Space Expatriate

Are you ready to embark on an intergalactic adventure? Look no further than Space Expatriate, a strategic game that takes players on a journey across the galaxy. In this game, players represent private companies that have launched and currently control space stations searching for possibilities to terraform other planets. Throughout the game, players gain Terraforming Points (TPs) by applying technologies and resources to their research and experiments. But to make TPs truly valuable, players must set up colonies, which open up new strategic possibilities and improve the multiplier of TPs into Victory Points that determine the winner.

2-4 players, ages 12+
Playing time: 30-90 minutes
Designers: Ihor Chulinda & Taras Tomyshch
Artwork: Michele Bertilorenzi

Publisher: al-Khwarizmi Games

πŸš€ The game is divided into rounds consisting of three phases each: Actions, Turn Order, and Cleanup.
During the Actions phase of the game, players take turns choosing one of the available actions by selecting a card from the display and activating its effect. All players can perform the corresponding action, while the active player also gains a bonus. The delivery action enables players to obtain resources, and process them with the engineering station modules to generate both energy and resources. In the final step of the delivery action, the terraforming station modules need specific resources to convert them to TPs. Any excess resources are placed in a Space Garbage pile.

βš™οΈ With the engineering action, players can dock additional station modules to their space stations, while with the terraforming action, they can undock some of their station modules and establish colonies, which provide permanent benefits and amplify TPs earnings. The military action compares players’ military power, and the active player may choose between exploration or political pressure.

πŸ§‘β€πŸš€ In the Turn Order phase, players compare their military power to the first player and designate a new first player for the upcoming round. And finally, in the Cleanup phase, all unused actions are discarded.

πŸ›‘οΈ The game ends when a single player has set up ten colonies, or all players have collectively set up a specific number of colonies based on the number of players. Victory Points are calculated based on the number of colonies, earned TPs, and the Victory Points table on the Hints card. The player with the highest number of VPs wins.

πŸ’­ Space Expatriate is a highly engaging game that puts players in control of private companies in charge of space stations searching for opportunities to terraform other planets. The game’s strategic depth is heightened by its unique twist. Once a player drafts an action card, it becomes part of their tableau, adding an extra layer of complexity to the decision-making process. Every move must be carefully calculated as players must weigh the benefits of each action and carefully choose which cards to pick to build and optimize their engine.

πŸŽ–οΈ To triumph in Space Expatriate, players must deftly balance two key elements: establishing and enhancing their engine while utilizing delivery actions and strategically setting up colonies that are pivotal to their final score. This is a challenging task, as establishing a colony requires dismantling modules from their stations, necessitating careful timing and planning. Players must also keep a watchful eye on their opponents, lest they gain too much of an advantage. The value of a player’s TPs earned is directly impacted by the number of colonies they have at the game’s end, making these colonies essential for achieving a high score. This means players must think strategically, plan ahead, and carefully manage their resources if they hope to achieve victory.

πŸ’¬ Space Expatriate’s unique starting player determination mechanic adds an exciting element to the game, despite its initial confusion. As players must balance their military power while focusing on their terraforming and colonization strategies, they must use strategic planning, timing, and a bit of luck to succeed. Fortunately, the game makes up for any confusion with its excellent component quality, including the high-quality metal first-player marker that catches the eye.
With a well-balanced mix of different actions, the game remains challenging and engaging, with multiple ways to gain Terraforming Points to keep things fresh and interesting every time it’s played. Ultimately, for strategy enthusiasts who love building engines and racing to colonize planets, Space Expatriate is an absolute must-try.

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