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Welcome to Christmas in July! In celebration, this digital title has been marked down by up to 40%! For more of Santa's savings, visit our Christmas in July sale page.

Civilisations is a game about building civilisations through the Bronze Age, Iron Age and the Age of Writing. At its heart the game is won by playing cards which earn Culture points.

At the start of the game the draw deck (38 cards for each Age) is divided into the number of players plus one. The plus one hand is then set aside and the other hands given to the players. This ensures that each game is different as you don't know for certain which cards will be in play.

Play consists of a series of turns with each player choosing a card to play from their hand simultaneously then playing them, paying the required cost and resolving the cards effects. Hands are then passed round the table clockwise. Each Age has 6 turns.

These cards can be great people, building, devices, texts or ideas. They are built using Gold, but acquisition of the right Resources and other kinds of cards can reduce the cost significantly.

Most cards have an Ability which effects other cards when it is triggered. Effects generally modify other cards values but also include effects such as removing other cards from play.

The secret to winning, if there such a thing, is to play cards whose Abilities complement each other, resulting in a high Culture score by the end of the game.

War and subterfuge will rarely win the game on their own but, when used at the right moment, can give a small but decisive advantage or ruin an opponent’s carefully planned strategy.

Some cards target opposing players cards with various effects but there is always a degree of randomness in the card and/or the target player (which is particularly in 3+ player games). This is a deliberate design feature to stop players ganging up on someone and keeping everyone in play.

From our own many playests (thanks Kath and co..!) most games are close and very engaging to the end with no one running away to victory.

Civilisations came about because I couldn’t find a card game which scratched my “building stuff” urge in quite the right way, so I wrote my own. It has been influenced by a number of other games, both physical and computer, have fun working out which one’s!

This has a been a labour of love and it has become a "go to game" for me and my friends. It is simple to learn, simple to play, but each decision is important.

It, hopefully, reflects the same design philosophy found in my other games, simple rules, quick to play (well.. this one takes about 1-2 hours/game) but with a lot of emergent complexity from the interactions between elements.

You can download the game as a pdf file to use online or to print your own cards, or buy the POD cards from here.

NOTE: You will need lots of small dice or other tokens of three different colours (RED for Military, BLUE for Culture, YELLOW for Gold). These do not come with the game.


Jon Clarke


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Customer avatar
Paul H February 15, 2022 11:08 pm UTC
Any plans for a print and play version for those outside the US. Shipping is more than the cards, and there will be additional customs charges as well :(
Customer avatar
Arlen W May 24, 2019 11:06 pm UTC
Civilizations looks like an interesting game (I already downloaded the rules pdf) but I mostly play games with friends online on Roll20. Is a way to purchase digital versions of the cards?
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File Last Updated:
February 09, 2022
This title was added to our catalog on September 29, 2018.
FJ Gaming
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