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Info taken from FAQs in file area and various forum threads, especially the thread Taluva FAQ
There is also a game notation available for play-by-forum or analysis etc.
Table of Contents
The game title is pronounced "Tah-LOO-vah" (accent on second syllable). That's [ta ˈlu va] in IPA.
A settlement is simply any connected group of buildings of the same color. E.g. a solitary temple is also a settlement (and thus can be expanded from or build a tower). Even though every settlement starts as a single hut, a settlement is not required to have huts (it could lose all its huts due to a volcanic eruption).
48 Volcano tiles
Although some players propose a variant with 12 tiles per player, the official rules are that all 48 tiles are used, regardless of the number of players.
The new edition (Ferti, 2012), uses the 12 tile per player variant as the official rulebook rule (now using all 48 tiles with less than 4 players is listed as a variant).
Note that the "Regular Goal" is actually unusual; normally the game is won by "Early Victory".
If a player places the 48th tile, then places their last of a second type of building, then they win via the "Early Victory" condition.
Each turn consists of two steps
Note that you do exactly those 2 steps: Add a tile and one building placement (which could cause several huts to be placed due to an expansion).
Step 1: Place a Volcano Tile
a) Expand the landscape
The new tile must touch some already-placed tile, but there are no restrictions about what types of terrain are adjacent to each other.
The first player's first move of course is an exception, since there is no already-placed tile. The first player's first move is to simply place their tile on the table (and then place a hut on one of its non-volcano hexes).
b) Volcanic eruption
The volcano hex on the new tile must be placed directly on a volcano hex already in play.
The volcano tile (which has 3 hexes) must be on top of at least 2 tiles.
All three hexes under the eruption tile must be at the same level.
Huts lost to volcanic eruptions leave the game and cannot be reused. They still count as having been placed (for purposes of ending the game by building all of two types of your buildings).
It is perfectly legal (and sometimes good for you) to cover your own huts.
It is legal to cover volcanoes with the non-volcano hexes of the new tile.
It is illegal to cover a temple or tower.
It is illegal to cover all of a one-hut or two-hut settlement, wiping out the entire settlement.
There is no limit to the number of levels you can build. E.g. the rules specifically say Towers can be built on "a level 3 or higher field".
Step 2: Place one or more buildings
By doing any of these 4 building actions, you can cause a merger of 2 or even 3 settlements. And that resulting larger settlement (group of adjacent buildings) might have more than one temple and/or more than one tower. That is all OK.
You do exactly one of these build actions in your turn, never more than one.
If you can't build, you lose.
Hexes do not need to be at the same level to be considered adjacent. E.g. a level 1 and level 3 hex can be adjacent.
You are allowed to build on lakes. The rules even show an example of it. Only volcanoes cannot be built on.
a) Build a Hut
A single hut can be placed on any empty level 1 hex. You cannot use this action to place a single hut on a higher level.
1st edition rules: You can use this action to place a hut adjacent to an existing settlement. This not considered an expansion, but simply building a hut.
2nd edtion rules: "The player places one Hut on a level 1 field of his choice, which is not adjacent to a settlement of the same color."
The first player places a building (which must be a hut) on their first turn, just like every other turn.
b) Build a Tower
The tower must be placed on level 3 or higher, adjacent to one of your settlements. It doesn't matter if this settlement has temples or huts or both, nor how many hexes it occupies. All that matters is that it's next to an empty level 3 hex where you can put the tower, and that the settlement doesn't already have a tower.
A Tower could be built next to a Hut or a Temple.
If a space is next to a settlement with a tower and another settlement without a tower, you may choose the latter settlement to legally build the tower from.
c) Build a Temple
Levels have no relevance. All that matters is that the settlement doesn't already have a temple, and that it covers at least 3 hexes. It doesn't matter if this settlement has towers or huts or both.
A temple could be build next to a hut or a tower.
If a space is next to a settlement with a temple and another settlement without a temple, you may choose the latter settlement to legally build the temple from.
d) Expand an existing Settlement
You name a terrain type that is adjacent to the settlement, and must fill all empty hexes of the named terrain type with huts. Note that you may only fill hexes that are directly adjacent to the existing settlement (i.e. you cannot cascade hut placement to other hexes that are not directly adjacent). Empty hexes on level one are filled with one hut, empty hexes on level two are filled with two huts, etc. If you don't have enough huts left, then the entire move is illegal, and you cannot do it. The rules explicitly say of the building actions that "a player may only choose one for which he still has enough building pieces"
It is perfectly possible that your expansion causes you to build huts in only one hex, if that is the only hex of the named terrain type adjacent to your settlement. And if that hex is at level 1, then you place only 1 hut. (That case is in effect indistinguishable from the action "Build a Hut".)
Note that the "Regular Ending" is actually unusual; normally the game is ended by "Early Ending".
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