two attacking pyramids attack (covered in attack phase), and then Player A toggles the one attacking pyramid that HE DIDN'T TOGGLE EARLIER in to defense mode. He now has one elemental in offense mode, and two in defense mode.

Attack Phase

In the attack phase, every elemental in offense mode (lying down) attacks the opposing player. The defending player then blocks with any of his pyramids in defense mode. Blocking happens on a one-to-one correlation. One defender can not block more than one attacker, and more than one defender can't block the same one attacker.

Combat

Elementals are by far the most important element (pun intended) of this game, and hence are the most complicated. Every elemental has power equal to its' pip value, i.e. large pyramids have a power of three. However, they interact like rock-paper-scissors. Fire elementals have a +1 bonus to power when blocking or blocked by air elementals. Air elementals have +1 versus earth, earth has +1 versus water, and water has +1 versus fire. While in defense mode (i.e. standing up), elementals can ONLY block, and cannot attack. While in offense mode (i.e. laying down), elementals can attack EVERY attack phase, whether you want them to or not. They MAY NOT block. Ever. At all. We clear? Good. Now onto combat. Combat is when one elemental blocks another elemental. Add any bonuses, and then compare total power bonuses. If one is higher than the other, the lower one is removed and immediately placed with the damage counters. If there is a tie, nothing happens. They cancel each other out.

  • Example: Player A is attacking with a large air elemental is attacking, and Player B blocks with a medium fire elemental. Fire gets +1 versus air, so the totals come out to 3 vs 3. Nothing happens. HOWEVER, then Player A uses a small red flash he'd been saving, and bumps his air elemental up to a four. The totals are now 4 vs 3, and the fire elemental is obliterated, and is sent to reside with the damage counters.

If an elemental is not blocked, it deals damage equal to it's pips to the defending player. The defending player then takes that many pips worth of pyramids from the damage counters, and sets them beside him.

Toggle Phase 2

This phase is optional. It's the same as the previous toggle phase, but if you toggled an elemental in that phase, you can not toggle that same elemental in this phase.

Winning the Game

When your opponent is dropped to 0 life, you win!