Units clash when one faction Marches into an occupied space, and the marching faction or the original occupants of the space are not prepared to coexist with each other. Note that allies can March to the same space and then avoid a battle by mutual consent, but this requires significant trust.
If 3 factions end up in a space, any 2 may choose to fight on the same side, pooling strengths. If no 2 factions agree to ally, each player in turn, starting with the player whose March initiated the battle, may announce a preparedness to fight the combined force of the other 2 factions. If there is still no separation of the factions into two sides, all 3 players take damages as though they had lost against the combined strength of the other 2, without applying special victor bonuses. (The same process should be applied for 4 or 5 factions.)
Determining the Winner
To determine who wins:
- Add up the Unit strengths on each side, including Supporting Units. Any Worker Units at the scene of the battle are treated like Civilian Units for all battle calculations, contributing a strength of 1 per Unit, but they do not have to vacate their Utility unless they are forced to Retreat.
- Each player in the battle may play one Skill Card from their hand, face-down.
- Each side then draws one face-down Chance Card. All Cards are then turned face up. The Unit strength, Skill Card stars and Chance Card stars are added. The highest total wins.
- Ties are broken by Location Cards, then the Military Track, and then the Crypto Track.
If a Skill Card has a text effect relevant to battles, it only exerts its effect if it has been played during battle resolution, prior to drawing a Chance Card. A player may not wait to see the other player’s Card or any Chance Cards prior to choosing to play their Skill Card. (Some Skill Cards override this.)
Following a battle, the factions involved must:
- A. Destroy losing routed Units
- B. Apply damages to combatants and infrastructure at the battle site
- C. Apply damage to losing supporting factions distant from the site
- D. Surrender the disputed territory. Give the relevant Location Card to the victor, if it is in the possession of any combatant. (If multiple victors cannot agree on ownership, possession does not change).Retreat and Rout all losing Units, including Workers.
A. Routed Units
Units that began the battle already Routed are immediately destroyed if they lose a second battle, and do not contribute to any damage calculations.
B. Damages at the Battle Site
Damages at the battle space are potentially suffered by both sides in a battle. The victor applies three types of damage to the loser: Overwhelming Superiority Bonuses, Killing Pairs, and Chance Cards The loser only applies Chance Cards to the victor.
Overwhelming Superiority. If the victor has won with overwhelming superiority, low-tech Ground Units on the losing side suffer. For every 5 points of difference in final battle strength, the victor kills one Civ/Worker Unit or Infantry Unit of the victor’s choice at the battle site. Only Units at the battle space are vulnerable. Supporting Units are not affected.
Killing Pairs. Pairs of Infantry Units, Fighters and Mechs are highly effective when battling their preferred victim Units. Determine which victorious Units can form matching pairs, including combinations involving Supporting Units and different factions.
For each pair of victorious Infantry Units, destroy a losing Civilian/Worker Unit. For each pair of victorious Mechs, destroy one losing non-Mech Ground Unit. For each pair of victorious Fighters, destroy a losing non-Fighter. Only Units at the battle space are vulnerable. Supporting Units do not face destruction by Killing Pairs. The victor chooses which Unit is destroyed, including which faction suffers if there are multiple losing factions.
Damages to Loser. For each victorious Unit that has not already formed a Killing Pair, including supporting Units and Worker Units, draw one Chance Card for non-Mech Units and two Cards for Mech Units. For each Card drawn, if the loser’s faction appears in the bottom-right corner, the loser must destroy a Military Unit of the loser’s choice at the scene of the battle; if the Card shows the word “Civ” in a red rectangle (third example above), a losing Civilian/Worker Unit must be destroyed at the scene of the battle. The loser may choose the order in which the Cards are applied.
If the losing faction is named on the Card and that name is surrounded by a red square (fourth example above), the loser must destroy a Unit at the battle scene and the victor applies one point of damage to a Utility tile (not Shield) of the victor’s choice. Neither faction may choose not to apply the damage to the losing faction’s Utilities. The icons in the blue rectangle in the second-last row of the card apply to Missile Attacks and have no effect in resolving battles.
Damages to Victor. The loser draws one Chance Card for each of the loser’s surviving Units at the battle site, not including Supports. For each Card that shows the victor’s faction in the bottom right, the victor destroys one Military Unit of the victor’s choice. “Civ” Cards can be ignored, and red squares around the faction name may be ignored.
Damages in Battles with Pooled Factions. If 2 or more factions have pooled forces in a battle, Chance Cards are divided among the factions without considering their relative contributions. Chance Cards are drawn in turn order, one at a time, and assigned to the factions before they are exposed. If the name on the Card matches the assigned faction, that faction must destroy one of its involved Units, if possible – damage that cannot be applied, because no involved Units remain, is not transferred to the other factions in the pool. The first player to receive a Card is determined by mutual consent (or by starting at the player whose March initiated the battle, and moving around the table in the current turn direction).
C. Damages to Losing Supporting Units.
Each losing faction with supporting Units draws one Chance Card to cover the losses for their entire Supporting force, and destroys one Supporting Unit of their choice if their faction name appears. If the word “Civ” appears, the victor destroys a supporting Civilian Unit. Infrastructure is unaffected.
D. Surrender Disputed Territory
After taking damages, the loser’s surviving Units must Retreat. Units that that have Marched to the battle from another space must return to their starting location on the map (not on a Location Card). If this violates stacking limits, excess retreating Units must be destroyed. Defending Units (or attacking Units that began on the battle space) must Retreat to a single adjacent non-hostile map space of the loser’s choice, excluding any space that Victor Units came from. If no Retreat space is available, the Units are destroyed. It is not permissible to disband or destroy a Unit if it has an available Retreat. Ground Units may not Retreat across cliffs (even with play of the Skill Card “Secret Routes”), but it is permissible to destroy the Ground Units and save the air Units by choosing an across-cliff retreat path. It is also permissible to retreat to the North Pole with Mechs, letting human Units perish. A retreated Unit is considered Routed and provides zero strength in any further battles for the Round (but it may be victorious in a second battle by virtue of strong Cards.) Routed Units do not contribute to damage in subsequent battles, even if victorious. A routed Unit blocks a Move ordered to the Retreat space. A Routed Unit is automatically destroyed if it loses a second battle.