Pyramids and Flags

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Pyramids and Flags
Jan Divecky
Move upper pyramid to create a flag
:Players Players: 2 - 4
:Time Length: unknown
:Complexity Complexity: Medium
Trios per color: 1
Number of colors: 10
Pyramid trios:
Monochr. stashes:
Five-color sets: 2
- - - - - - Other equipment - - - - - -
goal cards
Setup time: 1 minute
Playing time:
Strategy depth: unknown
Random chance: Some
Game mechanics:
Theme: Flags of nations
BGG Link: Pyramids and Flags
Status: Complete (v1.0), Year released: 2010
Also known as Pyramidy a Vlajky.

What is the game about?[edit | edit source]

Pyramids and Flags is a game for 2 to 4 players. It is an RX game; you will need one Rainbow and one Xeno set of Treehouse pyramids to play it. Out of these pyramids, players put together flags of specific countries from all over the world. Apart from the pyramids and goal cards, you will not need anything else.

You play with pyramids of ten colors. Flags are created out of black, white, yellow, blue, green and red pieces; purple, clear, orange and cyan pyramids are scoring pieces. Pyramids come in three sizes: small, medium and large. These sizes are indicated by one, two or three pips respectively. The size of pyramids matters!

  • Educative Game.
    Each card contains four interesting informations that contributes to the perception of the world in its context. The basic package consits of 36 cards. One of them is the Czech Republic (I come from), which will help us introduce the cards. Each card contains the name of the country (Czech Republic), its capital city (Prague), map and English name of the country (Czech Republic). The most important information on the card is the national flag and in particular the pyramidal shape of the flag (in this case a large blue pyramid with medium red one on it and small white pyramid ont he top). In addition, each card includes four figures for the state - its highest point (1602 m), population (10.5 million), the average annual temperature (8° C) and annual gross domestic product per capita (25 100 USD). To each of this four rows of data one pyramid is assessed in a certain size. In the Czech case is the average (middle pyramid) high peak, average (middle pyramid) population, below average (small pyramid) annual temperatures and above average (large pyramid) the GDP. Some cards include supplementary information (in the case of Czech republic membership in the EU).

The Rules[edit | edit source]

The Goal Cards[edit | edit source]

The basic pack comes with 36 goal cards. We will use Czech Republic (Česko) as an example. Each card contains the following:

  • Country name in Czech (Česko)
  • Capital city name in Czech (Praha)
  • the country’s flag
  • picture showing what the flag looks like when made up of pyramids. (Given our example card, we can see a large blue pyramid on the bottom, on the top of it a medium red one, and on the very top a small white piece).
  • a simple map showing its position in the world
  • Country name in English (Czech Republic)
  • Some goal cards contain symbols representing inclusion in certain categories (EU membership).

Each of these facts is assigned a value in the form of a pyramid of a certain size:

  • ORANGE: Highest point of altitude above sea level (1602 m)
  • PURPLE: Number of Inhabitants (10.5 mil.)
  • CYAN: Average Annual Temperature (8°C)
  • CLEAR: GDP per Capita (USD $25,100)

Considering the Czech Republic example card, the Highest Point as well as the Number of Inhabitants is of an average size (medium pyramid each), Annual Temperature is below the average (small pyramid) and GDP is above the average (large pyramid).

How to Win the Game[edit | edit source]

You win the game instantly if you:

  • create your fifth flag
  • create your third flag from one group of states (EU, Africa, Caribbean, Oil Exporting countries)
  • have eight points worth of scoring pyramids

Before the Game[edit | edit source]

  • Place the black, white, blue, green, yellow and red pyramids in nests on the table or any other playing surface.
  • The remaining pyramids (cyan, orange, purple and clear) will be used later used for scoring. Place them in a separate bank off to the side.
  • Shuffle the goal cards and deal each player four of them. Goal cards may not be shown to anyone.
  • The owner of the goal cards goes first. Players take turns clockwise, one after another.

On Your Turn[edit | edit source]

On your turn, you must move one single pyramid from the table or one or more topmost pyramids of a tower. The pyramid(s) can be placed directly on the table or on the top of any other pyramid or pyramid tower. But:

  • You cannot place a pyramid on top of a smaller pyramid. (When moving more pyramids, the bottom pyramid sets the size.)
  • You cannot move the very same piece(s) that has just been moved by player during the previous turn. (F.e. if he or she moved a single pyramid, you can still move it as part of a tower. Or if he or she moved let´s say two pyramids, you can still move the top piece alone.)

You can use your turn to change one of your goal cards, instead of moving pyramids.

How to Create a Flag[edit | edit source]

If you assemble a flag depicted on one of your goal cards, put this card face-up on the table and announce that you have completed it. (Even if your flag is completed by someone else by chance, it counts as “mission accomplished” and you still complete the goal out of turn.)

  • It is not necessary for a tower to consist only of the pieces making up your flag.
  • It does not matter if there are other pieces under (or above) the pyramids that make up your flag.
  • It is crucial, though, that the pieces your flag consists of the sizes and colors required.
  • It is not allowed for any other pieces to interrupt the flag.

When you complete a goal, you may either capture two scoring pyramids out of the bank or capture one of your opponent's scoring pyramids. In both cases, you can only capture pyramids of the exact color and size indicated on the goal card. As the flag creator, you choose which pyramids to capture, and where to capture them from. (For example, after having created the Czech flag, you may capture one of the following pyramids from an opponent of your choice: a medium orange, medium purple, small cyan or large clear piece. You may also capture any two (or just one) of these pieces from they Bank, if they are still there.)

After you make a capture, draw a new goal card.

End of the Game[edit | edit source]

The game ends instantly when one player meets any one of the winning conditions. (Memo: 3+5=8 > three cards from one group, 5 cards, 8 points - see scoring)

Scoring[edit | edit source]

Each scoring pyramid represents one point. If you can create a tree out of your scoring pyramids, each tree counts for five points (instead of three). A single-color tree has the value of seven points. (This is the same scoring method used in Volcano.)

Advanced rules for more experienced players[edit | edit source]

Actions[edit | edit source]

No flag consists of three same-color pyramids in the shape of a tree. If you manage to build such a tower, you are entitled to an extra action; the character of this action depends on the color of the tree you created.

  • RED TREE: (Destroy) Disassemble any number of towers you please into single pyramids.
  • BLUE TREE: (Trade) Swap one scoring pyramid with one of your opponents. (You choose both pyramids being swapped.)
  • GREEN TREE: (Grow) Draw two more goal cards to your hand and keep them.
  • YELLOW TREE: (New start) Gather up all goal cards from hands of all players. Shuffle them up, and deal them out evenly, starting by yourself.
  • BLACK TREE: (Pirate) Steal one goal card from hands of one of your opponents.
  • WHITE TREE: (Wild) Choose one of Actions stated above.

Development of rules[edit | edit source]

  • Replacement of cards - a player can use his turn to exchange one of his goal-cards for new one. (Put the old card to the bottom of the deck.)
  • New goal and end of the game set by 3+5=8 rule
  • Draw 4 cards in the beginning of the game.
  • Put scoring pyramids into neutral bank in the beginning of the game.
  • New Actions (for creating single color tree)
  • No limit of how many topmost pyramids in a tower you can move.
  • Do not disassemble created flag into single pyramid pieces.
  • Take 2 scoring pyramids from neutral bank or 1 scoring pyramid from you opponent after creating a flag.

Credits[edit | edit source]

Thanks to Ryan Hackel for playtesting and help in developing rules.

External Links[edit | edit source]