This article originally appeared in Pyramid #23
The Latest INWO Rulings
Compiled by Lynette Cowper
Editor's Note: What follows is the result of months of discussion and correspondence on the Internet between the folks here at SJ Games and some of Illuminati: New World Order's most dedicated fans, many of whom know the rules and the intricacies of various card combinations better than we do! After the smoke cleared, what was left was this set of official rulings covering the stickiest questions we had left to deal with. Many thanks to everyone who helped us figure all this out, especially official INWO goddess Lynette Cowper.
Q: What alignments and attributes do "agents" cards have?
A: The exact same ones as the group in play, if it matters.
Undestroyable Groups:Q: Can you attack to destroy an undestroyable Group? Can you make an attack against a group that you may not destroy (For instance, Shangri-La attacking a non-violent group) if the attack is doomed to failure or it is a Disaster that can only devastate?
A: No, you may never make an attack to destroy against an undestroyable group or have a group that cannot destroy a certain other group make an attack to destroy against them, even if the attack is doomed to failure or could only result in devastation at best.
Q: Can you aid an attack even if you cannot destroy the group yourself (For example, The Gnomes of Zurich aiding an attack to destroy Switzerland, or Shangri-La aiding an attack to destroy a non-Violent group)?
A: Yes, but this still doesn't allow the use of an Assassination or Disaster card.
Are We Having Fun Yet?Q: What can this cancel?
A: Any one group action using a token or one use of a special ability (see definition in errata).
Q: Can this cancel such special abilities as Moonbase's immunity to certain disasters or other "natural" special abilities? This doesn't make any sense, given the card represents boredom with the conspiracy.
A: It doesn't make sense. There are other cards that don't always make sense if you apply real-world common sense to a specific combination. But, these are clearly special abilities, so yes, Are We Having Fun Yet? can cancel them. The secret masters are stranger than we thought.
Bermuda Triangle:Q: Can it reorganize before declaring victory?
A: Yes. Any time during phases 6 and 7, the end of your turn, before you knock (You cannot do it after you knock, because your turn is then over! There is no phase between turns).
Commitment:Q: Can this be played on a group that is being attacked to control from hand?
Feminists:Q: If they use their special ability and get a card that is an agent for a card in play that has been turned liberal, but doesn't have that alignment printed on the card, do they get it?
A: Yes. An agents card has the same alignments and attributes as the Group in play.
Hat Trick:Q: When is a Plot discarded for purposes of Hat Trick, etc.?
A: A Plot is discarded immediately after use unless it remains on the table to mark its effect. Plots affecting an attack remain on the table until the dice are rolled, to mark their effect. Plots that have a duration of a full turn remain until after the current player has knocked, to mark their effect. Linked plots are only discarded after the link has been broken.
Immortality Serum:Q: Can this be played on a group that is being attacked to control from hand?
Never Surrender:Q: Can this be played on a group that is being attacked to control from hand?
Society of Assassins:Q: Do +10 cards or other temporary Power boosts count for the Global Power of Fanatic groups in the Assassins power structure?
A: No. The Global Power is always the same as the permanent Power of the Fanatic group.
Upheaval:Q: Do groups discarded by Upheaval count as destroyed?
A: No. The controlling Illuminati merely lost control of it. The card is merely discarded and does not count as destroyed for any reason.
Q: Are undestroyable groups affected by it?
A: Yes. The group is not destroyed - it merely becomes uncontrolled.
Q: Do I get to draw Plots for Cthulhu or Hitler's Brain for the groups discarded because of Upheaval?
Q: Can I attack to control a duplicate of a group discarded because of Upheaval without a plot allowing me to return a destroyed Group to play?
A: Yes, you can.
Bonuses to attacks:Q: Do I have to use them against my own groups, for instance, if they are pointed out to me?
A: Yes - just as you have to use your full Power and Resistance. Obviously, if you missed (intentionally or otherwise) a bonus or penalty, your opponents never point it out, and you get through the roll before it's noticed, this falls under the Whoops! rule - you cannot go back and change it.
Attacks:Q: Do you roll for an attack strength less than 2?
A: No. No die roll can be made when the total modified strength of the attack is less than 2, because you cannot roll less than 2 on 2 dice. The attack automatically fails.
Q: When does an attack fail?
A: An attack fails when the die roll fails, or no die roll can be made. An attack that is canceled, made illegal, or called off isn't a failure.
Cancellation:Q: In what order do effects and cancellation occur?
A: The effect always precedes the cancellation, except in those cases where the effect would result in knowledge someone shouldn't rightfully have - for instance, looking at someone's hand, drawing from a deck or announcing the target of a particular Plot, like Go Fish. In all these instances, the cancellations must occur before the event it is canceling. The person playing one of these Plots must give their rivals a chance to react by canceling before proceeding.
Discarding:Q: When do you discard Plots?
A: A Plot is discarded immediately after use unless it remains on the table to mark its effect. Plots affecting an attack remain on the table until the dice are rolled, to mark their effect. Plots that have a duration of a full turn remain until after the current player has knocked, to mark their effect. Linked plots are only discarded after the link has been broken. There should be no time where someone has to reference a Plot in the discard pile to determine a current effect.
Turn SequenceEach turn has the following steps:
Beginning of your turn1. Draw the top card from your Plot deck, if you wish. At the same time, if you have action tokens on any of your Groups, you may spend them for extra Plots.
2. Draw the top card from your Groups deck, if you wish. There is no limit to the number of Groups in your hand.
3. Make one automatic takeover, if you wish. Choose any Group or Resource from your hand. You take it over automatically - no die roll is required.
A red card with Control Arrows is a Group. Put it on any outgoing arrow of your Power Structure. You may not make an automatic takeover of a Group that duplicates a card already in play.
A purple card, with no Control Arrows, is a Resource . . . put it beside your Power Structure. (But you may not duplicate a Unique Resource already in play. See p. 14.)
4. Place an Action token on each of your groups that doesn't have one. You can use anything you want - we like glass stones - but they should all be the same. No group can ever have more than one token unless its special ability, or a Plot card, specifically gives it an extra action.
Main phase5. Attempt attacks or other actions, as explained below. Each Action token allows one action - you can attack, or use a special ability, or draw more Plot cards. Plot cards, in turn, may give you extra attacks or other actions. Groups that don't act during your turn can use special abilities or Plot cards to act during the other players' turns! When a group acts, remove the Action token from its card.
You cannot take actions before phase 5 of your turn, except for those actions specifically allowed by the card. Exception: If someone else does something during phases 1 to 4 of your turn, you are free to respond to that action or attack in any way you can.
You may also take any "free moves" you want. Free moves (see p. 6) don't count as actions. You may take free moves before, between, or after your actions.
End of your turn6. Has anyone won? At this point, if you have achieved one of your Goals, you must say so, to give other players a last chance to stop you by spending their actions or playing Plot cards. Other players may also announce a victory in this phase.
If the victory can't be stopped, the game now ends. Otherwise . . .
7. Knock. Discard all plots whose effects lasted till the end of the turn, do any other "end of the turn" moves and rap on the table to alert the next player that you're finished. An evil laugh is appropriate here.
Change:"(This is all you can do with them. You cannot use them for actions before phase 5 of your turn; in most cases, you might as well spend them for Plots. However, you may be vulnerable to certain attacks between the time you spend your tokens and the time you replace them . . .)" (page 4, second paragraph) to "(You cannot use them for actions before phase 5 of your turn, with a few exceptions (see Turn Sequence, page 3); in most cases, you might as well spend them for Plots. However, you may be vulnerable to certain attacks between the time you spend your tokens and the time you replace them . . .)"
Attacks, Defense:Change "If the target of the attack spends a token in its own defense, it counts double. And if the target happens to have more than one token, it can spend them all, and they're all doubled!" to "If the target of the attack spends a token in its own defense, it gets a defense bonus equal to its permanent power. And if the target happens to have more than one token, it can spend all of them, and get this defense bonus for each token."
Glossary:Any time: Change "You may do this during another player's turn," to "You may do this during another player's turn and during your own turn on phases 5 through 7."
Discard: This should say "A Plot is discarded if played," not "A card is discarded if played."
In play: A Group or Resource is in play when it is controlled. A Plot is in play while it remains on the table to mark its effect.
Just played from hand: A group that is in the process of being attacked to control from hand. This card is not in play.
Permanent power: Printed Power, modified by any permanent changes.
Printed power: The Power actually printed on the card.
Special ability: Anything in the text box that is generally beneficial. All other text is flavor text (usually italicized) or other features of the card, usually limiting its usefulness and instructions concerning Power or Resistance with a * and variable alignments or attributes. Under certain circumstances, usually when a player is attacking his own Power Structure, some special abilities are not beneficial and some limiting features become beneficial. This does not change their definitions.
+10 cards:Change the second paragraph to read, "If used with an action, it must be played when that action is first declared, and counts only for the power of that action, not for other effects. If used for defense the bonus lasts until the end of the current turn, is good only for the strength of the defense(s), not for other effects, and does not count toward Goals. This card may only count once in any given action or defense."
Upheaval:Change "These cards to not count as 'destroyed' for anyone's victory conditions," to "These cards do not count as '4 destroyed' for any reason.
Article publication date: February 1, 1997
Copyright © 1997 by Steve Jackson Games. All rights reserved. Pyramid subscribers are permitted to read this article online, or download it and print out a single hardcopy for personal use. Copying this text to any other online system or BBS, or making more than one hardcopy, is strictly prohibited. So please don't. And if you encounter copies of this article elsewhere on the web, please report it to firstname.lastname@example.org.