Tiny Epic Kingdoms Rules

Rules of Engagement

  • A 4X Game by Scott Almes
  • 2-5 players
  • 30 minutes
  • ages 13+


    1 Active Player Token

    13 Faction Cards

    8 Territory Cards
    (double sided)

    1 Action Card 1 Tower Card

    35 Player Meeples
    (7 in each player color)

    5 Shield Tokens

    2 12-Sided War Dice

    5 Tower Tokens
    (1 in each player color)

    15 Resource Tokens
    (5 of each Mana, Ore, & Food)

    5 Research Tokens
    (1 in each player color)

    16 Exploration Tokens
    (mini expansion)


    Notes on braille-

    The accessibility kit includes stickers for wooden pieces each of the player colors to be placed on the meeples of the players, towers, and their research tokens. wh for white, b for blue, p for purple, o for orange, and x for black.

    Stickers for the exploration tiles are also included as well and should be placed on those tokens.

    Note because only 2 characters can fit on the tiles in braille -

    ca is camp, cr is crown, tr is treasure, x is blank, chu is church, fort is fort, band is bandits, dr is dragon

    Blind players should use the braille war dice when engaging in war instead of the normal war dice.



    In Tiny Epic Kingdoms, you rule! But whether you reign supreme or crumble
    under pressure is entirely in your hands. You will be exploring lands and factions,
    expanding kingdoms, exploiting opportunities, and exterminating all those who
    question your rule…but so will everyone else! The results of this tiny conflict are
    nothing short of epic!


    Place the tower card and action card in the middle of the table. Then place the 5
    shield tokens next to the action card. Note: for 2 player games, 5 player games, or when you are using the exploration tokens, please refer to the end of the rulebook for modified rules.


    Give each player:
    • 7 meeples in their color
    • 1 of each resource token (mana, ore, & food)
    • 1 research token (in their color)
    • 1 tower token (in their color)
    • 1 faction card (random draw, or chosen by each player)
    • 1 territory card (random draw, then players choose which side to use), this is
    considered the player’s home territory.


    Each player should place:
    • Their resource tokens on the resource track of their faction card to
    represent a total of 6 resources. (For first time players, it is suggested they
    take: 1 ore, 2 mana, 3 food.) The ‘zero’ space is considered off the card.
    • Their tower token below the tower card – this will be used to track their
    tower level.
    • Their research token below the magic levels on their faction card – this
    will be used to track their magic level.
    • Two meeples on one region on their home territory card.


    Gameplay Overview

    Players compete for the most victory points (VP) by expanding their population,
    researching magic, and building towers. The game is played in a series of turns.
    Each turn, the active player selects an available action that all players will get
    a chance to perform. Then the active player token is passed to the next player
    clockwise and a new turn begins. Play continues like this until one player
    completes one of the end of game conditions. After which players will add up
    their victory points and determine a winner.

    Assign the Active Player Token

    The player who most recently swung a sword is given the active player token and starts the game, or determine the first player randomly.


    On Your Turn

    Your turn has five steps:
    1. If no more actions are available (i.e., if all 5 shield tokens have been placed),
    clear the action card by removing all shield tokens.
    2. Select an available action.
    3. Take action (any player) or collect resources (non-active players only).
    4. Check for end-of-game conditions (see page 10).
    5. Pass the active player token clockwise.


    1. Clear the Action Card
    If all five shield tokens have been placed on the action card, take them all off and place them to the side of the card. You will now be able to select any action.
    2. Select an Action
    Place one of the shield tokens on the action card. It must be placed on an action
    that doesn’t already have a shield token on it. Announce which action you are
    3. Take Action or Collect Resources
    First, as the active player, you must either take the action you selected or choose to do nothing. Then in clockwise order, each other player must either take the action you selected or collect resources. The active player cannot choose to collect resources.


    Take the Action

    There are 6 actions on the action card:
    • Patrol - Regional movement/Engage in war
    • Quest - Territory movement/Engage in war
    • Build - Construct tower (VP)
    • Research - Learn magic abilities (VP)
    • Expand - Increase population (VP)
    • Trade - Resource exchange



    Move one of your meeples into an adjacent region, that is one that shares a
    common border with another, on the same territory card. You cannot patrol
    across water, including rivers, or crags. 


    Move one of your meeples from one territory card to any other territory
    card. A player may only quest to and from a region that borders the edge of
    a territory card. You cannot quest across water, including rivers, or crags.


    Movement Rules
    • You cannot move into a region that already has two meeples. At no point
    may more than two meeples, of any color, be in the same region.
    • You may never enter a region occupied by an opposing player’s last meeple
    (i.e., the only meeple they have in play), nor may you use your last meeple to
    enter a region occupied by an opponent.


    At no point may more than two meeples, of any color, be in the same region.



    If you move a meeple into a region with another player’s meeple, you attack
    and start a war. You, the moving player, are the attacker. The other player
    whose meeple was already in the region is the defender.


    1. Set – Both players take a war die and, using their hand as cover, secretly set it face up to a number indicating the total war cost they are willing to incur to fight the war (max 11). Players must have enough value in resources and ability
    bonuses when setting the die to pay their chosen war cost. OR, a player may set their die to the white flag to offer a peaceful alliance; which requires no cost in resources.

    2. Reveal – Both players reveal their war die.
    The player with the highest war cost wins and takes control of the region. The other player, with the lowest war cost is the loser. If both playershave selected the same war cost, the tie goes to the defender who then becomes the winner. If both players chose a white flag, a peaceful alliance is formed

    3. Resolve – Win or lose, both players must pay their war cost. To pay your war cost, subtract any war cost abilities and then pay the remaining value with resources at the rate: mana is worth 2, ore is worth 1, and food is worth zero. Then, the winner’s meeple will remain in the warring region. The player who lost must retreat their meeple (see below) or remove it from play and return it to their supply.


    Retreat: After war costs are paid, the losing player may pay food equal to the number of meeples they currently have in play to move their meeple to an adjacent region. This cannot result in another war. If there are no regions to move to, or the player does not have enough food, retreat is not an option. Remove the meeple from play and return it to the player’s supply.


    Example: Brittany starts a war with Mike. Brittany has a total of 1 mana, 2
    ore and has a faction that offers -1 war cost. So, Brittany sets her war die to
    a power of 5 even though she can only pay for a war cost of 4. Mike wants to
    conserve his resources, so he sets his war die to the white flag to offer peace.
    Mike and Brittany reveal their war die. Brittany’s 5 beats Mike’s 0, so she
    wins. Brittany only has to pay a war cost of 4 even though she set her war
    die to a power of 5. This is because of her faction’s researched special ability.
    Mike chose peace and therefore pays no war cost. He must retreat or remove
    his meeple from play.


    Alliance: Both players offer peace. Both meeples remain in the region, and
    both players will enjoy the benefits of that region. The two players are now
    considered to be in an alliance. Later, an allied player may patrol or quest
    their meeple out of an allied region without penalty. If those players do not
    have any more allied regions together, they are no longer in an alliance.


    Breaking Alliances

    If a player ever moves into a region, which starts a war with an ally, and
    doesn’t offer peace, all allied regions they share are in jeopardy from this
    war. The war’s winner will claim control of all the regions they share with
    the losing player. The player who lost must retreat all their meeples in shared
    regions, paying the cost of retreat for each meeple, or remove them from
    play. The order in which these lost regions are resolved is chosen by the
    player who lost.


    If breaking an alliance would result in a player losing the last of their meeples,
    and that player cannot retreat a single meeple, then that player may keep 1
    meeple for free and must place that meeple in the nearest unoccupied region,
    even if that means placing it in a region on a different territory card.



    Pay the number of ore necessary to reach the next level of the tower. (For
    example, the 1st level costs 1 ore, the 2nd level costs 2 ore, and so forth.)
    Advance your tower token up by one level. You may only build one tower
    level per action. Tower tokens should be placed in the middle column of the
    card as they advance. At the end of the game, you’ll gain VP equal to that
    listed on your tower level.



    Pay the number of mana necessary to reach the next magic level. (For
    example, the 1st level costs 1 mana, the 2nd level costs 2 mana, and so forth.)
    Your magic level is marked by advancing your research token up by one level.
    You may only learn one magic per action. You now have access to the special
    ability given by that magic level and any already learned. At the end of the
    game, you’ll gain VP equal to your magic level.



    Add a new meeple to a region, and pay food equal to the number of meeples
    you now have in play. (For example, placing your 4th meeple costs 4 food.) The
    new meeple must be placed in the same region with another meeple of your
    color. Since you may never have more than two meeples in any region, if you
    do not already have a solitary meeple, you may not expand. At the end of the
    game, you’ll gain 1 VP for each of your meeples in play, except for those in
    the ruins.



    You may discard any number of one resource type and gain an equal number
    of another resource type. (For example, you may discard 3 food to gain 3 ore.)
    You may only trade once per action.


    Collect Resources

    Instead of taking the action selected by the active player, non-active players can
    collect resources from your occupied regions. For each region occupied by at
    least one of your meeples, you collect one resource of that type. (Note: having
    more than one meeple on a region does not provide additional resources for that region; you still only collect one.) Keep track of your resources using the resource track of your faction card, with the appropriate resource token showing how many of that resource you have.


    When you collect resources, you gain:


    Mana from the forests. Ore from the mountains. Food from the plains.


    The maximum number of resources you can have is 9 of each type; your
    marker may never go past the end of your resource track.
    NOTE: In the rare event you are reduced to one meeple in play, you gain a bonus resource of your choice in addition to the resource you gain from the region your meeple occupies.


    Other Regions

    Water and Crags
    • These regions are impassable and cannot be occupied, unless stated
    otherwise by faction abilities.
    • Rivers are impassable and regions split by a river are not considered

    Capital Cities
    • A capital city region is worth 2 victory points for the player who
    occupies it at the end of the game. If two allied players share a
    capital city, both allied players receive 1 VP.
    • A capital city region does not provide resources.

    • Once a player’s meeple enters or expands into the ruins, it must be
    knocked over to indicate it is searching.
    • When collecting resources, a knocked over meeple searching the
    ruins collects one resource of the player’s choice.
    • A knocked over meeple cannot move, however it is treated
    normally regarding war and the expand action. When taking a
    patrol action, instead of moving a meeple, you may stand up a
    knocked over meeple. A meeple standing in the ruins is unable
    to collect any resources. However, it may now patrol or quest as
    • At the end of the game, meeples in the ruins are considered lost and
    removed from play before scoring.

    4. Check for End-of-Game Conditions
    Once every player has taken the action or collected resources, players should
    check to see if anybody has hit one of the following end-of-game conditions:
    • A player has all 7 of their meeples in play.
    • A player has built the 6th level on the tower card.
    • A player has mastered all 5 levels of magic on their faction card.
    If one of these conditions has been met by any player, the end of the game is
    triggered. The trigger cannot be reversed by future actions. Play continues until
    the next time the action card is cleared, at that point the game ends immediately.
    Refer to the scoring section below to determine the winner.

    5. Pass the Active Player Token
    Pass the active player token clockwise, indicating who will select the
    next action. It is now their turn.



    After the game is over, each player gets victory points (VP) as follows:
    • 1 point for each of your meeples in play, except for those in the ruins.
    • 1 point for each level of magic reached (and any applicable bonuses if the 5th
    level was reached).
    • Points for the tower, as indicated on the tower card.
    • Points for capital cities (2 points for full control or 1 point for allied control).
    The most points wins! In the event of a tie, check these tie breaking conditions in this order: meeples in play, tower level, magic level reached, and total resources. If the tie remains, the game ends in a tie.

    Playing with the Exploration Tokens (optional variant)
    Shuffle the 16 exploration tokens and randomly place one exploration token, face down, in each region not occupied by a player’s starting meeples. The number of exploration tokens in play will vary by the number of players you have. Do not place exploration tokens on water or crags regions. When a meeple moves into a region with an exploration token, reveal the token and resolve it using the following table:


    Playing with the Exploration Tokens (optional variant)

    Shuffle the 16 exploration tokens and randomly place one exploration token, face down, in each region not occupied by a player’s starting meeples. The number of exploration tokens in play will vary by the number of players you have. Do not place exploration tokens on water or crags regions. When a meeple moves into a region with an exploration token, reveal the token and resolve it using the following table:


    Crown-(cr in braille) The crown is put into possession of the player who finds it.
    This is placed on their faction card. It is worth 2 victory points at the
    end of the game. If the player who has the crown ever loses a war,
    they must yield the crown to the player who defeated them.

    Treasure-(tr in braille) Immediately gain two resources of your choice and discard this token.

    Bandit-(band in braille) When this token is revealed, you immediately get ambushed.
    Pay two resources of your choice or remove your meeple and place it
    back in your supply. Then discard this token.

    Dragon’s Lair-(dr in braille) This token stays on the board in the region that it was found. If the player that controls this region defeats another player
    in war, in any region, he/she may make the losing player drop one
    level on the tower card instead of losing his/her meeple. In this event,
    the loser’s meeple must retreat to an open adjacent region at no cost.
    If there is no open adjacent region then the meeple is removed and
    placed in the losing player’s supply. The losing player’s tower level is
    still dropped by one.

    Camp-(ca in braille) This token stays on the board in the region that it was found. This region now gives an additional resource to the player who
    controls it. The resource is of the same type of the region.

    Fort-(fort in braille) This token stays on the board in the region that it was found.
    The player who controls this region is granted -2 war cost when
    attacking any region.

    Town-(tow in braille) This token stays on the board in the region that it was found.
    At the end of the game, this region is worth one additional VP.

    Church-(chu in braille) This token stays on the board in the region that it was
    found. If the player that controls this region loses a meeple in war,
    they may place it in the region with the church instead of losing it.
    This can only be done once. Discard the church token once it has
    been used. If there are two meeples in the region with the church, it’s
    power cannot be used.

    Blank-(x in braille) This token does nothing, discard it.


    Playing with 5 Players

    The rules for a 5 player game are the same, with the exception that the player who clears the action card gets skipped. The active player token is passed to the next player; no action is taken that turn. This ensures that players have an equal opportunity to make the first selection. If you are playing with the exploration tokens, remove 1 blank token before shuffling. Each player places three exploration tokens in their home territory.

    Playing with 2 Players

    To play with 2 players, a third territory card needs to be added to the game. This
    is called the Lost Kingdom. Randomly place one of the unused territory cards in
    the middle of the table and populate each region with a meeple from an unused
    color. These are considered neutral meeples.
    During play, the players have the option of invading the lost kingdom. To do so,
    a player must start a war with a neutral meeple. To win the war, the player must
    pay a war cost at least equal to or higher than to the current number of neutral
    meeples in play. By doing so, the player takes control of the region and removes
    the neutral meeple. The player should place the neutral meeple in their area, out
    of play, as it is worth 1 VP at the end of the game. You cannot start a war with a
    neutral meeple if you cannot pay the required war cost.
    Players cannot form an alliance in a 2 player game.
    At the end of the game, players gain 1 additional VP for each region they occupy in the lost kingdom, plus 1 VP for each neutral meeple they captured.



    Designer: Scott Almes Game Developer: Michael Coe
    Illustrator: William Bricker Graphic Designer: Darrell Louder
    Editors: Andy Harrison & Richard A. Edwards


    Honorary Producers: Matt Pohl, Andrew Scarlatelli, Michael Black, Mitchell F. Gale, Victor Luchangco, Albert Espino, Derek Leigh Davis, Chaoran Chang, Lyndon Martin and Stephen Eckman.


    Special Thanks: Beth Almes, Brittany Coe, Nathan Hatfield, Brian Ikegami, Donald Shults, Chris Sabat, Adam McIver, Rainer Ahlfors, our play testers, the BoardGameGeek community, and over 10,000 Kickstarter backers that make Tiny Epic Kingdoms possible.


    ©2015 Gamelyn Games, LLC all rights reserved. No part of this product may be reproduced without specific permission. Tiny Epic Kingdoms, Gamelyn Games, and the TEK logo are trademarks of Gamelyn Games, LLC.