A 5 Minute teaching guide by Edi Birsan.
Players: there are 7 players in the game, one for each of the major powers in Europe in 1901:
England, France, Germany, Italy, Austria, Russia and Turkey.
Turns are divided: Spring and Fall with the game starting in Spring 1901.
Players discuss their plans for their pieces privately at the beginning of the Spring and Fall moves.
You are not bound by anything you say or do with another player.
Players secretly write down their orders for their pieces and then they are revealed and adjudicated simultaneously.
Abbreviations in order writing are listed on the conference map with S for Support and C for Convoy.
When writing a support for a piece to move you have to write where the target piece is moving to.
There is no discussion when players have to retreat or make adjustments to their positions (on face to face games to save time).
The map is divided into different named spaces (called provinces in the game).
Provinces can be water or land. Land provinces may be coastal or inland.
Split Coasts exist in St. Petersburg, Bulgaria and Spain. A fleet in those provinces must be on one coast or another.
There are 34 supply centers on the map (stars/dots) scattered in 75 named provinces.
To win you need 18 supply centers at the end of a Fall move.
Players start with 3 or 4 supply centers; these are your home centers in one of 7 Great Powers.
The two piece types are: Army and Fleet.
For every supply center you own at the end of the Fall you may have one piece on the board.
If you are short of pieces you build new ones in unoccupied home centers.
If you have more pieces than supply centers you must reduce your pieces to equal the number of supply centers.
Each piece has equal strength so it moves with a force of 1 plus 1 for each of its supports.
An Army may move or give support for another piece to move into or hold an adjacent land .
A Fleet may move or give support for another piece to move into or hold an adjacent water or coastal land province or convoy an Army to a coastal land province.
Only one piece may be in a province at any time.
You may move all or some of your pieces each turn.
A piece moves only one province at a time to an adjacent province unless it is an army being convoyed.
No switching. Units ordered to each other's province do NOT switch positions unless one is being convoyed.
Your piece may only do one of the following things in any turn:
MOVE to an adjacent province or be convoyed from a coastal land province to a coastal land province. (Fleets in split coasts may only move to adjacent coastal land or water provinces.)
SUPPORT DEFENSIVELY to defend another adjacent piece in place if you could have moved there and it is not moving.
SUPPORT OFFENSIVELY a specific piece to attack another province that your unit could move to; fleets in split coasts may only support moves into a province that they could have moved to.
CONVOY if it is a fleet at a sea space, you can assist in convoying an army.
HOLD (also called Stand) in place doing nothing.
When giving support you are adding your force to the mover on, or the holder of, a province.
You may support other people’s pieces.
Bounce: if units of equal support try to move to an unoccupied province then they BOUNCE and no one gets in.
Supports are CUT by a piece moving on the supporter from other than the province that the support is directed at.
To force someone out of a province requires that you have greater force than the piece that is holding the province plus all of its supports to Hold. A move with one support and a hold with one support bounce.
Cut supports do not count for the determination of who has the most force.
A convoy is a move of an army in one coastal land province to another by a fleet or a chain of fleets in adjacent water provinces.
A fleet in a coastal land province may not convoy.
You can not dislodge or cut support of one of your own units. No 'friendly fire'…
Units forced out of their province are dislodged and must retreat to a vacant adjacent province that they could otherwise legally move to.
You may not retreat to a province that was the site of a Bounce.
You may not retreat via a convoy.
If you can not retreat or decide not to retreat, the piece is disbanded, that is often called “retreat off the board”.
A piece that is dislodged has no effect on the province from which the mover came that dislodged it.
A convoying fleet that is dislodged disrupts the convoy and the convoy using a route including the fleet does not take place.
Oddities : Kiel and Constantinople have a single coast due to their waterways (Kiel Canal/Bosphorus) Denmark connects with Sweden so armies can go between them but the Danish coast and Swedish coasts are not divided in two. As a coast land province you may not convoy through Denmark, Kiel or Constantinople.