Yup. Poop jokes. I went there. When you’re dealing with animal evolution, digestive and excretion systems are important, so we can be rational adults and talk about these things. Heh. Poop.
Where we last left off, some more CO2 popped into the air, but not much more. Mars is actually a warm place to live, which is awesome. Our plants have more actions, which should allow our animals to get more actions soon.
It’s a bit blurry here, but the Climate Track shows we’re officially “Warm” and our plants have 3 actions. 2 more discs down and they’ll have 4! We still have very little cloud cover so the “Green heart limit” is only 3 for the plants, meaning I can’t go crazy with Mutations on the plants, but that’s okay, I just need them to spread out, I don’t want them out competing me, anyway. Finally the Oxygen track shows 6%, giving me 2 actions and a 3 “Black heart limit.” Not as many actions as the plants, but I’m sure to catch up.
With my two actions, I promote my feet and brain to get a Hypothalamus and a Bipedal stance. Yup, little bugs walking on their back legs and thinking. Scared yet? That gives them a TON of cubes, but the most important thing is that little formed shape in the middle. See how the purple smiley matches with the purple tail? That means I completed an emotion, curiosity in this case. Most emotions, as I said before, allows you to purchase Mutations at half price, curiosity, however, let’s you get a Tool. Tools give you an extra point, as well as a small hunting benefit.
In this case, our small Bipedal bugs are using stones to chisel their way into all the tough vines that are growing across Mars. Awwwwsome.
Our plants merely spread and make more Armored young. I also increase their size just to suck up an action. Shouldn’t make a difference at this point, and I’m planning on spreading out to the other continent which requires “Rafting,” a whole lot of DPs are required for that. Our vines are spreading and getting thicker.
Our next event was pretty boring, so I didn’t take a picture. There must have been a mutagen event, however, because I took the following picture:
New display meant new Mutations that the plant would be forced to buy. Even without any Unborn to soak up cost, the Plant has to buy Calcite Crystal Vision. What’s worse, is immediately after that, it would have to spend an action to promote that card because it has a Mutualism ability. Mutualism is a fantastic ability in a multiplayer game. In solitaire it royally stinks. In effect, if the creature that has it is “colocated” (in the same hex) as another player’s Creeple, you can take one of their Unborn Creeples and place it on the Mutualism card. Each one of those Creeples (there can be several) is worth a VP at the end of the game. Also, plants have the “Horror Mushroom” ability. If any animal has a “Horror Plant” mutation, it can claim it as a Mutualism animal. Stinks for me.
So now our Archetype vines (our less armored ones) have the APPEARANCE of armored vines, and probably wind around them, using the armored plants as cover. That’s what I’m saying, but I gave this ability to the Armored plants because they are not collocated with anyone, so no stealing of an unborn. So I guess our Armored plants has leaves that look like my bugs? I dunno. I’m sure ya’ll can come up with a better description than I can.
Anyway, I now notice there are still 2 Creeples left from the Archetype and Armored, so I have to buy the Horror Plant Icon from the second column, too. But Septate Lung isn’t too bad, especially if I beef it up to:
which gives White Cubes. Each white cube protects it from freezing over, as well as providing extra “Green Heart Limit” during mutagen events. Also, that symbol surrounding the +cube there means it’s a “Monster” gene. You get as many cubes as your current size. It’s fantastic, though if you’re ever forced to discard a cube from it, you have to lower your size instead of discarding a cube, which could be horrible. I give this to the Plant Archetype.
At this point, I didn’t take a picture or any notes about my own animal’s turn. It must have been awesome. I probably just altered sizes and maybe spread by a Creeple or two. Nothing too drastic. Let’s just move on.
See that black square in the upper right? That means “Stable Biome.” Main effect of that is no other card is flipped and this is the only one that we work with. On Mars, it also means that any plate shifts from the PREVIOUS turn cards go into effect. On Earth, our plates are moving all the time, but Mars just putters along, so this is our first movement.
So Tharsis moves a bit South, which you can tell by the latitude die. All this really affects is adjacency with Arabia, but this action also causes me to lose the game, which I fail to notice. We also see here Swamp plants thriving on the coast of the large sea on the East of Tharsis, as well as hardy cacti on the western bank. Arabia only has one small sea, as well as a dry sea bed. I like that, though, as it’s a place that I can move my Cacti to. So I plan.
Of course, I’m forced to make more purchases, and my armored vines grow tiny hairs that can poison those that touch it. Great. This means my animals won’t be able to eat it unless they are poisonous as well, or have a bigger size than the plant. Pain in the butt.
I see that my animals are already bigger than the Cacti, so I’m good there. That being the case, I increase the size of the Cacti, and get them Carrying Young for 2 Blue Cubes. They are now far more mobile. I, too, increase the size of my lil’ creatures, in order to be able to eat the cacti, and then dump a few extra cubes in case mutagen comes and nabs me since O2 is a bit low at the moment.
Oops. Olympus Mons just blew up. A special rule of Mars is that the upper left of Tharsis is ALWAYS the site of volcano explosions because that’s where the Solar System’s biggest volcano resides.
Ow. Well fine, anyway, I’m able to spread my Cacti over the break between Tharsis and Arabia using a Raft action. Rafting is difficult, you can only travel between cratons (plates) in the direction of the wind (which is different depending on which latitude you’re on) and it costs 3DP just to hop into the spot between continents! Mind you, I was still playing under the old rule that it was only 2DP, so it wasn’t as bad, but still, it’s no walk in the park. But I used my plant’s actions to get my Cacti over the hill and far away to Arabia.
You’ll also see here the Ocean that had sublimated because of the Ocean Circulation Change card from earlier. Big Deal, I thought, I’ll make it rain next turn. I think you know where this is going.
At this point I had also made some Armored animals of my own. They weren’t big enough to eat the Armored plants yet, but they will be soon, so they plan to spread and get me the points I need to win (15).
Okay, Olympus Mons blows again, and we get more Carbon in the air, which is good for the plants. I use a plant action to make it rain in the Northern Arabian basin, and use the remaining actions to grab an Oral Disc and Speciate into Seaweed to get yet another kind of life on this world. I use my animal actions to fit together some traits to try and get language. Unfortunately that’s another thing you need in order to win, and for the life of me I just can’t get the heads and tails to line up right. Remember how we made curiosity earlier? Well if you get 3 emotions of 2 different colors in the same creature, you develop language, which nets you 3 bonus VPs as well. If I could just find a Blue face at this point, I could, but there are none in the frickin’ Display! So I’ve been building new emotions on the Armored animal. Maybe I should have been paying attention to something else.
Planet looks pretty big, though, huh? Nice and populated with plants flourishing everywhere? A few insects surviving here and there. What could possibly go wrong? Why should I be worrying? It should have been obvious, but I was too busy looking at other things:
Ah, another Stable biome. That means the last plate shifting is going to happen. Let’s see, that means Arabia shifts to the West (I think I may have gotten the symbols messed up, because I’m using older event cards with newer tiles) and smashes into Tharsis. No, I didn’t mess up symbols, there had to have been another turn in between the last and this one, since there are more Creeples on the board now. Oh well. Sorry about that. Either way, smashy smashy to Tharsis and it grows mountains where it was smashyed. Let’s see what that looks like:
Oh my, the giant ocean is just GONE. Either frozen in the peaks of this new mountain range, or buried underground beneath Arabia. That means all the Swamp plants are going to shrivel up and die. There’s also further radiation events from the Supernova, but that’s not the worst part. Then I’m supposed to move a white disc from the atmosphere to the clouds.
But, but, ALL the white discs are in the clouds. And if a Reservoir is empty, you have to take it from somewhere else. Where is the other white disc?
Our last spot of water on Mars.
Word of warning fellow gamers. ALWAYS KEEP MARS AS WET AS POSSIBLE. No water = instant loss.
So there you have it, a complete solo game of Bios- Megafauna 2nd edition. Typing this up, I do realize I messed up a rule, Cacti have to be within 2 hexes of water. When I first travelled to Arabia, there was no water there, so the Cacti couldn’t have lived there. Which may have gotten me to focus on rain more…which may have saved the game for me. But then again, I’m dumb.
So in the end we had Ropey Vines, all over Mars, but they dried up to nothingness, and our large 2 legged rock-weilding armored bugs starved to death. Clearly they’ll come back as ghosts when humans finally land on this rock.
Let me know what you think and if you have any questions.