In ECOLOGIES, you build and maintain food webs in diverse biomes around the world. Each biome has a different ecology, and gives unique rewards when it is healthy and balanced. But watch out, your opponents may decide it's easier to disturb and degrade your ecosystems than nurture their own. In this hectic environment, you must choose how best to protect and care for your ecologies.
Designed by a biology instructor, the game includes 77 unique organisms, 7 biomes, and beautiful vintage Victorian art. (108 cards total)
How-to video provided by "Roll For Crit"
It’s all about building healthy food webs in different biomes. If you create a healthy ecology you get the perks and powers of that biome. Each organism card lists what it eats and what it’s eaten by. You arrange them with plants on the bottom, predators on top. There is a trade mechanic similar to catan where you trade with others based on what you need and what they need. It is a race to get 12 victory points and different organisms give different points. There are biotic/abiotic factor cards that can affect opponents and different strategies such as focusing on one biome, going for perks and bonuses, or disrupting other ecologies.
The game takes inspiration from titles like Settlers of Catan, Agricola, and Dominion. Real science is integral to the game, as it is used in the classroom to teach real concepts to biology students. While it is scientific enough for the classroom, it is also strategic enough for game night.
The points system is based on ecological trophic levels. The producers (plants) are worth less and as you make your way up the pyramid organisms are worth more as it takes a lot of energy to sustain them. In real life only roughly 10% of the energy makes it from one level to the next, meaning you have to have acres of land and hundreds of animals just to sustain one apex predator. There is a 20 page rulebook included with the card game that also gives an overview of the science.
An expanded 24 page rulebook pdf is available here for free download. It contains the same information as the current 20 page rulebook but also includes additional illustrations and examples. Both the 24 page and 20 page rulebooks have been updated and reorganized this year based on player feedback.
|September 22, 2019
The cards look really cool with the vintage drawings. The game is educational, not only for kids but also for adults.