Central Europe, around 1670 A.D. The Plague, which has raged since 1348, has finally been overcome. The civilized world is revitalized. People are upgrading and renovating their huts. Fields must be plowed, tilled and harvested. The famine of the previous years has encouraged people to eat more meat (a habit that we continue to this day).
Players start the game with a farming couple living in a simple two-roomed hut. During the course of the game, these families have abundant possibilities to improve their quality of life by building up their home, improving their fields and breeding their animals. In each of 14 rounds, each of a players Family members may take exactly one action. They can generate building resources such as Wood and Clay, add more people to their family, and ensure that they are fed. In each round, each action can only be taken by one Person. Players will miss out if another player chooses the action first. A new action becomes available in each round. You must plan to grow your family at the right time but not too soon, because even the next generation must be fed. Growing your family is important, though, because it allows you to take more actions as they become available. At the end of the game, the winner is the player who has established the best farmyard. Victory Points are awarded for the number of fields, pastures and fenced stables, as well as for Grain, Vegetables, Sheep, Wild Boar and Cattle. Players lose one point for each unused farmyard space. Additional points are awarded for extension and renovation of the family home, for the number of Family members, and for played Occupation and Improvement cards.
All games will be 4-player games, if possible. 5-player games will be used to balance the number of entrants for each heat, with the table(s) using a 5-player format to be determined randomly. The player who starts fifth in all 5-player games will receive four food to start the game (Note: This is a tournament-specific rule and is not included within the base rules of the game).
Please note a 2016 rule change: Start Player is determined PRIOR to the draft for all games (heats and elimination rounds).
Sixteen players will advance to a semifinal round to be comprised of four 4-player games. Advancement to the semifinal will be determined using the following HMW/G format:
1) Most wins
2) Total points earned in the tournament as follows: For 4-player games, twelve points are awarded for a win, eight points for second place and four points for third place. In the case of 5-player games, twelve points are awarded for a win, nine points for second place, six points for third place and three points for fourth place. Points will not be awarded for last place finishes. In the case of ties, points are split (for example, if players tie for a win in a 4-player game, both players receive ten points while the third place finisher receives four points.
3) Highest score in a heat, followed by next highest score in a heat, followed by next highest score in a heat
If there are any tied scores for a win during the heats, all tied players will earn credit for a win. The third place finisher will still score one point. Likewise, if there are ties for the remaining positions, all tied players will receive points for their finish as previously specified.
The semifinal tables will be seeded based upon performance during the three heats. The top four qualifiers will be placed into Group A, positions 5 through 8 into Group B, positions 9 through 12 into Group C and positions 13 through 16 into Group D. One qualifier from each Group will be drawn randomly and placed at each semifinal table.
All ties during elimination rounds will be resolved by the following methods:
1) If one of the tied players started the game in Seat 4, that player wins all tiebreakers.
2) Most food leftover at the end of the game. Note: During elimination rounds you MUST ensure all conversion of any goods to food MUST be made prior to final breeding. Once final breeding has occurred following Round 14, the final state of your board cannot be modified.
3) Fewest negative categories.
4) Most scoring categories that the player has achieved the maximum value.
5) Total card points (point value of the cards plus bonus points).
6) Reverse turn order from the start of the game.
Note: Scoring categories are Fields, Pastures, Grain, Vegetables, Sheep, Wild Boar, Cattle and unused spaces.
During the heats, the standard EIK decks will be used. All three decks will be shuffled together and each player will be dealt seven Occupation cards. Each player will choose one card and pass the remaining Occupation cards to their right (Note this is a change from previous years). This will continue until each player has selected seven Occupation cards. Players will then be dealt seven Minor Improvement cards. Each player will choose one card and pass the remaining Minor Improvement cards to their left (Note this is a change from previous years). This will continue until each player has selected seven Minor Improvement cards.
During the semifinal and Final rounds, the EIK decks will be shuffled together with the WM deck (World Championship 2011). The draft will commence as described above using the mixture of the four (4) decks (EIKWM).
All questions regarding card rules or combinations will be clarified by the GM (or one of the assistant GMs). Decisions may be based on information contained within the Agricola compendiums available on the internet for all decks used in the tournament.
The following errata will be observed in tournament play:
Moldboard Plow may be used twice per game rather than once
Brushwood Roof has a prerequisite of two Occupations played rather than one
Swineherd text should read that when a player takes wild boar, they receive an additional wild boar.
Note: The following cards are banned from use and must be removed prior to the start of the draft:
Braggart (E Deck, Occupation)
Ratcatcher (E Deck, Occupation)
Chamberlain (I Deck, Occupation)
Taster (I Deck, Occupation)
Wooden Hut Extension (I Deck, Minor Improvement)
Lover (K Deck, Occupation)
Wet Nurse (K Deck, Occupation)
Reed Hut (K Deck, Minor Improvement)