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Empires in America (second edition) FAQ RSS Feed

FAQ for Empires in America (second edition)

Info taken various rule forum threads, consolidated into a Wiki page so that people can more easily find all the info in one place and update it.

List of game FAQs

2.0 Game Equipment

The rules say there are 12 3/4" game pieces and 40 5/8" game pieces. But in fact there are 11 3/4" game pieces, 46 5/8" game pieces, and 3 larger game pieces.

4.0 Sequence of Play

The British phase happens before the French phase. Don't read the 4 boxes in the Sequence of Play on the map in vertical columns, but in horizontal rows. :)

6.0 The Historique Phase

Newly drawn provincials normally go directly to the (British or French) tableau. Newly drawn actions go to your hand. If they are units, you can (during the French phase) spend an action to add them to your tableau (where they are units usable in combat just like provincials.)

Trash British Event cards after using them. Rule 6.2.5 is correct; 6.8.4 is incorrect!

6.6 Organizing the Tableau

"The tableau" is all the face up British and French cards (British Provincials, French Leaders, French Provincials, French played actions). The rules don't distinguish between a "British tableau" and "French tableau"; it's all just "the tableau".

7.0 Leaders

A new British leader is first checked against a random track to see if he gets the job; if so, any current leader there is sacked (recycled). If not, then check St Lawrence, Champlain, Ohio, etc in order until he gets the job (sacking any current worse leader there) or (if all 5 tracks already have better leaders) he himself is recycled, in which case a new card is drawn instead (note 2 of [6.0]).

9.3.3 Govern

"The counter mix is a finite limit when building Forts and Trading Posts!" The rules don't say how many Fort/Trading Post counters there are: there are 8.

10.0 Combat

"Montreal is on every track for most purposes..." So the French can commit any auxilaries regardless of their track restrictions. But it is unclear whether this means that British attacking Montreal can commit all their auxiliaries, or only ones valid for the track from/along which the British are attacking. However the consensus (including by Alan Emrich) seems to be that only the ones valid for the attacking army's track can participate.

Note that some British auxilaries will fight in multiple battles for a given army, and then at the end of the turn get discarded or recycled.

Eliminated Leader with +1 strength bonus

An eliminated leader who has a +1 strength bonus (e.g. from Royal Navy Sails up the St. Lawrence) does get to roll 1 die in return fire. (They have 0 battalions at that moment, but 1 strength due to the bonus strength.)

Specific cards

Some clarifications about specific cards:

Brilliant Maneuver

The +1 to leader ability applies also when retreating a losing British army.

British Colonial Disputes

The card says that "one British Army" cannot advance, but the marker says "Inactive Leader". There was some discussion about this ambiguity/confusion in the thread with Alan Emrich, and the current thinking is this: consider the card to say "one British Leader cannot advance", and the "Inactive Leader" marker goes with the leader, not the army. (This matters in case some event moves the leader to a different army.)

And "ensuing" means "next", which might be in the following turn, if the British Colonial Disputes were drawn by a French leader's special ability or some French action

British Replacements

Note that the card says on each "active" British Leader, so it is not possible to add it to one with an "inactive leader" marker.

Fortress Artillery / Siege Train

These must be used by the British in the first possible fortress battle.

French Command Dispute

The randomly chosen leader cannot be "used", which includes that you get no action points from that leader. He "is not contributing at all". (You also cannot spend action points to assign replacements to him!)


One Militia unit in a battle with Langlade stays in the tableau. Alan Emrich says this is true even if Langlade dies in the battle. User Fabvier notes that Langlade was discarded in battle step 7, before card repositioning in battle step 8, so arguably Langlade's ability should be no longer usable. (So you can use Alan's interpretation to make the game easier, and Fabvier's to make the game harder...)

Last of the Mohicans

Unlike most British cards, it will participate in the second wilderness battle in a turn. I.e. if 0 or 1 wilderness battles occur in a turn, then it stays in the British tableau. But if a second wilderness battle occurs in a turn, then send this card to fight.

Map of North America

This World Event is trashed even if no battle occurs (and thus no initiative roll happens), because it was possible for an initiative roll to have happened.

The turn's single initiative roll would of course also apply to garrison battles if using optional rule 13.5.

There are some British cards (British Grenadiers, Scale the Cliffs) which "must" be played in combat whose sole purpose is to raise a leader's tactical rating. Playing a card like British Grenadiers thus has no effect while Map of North America is in effect; nonetheless follow such cards literally and play them. Unless of course you want to make the game harder. :)

New Campaign

The intention is that regardless of how many cards have already been drawn in this "Historique Phase", restart from 0 now and draw 6 or 7 more. E.g. if you have already drawn 4 and the 4th one is New Campaign, then draw 6 more. (Or 7 more, if War Tempo Increases is in effect.)

If drawn during French actions instead of Historique phase, Alan Emrich proposes delaying its effect until the next Historique phase.

Pitt Takes Control

If an army advances into a space with a fort marker and the French don't defend it, so no combat occurs, the fort marker is trashed just as if the French had lost a battle to defend it.

Royal Navy Sails up the St. Lawrence

Only check whether the marker should be removed during a future housekeeping phase. (So evidently if the army is currently in Quebec or Trois Riveres and the event occurs, it gets the bonus during the current turn.)

Despite the card saying "occupies Quebec", it surely means "controls Quebec" (i.e. "occupies Quebec or Trois Riveres").
Currently Alan Emrich says that the card means what it says in one thread:
But in another thread Alan Emrich says it means that "Quebec is British Controlled":

Seven Years' War Erupts

If drawn during French actions instead of Historique phase, Alan Emrich proposes delaying its effect until the next Historique phase.


The French leader Villiers has battle rating 2 in wilderness. If Villiers wins a battle in wilderness, then the losing British retreat 2 spaces since retreat is part of the battle sequence.

War Tempo Increases

"Recycled for any reason" apparently is synonymous with "Placed into the Recycling Bin for any reason".

Optional Rules

Here is a short discussion thread about people's preferences on optional rules:

Unified list of all optional rules (which are scattered in margins throughout the manual):

6.10 The French Navy

This option makes the game easier by providing a way to get rid of the naval blockade.

9.7 Governing

This option makes the game harder by restricting the order in which you can do actions in a turn.

10.8 Leader Importance

This option makes the game harder by restricting your freedom of choice in which French leader will fight a given battle.

Presumably the option applies also with Brilliant Maneuver, but not with the special ability of Montcalm:

10.9 Leader Casualties

This option can apparently kill leaders of both sides, so presumably makes the game neither harder nor easier...?

10.10 Leader Morale

This option applies to leaders of both sides, so presumably makes the game neither harder nor easier...?

13.5 Fortess Garrisons

Unclear whether this makes the game harder or easier.

13.6 Calming Down Montcalm

This makes the game harder by starting Montcalm off with only 4 battalions instead of 8. It also raises possible subtle rule questions:

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