by L. Creede Lambard

This material originally appeared in Space Gamer #72.

Yes, you've heard rumors of their existence . . . half-caught whispers in dark, seldom-travelled pages of Space Gamer . . . letters from people who disappear, never to be heard from again. But until now, you had no proof they actually existed. Yet here they are: The Evil Geniuses For A Better Tomorrow, Inc. These brave men and women at the forefront of technology scoff at the notion that there may be things man was not meant to know. They laugh at the bleeding hearts who would restrict scientific research and put it under strict governmental control, who would cease research on genetic engineering and nuclear energy because they "might be dangerous".

To play the Evil Genius version of Illuminati, you will need the basic game and both Expansion Sets, including the two blank cards in Expansion Set 2 (one Illuminati blank card and one controlled group). The blank Illuminati card represents the Evil Geniuses For A Better Tomorrow, a Delaware corporation, who have the following statistics:

Evil Geniuses For A Better Tomorrow, Inc. Power structure can participate in three acts per turn (though any one group can still only participate in one). Power: 7/7 Income: 9

The blank group card represents the Malevolent Microwavers, the people who beam microwaves into the US Embassy and, for all we know, into our homes.

Malevolent Microwavers Can alter any die roll one in either direction, as long as owning player is involved in the action. Power: 5 Resistance: 4 Communist Income: 3 Criminal

Note that the Microwavers can alter the die roll by one in either direction in any action in which their owner participates. ("Participation" is defined as being the attacker, defender, or spending MB to aid one or the other in an attack.) This means that if player A is attacking player B, player C cannot use the Microwavers unless he or she first contributes at least one megabuck to either attack or defense. (This special ability represents the confusion people experience when they are subjected to microwave bombardment.)

The Evil Geniuses win if they can take over seven Technological groups. Technological is not an alignment; one Tech group does not get a bonus of +4 to try to take over another. Rather, it is a list of the groups the Evil Geniuses use to achieve their nefarious ends. These groups are:

Boy Sprouts Malevolent Microwavers Cattle Mutilators (ex- Nuclear Power Companies periments gone wrong) Orbital Mind Control Lasers Clone Arrangers The Phone Company Comic Books Phone Phreaks Goldfish Fanciers Robot Sea Monsters Intellectuals Science Fiction Fans L-4 Society Secret Masters of Fandom Mad Scientists Video Games

Note that there are only 17 Tech groups and the Evil Geniuses need to get seven to win (as opposed to there being 21 Weird groups and the Discordians needing five). This helps balance out the Evil Geniuses' incredible advantage of having three opportunities to act per turn.

The groups above represent not only the technological artificers themselves but also allies and dupes of the Evil Geniuses, including youth arms (Comic Books and Science Fiction Fans). In fact, the only anomaly on the list is the Goldfish Fanciers. The only explanation I got when I called their corporate headquarters in Delaware was a cryptic, "Why . . . ah . . . well, Evil Geniuses like goldfish."

Enjoy this variant. Or else!

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