Kaolan

A Battle Strategy Card Game

Kaolan is an exciting trading card battle game. It can be played in four ways: Match Play (single pack), Tournament Play (multiple packs), Power Play (head-to-head), or Single Play (solitaire). All versions use a Master Deck of 60 original cards but Booster Cards can be added to allow for an endless variety of challenging play.

Features

  • A complete single-deck battling card game.
  • 60 original design cards including character, power, opportunity, and special ability cards.
  • Easy to learn but hard to put down.
  • Designed for kids and adults to enjoy.
  • Can be augmented with booster cards.
  • Creator: Kenneth P. Langer
  • Publication Date: April 2017
  • Retail Price: TBD
  • Edition: First
  • Cards
    • Master Deck: 60
    • Booster Decks: 6 decks of 10 cards

The Cards

The Kaolan Master Deck consists of four types of cards: Character Cards, Power Cards, Special Ability Cards, and Opportunity Cards. There are five Character Cards in three colors: Starmaster, Diamondback, Stinger, Claw, and Flame. Each one lists a level number, the number of Power Cards that can be added and the numbers of a single die needed to challenge another player. The Power Cards come in three colors and have only numbers on them. Special Ability and Opportunity Cards are marked by name and contain different text for each one.

The Kaolan Booster Packs are sets of ten cards that can be added to the Master Deck. Each Booster Pack may contain special cards with additional special abilities, powers, or opportunities. Any Booster Pack may also contain gold Character or Power Cards which can be used by any color.

Character Cards

Each Character card has an image of a beast with its name at the top and its symbol. There are three standard colors of Characters: red, green, and blue. (Gold Characters are also possible with Booster Packs). Character Cards also list three characteristics: its level number, the total number of Power Cards it can hold, and the number needed to initiate an Attack.

Power Cards

Each Power Card contains only a single number in the center and on the sides in one of the three Character colors. They can only be used by Characters of the same color. Each number represents the possible result of a roll of two dice.

Special Ability Cards

Each Special Ability Card displays a special seal and lists an ability that can be added to any Character. No Character may have more than one Special Ability at a time. The Special Ability Card is placed underneath a Character along with its Power Cards and has a special code on the side to help identify its use.

Opportunity Cards

Each Opportunity Card lists an action that a player may take during a turn.

Special Booster Pack Cards

Booster Packs are randomly chosen packs of five cards that can be added to a Master Deck. Special cards can include Gold Characters that can use any color of Power Cards, Gold Power Cards that can be used with any Character or that might include the possibility of two or three dice roll combinations, and new and additional Opportunity and Special Ability Cards.

Match Play

Match Play is the standard game for a small group of players.

Requirements:

Match Play is for two to four players using a single deck of 60 cards. Two six-sided dice are also needed. The original Master Deck is the main deck but Booster Cards can be used to supplement it. If Booster Cards are used only 60 cards can be used for play. The Booster Cards can be shuffled into the Master Deck and then a number of random cards should be removed before play so that the playing deck will have no more than 60 cards.

Object:

The object of the game is to clear your opponent’s battlefield of all Character Cards. A battlefield consists of one Leader and up to three Guards. When a player’s Character Cards on the battlefield have been eliminated that player is out of the game. The last remaining player is the winner.

Preparation:

Play begins by shuffling the cards of the Master Deck. This will be the Play Deck. From the Play Deck deal four cards, face down, to each player. Without looking at the cards each player will arrange these cards in front of them so that there is one before three cards. See the chart below for play formation for each player. This will be the player’s Playing Board. (For a shorter game use fewer guards.)

1 = Leader Card, 2 = Guards, 3 = Draw Pile, 4 = Discard Pile

The Playing Board can have no more than four cards at one time. During play, any non-Character card can be replaced by a Character Card from a player’s hand.

Next, four cards are dealt to each player to form the playing hand. All players must have no more than four cards in their hand at any time during the game. Any player having more than four cards in their hand at the end of a round must place enough cards in the Discard Pile to have four.

The remaining cards become the Drawing Pile. If the Draw Pile is empty shuffle the Discard pile and start a new Draw pile.

Finally, each player turns the four cards on their Playing Board face up.

The Play

On each turn, the player must do only one of the following options:

  • Place a Character Card on the board
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can use a Character Card to replace any non-Character Card on your board. Once all the non-Character cards on your board have been replaced no more Character Cards can be put down. The Leader position on the board must always be filled first. Once the Leader position is filled you can use Character Cards to fill Guard positions. The non-Character card from the board can be added to the playing hand or discarded. When you are done, discard any cards over five in your playing hand.
  • Add a Power Card to any Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add Power Cards to any Character Card on your board (including the Leader) with the same color. For example, a green Character Card can only use green Power Cards. Put the Power Card underneath your Character Card so that the number can be seen to the side of the Character. Each Character Card has a limit on how many Power Cards you can use at one time.
  • Add a Special Ability to any Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add a Special Ability to any Character Card. Each Character may only have one at a time and a Special Ability cannot be replaced unless directed by an Opportunity Card.
  • Play an Opportunity Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. Show the Opportunity Card you want to use to all the players then follow the directions on the card. Discard the Opportunity Card when finished.
  • Initiate a Challenge
    • Do not draw a card from the Draw Pile. If you want to Challenge another Character in a player’s Leader position you must first announce the challenge to the other player. Follow the rules for a Challenge listed below. Your turn is over when the Challenge has been completed.
  • Pass
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile and discard a card to the Discard Pile.

The Challenge

  • Setting the Challenge
    • On their turn, a player (the Attacker) announces the Challenge and identifies the player being challenged (The Defender). Both Attacker and Defender must use the Character cards in their Leader positions for the challenge. An Attacker can attack any color and each attack takes place in three stages:
      • The Qualification
      • The Defense
      • The Volley
  • The Qualification
    • The Attacker first rolls one die (1d6) in an attempt to match the “to attack” numbers listed on the Character Card taking into account any Special Ability.
    • If the Qualification is successful the players go on to the next stage, otherwise, the Challenge is over.
  • The Defense
    • The Defender goes next and rolls two dice to attempt an escape. If the Defender’s roll matches any of the numbers of the Power Cards placed underneath their Character Card, the Defender avoids the attack and the Challenge is over, otherwise, the final stage begins.
  • The Volley
    • The Attacker rolls two dice (2d6). If the Attacker’s roll matches any of the numbers of the Power Cards placed underneath his or her Character Card (including any Special Ability cards), the Attacker wins and the Defender must discard their Character Card and any cards related to it into the Discard Pile and fill the Leader position with one of their Guards. If the Defender has no remaining Guards, that person is out of the game. If the numbers do not match the roll, the Challenge is over.

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Tournament Play

Tournament Play is a long game for multiple players using their own decks.

Requirements:

Tournament Play is for two to eight players each using their own deck. Two six-sided dice are also needed. The original Master Deck is the main deck but Booster Cards can be used to supplement the deck for each player. If Booster Cards are used only 40 cards per person can be used for play. The Booster Cards can be shuffled into the Master Deck and then a number of random cards should be removed before play so that the playing deck will have no more than 40 cards.

Object:

The object of tournament play is to clear all your opponents’ battlefields and to claim their Prize Cards. A battlefield consists of one Leader card, two Guards, and a Prize Card. When the Leader and the Guards have been eliminated through battle the player is out of the game and must permanently forfeit the Prize Card to the winner. The last remaining player with characters in their battlefield is the tournament winner.

Preparation:

Play begins with each player shuffling their own deck of cards then counting out four piles of ten cards to be used for play. Each player will then pick the top card of each of the four piles and place those cards face down on the table. Without looking at the cards they are arranged so that there is one card placed in front of two cards and another card behind the two. See the chart below for play formation for each player. This will be the player’s Playing Board.

1 = Leader Card, 2 = Guards, 3 = Prize Card, 4 = Draw Pile, 5 = Discard Pile

Next, each player takes the next four cards from their piles to use as the playing hand. All players must have no more than four cards in their hand at any time during the game. Any player having more than four cards in their hand at the end of a round must place enough cards in the Discard Pile to have four. The remaining cards are combined to become a player’s Draw Pile. Once all the cards from a Draw Pile are used they remain out of play for the remainder of the Tournament. Finally, each player turns over the Leader Card and the two Guards on the Playing Board face up. The Prize Card must remain face down on the board.

The Play

On each turn, the player must do only one of the following options.

  • Place a Character Card on the board
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can use a Character Card to replace any non-Character Card on your board or in any empty Guard position. The Leader position on the board must always be filled first. The non-Character card from the board can be added to your playing hand or discarded. When you are done, discard any cards over five in the playing hand.
  • Add a Power Card to any Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add Power Cards to any Character Card on your board (including the Leader) with the same color. For example, a green Character Card can only use green Power Cards. Put the Power Card underneath your Character Card so that the number can be seen to the side of the Character. Each Character Card has a limit to how many Power Cards you can use at one time.
  • Add a Special Ability to any Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add a Special Ability to any Character Card. Each Character may only have one at a time and a Special Ability cannot be replaced unless directed by an Opportunity Card.
  • Play an Opportunity Card
    • Do not draw a card from the Draw Pile. Instead, show the Opportunity Card you want to use to all the players then follow the directions on the card. Discard the Opportunity Card when finished.
  • Initiate a Challenge
    • Do not draw a card from the Draw Pile. If you want to Challenge another Character in a player’s Leader position you must first announce the challenge to the other player. Follow the rules for a Challenge listed below. Your turn is over when the Challenge has been completed.
  • Pass
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile and discard a card to the Discard Pile

The Challenge

  • Setting the Challenge
    • On their turn, a player (the Attacker) announces the Challenge and identifies the player being challenged (The Defender). An Attacker cannot challenge any Character of the same color. Both Attacker and Defender must use the Character cards in their Leader positions for the challenge. Each attack takes place in three stages:
      • The Qualification
      • The Defense
      • The Volley
  • Alliances
    • In tournament play, Attackers and Defenders of the same color may form alliances. Players in alliance attack and defend together. Players are not required to be part of any alliance.
  • The Qualification
    • Each Attacker first rolls one die (1d6) in an attempt to match the “to attack” numbers listed on the Character Card taking into account any Special Ability. If the Qualification is successful the player goes on to the next stage, otherwise, the Challenge is over for that player and the next Attacker attempts to qualify. All Attackers that qualify move on to the next stage.
  • The Defense
    • Each Defender goes next and rolls two dice to attempt an escape. If that Defender’s roll matches any of the numbers of the Power Cards placed underneath their Character Card, the Defender avoids the attack and the next Defender attempts an escape. All Defenders that do not escape go on to the next stage.
  • The Volley
    • The first Attacker must announce which Defender is being attacked and rolls two dice (2d6). If the Attacker’s roll matches any of the numbers of the Power Cards placed underneath their Character Card (including any Special Ability cards), the Attacker wins. The next Attacker begins a volley against any Defender who has not escaped. The volley continues until all qualified Attackers have attacked.
  • After the Battle
    • If an Attacker loses a Challenge, the turn is over. If a Defender loses a challenge, they must discard their Character Card and any cards related to it into their Discard Pile and fill the Leader position with one of their Guards. If the Defender has no remaining Guards, that person is out of the game. All Prize Cards remain on the Board until the Tournament is over. The winner of the Tournament claims all Prize Cards.

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Power Play

Power Play is a fast head-to-head set of rules for quick play.

Requirements:

Power Play is for two players and uses a single deck of 60 cards. Two six-sided dice are also needed. The original Master Deck is the main deck but Booster Cards can be used to supplement it. If Booster Cards are used only 60 cards can be used for play. The Booster Cards can be shuffled into the Master Deck and then a number of random cards should be removed before play so that the playing deck will have no more than 60 cards.

Object:

The object of the game is to clear your opponent’s battlefield of the Main Character Card and all linked cards. A battlefield consists of only one Character which can be linked to additional Characters. When a player’s Character Cards on the battlefield have been eliminated that player is out of the game, the game is over, and the other player is the winner.

Preparation:

Play begins by shuffling the cards of the Master Deck. If Booster Cards are added to the deck then a number of random cards should be removed so that only 60 cards remain. This will be the Play Deck.

From the Play Deck deal one card, face down, to each player. Without looking at the card each player will put this card in front of them. This will be the player’s Playing Board. The rest of the cards will form the Draw Pile. During play, the face down card on the board card can be replaced by a Character Card from a player’s hand if it is not already a Character Card.

Next, four cards are dealt to each player to form the playing hand. Each player must have no more than four cards in their hand at any time during the game. Any player having more than four cards in their hand at the end of a round must place enough cards in the Discard Pile to have four.

The remaining cards become the Drawing Pile. If the Draw Pile is empty shuffle the Discard pile and create a new Draw pile.

Finally, each player turns the card on their Playing Board face up.

The Play

On each turn, the player must do only one of the following options.

  • Place a Character Card on the board
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can use a Character Card to replace a non-Character Card on your board. The non-Character card from the board can be added to the playing hand or discarded. When you are done, discard any cards over four in the playing hand.
    • Once the first Character Card is set on the board it becomes the Main Character and must remain in place through the rest of the game.
    • In Power Play, additional Character Cards can be linked to the main Character on the board by placing them directly below each other. Only one Character of each level can be linked together so that there will be no more than five cards, one of each level of any color, linked together.
  • Replace a linked Character Card
    • During play linked cards can be exchanged with Characters of the same level but of different colors to try and make all the linked cards the same color as the Main Character.
    • The first or Main Character cannot be replaced.
    • If all five cards of the same color are linked the Character is said to be a Grandmaster and can attack without qualifying (To Attack = 1-6).
  • Add a Power Card to any Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add Power Cards of the same color to any linked Character Card on your board. For example, a green Character Card can only use green Power Cards. Put the Power Card underneath your Character Card so that the number can be seen to the side of the Character. Each Character Card has a limit to how many Power Cards you can use at one time. All linked cards maintain their card limits.
  • Add a Special Ability to the Main Character Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. You can add a Special Ability only to your Main Character Card but not on linked cards. That Character may only have one Special Ability at a time.
  • Play an Opportunity Card
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile. Show the Opportunity Card you want to use to all the players then follow the directions on the card. Discard the Opportunity Card when finished.
    • Initiate a Challenge
    • Do not draw a card from the Draw Pile. If you want to Challenge your opponent you must first announce the challenge to the other player. Follow the rules for a Challenge listed below. Your turn is over when the Challenge has been completed.
  • Pass
    • Draw a card from the Draw Pile and discard a card to the Discard Pile.

The Challenge

  • Setting the Challenge
    • On their turn, a player (the Attacker) announces the Challenge. Each attack takes place in three stages:
      • The Qualification
      • The Defense
      • The Volley
  • The Qualification
    • The Attacker first rolls one die (1d6) to qualify (taking into account any Special Ability).
    • In Power Play the “To Attack” numbers on each card are ignored. A player qualifies based on the number of cards linked to the main Character. If there is one card on the board (the Main Character) the ‘To Attack’ number is one and if there are five cards on the board the ‘To Attack’ number is five, and so on. A Grandmaster does not need to qualify for attacks.
    • If the Qualification is successful the players go on to the next stage, otherwise, the Challenge is over.
  • The Defense
    • The Defender goes next and rolls two dice to attempt an escape. If the Defender’s roll matches any of the numbers of any of the Power Cards placed underneath their Main Character or linked cards, the Defender avoids the attack and the Challenge is over, otherwise, the final stage begins.
  • The Volley
    • The Attacker rolls two dice (2d6). If the Attacker’s roll matches any of the numbers of the Power Cards placed underneath their Main Character or any linked cards, the Attacker wins and the game is over.

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Single Play

Single Play is a solitaire game.

Requirements:

Single Play is for one player using both the Master Deck and all the Booster Packs (six in all) combined into one deck of 60 cards and called the Booster Deck. Two dice are also needed. In effect, the player battles against the Booster Deck.

Object:

The object of the game is to remove all the cards of the Booster Deck before being eliminated.

Preparation:

Begin by shuffling both decks. Divide the Booster Deck into four piles, face down. When done, turn over the top card of each pile. Take hold of the Master Deck.

The Play:

From the Master Deck, deal three cards and flip over the last card. If possible, use that card to eliminate a card from the Booster Deck based on the following rules.

  • A card from the Master Deck that matches a card from the Booster Deck eliminates that card. This includes Opportunity Cards, Special Ability Cards, and Power Cards of the same color and the same number. (Gold Cards match any color). Cards from both decks are then placed in their own separate Discard Piles.
  • When a card is removed from a pile, the next card in the pile is turned over. The next card revealed in the Master Deck can then be played, otherwise, play begins again by repeating the deal.
  • When the end of the Master Deck is reached, one card is discarded, the remaining cards are turned over, and play begins again.
  • If the player runs out of cards from the Master Deck the game is over.
  • A Character Card from the Booster Deck can only be removed by being defeated in battle.
  • If all four piles of the Booster Deck have a Special Ability Card revealed, they are all discarded together.
  • When a Character Card is revealed in the Master Deck it is set aside and Power Cards and one Special Ability Card may be added to it as play continues based on the card limits of the Character. Only one Character Card can be in play at a time for the Player.
  • If more than one Character Card is revealed on the piles, the Player must battle both separately.
  • If a matching color Power Card appears while a Player's Character Card is on the board it can be attached to the Character Card until that Character’s card limit is reached. Special Ability cards can also be attached to the player’s Character.

The Battle:

An attack can take place when there is a Character Card on the board with at least one Power Card attached for the player and a Character Card on one of the four piles. When a player reveals another Character Card from the Master Deck, they must attack. The Booster Pack always attacks first. Two dice are first rolled for the Booster Pack and any card revealed on the other piles are used including all Special Ability Cards. If the Booster Deck attack is successful the Player must discard the Character card and all attached cards, as well as the Character Card, revealed in the Master Deck. The Player can then attack using any Power Cards attached to the Character on the board. If the attack is successful all the face-up cards on the piles are removed unless there is more than Character Card on the piles. In such a case, the cards relating to the first Character are removed and the top card of each remaining pile is turned over and used for the battle with the next Character.

After all defeated Characters are discarded, play then continues as before.

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Strategy

  • Avoid using Character Cards all of the same color. It reduces the probability of picking the needed Power Cards.
  • Get Character Cards and Power cards on the board early.
  • Observe the following probabilities of 2d6 rolls:
    • 2 = 2.7%
    • 3 = 5.5%
    • 4 = 8.3%
    • 5 = 11.1 %
    • 6 = 13.8%
    • 7 = 16.6%
    • 8 = 13.8%
    • 9 = 11.1%
    • 10 = 8.3%
    • 11 = 5.5%
    • 12 = 2.7%

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