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Turn structure: 1. Play a political card (if you have one) 2. Spend your military actions to build military units, and civil actions to:

  • pick cards from the card rows (if you have room in your hand)
  • play cards to your tableau
  • increase your population
  • build/upgrade farms, mines, or urban buildings

Yellow counters represent your population. They can be in one of three places:

  • on your farms, mines, urban buildings (grey-backed cards, such as philosophy), or military units (representing workers)
  • on your available population, which are available to place on your cards
  • on your "yellow bank" -- when this is empty, you can no longer increase your available population

Blue counters represent food or resources. They can be in two places:

  • on your farms or mines
  • on your "blue bank" -- when this is empty, you can no longer produce

Building up your civilisation:

  • Building or upgrading farms will help you increase your population.
  • Building or upgrading mines will help you build more farms, mines, urban buildings, or military.
  • Producing more science (light bulbs) will let you play technologies for better farms, mines, urban buildings, or military.
  • When your population grows, you will need to produce more happiness or your workers will stop working.
  • Producing culture will earn you victory points.
  • Producing more military strength will protect you from raids or wars.

There are 3 versions of Through the Ages:

  • simple plays through Age I
  • advanced plays through Age II, and introduces colonies, raids, unhappiness, and corruption
  • complete plays through Age III, and introduces wars