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Gamehelppond

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Overview

Be the first to score 7 or more pieces of your own color.


Setup

Pond is played by two players on a 4x4 board. Each player starts with 11 Eggs of their color in their spawn.

Turn

Each turn consists of three steps: Action, Develop, Score

  • Action: As your action, you can either Place an Egg, Move a Tadpole, or Move a Frog.
    • Place an Egg: Place an Egg from your spawn on any empty space on the board. Eggs themselves cannot move while on the board.
    • Move a Tadpole: Move a Tadpole of your color to an orthogonally adjacent empty space
    • Move a Frog: Move a Frog of your color 1 or 2 spaces in an orthogonal straight line to an empty space. The Frog may hop over an adjacent piece to reach an empty space on the other side.
  • Develop: Once you have completed your action, the Develop step occurs, causing some pieces to change symbols.
    • From where your moved piece now resides, every orthogonally adjacent piece develops, regardless of color.
    • To develop a piece, move it along its life cycle: An Egg becomes a Tadpole, a Tadpole becomes a Frog, and a Frog becomes an Egg.
    • Developing a piece does not change its color.
    • Development is not optional, and pieces must always develop in the same order. You can never skip development or develop backwards.
  • Score: Finally, score any sets you have now created.
    • A set is a group of 3 or more matching symbols in an unbroken orthogonal line, regardless of owner. This means that sets can consist of pieces of a single color or pieces of both colors.
    • These pieces are removed from the board and given to their owner to form their owner's scoring pile (i.e. You might not be scoring for yourself.)
    • In the instance of intersecting sets, all components score. (e.g. In a "+" configuration, all 5 would score, but the middle one does NOT double score.)

After a player has played an action, developed all necessary pieces, and scored any resulting sets, it becomes their opponent's turn.


Game End

The game ends when a player has scored 7 or more of their own pieces. Then, the player with the most scored pieces wins the game. (e.g. If one player reaches 8 points, and their opponent simultaneously reaches 7 points at the same time, 8 beats 7.) If the score is tied, then the game ends in a draw.

The game also ends if a player is unable to perform an action on their turn. If a player has no legal actions, that player loses the game. This secondary win condition is called Elimination.


Big Pond Variation

If playing on the Big Pond, the game is played on a 5x5 grid. Each player begins with 15 eggs in their spawn, and the win condition is 10 points.