Section 1: Introduction


The Short Of It

Take control of all of the realms of the game world while staying alive longer than your opponents.

The Epic Version

Each player controls adventurers (represented by pawns) who travel around the lands amassing their fortunes through endevors of toil, trade and adventure, slowly amassing lands and defeating off rival barons who wish to rule.

Specific Win Conditions

  • All other players lye dead. The remaining player wins.
  • One player buys all of the land. That player is the Baron, and wins.
  • All of the land has bought and a political victory is von. Either:
    • The player with the most property wins.
    • The player who owns the most realms (a majority of the properies in each) wins.
    • The player with the highest total value of property wins.
  • The player who has built a keep in each realm is the true Baron and wins.

Section 2: Parts

The Board

The shape of a board is a hexagon inscribed inside of a 12" radius circle. The board represents the entire world.

  • Each realm is 12" per side, and each space is 1.5" wide.

Each side of the board represents a different realm, and each has a characteristic terrain, natural resource and color.

The realms are divided into six spaces, or lands. Each realm has four open lands, as well as one city space and one guild space.

  • Open lands can be purchased for their cost in gold. If another player lands on an open space that is owned, they must pay the tribute to the lands owner. If they cannot afford the tribute, they are sent to a dungeon.
  • City spaces are where players can buy special items. They draw from the item deck and if they want the item, pay the cost, if not discard it to the bottom of the pile.
  • Guild spaces are where players can learn skills. They can pay the training cost and add the skill to their character.
  • Each corner of the board represents a unique trading post. Each post will buy natural resources at the specified rates.

Character Tokens

Six (6) colored tokens to represent each character as the move around the board.

Gold Pieces

Numerous tokens (or coins) used to represent gold pieces in the game. Units of 1gp, 5gp and 25gp (subject to change).


A considerable number of six-sided dice to use to resolve changes..


  • Six (6) Character Cards
    • Show the characters stats and health
    • Character stats are Strength, Agility, Mana, and Guile
    • Fig. 2a Rendrick the Warrior character card
  • Thirty-six (36) Dungeon Adventure Cards
    • Consist of dreaded monsters or treasure cards.
    • If a monster is defeated, the player receives treasure equal to it's value.
    • If a monster is drawn, the player must defeat it, of treasure is drawn, the player is awarded that much gold.
    • Fig. 2b A Vampire monster card in the dungeon adventure deck
  • Thirty-six (36) Item Cards
    • Represent items that the player can buy at any city on the map.
    • Items may enhance the character's abilities, grant them new abilities or have special one time effects.
    • Once bought, they are either perminantly attached to the character, or used once and discarded as indicated on the card.
    • If a player lands on a city, they draw the top card from the item deck, if they want it, pay the cost, if not, discard it to the bottom of the pile.
    • Fig. 2c A Magic Sword item card found in the item deck.
  • Thirty-six (36) Skill Cards
    • Represent skills that the player can train in at the specific guilds on the map.
    • If the character lands on the guild space, they can buy the next highest available skill at the specified cost.
    • The guilds train the character as Warrior, Thief, Sorceror, Healer, Merchant or Hunter.
  • Thirty-six (36) Natural Resource Cards
    • Represent natural resources that are abundant in the different realms of the world.
    • If the character lands on a free space, they can choose to forage for a resource, and if they are successful, are awarded one of these cards.
    • Resources can be traded for gold at any of the trading outposts.
  • Thirty-six (36) Property Cards
    • Represent ownership of free spaces on the board.
    • If the character lands on a free space, they can pay the cost to buy the land.
    • If a character lands on a space that is owned by another player, they must pay the rental cost to the owner in gold or be sent to a dungeon.

Section 3: Gameplay


Types of Rolls

Gameplay uses standard six (6) sided dice. There are three types of rolls in gameplay:

  • Total Roll Roll a number of dice equal to an attribute and use the total as the result
  • Hits Roll Roll a number of dice equal to an attribute and count the number of sixes (6) as a success
  • Movement Roll Roll a number of dice equal to the Agility attribute, and move a number of spaces equal to any value rolled.

Starting Out

Board Setup

  • Shuffle the dungeon cards and the item cards and place them in the middle of the board.
  • Seperate out the skill, property and resource cards and put them in piles next to the board.
  • Each player selects one character card. Set the initial health to 10.
  • Each player receives a starting amount of gold. Base game amount is 50 GP

First Turn

  • Place all player tokens on the white outpost.
  • Players each roll a single die to see who goes first, highest wins.
  • Turns proceed in clockwise order.
  • The player characters are not yet adventurers until they have traveled around the board one full time. Thus they cannot fight each other or willfully enter a dungeon.

Turn Sequence

Each player's turn consists of these phases, in order:

A. Movement

  • Movement always occurs in a clockwise fashion unless superceded by the effect of a card.
  • The player rolls 1d6 for each point of agaility.
  • The player can move the number of spaces indicated on any one of the dice.
    • A character with Agility equal to three (3) rolls 3d6
    • The roll a 1, 2 and a 5, the player decides to move 2 spaces, and advances their token
  • A player cannot stop short on a desired space, they must move the exact number on the die.
  • A player must always move during their turn unless they are skipping a turn (and doing nothing else).

B. Combat

When the player encounters an aggressive foe, they enter into combat. There are three types of combat in the game.
vs Monsters
  • Occurs when a monster card is pulled from the dungeon deck.
  • Lasts until the monster or character is killed by their health being reduced to zero, or the player runs away.
  • The monster's rolls are handled by the player to the left of the current player.
  • Sequence of actions:
    • Initiative roll to determine who attacks first
    • The player and monster each roll their agility dice and the highest total goes first.
    • After initiative, turns rotate back and forth.
    • The winner can play a card or do a normal attack. If playing a card, it must be announced every round.
    • In a normal attack, the attacker makes a roll using their strength dice.
    • Some cards add extra dice, or reduce the hit threshold below six (6).
    • If the attacker scores any hits, the defender has an opportunity to defend the attack.
    • If the defender has armor or a defensive skill, they make a hit roll using their defense, with each success removing one scored hit.
    • The rounds continue back and forth.
    • A player can decide to run away on their attack turn. They must roll a hit on their guile dice.
    • If successful, combat ends and the player escapes. If it fails, the monster gets an undefended attack.
    • If the monster is slain, the player recieves a gold award based on the level of the monster.
    • If the player defeats a boss monster, they can immediately build a castle in the realm attached to the beginning of the dungeon.
vs Other Players
  • Occurrs one players land on the same place, and one player announces that they are attacking the other.
  • This can only occurr after their movement phase has been completed.
  • Combat sequence is the same as above for monsters.
  • Optionally, there is a three (3) round rule for PvP combat. After three rounds of attacks, the fight is over.
  • If a player is defeated in combat, the victor claims ownership of the defeated players properties and items. No skills are transferrable.
Ranged combat
This can only occur when special cards or abilities are played.
Some examples:
  • Archery Player can launch a single attack on a player up to their agaility spaces away. Normal attack that can be defended.
  • Magic Spells cannot be absorbed by armor. The attack uses mana rather than strength, and the range is determined by the spell type.

C. Resolve the space (Buying Land / Pay a toll / Forage or Harvest / Train / Buy Items / Selling Resources)

When resolving a space, the actions available depend on the general and specific type of space your character has landed on.
  • If you are on a LAND space...
  • ...and the land is owned by somebody other than yourself, you must:
    • Pay the toll to the owner.
    • Or if you don't have the required money, you can pay in property or items.
    • Or if you don't have money, property or items, you are banished to the first space of the white dungeon, and must immediately draw a dungeon adventure card and resolve it.
  • ...and you own the land, collect resource cards equal to your hunting ability.
  • ...and the land is unowned, you ma:
    • Pay the price on the deed to buy the land.
    • Attempt to forage. Roll dice equal to your hunting skill and collect one resource for each hit.
  • If you are on a CITY space..
    • Draw a card from the item deck, and if you want it, pay the cost. If not discard the item to the bottom of the deck.
    • Base cost for items is 20 GP.
    • Skip a turn and heal one health point.
  • If you are on a GUILD space..
    • You can train in special skills unique to that Guild type. You must learn them in order. To learn, pay the cost on the skill.
    • Base cost for training is 10GP per level.
  • If you are on an OUTPOST space..
    • You can trade resources for the amount of gold listed on the outpost for the resource that you are selling.
  • If you are on an DUNGEON space..
    • Draw a dungeon adventure card.
    • If a monster is drawn, combat ensues. On victory you receive the amount of gold on the card.
    • If a treasure is drawn, the player recieves that gold immediately.
    • OPTIONAL: Players may choose to "dungeon crawl" and move one space at a time in a dungeon rather than taking their movement roll.

D. Use an Active Skill

Players may learn different skills from the guilds across the realm. Some are active and others are passive.

  • Passive skills are always in effect. Typically they add an addional die to a roll.
  • Active skills require the character do something and can only be used once per turn.
  • Players with more than one active skill can use each of them on the same turn, but only once each.
  • If there is a roll involved with the active skill, the skill used must be declared before the roll.

Section 4: Win Conditions

Gameplay continues until one of these conditions is true at the beginning of a player's turn.



Each of the six sides of the board represents a different realm in the world with unique characteristics

Name: Snow lands
Dungeon: Ice Caves
Resource: Pelts
Guild: Healer
Lands: Monsters:

Name: Desert Plateau
Dungeon: Decrepit Tomb
Resource: Spice
Guild: Thief


Name: Emerald Forest
Dungeon: Cursed Thicket
Resource: Lumber
Guild: Hunter


Name: Cerulean Shones
Dungeon: Sludge Swamp
Resource: Fish
Guild: Merchant


Name: Fire Mountains
Dungeon: Satan's Peak
Resource: Iron
Guild: Warrior


Name: Black Wastelands
Dungeon: Haunted Dungeon
Resource: Crystals
Guild: Sorceror



There are a number of different default characters, each with different strengths and weaknesses. Each character has four attributes with a total of twelve (12) dice divided between them. They also begin with 10 health points.


Character Type StrengthAgilityManaGuile


Inside of the dungeon adventure deck there are eighteen (18) fiersome and dreaded monsters who lurk in the dungeons of the lands, waiting to thward adventurers. Monsters have attributes similar to characters as follows:


Monster Type StrengthAgilityDefenseHealthTreasure
Northern Raiders321210
Snow Wolves340320
Giant Ants232210
Mummified Undead303320
Sand Worm331630
Giant Crab123210
Lizard Man331420
Swamp Monster442630
Stone Giant411420


Skills are cards that grand your character new abilities or enhance their existing abilities. There are three levels of skills, and you must learn them in order.










Barons was created out of the idea of building a game that combined aspects of fantasy rpgs with a game that people were already familiar with, in this case monopoly. I started working on ideas for it in 2008, with an initial board version that looked like the traditional monopoly board, but with "dungeons" outside of the city. This turned out to be unweildy, so I came up with the hexagonal board re-design. I finished an initial ruleset in 2009 and did some initial playtests that worked ok, but needed refinement. Started revisiting it in 2014 with an eye to improving on the "monopoly" aspect of gameplay and making play overall more elegant and streamlined.


For questions, comments, feedback or anything else, please send email to Geoff Maddock at Thanks!

Playtest Session Notes

03/18/09 2 Players (Geoff – Illistaire, Dave – Rendrick)

Rules / Starting Conditions

Conclusions and Clarifications

03/26/09 3 Players (Geoff, Dave, Lauren)

Rules / Starting Conditions

Conclusions and Clarifications

04/10/09 2 Players (Geoff, Dave)

Rules / Starting Conditions

Conclusions and Clarifications

2010 Updates & Ideas


Through playtest and feedback, I've decided to establish seperate ruleset versions that we can track and decide which is the best, both in terms of the math, fun and elegance of gameplay.


Starting Conditions


Specific Rules


Starting Conditions


Specific Rules


Starting Conditions

  • Start with 50 GP


  • Items cost 20 GP
  • Training costs 10 GP per level.

Specific Rules

  • Land is no longer owned. But instead, you pay the cost to build a dwelling there.
  • Dwellings act the same as if you own the land previously, except that other players can also build a dwelling on the same space.
  • There is a limit of three dwellings on any space.
  • If you land on a space with multiple dwellings that are not your own, you must pay the toll to EACH owner.
  • If a player pays the toll and there is open space on the land, they can build their own dwelling on the same turn.
  • You can upgrade a dwelling to a keep by landing on the same space and paying the cost over again.
  • A new win condition is building a keep in each of the six realms.

Optional Rules

  • Instead of skill cards, each player has six basic skills that can be improved by training at a guild
    • Warrior Each level adds +1 dice to combat.
    • Healer Each level adds +1 die to healing.
    • Sorcerer Each level allows you to fire a magic attack one space further away.
    • Hunter Each level adds +1 die to foraging, +1 resource to harvesting.
    • Merchant Each level adds +1 Gold to the amount you can trade a resource for at an outpost, and allows you to trade one space further away from an outpost.
    • Thief Each level allows you to attempt to steal an item or resource from another player one space further away.