"Adventurer-Kings" is a game set in a medieval world filled with magic, treasure, monsters and armies. There are 8 to 12 players in each game. A player controls one King, his armies and treasures, and any Heroes which he hires to serve him. Each turn, a player sends in a set of moves for his "Adventurer King" (or Queen, for that matter) and his Heroes. These moves cover the King's activities for one year in the medieval world.

[1.1] Game Components

The map has (in a standarg game) a total of 162 provinces. Some of the land provinces are initially controlled by player Kings, and the remaining land provinces are defended by 1-4 armies and (usually) a Hero. These non-player-controlled Heroes do not attack you or go on adventure. Each player starts out with the ownership of one province. No King will start closer than three provinces away from another. Each province has a terrain type, native race, army type and tax base. As you explore the world, more sections of the map become known to you.

Terrain types are plains, deserts, forests, jungle, mountains, and seas. About half of the provinces are seas. Many of the provinces contain additional features, such as a dungeon, dragon lair, abandoned castle, pyramid, wizard's tower and so on. They are usually defended by a monster which guards a treasure.

Native races can be human, elven, dwarven, orcish, eagles, dragons or whales. Humans are by far the most common race. Each province may have one or two of the army types.listed in the Army Type Table. The taxation value of a province can range from 0 to 10.

When you come adjacent to a province, it will usually be described as Rich (7-10 tax), Prosperous (3-6 tax) or Poor (0-2 tax). If a province's wealth is not described, then for most terrains you can assume that it's Prosperous (but for Sea or Desert, assume Poor.) On average, a Rich province will be defended by 3 armies, Prosperous by 2 armies, Poor by 1 army (although sea provinces which are occupied by no races will still be undefended.)

[1.2] Kingdoms

Each player starts out with a King, a few subordinate Heroes, one province, some armies and a treasury of 10 gold. The province, Heroes and army are assigned to the player by the computer, but the player can select four skill levels for his King from the 15 available abilities.

[1.3] Character Actions

There are five action phases in each gameturn, corresponding to Spring, Early Summer, Late Summer, Fall and Early Winter. A player may give one order to his King and each of his Heroes per phase. He may choose from among the following actions:

[1.4] Turn Results

The turn results are informative, comprehensive and written in descriptive prose with supporting charts and tables. Here's what you receive each turn:

[1.5] Victory

Long ago, the world was reigned over by a great Emperor who enforced justice and maintained world peace. But the Empire was torn apart by the petty disputes of small-minded nobles, and the world plunged into a dark age of barbarism. After centuries of warfare, strong kings who dream of a second Empire have begun to emerge in different parts of the world. You are such a King. Your goal is to reunite the Empire under your rule, and to maintain the Empire by awarding high office to those men who have demonstrated the most merit for such an honor, regardless of their creed.

There are a total of 8 major Imperial Offices, each of which will be awarded at the end of the game to the character who has piled up the most Merit Points for the office. The highest office is World Emperor, awarded to the player who has the largest tax base support at the end of the game. Each office comes with a percentage prize share. The standing of the player in the game is decided by the prize share of the Imperial Offices he controls.

[1.6] Terrains

Terrain type Average taxation Basic exploration Length of battle line
(in #armies)
Random encounter chance
Plain 6 50% 5 - 10 10%
Desert 2 25% 5 - 10 15%
Jungle 4 10% 3 - 6 25%
Forest 5 15% 3 - 6 20%
Mountain 5 15% 1 - 3 15%
Sea 1 25% (*) 5 - 10 5%

(*) There is only a small chance of finding a feature in a Sea province.

The chance of encountering monsters applies to Move, Pursue, Trail, Explore and Search actions. It does not apply when a character Moves or Pursues with an army, and is halved when the character is within the boundaries of the Kingdom.