OBJECTIVE OF SPLENDOR: The objective of Splendor is to earn the highest amount of prestige points by the end of the game.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 to 4 Players (special rules for 2 and 3 players; see variations section)
MATERIALS: 40 tokens (7 green emerald tokens, 7 blue sapphire tokens, 7 red ruby tokens, 7 white diamond tokens, 7 black onyx tokens, and 7 yellow gold joker tokens.), 90 development cards (40 level one cards, 30 level two cards, and 20 level three cards.), and 10 noble tiles.
TYPE OF GAME: Economic card game
OVERVIEW OF SPLENDOR
Splendor is a game where you play as a merchant during the time of the Renaissance who is using your available resources to gain ways of transportation, mines, and artisans; all of which will help you earn the respect of nobles through the land. Your goal is to turn raw resources into beautifully crafted jewels.
The game in a mechanical sense is players acquiring gold and gem tokens to buy special cards that will award them with prestige and special bonuses that will help them later in the game. Nobles will also be acquired which rewards more prestige points. This is all to obtain the most prestige points of the game, and so become the winner.
Players will separate the development cards into their respective stacks and shuffle them separately. These will be set on the table in piles vertically, one under the next, close to the center of the table. Then next to their respective piles four cards will be laid out horizontally from each deck. The end should result in the three piles and next to them a 3×4 grid of development cards.
Next, the noble tiles will be shuffled and above the grid, a number equal to the number of players plus one will be revealed on the board. The tiles not revealed are removed from the game and placed back into the box.
Finally, the gem tokens should be sorted into piles based on color and placed within reach of all players.
A player will start the game and from the players in a clockwise manner will follow. The first player will have four actions to chose from but may only perform one of them a turn. In a turn, a player may: acquire 3 gems of different types, take 2 gems of the same type (but players may only do this if there are at least 4 gems of this type available), reserve a development card and take a gold token, or purchase a development card from the table or their hand. Anytime a development card is reserved or purchased from the table a card of the same level, if available, is flipped to replace it.
A player may take tokens according to the above rules during their turn but there are some other stipulations to taking tokens as well. Players cannot hold more than 10 total tokens at the end of their turn. If a player would have too many tokens some or all of the tokens just drawn may be returned. Players must always keep their tokens visible to all players.
When using the reserve, a development card action, players will select a faceup development card on the board and take it into their hand. Players may also elect to draw the top card of a development deck instead of taking a faceup card. This is kept hidden from other players. Reserved cards are kept in your hand until purchased and cannot be discarded. Players may also only ever have 3 reserved cards in hand. Reserving a card is the only way to acquire gold but the action cannot be taken unless a player has space in their hand, but a player may still reserve a card even if there is no gold to acquire.
To buy cards, whether on the board or from your hand, players will need to spend the required resources shown on the card. The resources spent will be returned to the center of the table. Gold can be used as any resource and is spent the same and returned after use.
After purchase development cards are placed in front of players, sorted by their type, and tacked so that all rewarded prestige and bonuses are visible.
After each player turn, they check to see if they will gain a noble tile. This happens if the player has at minimum the needed requirements for bonuses or types of cards on the noble tile. If this is met the player receives the title and cannot refuse it. If a player could receive multiple titles, they may pick which is received. Once acquired, players place noble tiles in front of them visible to all players.
Bonuses are awarded to players after they purchase development cards. They are represented by a type of gem in the top corner. Once received a player now has a free resource of that type to spend on their turn. These bonuses stack and can become so plentiful it is possible to purchase cards just with bonuses. When using bonuses to purchase cards subtract the bonus from the cards price and pay any left-over resources.
END OF GAME
The game starts to end once a player gains 15 or more prestige points. Once this condition is met the round is finished, and then all players will total their scores. The player with the most prestige points wins the game.
There are different setup instructions for different numbers of players.
For two players, three gems of each type will be removed from the game, and gold is not available for this game. Only three nobles will be revealed for the game.
For three players, two gems of each type are removed from the game, and gold will not be used for this game. Four nobles will be revealed.