Title:
LAYERED BOARD GAME
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A layered game board includes a base game board, a movable game surface, and a play surface. The movable game surface is provided on top of the base game board and is movable in relation to the base game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board. The play surface is provided on top of the movable game surface for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface. An example includes a weather wheel provided for rotation on a game board depicting a world domination-type game. The movable game surface and the play surface can be provided as a retrofit expansion set for existing games.



Inventors:
Zuuring, Frank A. (Kingston, ON, CA)
Zuuring, Peter F. (Kingston, ON, CA)
Application Number:
11/423022
Publication Date:
12/28/2006
Filing Date:
06/08/2006
Assignee:
SAVITA GAMES INC. (131 Notch Hill Road, Kingston, ON, CA)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F3/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
MENDIRATTA, VISHU K
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BORDEN LADNER GERVAIS LLP (WORLD EXCHANGE PLAZA, 100 QUEEN STREET SUITE 1100, OTTAWA, ON, K1P 1J9, CA)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A layered game board, comprising: a base game board; a movable game surface, provided on top of the base game board and movable in relation to the base game board, having game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board; and a play surface, provided on top of the movable game surface, for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

2. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the game-related characteristics are displayed so that a type of effect is known and visible to the user, yet its timing and intensity are determined by other game factors.

3. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface overlaps a substantial portion of the base game board in substantially all positions.

4. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface comprises a translatable portion that be moved with respect to an axis of the movable game surface.

5. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface is disc-shaped.

6. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface comprises an environmental effects layer.

7. The layered game board of claim 6 wherein the environmental effects layer comprises a rotatable weather wheel.

8. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface comprises a sub-portion that is movable on the movable game surface.

9. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface comprises a removably attachable element that displays game-related characteristics.

10. The layered game board of claim 1 further comprising a game surface support to movably position the movable game surface on top of the base game board.

11. The layered game board of claim 10 wherein the game surface support comprises a central pin anchored to the base game board.

12. The layered game board of claim 10 wherein the game surface support comprises a track for positioning on the base game board, the movable game surface being movable within the track.

13. The layered game board of claim 12 wherein the track defines a closed path comprising a plurality of path segments.

14. The layered game board of claim 12 wherein the track is positioned so that the movable game surface is movable within the track to overlap a substantial portion of the base game board.

15. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the base game board defines a circular recessed portion to receive the movable game surface to permit it to be movably positioned.

16. The layered game board of claim 15 wherein the movable game surface comprises a circular protruding portion to engage with the circular recessed portion of the base game board.

17. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the play surface and the base game board have substantially similar dimensions.

18. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the play surface permits viewing of both the base game board and the movable game surface.

19. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the play surface is transparent.

20. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the play surface comprises a polarizing filter.

21. The layered game board of claim 1 wherein the movable game surface comprises a polarizing filter.

22. The layered game board of claim 1 further comprising a second movable game surface, provided below the play surface, characteristics of the second movable game surface directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board.

23. The layered game board of claim 22 wherein the characteristics of the second movable game surface change the manner in which game play is affected by the characteristics the movable game surface.

24. A layered expansion set for a base game board, comprising: a movable game surface, for positioning on top of the base game board and movable in relation to the base game board, having game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board; and a play surface, provided on top of the movable game surface, for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

25. A layered game board, comprising: a transparent game board having game characteristics printed thereon and defining a play surface; and a movable game surface provided below the game board and movable in relation to the game board, the movable game surface having game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the game board.

26. The layered game board of claim 25 wherein the play surface is for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the game characteristics on the game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of priority of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/693,800 filed Jun. 27, 2005, which is incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to board games. More particularly, the present invention relates to a layered board game.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Board games are known to have various forms and rules. In some board games, each player's playing piece travels along one or more paths on a game board in order to reach a destination first. In other board games, players compete directly with each other in order to be the first to achieve a status or rank in the game, rather than reaching a physical destination. Some factors that can affect a player's success or failure in a game include: the player's own actions; actions of competing players; drawing a game card with an associated result; a result associated with a particular roll of the dice; landing on a particular area on the game board, including whether the area is “owned” or “occupied” by a player; or any combination of these or other similar factors.

While most board games have a planar surface that is essentially two-dimensional with respect to play of the game, some games have three-dimensional or multi-level attributes. In such known board games, the three-dimensional aspect typically represents a hazard, a physical attribute of an area on the playing surface, a geographic topology, or a similar aspect. In other instances, multiple levels or areas provide for distinct playing surfaces on the game board for the movement of game pieces. However, such multi-level or multi-area board games typically have a stationary game board, which can limit possibilities with respect to game play. Also, the additional levels do not generally affect the game play environment in a way that changes during game play.

Some games have a movable layer that can be moved or repositioned during game play, and have some sort of effect on the play of the game. However, the effect is often unknown until it happens, including how it will affect certain portions of the game board. Since this can take away from strategy involved in game play, it is desirable to have a movable game that can add to game play strategy, by providing a mix of predictability and uncertainty.

It is, therefore, desirable to provide a board game that overcomes at least one of the drawbacks of known board games or gaming boards.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to obviate or mitigate at least one disadvantage of previous board games or gaming boards.

In an aspect, the present invention provides a layered game board, including a base game board, a movable game surface, and a play surface. The movable game surface is provided on top of the base game board and movable in relation to the base game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board. The play surface is provided on top of the movable game surface, for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

Game-related characteristics of the movable game surface can be displayed so that a type of effect is known and visible to the user, yet its timing and intensity are determined by other game factors. The movable game surface can overlap a substantial portion of the base game board in substantially all positions. The movable game surface can be disc-shaped. The movable game surface can include a movable sub-portion that is movable in relation to the movable game surface. The movable game surface can be customized by the attachment of removable elements that display game-related characteristics. The movable game surface can be an environmental effects layer, such as a rotatable weather wheel.

A game surface support can be provided to movably position the movable game surface on top of the base game board. The game surface support can include a central pin anchored to the base game board, or a track for positioning on the base game board, the movable game surface being movable within the track. The track can define a closed path comprising a plurality of path segments, and can be positioned so that the movable game surface is movable within the track to overlap a substantial portion of the base game board.

The base game board can define a circular recessed portion to receive the movable game surface to permit it to be movably positioned. The movable game surface can include a circular protruding portion to engage with the circular recessed portion of the base game board.

The play surface and the base game board can have substantially similar dimensions. The play surface can permit viewing of both the base game board and the movable game surface, and is preferably transparent. The play surface, or the movable game surface, can include a polarizing filter.

A second movable game surface can be provided below the play surface, with game-related characteristics of the second movable game surface directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board. The game-related characteristics of the second movable game surface can change the manner in which game play is affected by the characteristics of the first movable game surface.

In another aspect, the present invention provides a layered expansion, such as an expansion set, for a base game board, including a movable game surface and a play surface. The movable game surface is provided on top of the base game board and movable in relation to the base game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board. The play surface is provided on top of the movable game surface, for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

In a further aspect, the present invention provides a layered game board including a transparent game board and a movable game surface. The transparent game board, which can be partially transparent or semi-transparent, has game characteristics printed thereon and defines a play surface. The portion with the game characteristics can be sufficiently transparent to view portions of the movable game surface. The movable game surface is provided below the game board and movable in relation to the game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the game board. The play surface is for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the game characteristics on the game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

Other aspects and features of the present invention will become apparent to those ordinarily skilled in the art upon review of the following description of specific embodiments of the invention in conjunction with the accompanying figures.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Embodiments of the present invention will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the attached Figures, wherein:

FIG. 1 is an exploded view of a layered board game according to an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a game surface support according to another embodiment of the present invention;

FIGS. 3 and 4 illustrate additional game board supports according to embodiments of the present invention;

FIG. 5 illustrates a layered game board with a movable game surface according to another embodiment of the present invention; and

FIGS. 6, 7 and 8 illustrate embodiments showing game board supports comprising a track for movement of a movable game surface.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Generally, the present invention provides a multi-layered game board to create a unique and challenging gaming experience. The layered game board includes a base game board, a movable game surface, and a play surface. The movable game surface is provided on top of the base game board and is movable in relation to the base game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the base game board. The play surface is provided on top of the movable game surface for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the base game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface. An example includes a weather wheel provided for rotation on a game board depicting a world domination-type game. The movable game surface and the play surface can be provided as a retrofit expansion set for existing games.

FIG. 1 is an exploded view of a layered game board 100 according to an embodiment of the present invention, including a base game board 102, a movable game surface 104 and a play surface 106, all preferably connected by a connector, or game surface support, 108. The base game board 102 provides a stationary playing surface foundation for the additional board layers. The base game board 102 can be provided as a flat game surface. Different base game boards can be interchangeable with the other elements of the layered game board, to allow for expansion, modification or variation of the game. The base game board can be provided in a frame or casing, and the other layers and surfaces can be connected to the frame casing, allowing easy expansion or modification by replacement of the base game board within the casing, which is preferably transparent.

The movable game surface 104 is movably positionable with respect to the base game board 102 by means of the game surface support 108. In a particular embodiment, the movable game surface 104 is an environmental effects layer, which can be a rotatable weather wheel with graphics depicting weather storms for an added element to game play. While the environmental effects layer can be provided as a weather wheel, other embodiments can include environmental effects such as: earthquakes or other natural disasters; economic effects, such as recessions or stock market crashes. The movable game surface is preferably substantially transparent, either fully or partly, such as made of clear, anti-static polyester or polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which enables gamers to view the painted surface of the base game board below. The movable game surface can include or provide the ability to receive removably attachable elements that display game-related characteristics, which can be removably attached in order to customize the movable game surface.

A stationary play surface 106 is provided above the movable game layer 104, allowing game pieces placed on the play surface to be physically unaffected or unmoved by movement of the movable game surface, though they can be affected from the point of view of game outcome or strategy. The play surface 106 can be made from a square piece of transparent anti-static polyester, resulting in a clear stationary play surface. The play surface 106 and the base game board 102 preferably have substantially similar dimensions, so that the play surface covers the entire base game board. The play surface 106 can have notches 110 cut on each side to enable players to access the movable game surface 104 for spinning or other movement. The play surface 106 can be either fully or partly transparent, and can be controlled and polarized. Polarized film for the play surface 106 and the movable game surface 104 can produce the effect of fog or an eclipse.

A second movable game surface 112 can be provided above or below the play surface 106 is held in place via the connector 108. The second movable game surface 112 can be a secondary environmental effects layer, such as a cloud cover, or Antarctica cloud cover, which can be provided as a clear piece of anti-static polyester with a printed cloud image and shape. The game characteristics on the second movable game surface 112 affect game play on overlapping portions of the base game board, and can affect the game characteristics of the first movable game surface 104 with respect to game play.

As shown in FIG. 1, the connector or game surface support 108 is provided as a plastic central pin, for positioning the movable game surface on top of the base game board. In the case of a central pin, it can be mounted to the middle of the base game board 102 to anchor additional layers 106, 106, and 112. There are other possible implementations of the game surface support 108.

FIG. 2 illustrates an embodiment where the game surface support is not a separate element, but is provided as parts of the existing elements. In FIG. 2, the game surface support is provided as a recessed area, or pocket, 114 in the base game board for receiving a protruding portion 116 of the movable game surface. Alternatively, a circular hollow can be provided in the base game board, which receives the entire movable game surface, so that the entire surface is received in, and rotated within, the pocket. This embodiment works with a circular, or disc-shaped, movable game surface, or any shaped movable game surface having a circular or disc-shaped protrusion. An additional raised portion can be provided to facilitate movement of the movable playing surface, and the play surface is placed on top of the other layers in a way that does not impede movement.

FIG. 3 and FIG. 4 illustrate additional game board supports, preferably provided in addition to the game surface support. In FIG. 3, each corner of the base game board 102 includes a pocket area 118 for retaining the layers of the game board. The pocket area 118 can be provided in addition to the central pin of FIG. 1, and preferably secures the movable game surface between the play surface and the base game board. In FIG. 4, a side game board support is shown. In many cases, the base game board is foldable, so that it can be folded when stored. The side game board support, or extrusion, 120 is preferably provided in order to secure the play surface and the movable game layer to the base game layer, and also reinforce the folds in the base game board. The side game board support can be transparent, so as not to obscure the base game board or any other surfaces. The game board support can be an unequal piece with a longer portion having a feathered edge to facilitate its use. The game board support can be integral with the play surface, so that it covers the other game layers like a sleeve. Alternative securing or game board support means can include riveting, pockets, Velcro™, or any other fastening or anchoring means.

FIG. 5 illustrates an embodiment of a movable game surface that does not cover a substantial area of the base game board at any given time. The movable game surface 108 is rotatable by means of a central pin or anchoring means, and can itself include a movable sub-portion 122, such as a slidable portion, that is movable with respect to the movable game surface. A track, guide or sliding means can be provided for movement of the movable sub-portion on the movable game surface. Any number of partial or full layers can be provided according to embodiments of the present invention.

The movable game surface need not be rotatable. For example, the movable game surface can be slidable to move from one side of the game board to another, such as shown in FIG. 6. A track 124 is provided for positioning on the base game board, and the movable game surface is movable within the track. In FIG. 6, a center pin at the center of a circular movable game surface can engage with the track, and provide for a movable offset, so that the circular movable game surface can be moved in play to cover a rectangular base game board. This adds another dimension of game play, since the movable game surface can now be moved in translational motion and rotational motion at different rates. Of course, the track can be provided to move the movable game surface either in the x- or y-axis. Alternatively, instead of providing a track, two distinct movable game surfaces can be provided with different centers. So, the solid surface and the dotted surface in FIG. 6 can be provided as two different movable game surfaces, which can be moved at different rates.

FIG. 7 and FIG. 8 illustrate embodiments where the movable game surface comprises a rectangular layer provided for engagement with a track or guide for slidable movement. In FIG. 7, an edge of the movable game surface 108 engages with a track 124 that is provided at the outer perimeter of the base game board. In FIG. 8, the center of the movable game surface 108 engages with a track 124 that is provided in an inner box shape. The movable game surface can either be partially or entirely movable and can be provided in any number of shapes. For example, the movable game surface can be a rotatable oval-shaped layer, with movement of the oval-shaped surface adding some uncertainty as to whether a particular environmental effect will affect a particular area of the base game board.

In a further embodiment, the base game board can be omitted by having the play surface include the characteristics formerly included on the base game board. In this case, the play surface can be provided above the movable game surface, and the play surface is transparent or semi-transparent in whole or in part.

In other words, in an embodiment, the present invention provides a layered game board including a transparent game board and a movable game surface. The transparent game board, which can be partially transparent or semi-transparent, has game characteristics printed thereon and defines a play surface. The portion with the game characteristics can be sufficiently transparent to view portions of the movable game surface. The movable game surface is provided below the game board and movable in relation to the game board. The movable game surface has game-related characteristics directly affecting game play in portions overlapping the game board. The play surface is for placement of a game piece such that a position of the game piece relative to the game characteristics on the game board is unaffected by movement of the movable game surface.

The movement of the movable game surface, or environmental effects layer, can be determined as a result of any number of factors. For example, the movable game surface can be moved or rotated upon completion of each full rotation, i.e. all players have completed a turn. This can continue after each full rotation of the players. A plurality of environmental effects, or storms, can be provided on the movable game surface.

Embodiments of the present invention can be provided as an expansion, or add-on, to existing game boards. In such an embodiment, a movable game surface is provided for mounting to a stationary game board. The add-on module can be sold in a tube, so that it does not fold when stored. A mounting means is provided to mount, or retrofit, the movable game surface to the stationary game board. The mounting means can be substantially similar to the game surface supports described in relation to FIGS. 6, 7 and 8, since they can be implemented without requiring the base game board to have any special features. For example, a grommeted wheel can be provided with a clamp and grooves for engagement with a channel provided on at least part of the outer perimeter of the stationary game board to anchor or mount the movable game surface to the game board. This can add new possibilities and game playing options to many existing and well-loved board games, from war strategy games to real estate market games and any other type of game that uses a game board.

In an embodiment, movement of the movable game surface can include unpredictability relating to the arrival and the intensity of each storm. For example, the numerical result corresponding to a roll of a pair of dice can be associated with a Beaufort number to determine the intensity of a storm in a particular round, or rotation, of play. The Beaufort scale is an international scale of wind force from 0 (calm air) to 12 (hurricane), which conveniently corresponds to possible numerical outcomes from the roll of a pair of dice. In one example, a roll of the dice corresponding with a low Beaufort number can determine a low level effect, such as that the game pieces are “frozen” and cannot move. In another example, a roll of the dice corresponding with a higher Beaufort number can determine a higher level effect, where the game pieces are frozen and any affected player also loses one or more hit points.

Each storm can include a bull's eye, or other focused storm area, buried in it. In an embodiment, when a bull's eye falls on a segment, game play on that location is effectively frozen. Fate cards can speed up, slow down, and/or reverse the direction of movement of the movable game surface, or weather wheel. In a particular embodiment, the unpredictability in arrival and in intensity of the weather created by the weather wheel and its effects on the game are the resultants of global warming, hence the race to conquer Antarctica. This exemplary, and non-limiting, embodiment will now be described in further detail.

In this particular embodiment, the base game board includes graphics of four continents and Antarctica, which are broken up into segments of various sizes. There are three types of segments: land segments, coastal water segments, and water segments. The environmental effects layer, or weather wheel, includes storm graphics. The stationary play surface has cut-out notches on each side to access the weather wheel underneath. A secondary environmental effects layer is provided as an Antarctic Cloud. Therefore, this embodiment is an example of a stationary base game board and a repositionable movable game surface in the context of a world-domination type game. The play surface, weather wheel, and Antarctic cloud can be transparent or semi-transparent, either on a portion of the layer or on the entirety of the layer.

A plurality of game pieces can be moved and collected by each player. Although the numbers and colors of the game pieces can be varied, in a particular embodiment, the game pieces include: Dice—5 total (4 white, 1 black); White game pieces (100 cities, 40 coastal guns); Colored game pieces—584 total (146 red, 146 green, 146 blue, 146 black) in 4 bags. In order to provide an educational experience along with the play of the game, the game can be provided at retail sale with a poster illustrating the Effect of Global Warming, such as an 18″×32″ full color GIS world map.

The object of the game in this embodiment is to take control of your continent and islands, an opponent's continent and islands, and Antarctica. Players should successfully defend against attacks and wage their own attacks against other players to conquer territory. The player who has successfully conquered the requisite territories while effectively fending off attacks is declared the winner.

The game can begin once the Weather Wheel is placed in the start position by matching up the arrow on the outside rim of the wheel with the same arrow on the base game board.

Preferably one player acts as the banker for the duration of the game. Players can determine which color will represent their positions and homeland continents as illustrated on the base game board. Once all players have chosen their colors, they can then receive starting money and game pieces, such Land Game Pieces and Water Game Pieces. Players can then place their land and water game pieces on their corresponding continent sections.

Players can use a selection criterion, such as rolling dice, to establish which player proceeds first. Once all players have completed a turn, a full rotation is completed, and the Weather Wheel's arrows can be moved by a predetermined amount, such as the next notch marked on Antarctica's circle. The notches on Antarctica's circle can be numerous (e.g. 24 notches in total) and visible on the outer and inner rings of the Weather Wheel with 90 and 180 degree cross hairs for easy reference. These notches can act as markers so that the effects of the bull's eyes buried in the storms can have an effect on the game (e.g. when a bull's eye falls on a segment, that location is effectively frozen).

At each turn sequence, a player preferably picks up a Fate Card and receives money. During a player's turn, the player can buy game pieces, place game pieces on the board, and/or move game pieces and engagements.

At this stage of the game, each player's goal is to take control of his or her continent and islands. There are four continents on the game board broken up into segments of various sizes. This can result in each continent and adjacent islands comprising a landmass of multiple land segments per continent per player.

A plurality of game pieces are preferably provided, such as land and water game pieces. Land game pieces can include varying levels, groups, or classes of game pieces. Each level of game pieces can vary in ability, longevity and cost. For example, the lowest class of land game pieces can be destroyed with a minimum number of hits and can cost the least (e.g. Platoons can cost $2, can move one land segment in any direction per player's turn, and can be destroyed with one hit from an opposing player). A second class of land game pieces can be destroyed by more than one hit at an increased cost (e.g. Armor can cost $4 each, and can move two land segments per turn in any direction at the risk of being destroyed by two hits). If land game pieces in this class are hit once, they can be replaced by pieces of lower denomination (e.g. Platoons). A third class of land game pieces can enable players to occupy their continents at a greater cost, yet also generate a cash return (e.g. City game pieces can cost of $20 each, and generate $5 per turn for the player occupying that segment). A fourth class of land game pieces can enable players to furnish an attack on opponents at a reasonable cost (i.e. Coastal Guns cost players $5 each and can fire one shot per turn per gun into an adjacent water segment).

When a player achieves an increased status in securing his/her continent (i.e. continental power), they can receive a Fate card at the beginning of each turn. Fate cards can pose different challenges or predicaments to players and come in a range of categories. In an embodiment, if a Fate card is a Weather, Growth or Loss card, the card must be played immediately. Advantage cards can be held, but preferably no player can hold more than one card at a time. When a player's turn comes around, they can return the card they are holding in exchange for a new card.

A player's status at this stage is preferably secure and one can now wage war on other players. Those players who have not reached the same status can be permitted to defend against attacks are preferably not permitted to wage their own attack against another player.

To wage an attack on another player, players can use other game pieces accordingly. There can be another category of game pieces called water game pieces. There can be a plurality of levels, groups, or classes of pieces within the category of water game pieces. Like the land game pieces, each class of Water Game pieces can vary in ability, longevity and cost. For example, the lowest class of water game pieces can be destroyed with one hit and can cost the least (e.g. Destroyers can be purchased by players for $2 and can be destroyed with one hit. They can move one segment per turn in any direction). A second class of water game pieces can increase in cost, longevity, and maneuverability (e.g. Battleships can cost $4 each and can be destroyed with two hits. Battleships can move two water segments in any direction). If water game pieces in this class are hit once, they are replaced by pieces of lower denomination (e.g. Destroyers). When a Battleship is in a coastal water segment, it can fire once per turn into that neighboring land segment.

A third class of water game piece can provide the additional function of holding a combination of land game pieces to enable players to transport their game pieces to other continents under takeover. This class of game piece can be at a higher cost, yet hold a combination of game pieces up to a determined amount of hit points. For example, the game piece of a Transporter can be available at a cost of $5 and can move two segments per turn in any direction. A transporter can be destroyed with one hit, yet can transport a combination of land pieces up to a maximum of 5 hit points.

If a circumstance arises where more than one player is occupying the same segment, then a procedure can be exercised to determine which player has control of that segment. For instance, each opposing player can roll a white die after another neutral player rolls a black die, with the understanding that different colors and/or shapes can be used, as long as there is a distinction between the two dice. The outcome of the situation can be determined depending on the outcome of the numbers that result from the dice rolls. The result of the black dice roll by the neutral player can determine what is at stake. If the number on the black die is 1, 2, or 3, then one hit point can be at stake. If the number on the black die is a 4, 5, or 6, then two hit points can be stake. The number rolled on the black die can also act as the number to match before a player can hit their opponent with either one or two hits as established. The two opposing players can then roll their respective white dice. If one player or the other or both roll the current hit number as found on the black die by the neutral player, then the opposite player loses the piece or reduces their hit value.

Once a player has occupied the land segments of more than one continent (e.g. two continents), that player is preferably eligible to enter the Antarctic Circle to try his/her luck at conquering the previously unconquerable. At this stage, the cloud coverage disc or secondary environmental effects layer can be removed from the board and all players can use the Antarctic's surrounding water segments to advance themselves; preferably only the player who has conquered more than one continent can occupy land segments on Antarctica.

An additional risk factor can be in play that threatens to cut off accessibility to Antarctica and the return of the cloud coverage disc. For example, if a player loses at least one segment on any of the conquered continents, then access to Antarctica can be denied and the Cloud Coverage Disc can be placed back on the central anchoring pin to prevent all players from progressing to this final stage.

In this embodiment, once a player has retained more than one continent (e.g. two continents) and occupied all land segments on Antarctica that player is the winner and the game ends.

The above-described embodiments of the present invention are intended to be examples only. Alterations, modifications and variations may be effected to the particular embodiments by those of skill in the art without departing from the scope of the invention, which is defined solely by the claims appended hereto.