Spotlight on Games > Translations
English Translation
Thu May 28 20:18:12 UTC 2015
Kashgar: Merchants of the Silk Road
Cards Translation (March 8, 2014)
A game by Gerhard Hecht for 2-4 players aged 12 and up

Idea and Goal of the Game
As spice dealers, players traverse the Silk Road with their caravans, maintaining trade relations with Kashgar in the west of China. They send out members of their caravans to attract more people, and thereby increase their stocks of spices, gold and mules that enable them to fulfill orders. Fulfilling orders, and also for some of the people in their caravans, they earn victory points. Once a player reaches 25 victory points, play ends with the current round. The player with the most victory points is the most successful merchant of the Silk Road.



What other games are there
about the Silk Road?


Components
165 cards (125 person cards in 5 types and 40 contract cards):
13 Patriarch cards (reverse: Matriarch)
12 Start cards
76 Standard cards
12 Special cards
12 Additional cards
40 Contract cards
4 Player boards
4 Mule markers
4 Gold markers
20 Spice markers (4 each in 5 types)


Preparing the Game
Each player receives:

The Icons (see German rules, page 2)
Ingwer: ginger; Nelken: cloves; Pfeffer: pepper; Stern-Anis: star-anise; Zimt: cinnamon; Mulis: mule

Anatomy of a Person Card
(top-middle): Card Name
(top-left): Action Cost
(top-right): Victory Points
(second-from-top): Caravan Action (light background)
(third-from-top): Parting Action (red background)

Course of the Game
General rule: the card texts always take precedence over these rules.

The starting player is the one having the starting card with the lowest rank (number at the bottom right) in one of his caravans.

The current player selects the front card of one of his caravans. Then he must – depending on the card – choose one of three options:

A) Caravan action, or
B) Parting action, or
C) Pass

Then it is the turn of the next player in clockwise order.

A) Caravan action
If the player wants to perform a caravan action with the selected card, he places this card at the end of the same caravan, i.e. pushes it all the way back.

To perform the caravan action of the card, he must pay the costs specified in the light background area by adjusting the corresponding markers on his player board. Note: some caravan actions have no cost and can be executed directly.

An example cost shows an cloves flask following by "- 1" [presumably meaning "pay 1 cloves"].

Now the player performs the selected caravan action as described on the card.

Cards obtained as a result of caravan actions are always placed behind the just-used card, i.e. furthest back in the caravan.

When a card contains more than one caravan action, only one of the actions can be performed. It is not allowed to pay again and perform the action multiple times.

B) Parting action
If the player wants to perform a parting action with the selected card, he removes the card from the game (placing it back in the box).

To perform the parting action of the card, he must pay the costs specified in the red background area by adjusting the corresponding markers on his player board. Note: most parting actions have no cost and can be executed directly.

Now the player performs the selected parting action as described on the card.

Cards obtained as a result of parting actions are always placed furthest back in the caravan.

When a card contains more than one parting action, only of the actions can be performed. It is not allowed to pay again and perform the action multiple times.

C) Pass
If a player cannot or will not pay the cost of a caravan action and prefers not to perform the parting action of the selected card, no action is taken. The card is still placed at the end of its caravan. This ends the player's turn.

Exception: Cards displaying "!" in the card name cannot be passed, i.e if the Patriarch or Matriarch (or the Additional card "Torwache" (which means "gate guard") is selected, the player must perform either its caravan or parting action.

Turn Example (see page 3, right hand side)
At the beginning of the game Patriarchs are at the front of all caravans. The current player selects the Patriarch in caravan 1 and places it at the back of the same caravan.

Since next turn he would like to use the Krämerin (grocer) to fulfill a contract, he has chosen this Patriarch. He could also have chosen the caravan 2 or caravan 3 Patriarch, but prefers using neither the Knecht (servant) nor the Prophet on one of his next turns.

He opts for the Patriarch's first caravans action because he wants to expand caravan 1. Both of the Patriarch caravan actions are free, so the player pays nothing. As described on the card, the player draws 2 cards from the deck of Standard cards and gets a Pflanzerin (Planter) and a Bäcker (baker). He opts for the Pflanzerin and places the Bäcker on the Standard discard pile. He places the Pflanzerin behind the Patriarch at the end of the first caravan.

The player could have instead used the Patriarch's second caravan action. Then he would have turned the Patriarch side over to reveal the Matriarch side and placed it at the end of caravan 1. But he would not have received a new card for caravan 1.

Fulfilling Contracts
Contracts can only be fulfilled by performing a caravan or parting action. Most have a cost to be paid, as indicated on the Contract card. However, there are also caravan actions and parting actions that explicitly satisfy a contract for free.

Anatomy of a Contract Card
(top-middle): Contract Name
(left): Mule requirement
(top-right): Victory Points
(bottom): Costs
(bottom-right): Immediate payout (only on 2 types of special contracts)

Paying costs is done by adjusting the corresponding markers on the player board.
For mule requirements: The player must have at least as many mules as shown on left part of the Contract card. A few Contracts also require paying spices and mules or gold. For this purpose the player reduces the corresponding marker(s) on his player board.

The player takes the fulfilled contract and places it face up in front of himself, so that all the players can see its victory points value. Hint; multiple contracts can be overlapped so that all victory points are visible.

Draw a new Contract card from the deck and place it so that once again there are 4 face up Contract cards showing.

Example of fulfilling a Contract
The current player selects Krämerin's (grocer's) parting action, removing the card from the game.

With the Krämerin parting action, he may Fulfill a face up contract and opts for the GroßAuftrag (Large Contract), earning 4 victory points.
The player must now fulfill the contract conditions and pay the costs. The condition having at least 3 mules is fulfilled. Since the player must also give up a mule as a cost, he shifts the Mule marker down by 1 on his player board. He also moves the cinnamon marker down 6 spaces.

The player takes the fulfilled contract and places it face in front of himself.

End of the Game
The game end is triggered as soon as a player reaches 25 victory points or more.

The current round is played to its end. The player who has the most victory points wins. In case of a tie, the tied player who last earned points wins.

General Notes on the Rules
"Erhöhe" (Increase): If a card says "Erhöhe", it means that the spices, gold, or mules can be increased to the specified value. Mules can rise to a maximum value of 6, spices and gold to a value of 9. So in some cases it may be necessary to forfeit a portion of an Increase.
When spices, gold or mules indicators are separated by a "/" (slash) the player must decide which one of these to increase. When there is no slash, all shown are increased.

"Setze" (Set): If a card says "Setze", this means that the specified spices, gold or mules must be set to exactly the specified value, regardless of the value they had before! This can sometimes mean that the value may be increased, at other times that the value must be reduced. It can also sometimes remain unchanged.

"Entferne" (Remove): If a card says "Entferne", it means that affected card is placed back in the box and no longer used in the current match!

"Wenden" (Turn): If a card says that this card is to be "turned", then the card is simply turned on its back. The Patriarch and the Matriarch are turned over at the end of their caravan actions.

"Erfülle 1 Auftrag" (Complete 1 Contract): If a card "Erfülle 1 Auftrag" and and nothing else is specified, then this can be be a Kleinauftrag (small contract), Großauftrag (Large Contract) or Spezialauftrag (special contract).

"Karten ziehen" (Draw Cards): When cards may be drawn, draw them from corresponding deck: - Contracts from the Contracts deck - Special cards from the Special cards deck - Standard cards (and Additional cards) from the Standard cards deck Since in in the variant the Additional cards are in the Standard cards deck, when an instruction indicates Standard cards it also means the Additional cards.

"Nicht gewählte Karten" (Not Selected Cards): After a Standard (or Additional) card is drawn and placed in the specified position in the caravan, all of the not selected cards are placed on the discard pile.
Not selected Contract and Special cards are placed under their respective decks.

"Ablagestapel" (Discard): The discard pile may be inspected by all players at any time.

"Siegpunkte" (Victory Points): Each player's victory points must be visible at all times to all players and called out on demand.

Important: The special rules on the cards always take precedence over the general rules in the instructions. Example: Normally, to fulfill a contract you must pay the cost in spices, gold and mules specified on the Contract card. But some cards (e.g. the Schreiber (Scribe)), permit fulfilling a contract free.

"Cut and Thrust" Variant
Players who want more interaction, may after the first few matches, introduce at the beginning of play one or more of the 12 Additional cards into the deck of standard cards.

There are two each of the following persons: Bettler, Gesandter, Hirte, Karawanenführer, Taschenspielerin, Torwache.

The designer: Gerhard Hecht, b. 1966 in Munich, lives with his wife and two children near Augsburg. He plays passionate table tennis, sees movies often and reads fantasy novels. Already at a young age he began to change game rules and later implement his own ideas. First designed almost 10 years ago, Kashgar is his first published game. He thanks all his friends, who he tormented with countless prototypes and who made it possible for the game to be playable at all.
Illustrations: Franz Vohwinkel
Graphics: Francis and Imelda Vohwinkel
Editing: KOSMOS-Redaktion

The author and publishers thank all playtesters and rules readers.

© 2013 Franckh Kosmos Verlags-GmbH & Co.
Pfizerstraße 5–7
D-70184 Stuttgart
Tel.: +49 711 2191–0
info@kosmos.de
kosmos.de

Card Index
All persons cards are listed alphabetically below. The number in parentheses after each card indicates the number of cards available in the game. Many cards are self-explanatory. For some cards are provide some further explanations and examples that can be looked up as needed.

Adelige (Nobles) (4x): With the caravan action, the second card is placed under the deck of Special cards. The parting action can be useful because then the caravan cannot be expanded by further cards. Later in the game "small" caravans can be better than "large" (with many cards) ones!

Aristokratin (Aristocrat) (1x): Each player starts with three caravans. The aristocrat's caravan action [probably intends "parting action" rather than "caravan action" –translator] offers a player an additional caravan placed next to the existing ones, using a Patriarch who was left out at the start of the game. (The game includes 13 Patriarchs so that – no matter the number of players – one Patriarch is always available at the start.) In games with fewer than than four players it can be that the Aristocrat is not distributed. Then during this match no one can add a caravan and the extra Patriarch is returned to the box.

Bäcker (Baker) (2x): Example: The player would like to increase Cinnamon. One opponent has Cinnamon at 4, another at 6. The player naturally chooses to raise Cinnamon to 6. The player could have chosen to increase Pepper instead.

Bauer (Farmer) (4x): Even if the Farmer draws 2 Special "Getreidefeld" (Wheat Field) Contracts, he can only keep one. If they have different values, he chooses the one he wants. All other Contracts that are drawn are placed at the bottom of the Contracts deck. Example of farm scoring: The player has fulfilled 3 wheat fields (of various values). Then each of his Farmers is worth 3 victory points. With each additional wheat field fulfilled, the value grows.

Bettler (Beggar) (2x): Example: All players must lower their Gold by 2. One of the players reduces from 5 to 3, another from 1 to 0. Since at least one player now has 0 Gold, the player who activated the Beggar sets his Gold to 6. This would also have been the case if an opponent had Gold at 0 even before the Beggar was activated.

Böttcher (Cooper) (4x): Example: The player decides to set Gold at value 4 and increases Mules by 1.

Bootsmann (Boatman) (2x): Example of the second caravan action: the player reduces Pepper by 4 and sets Ginger to 9 However, Pepper cannot be lowered by 4 and then immediately set to 9.

Dorfschönheit (Village Beauty) (1x): The parting action forces all players to place their Patriarchs at the front of their caravans – which can be very annoying. Important: matriarchs are not affected – their positions remain unchanged!

Fahrender Händler (Traveling Merchant) (2x): For each gold paid, the player must choose one of the two options. Example: The player lowers his Gold by 4. Therefore he increases Pepper by 4, Cinnamon by 2 and Mules by 1.

Geldeintreiber (Debt Collector) (2x): Example of the caravan action: The player has 3 fulfilled Contracts. He increases Gold and Pepper each by 3. Example of the parting action: The player has 4 fulfilled Contracts. He draws 4 cards from the Special cards deck and places one of them at the end of this caravan. The three remaining cards are placed at the bottom of the Special cards deck.

Gesandter (Messenger) (2x): The Special cards deck is shuffled to form a new deck.

Gewürzhändler (Spice Merchant) (9x):

Gildenherr (Guild Lord) (2x): Unfulfilled Contracts are placed under the Contracts deck.

Gönnerin (Patroness) (4x): The player decides whether to increase Mules or any Spice. Example: This caravan consists of 4 cards (including the Patroness). The player increases his Ginger by 4. He would not have been able to increase Ginger by 3 and Cinnamon by 1.

Graue Eminenz (Gray Eminence) (2x): The caravan action places the rest of the cards face up on the discard pile.

Händlertochter (Merchant's Daughter) (2x): Example: The player has 2 Patriarchs in his caravans. His third Patriarch is on the Matriarch side and so does not count as a Patriarch. He raises Gold by 2 and Ginger by 2. He could not have raised Ginger by 1 and Cinnamon by 1.

Hirte (Herder) (2x): The order in which the front cards are moved is left to each player. It is possible that in a caravan 2 cards are placed at the back. It is only important that for each caravan the front card is placed at the back of a different caravan.

Hochstapler (Impostor) (3x): The parting action means that the player may remove any card from this Caravan, even the Patriarch. This can be useful for reducing caravan size. Later in the game "small" caravans can be better than "large" (with many cards) ones!

Höker (Hawker) (4x): Only missing Spices can be replaced using Gold. It is not permitted to voluntarily give up Gold instead of Spices. Example: The player must pay 4 Pepper and 6 Cinnamon to fulfill a Contract. But he only has 3 Pepper and 4 Cinnamon. He reduces Pepper and Zimt to 0 and reduces Gold by 3 to replace the 3 missing Spices.

Hufschmied (Farrier) (2x): Unfulfilled Contracts are placed under the Contracts deck. Example: The player draws 3 Contracts from the deck and gets 1 Large Contract, 1 Small Contract and 1 Special Contract. The latter two may each be fulfilled free. The player would not receive an Immediate Earning (6 Pepper or 6 Gold) for the Special Contract. But had he drawn a Getreidefeld (wheat field) as the Special Contract, it would have increased the value of his Bauer (Farmer) cards as usual. He must place the Large Contract under the deck.

Karawanenführer (Caravan Leader) (2x): Caravan action: An opponent must reduce his Mules by 3 if before the increase he had 5 or more. The player of this card is not affected.

Knecht (Servant) (1x): The player sets Gold to 5 and three Spices of his choice each to 2.

Korbmacher (Basketmaker) (4x)

Krämerin (Grocer) (1x)

Kräuterfrau (Herbalist) (1x): Parting action: the second card is placed under the Special cards deck.

Kurtisane (Courtesan) (2x): First caravan action: All opponents must turn their Patriachs to the Matriarch sides and their Matriarchs to the Patriarch sides. These cards are not placed at the ends of their caravans, but instead retain their positions.

Marktfrau (Market Woman) (6x)

Matriarchin (Matriarch) (13x): As soon as the Matriarch reaches the front of the caravan her caravan action is used. This is that the player can search the Standard cards discard pile and take one (if using the variant it can be an Additional card) and place it at the back of the caravan. The Matriarch action must be performed! It can not, like other cards, be passed and simply returned to the back of the caravan.

Mulihändlerin (Mule Handler) (3x)

Mundschenk (Cup Bearer) (2x): Caravan action: The player may remove 1 card of his choice from his caravan, even a Patriarch. This can be useful for reducing caravan size. Later in the game "small" caravans can be better than "large" (with many cards) ones!
With the parting action the player removes up to 2 cards – they may come from the same or different caravans.

Nachtwächter (Nightwatch) (2x)

Patriarch (Patriarch) (13x): The first caravan action is performed as explained in the example on page 3. The second caravan action states that the Patriarch card is flipped over to its Matriarch side and then added to the back of the caravan.
One of the two caravan actions must be performed! It can not, like other cards, be passed and simply returned to the back of the caravan.

Pflanzerin (Planter) (4x)

Prophet (Prophet) (1x): The remaining cards are returned face up to the discard pile.

Quacksalber (Charlatan) (5x)

Recke (Warrior) (2x)

Schankmaid (Barmaid) (1x): The three remaining cards are placed face up on the discard pile. The opponents may look through them.

Schmied (Smith) (2x)

Schneider (Tailor) (2x): The four remaining cards are placed face up on the discard pile. The opponents may look through them. Important: The chosen card is placed at the front of the caravan and can be used in the next turn.

Schreiber (Scribe) (1x)

Stadtwache (City Guard) (1x)

Taschenspielerin (Conjuress) (2x)

Torwache (Gate Guard) (2x): Either a caravan action or the parting action must be performed! It can not, like other cards, be passed and simply returned to the back of the caravan.

Wagner (Wainwright) (1x)

Waldbäuerin (Woman of the Woods) (1x)

Zigeuner (Gypsy) (1x): The caravan action can be be useful for preventing the Patriarch action. This can be useful for reducing caravan size. Later in the game "small" caravans can be better than "large" (with many cards) ones!

Zimtfürst (Cinnamon Prince) (4x)

Züchter (Breeder) (2x)

The 40 Contract Cards
Small Contracts (8 having value 2, 8 having value 3)

Large Contracts (4 having value 4, 6 having value 5, 2 having value 6)

Special "Getreidefeld" (wheat field) Contracts (6 having value 1, 2 having value 2, 2 having value 6): Each wheat field increases the value of one's own Bauer cards (Farmers) by 1.

Special Contract with "Sofort-Ertrag Pfeffer" (Immediate earnings Pepper) (2x): With the fulfillment of this contract the player immediately increases Pepper by 6!

Special Contract with "Sofort-Ertrag Gold" (Immediate earnings Gold) (2x): With the fulfillment of this contract the player immediately increases Gold by 6!

See also
Cards Translation
Silk Road Board Games.


Translation by Rick Heli
spotlightongames.com