The year is 1888. Automated probes sent to Mars have transmitted evidence of two priceless kinds of ore not found on Earth, celerium and sylvanite, which could fuel mankind well into the future. They also found ice, which could be used to create an atmosphere around Mars and enable human colonization there. As the head of a ruthless Victorian-era mining corporation, you could become unfathomably wealthy from mining these resources – if you can reach them before your competitors. You have ten rounds to send your astronauts into space, occupy the planet’s most resource-rich zones, and harvest as much celerium, sylvanite, and ice as possible.
At your command is a team of nine professionals, each with a unique skill set. Every turn you’ll use of them to seat your astronauts in spaceships, move between zones on Mars, make scientific discoveries, or eliminate astronauts that belong to the competition. If you want to win the race for Mars’ riches, you’ll need to use your characters to play a few dirty tricks.
To mine a zone of Mars for ore or ice, simply occupy it with more astronauts than your rivals. In addition, you begin the game with a secret mission, which may be to control certain zones or amass a specific type of ore. If you can accomplish your mission, you’ll earn points in addition to those earned from mining. You can also draw Event cards, which may give you additional secret missions or surprise actions to use in the final stage of the game. You might make a lucrative scientific discovery about a certain zone, or unearth knowledge that you could use to sabotage a rival corporation.