Sat Jul 28 18:43:49 PDT 2001
Die Hanse is a family game for 3-6 players aged 10 and up. Game time approx. 1-2 hours.
First edition 1993
Author: Tom Schoeps
Co-Author: Henning Sachse
Editing: Bernd Dietrich
Assistance: Kapitän a.G. Günther Knorr
Graphics and layout: Frank Gerwin
Text: Rainer Gladys
[English Translation: Rick Heli. All translator additions in brackets.]
The players, as merchants in the time of the Hanseatic League try to carry salt from Lübeck to commercial ports and exchange them for needed products. The exchanged goods must either be brought back for domestic storage (on the storage card) or to trade offices in other harbors, in exchange for other needed products.
On the storage cards each Hansa merchant finds the products which he must in the course of the game, put in storage. Once a merchant fills his storage card, the game ends and the winner is determined.
During this time period, wares were transported in sailing ships, cogs or later holks. To reduce the risk of such a dangerous and uncertain journey, merchants formed so-called companies with one or several partners and thereby distributed valuable loads on several ships.
In this game each player shares a Hansa cog with his left and righthand neighbors. And there are risks to the voyage on all sides. Whether it be the feared pirates, the Vitalian Brotherhood as they were known, wreaking havoc, whether storms rage over the North and Baltic Seas, or a harbor is blocked, a thousand things can cause difficulties in the life of an honorable merchant...
Products should be sorted out by type Then each product group is individually mixed and placed at the harbor on the board with its corresponding symbol so that the numbers of the product tokens are concealed.
Playing cards. Next all 64 cards must be sorted out. Each player receives 1 Kaperbrief card and 1 Privilegienkarte card. If there are fewer than 6 players, lay the rest of these cards to the side.
All of the other cards are termed Hafenkarten [Harbor cards]. Remove both of the blank cards from the deck. Then sort the harbor cards into 3 piles: Wind cards , "Neue Warren" cards [new product cards, 12], and all remaining harbor cards [18: 3 pirate cards, 9 blockade cards, 4 storm cards, 2 return to Lübeck cards]. These 3 piles should be shuffled individually and one card from each pile dealt face down to each player. [Each player show now have five cards all told.] A wind card is drawn and placed on the board. Finally all three of the undealt harbor card decks are combined, shuffled and placed face down in the space at the upper left of the board.
Storage cards. The ten storage cards present the task which each Hansa merchant needs to fulfill. Each card differs in the product symbols and uniquely determine which six goods the player must acquire in trade. Once a product is put in the storage card, it can no longer be exchanged. Naturally, the storage houses of each player are in Lübeck. Thus, each merchant must carry with his trade goods back there, in order to unload and pick up new salt. The ten storage cards are shuffled and each player draws one of these cards which he places down in front of him for all to see.
Game pawns. The six ship pawns and the pirate
ship are fit into the wooden stands.
They will indicate the current position of the trading cogs on the board. The black pirate ship and the round blockade token should be set to the side. They come into play later. Each player selects a colored ship pawn (the youngest player begins).
For each ship pawn there is a two-part cargo area card of the same color.
The ship cargo area is halved and each half can hold up to three wares.
Each player takes the cargo area cards that match the color of his ship pawn and then the ship pawns are placed in Lübeck (or as near as space allows). As the last step in set-up, each merchant gives the person to their left the bow of their ship (the right half of the divided ship card).
Thus each player now participates in exactly 2 cogs. A player has, for example, a red stern and a blue bow cargo area before himself. Thus, on his turn he moves the red and blue halves together as a single ship.
Then each player loads the cargo areas lying before him with 6 salt (3 per half).
All ships set out from Lübeck loaded with salt. Each merchant has a storage card, which must be filled with specific products. Through favorable planning of the ship routes and smart trading the players try to fill their own storage as quickly as possible and thus obtain the most points.
Start. Each player fills both cargo halves before him with three salt product tokens. All cogs begin their journey in Lübeck. The youngest player starts and play continues clockwise.
Movement. Each merchant on his turn moves both ships
which in which he half participates.
The sequence in which he moves the two ships as well as the
direction he moves the ships remains entirely up to him! The merchant
can sail therefore in a circle or remain in place.
The cogs may be only be moved on the hexagon fields. These may be sea hexes, harbors or the canal between the North and Baltic Sea.
On the sea a ship sails at most the number of spaces indicated by the current wind card, which is displayed on the board, and applies to all players. The values will differ between the North (Nordsee) and Baltic Seas (Ostsee). The maximum movement of a ship is determined by where a ship begins its turn. If a ship begins movement from the North Sea, use the movement value on the wind card for the North Sea, even if ending in the Baltic. Accordingly, the same applies for the Baltic.
At sea, only one ship may occupy a hexagon at a time. Only in the harbors and in the canal may several ships rest in the same space at the same time. In the Helgolander Bight and Lübeck's Bight more than one ship may occupy a hex if driven there by a storm (see Harbor cards). Ships may move through hexes occupied by another ship.
When a ship comes into a harbor he stops and any remaining movement is
lost. It is however allowed to exit a harbor and in the same turn re-enter
the same harbor.
Note: The Hanseatic cities Hamburg and Wismar do not count as harbors in this game. They merely represent the entrance and exit to the canal.
On the canal all ships move only one hex per turn. The values on the wind card are meaningless here, and the rest of the points lost as long as one is moving in the canal. That is, as soon as one enters the canal, movement ends automatically on the first canal space. During the entire canal passage the ship may not change direction. A player must, if on his turn he finds his ship in the canal, continue on through one hex per turn. Not moving, perhaps with the goal of annoying one's partner, is not allowed.
Harbors. As soon as a cog reaches a harbor both partners can transact trades one after the other. First is always the player who moved the ship into the harbor. This player must play a Harbor card after the close of all trading.
To be able to trade for products offered in the harbor one must have the right products. Trades are always concluded on a 1-for-1 basis, strictly according to the following scheme: Lubeck Salt can be exchanged for Fish from Bergen or Grain from Danzig. Fish can be further traded for Ore or Pelts. Grain can be traded for Cloth or Beer. In addition, a product may also be exchanged for like kinds (grain for grain, fish for fish, etc.).
Once in a port, a player states beforehand the number and type of products that he would like to trade. He takes these from his cargo area of the cog which has just moved into the port and places them back on the board at their point of origin. For each token returned he may now turn over three tokens of his choice from the goods supply, examine their point values and take one of them. The chosen wares are placed face down in the cargo area of his cog. Finally he places the rest of the ware tokens face down again on the board.
Attention! The transfer of products between ships
or from merchant to merchant is not allowed! One may exchange more of a
wares of a type than one really needs in his storage, this can reduce the
danger of looting. Such surplus products may be unloaded in Lübeck, and
only there, and
are distributed to the poor, i.e. these product tokens are again placed at
their origin harbor on the board.
All trades are voluntary. Thus, one may enter a harbor without exchanging products. In every case however, a Harbor card will be played.
If the draw pile is exhausted, the discard pile is shuffled and replaced on the board.
All harbor cards influence the whole game and can have direct or indirect consequences on all players. Listed below are the individual harbor cards with their consequences.
Wind card. A new wind card placed on the board. The old wind card is discarded. Starting immediately the new movement ranges count for all players. On each wind card there are two numbers. One counts for ships which begin their turn in the North Sea and the other is for ships which begin their turn in the Baltic Sea. Cogs which cross the line between North and Baltic Seas during their move use the number which applies for the sea in which they begain their turn.
Blockade. Play of such a card blocks ships from entering either a harbor or the Sund (strait). To indicate this, place the blockade token on the corresponding place: one of the seven harbors or the strait. Since there is only one blockade token there can only be one blockade at a time.
No ship may enter a blocked harbor. If the strait is blocked no ships may travel through it to go from the North Sea to the Baltic, or back. Instead in this case it must choose to travel the "slow" way through the canal.
Should at the time of the playing of the card one or more ships occupy the blocked hex, they are placed in an adjacent hex. The player of the card decides which ship is placed where. Of course he must observe the rule that only one ship may be placed in a single hex.
Neue Waren in: (New products). Additional product tokens are available at a harbor which does not normally offer wares of this type. Without examining their point values, take the wares listed on the card from their port of origin and place them at the relevant city.
Vitalienbrüder (Vitalian Brotherhood). Feared pirates of the North and Baltic Seas. The player of such a card takes the pirate ship and placed it on the listed starting space. Starting spaces can be Gotland or Rügen in the Baltic or Helgoland in the North Sea. Then the player moves the pirate ship a number of points listed on the card. If the pirates enter a hex containing a trading cog, it is automatically plundered. This means that a pirate ship may not jump over any cog as this trading ship would naturally be immediately attacked. One may however move the pirates around a ship, perhaps for example he would like to avoid having his own cog plundered!
In a plundering the player who moved the pirate takes two wares from the cargo area of the attacked cog. He has free choice of which wares he plunders [without looking at their values?] and whether he takes a ware from each of the partners or removes two wares from the cargo area of one player. Both wares are then placed back on the board at their port of origin.
Should the player of the pirate card not reach any trading cog, the turn passes to the player on the left. This player adds one to the movement allowance used by his predecessor! If this second player also fails to reach a ship pawn, the turn continues and the next adds another point to the movement allowance. This goes on until a cog is reached and plundered.
The pirate ship may travel on all sea fields. Blockades do not stop the Vitalian Brotherhood and they can even enter harbors to plunder cogs there. Only the canal and the harbor of Lübeck are taboo to them!
Should it be the case that pirates move into a hex with more than one ship, whether it be in a harbor or following a storm in the Lübeck or Helgoland Bight, the player whose immediate turn it is decides the cog to be plundered. In every case there will be exactly one ship attacked.
After the terrible Vitalian Brotherhood have completed their work, the pirate ship is again removed from the board and the round continues so as to to be uninterrupted.
Hansetag in Lübeck (Hansa Day in Lübeck). At some point in the two rounds following the play of this card all players must have visited Lübeck with at least one of their cogs. The round begins at once with the player of this card. And it also ends with this player! (This means that the player of the Hansa Day card begins the second round and after all other players have had one turn also ends it. Thus he is the only one who has two chances to reach Lübeck!)
If a player does not reach the Hansa Day in Lübeck by the second round his lefthand neighbor removes the ware token of his choice his storage area as a fine. If no products are in storage, there is naturally no fine.
Attention! If a player is only in the directly following round, that is the first round after the Hansa Day card in Lübeck this does not count for the obligation to be present. [Note: the wording seems to be a bit strange. The intention of the rule appears to be that to qualify a ship must be in Lübeck at the end of all of the Hansa Day movements.]
Sturm auf der ... (Storm). When one of these cards is played, all the affected cogs on the high sea (all ships in either the North or Baltic Seas) are immediately placed on the listed space. For the North Sea this can be Helgoland Bight and for the Baltic Sea the Lübeck Bight. As an exception, more than one cog may be on these places.
The ships can also be immediately driven into the nearest port. Any harbor which is not blocked is available. Also the path to it may not be blocked. When there is a tie for which harbor is nearest, the player of the card decides in which harbor the ship is placed.
Once products are placed on a storage card they may never be exchanged out. Only as "penance" in the case of a missed Hansa Day can a product can be removed from the storage card.
The Privilegienkarte affords the following three possibilities:
The Kaperbrief affords the following three possibilities:
First add up the tokens in one's own storage card. The merchant who first filled his storage card receives a bonus of 5 points. The partner with whom he shared the cog with which the first storage card was filled receives a bonus of 3 points. Players receive the printed bonuses for unplayed Privilegienkarte and Kaperbrief cards
All of the points are added up and the player with the highest total wins.
Later when the Prince of Mecklenburg went to war against Denmark and Sweden, they became freebooters signing on with all sides and equipping themselves with Letters of Marque. These Letters meant nothing other a written assignment of responsibility and accountability to one of the warring parties.
However these pirates soon became a serious threat to the Hanseatic traders. [Based in Visby in Sweden, they even dared to sack Bergen in 1392. The Teutonic Knights organized an invasion which drove them out of Jutland in 1398. However they were soon back in operation. Read more at Odds & Ends.] In the early 14th century a fleet from Hamburg and Lübeck was sent out against the Vitalian Brotherhood to overthrow the pirates. The remaining freebooters were initially dispersed, but freshly re-appeared after a short time, now under the leadership of Klaus Störtebeker, Gödecke Michels and Magister Wigbold. In the year 1401, the Vitalian Brotherhood and their leaders were attacked by a fleet out of Hamburg near Helgoland Bight and Störtebeker and Michels brought to Hamburg as prisoners, where in 1402 they were executed. [This event seems to be reflected by the "Blockade of Bremen" harbor card.] Opposed to the verdict was the "Bunte Kuh" [multicolored cow] and also Simon of Utrecht did not participate in it.
Toward the end of the 14th century [not translated]
Die Hanse is not a negotiation game, but it is very worthwhile to co-ordinate ship routes with one's partner, quickly get into the lead and thereby accordingly get close to the win. It can be quite useful to make your fellow players aware of the advantageous position of another merchant, if only to divert attention from this fact.
In order to do meaningful route planning, it is important to remember the rules for trades and barter as specified. One should use the harbor cards as directly and consciously as possible. In this way, one can try using one ship and a harbor card to influence the course of the second ship. For this purpose, sometimes it is even appropriate to visit a harbor at which one does not actually want to trade, or to sacrifice one's Privilegienkarte for a special move. Nearing game's end, it is important to detect, when a fellow player possibly has a hidden chance to win in order to prevent this in time, perhaps with the assistance of the other merchants.
by Tom Schoeps
|Hansetag in Lübeck
(Hansa Day in Lübeck)
|Jeder Kauffahrer mus in der ubernachsten Runde in Lübeck vertreten sein, sonst verliert er eine Ware aus seinem Speicher.||Each merchant must have at least 1 ship in Lübeck by the end of the second round or lose a product from storage.|
|Sturm auf der Nordsee (Storm on the North Sea)||Alle Koggen, die sich auf der Nodsee befinden, ziehen sofort in den nachsten offenen Hafen und setzen dort 1 x aus.||All cogs currently in the North Sea are immediately moved into the nearest open harbor and must wait there for 1 turn.|
|Sturm auf der Nordsee (Storm on the North Sea)||treibt alle Koggen, die sich auf der Nordsee befinden, in die helgolander bucht. Hier furfen jetzt mehrere Koggen stehen.||All cogs currently in the North Sea are immediately moved to Helgoland Bight. Multiple ships may be in this hex for this purpose.|
|Sturm auf der Ostsee (Storm on the Baltic Sea)||Alle Koggen, die sich auf der Ostee befinden, ziehen sofort in den nachsten offenen Hafen und setzen dort 1 x aus.||All ships currently in the Baltic Sea are immediately moved into the nearest open harbor and must wait there for one turn.|
|Sturm auf der Ostsee (Storm on the Baltic Sea)||treibt alle Koggen, die sich auf der ostsee befinden, in die Lübecker Bucht. Hier durfen jetzt mehrere Koggen stehen.||All ships currently in the Baltic Sea are immediately moved to Lübeck Bight. Multiple ships may be in this hex for this purpose.|
|Blockade vom Sund (Blockade of the Strait)||Konigin Margarethe von Dänemark last den Sund für alle Hanseschiffe sperren.||Queen Margaret of Denmark has blocked the strait for all Hansa ships.|
|Blockade von Stockholm (Blockade of Stockholm)||wird von den feindlichen Danen belagert. Alle Erze werden daher für den Bau von neuem Kreigsgerat gebraucht.||Stockholm is besieged by hostile Danes. All ore is needed for the building of new war machines. [Stockholm blockaded]|
|Blockade von Bergen (Blockade of Bergen)||Konig Håkon erhebt drastische Steuern und Zolle, daher meidet die Hanse diesen Hafen.||King Håkon drastically raises taxes and duties; thus, the Hansa avoids this harbor. [Bergen blockaded]|
|Blockade von Danzig (Blockade of Danzig)||Der Deutsche Orden ist gerade damit beschaftigt, einen Aufstand niederzuschlagen. Keine gute Gegend fur friedliche Handler.||German soldiers are busy putting down a riot. Not a good area for peaceful traders. [Danzig blockaded]|
|Blockade von London (Blockade of London)||Farber, Weber und Kuper arbeiten nicht mehr, weil die karge Bezahlung nicht ausreicht. Es gibt zur Zeit keine Tuche mehr.||Dyers, weavers and cloth makers are on strike due to falling prices. There is no cloth available. [London blockaded]|
|Blockade von Nowgorod (Blockade of Novgorod)||wurde von Piraten erobert und geplundert. Wegen der rechtlosen Zustande ist dies kein Hafen mehr fur ehrliche Handler.||Novgorod has been conquered and plundered by pirates. Because of the lawless conditions this harbor is not fit for for honorable traders. [Novgorod blockaded]|
|Blockade von Bremen (Blockade of Bremen)||Die Hinrichtung Stortebekers zog viele Menschen an. Daher wurde alles Bier nach Hamburg verkauft und dort ausgetrunken.||An execution has attracted a great crowd. Therefore all the beer has been sold and drunk in Hamburg. [Bremen blockaded]|
|Blockade von Lübeck (Blockade of Lübeck)||Wegen der grosen Pestepedemie darf Lübeck nicht angefahren werden.||No ships may enter Lübeck due to plague epidemic. [Lübeck blockaded; this card nullified by Hansetag]|
|Vitalienbrüder auf Kaperfahrt (Vitalian Brotherhood on a raid)||Das Piratenshiff startet mit 5 Zugpunkten von Helgoland.||The pirate ship is placed in Helgoland and starts with 5 movement points.|
|Vitalienbrüder auf Kaperfahrt (Vitalian Brotherhood on a raid)||Das Piratenshiff startet mit 4 Zugpunkten von Gotland.||The pirate ship is placed in Gotland and starts with 4 movement points.|
|Vitalienbrüder auf Kaperfahrt (Vitalian Brotherhood on a raid)||Das Piratenshiff startet mit 3 Zugpunkten von Rügen.||The pirate ship is placed in Rügen and starts with 3 movement points.|
|Neue Waren in: (New products in)||[Place the appropriate number of new products in the harbor listed on the card. Fish (Stockfisch), Beer (Bier), Grain (Getreide), Cloth (Tuche), Fur (Pelze), Ore (Erze).]|
[* "Pfeffersäcke" is a slang term for very wealthy merchants.]
Thanks for the suggestions of Steffan O'Sullivan.