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Sub Terra


Sub Terra is a co

operative surviv

The players are

al horror game

cave explorers

for one to six pl


(or cavers) who

, when explorin g an llen down a stee are now trappe p sh af t in th e rock and d deep underg round. Together, you ne ed to find the w ay out before yo and you are lost ur flashlights ru in the darkness n out forever. You’ll ne to explore quic ed to w or k as a team kly and avoid a variety of dead ly hazards. And all, you don’t th worst of ink you’re alon e down here... uncharted cave

system, have fa

Components • 64 cave tiles

• 1 Starting Ca ve

• 1 Start Tile


• 1 Exit Tile • 30 Hazard Ca rd


• 1 ‘Out Of Tim e’ • 8 Caver Boar ds

r Marker

• 12 Cave-In M ar


• 8 Flood Mar kers • 1 Horror Mar ke


• 1 Gas Marke r • 6 Rope Toke ns

• 3 Explosives To • 1 Six-Sided Di e • 8 Caver Piec es



• 3 Horror Piec es • 20 Health M arke



e a caver board and th Players each choose alth he ch piece. Cover ea corresponding caver int ards with a health po space on the caver bo Return the unused token (usually three). x. alth tokens to the bo boards, pieces and he re of the tile face-up in the cent 2. Place the start s e chosen caver piece table, and place all th


onto it.


ck , then shuffle and sta Set aside the exit tile tiles face-down. the remaining 64 cave m exit tile into the botto Randomly shuffle the six tiles of the stack.

lty setting - Normal, 4. Choose a difficu rd Go through the haza Advanced or Expert. ed e cards that aren’t us cards and remove th culty. with your chosen diffi en deal ining hazard cards, th 5. Shuffle the rema of cards into a facethe following number down hazard deck: NORMAL 4 Cavers 5 Cavers 6 Cavers

22 cards 19 cards 17 cards

ADVANCED 20 cards 17 cards 15 cards

EXPERT 18 cards 15 cards 13 cards

card on the bottom of Put the “Out of Time” the hazard deck. rds back in the box Put the remaining ca em. without looking at th yer caver marker to the pla 6. Give the starting low ground level. who last ventured be



may They . ver. s ca costing ciou n cons an actio turn her orm each anot rf e ce pe os t on tely Cho mos edia at m ty im abili this Use








to d1




If there a re only tw o or three pla yers, eac h player chooses two boar ds/ pieces, a nd the ru le s for four or s ix cavers are used. If y ou are th e only player, y ou should choose four to six boards/p ieces and use the rules fo r that number of cavers .

ons ave ic h be s d r l ca hould a s r y e e v h e S at t at ting th game e h t indica m ed fro remov lties. c diffi u n i a t r al ce r Norm ve fo

Remo Rem



ve for





r Ad ove fo



after al. If m r o N ant rt on may w ou sta u y o y d , n t l e difficu comm s too we re i , 5. h t e g e m din n st p t ga i n s fi r k l c fi l i e r t s is you zard d you’re If this the ha ames o g t f s o d ple al car a cou dition d a 3 l to dea




solved d and re le a e v e r be the deck card will ds left in r d a r c a f z o a r h One e numbe cave. ape the und, so th c s o r e y r to e ft v e ave le ng you h is how lo

HOw to play


Your shared obje ctive is to get as m any cavers to the before you run ou exit tile as possib t of time. le The game takes pl ace over around twenty rounds, as hazard deck and controlled by the each round cons ists of four phases :

1. Action Phase

Cavers take turns in a clockwise order, performin g actions.

2. Horror Phase

All horrors on ca ve tiles move one step towards thei r closest victim.

3. Hazard Phase

The top card of th e hazard deck is resolved, causin g bad things to happen.

4. End Phase The starting cave r marker is passed one cave r to the left (clockwise).

Game End Rounds are taken

until either:

• All surviving ca vers are on the exit tile • OR: There are no conscious cavers left in the cave At this point, all pl ayers with a caver on the exit tile can score. Count the numbe r of cavers that didn’t make it ou t:


0 Cavers left behin



1 Caver left behin



2 Cavers left behin



3+ Cavers left be


S R E V A C S U IO C S N O UNC n ft have falle

oints le no health p h it e caver piece w rs ve a C is by lying th th t n se re p e s. R unconsciou . on its side actions, and ot perform n n ca rs ve p s ca r boards sto Unconsciou n their cave o s e ti ili eir b th a g durin any passive nconscious u lls fa r ve d ca r actions an working. If a t take furthe o n n ca y e th own turn, ts, they health poin must pass. re o m r o e n pright. rs o piece back u caver recove r s ve u io ca sc e n th co d n When an un us again. Sta me conscio co e b ly te ia immed


Some actio ns and eve nts will req make a sk uire cavers ill check ( to ). This mea If you rolle ns: “Roll th d a 4 or hig e die. her, you su you fail.� cceed. Oth erwise, The conse quences o f succeedin check will g or failing be specifie a skill d in the ac tion or eve nt.

e s a h P n o i t c 1. A e starting caver Beginning with th ckwise, every and proceeding clo action points caver is given two or ) to spend on one ( more actions.

one action Some actions cost st ), while others co point ( ). The base actions two ( vers are given available to all ca vers may be able below. Certain ca special actions to perform other, ed on their - these are specifi ds. unique caver boar

rmed Actions are perfo a caver can d sequentially, an action after choose their next of the last. seeing the results can be used The same action a turn unless multiple times in ed otherwise specifi

EXERTING + At any point during their turn, a caver m ay choose to exert th gain a third and final emselves to action point. They ca n spend this on wh they wish, including atever action as part of a action with a remain action point. ing “normal� If they choose to do so, at the end of their turn they must mak check ( e a skill ). If they fail, they los e one health point ( ).

Basic Actions Reveal Choose an open sid e of your current tile that does n’t yet have a tile connecting to it. Take the top cave tile from the sta ck and place it face-up in that ga p, so that it connects to your cu rrent tile. (you can choose any rota tion, as long as a connection is mad e) Move Move from your cu rrent tile to an adjacent connected tile. Some tiles (squeeze, water tiles with flood marker, cave-in tiles with rubble marker) cann ot always be entered in this way. (see Cave Tiles) Explore (Reveal + Move) Reveal a tile, then yo u must immediately Move onto it as a single combined ac tion. This is a much fa ste r way of placing tiles than the previou s two actions, but it’s much riskier if you’re far away from your friends. Choo se wisely. Run Repeat the above M

ove action up to th

ree times.

Heal Either regain one los t tile to regain one los t (You cannot exceed

, or choose another caver on your .

your starting numbe

r of


Hazard actions These actions interac

t with specific tiles or


Swim Move from your cu rrent tile onto an ad jacent connected tile cont aining a flood marke r. This is the only way to en ter flooded tiles. Squeeze Move from your cu rrent tile onto an adjacent connected squeeze tile. This is the only way to ente r squeeze tiles after they’ve been placed. Dig Remove a rubble m arker from this tile or an adjacent connec ted tile. This unblock s the tile and allows it to be entered again . Place Rope +

Make a skill check. If you succeed, place a rope token on the cu rrent ledge tile or slide tile. Hide


Make a skill check. If you succeed, you cannot be chosen as the closest victim for any horror this ro und (see Horrors).

2. Horror Phase on If there are any horrors e cave tiles, they move on t ses step towards their clo ous victim: the closest consci of ps caver within seven ste the horror. Horrors can’t move through solid walls, but they can move through floods, rubble, es squeezes, ledges and slid without penalty. If there is no closest victim within seven tile steps, the ed horror is instead remov from the cave. the same tile as a If a horror ever occupies tely loses all caver, that caver immedia careful! and falls unconscious. Be for more details. If (See the Horrors section cave, the horror horrors are present in the on top of the marker should be placed u to move them hazard deck to remind yo every round)

e s a h P d r a z a 3. H rd of Reveal the top ca do what the hazard deck, , then it says on the card the place the card in ard pile. hazard deck disc




e in five types:

Hazard cards com


ill rs must make a sk All conscious cave . se a cavers that fail lo

check (

). All


ker on Place a flood mar don’t all water tiles that Then already have one. ed tiles all cavers on flood . lose a

rs cannot be ning flood marke Water tiles contai ). e Swim action ( except by using th Gas All cavers on gas

tiles lose



ase, any caver the next hazard ph til un , lly na tio di Ad . se ill immediately lo enters a gas tile w

After trigger ing a gas ha zard, losing when enteri ng a gas tile applies even exploring new when tiles, so be ca reful! You ca place the ga n s reminder marker on o the cave tile r n ea r stack to rem ind you of th is.


Cave-in Roll the die. Pl ace a rubble marker on all ca ve-in tiles that match the num ber rolled and don’t already ha ve a rubble marker on them . All cavers on these new tiles lose

. Cavers cannot enter tiles with rubble markers on them. Rubble markers can be removed from tiles by using th e Dig action ( ). Horror All horrors on cave tiles move another step to closest victim (s wards their ee Horror Phas e, above). Then, if there ar e less than thre e horrors on al spawn a horror l cave tiles, on the closest ho rror tile to a cons cious caver. Sharing a tile w ith a horror will cause a caver to Watch out! lose all . While horrors ar e in the cave, pl ace the horror reminde r marker on to p of the hazard deck to remind you to m ove them during the horr or phase

On Advanced an d Expert difficu lty, there will also be five “severe� (x2) ve rs ions of the above hazard types present in th e hazard deck. For all of these other th an th e Horror x2 card, simply perform the ab ov e hazard effects twice in a row. For the H or ror x2 card, instead m ove all existing ho rrors twice, then spaw n two more ho rrors.








OUT OF TIME is always The last card in the hazard deck is the “Out Of Time� card. When this out of revealed, your flashlights are now and the power, the darkness is closing in, game is nearly over.


re hazard At this point, and during all futu tile phases, all cavers not on the exit make st mu s) (conscious or unconsciou ). If they fail, they are a skill check ( d from devoured by horrors and remove the cave. ng cavers The game ends when all remaini no cavers left are on the exit tile, or there are in the cave.

4. End Phase Finally, the starting caver marker is passed to the next caver on the left.




e another of the world, but it will requir end the ’t isn us cio ons unc Falling up a lot of time you. It therefore costs the gro caver to reach you and Heal exploring. BE CAREFUL! that could have been spent s

tile • Don’t linger on dangerous

good reason

t • Don’t exert yourself withou

necessary (you’re very fragile

as • Heal yourself proactively health point)

on one

er cavers

• Don’t stray too far from oth

• State your intentions clearly

– don’t get left behind!

in the Hazard on how many cards are left It’s also worth keeping an eye e tile stack are to the bottom of the cav deck, as well as how close you cavers out as , you’re trying to get as many (and the exit tile). Remember possible. , as you know r where the exit tile is placed • You have some control ove the stack it’s in the bottom six tiles of rt • Don’t leave it too late to sta

regrouping nds

rifice yourself to save your frie

sac • Sometimes it’s correct to

Good luck!

Cave tiles

There are many diff erent types of tile in Sub Terra. Some ar are dangerous, and e harmless, some some are difficult to traverse. Tiles are pla as a result of Reveal ced on the board or Explore actions, and must be placed connect to the tile of su ch that they the revealing/explor ing player. Tiles are considered connected if they sh are an open side (i.e. there is no wall separating them on either tile). Tiles are never connected diagona lly. START This tile is where th e cavers start the ga me. It has no special feat ures other than this. EXIT This tile is how the cavers escape the ca ve and win the game. Cavers on this tile ca nnot lose health points fo r any reason, and ca nnot be chosen as the clo sest victim for horro r movement and spaw ning. UNMARKED/NORM

AL TILES (x16)

These tiles are inten WATER

tionally left blank.


These tiles start in an unflooded state, an d are treated like any other unmar ked tile. When a Flo od hazard card is resolved, flood mar kers are placed on all unflooded water tiles, then each cave r on a water tile los es a . Cavers cannot ente r tiles with flood mar kers on them except by using the Swim action ( )

In the very unlikely ev ent that a tile placeme nt would result in a ca no open sides throug ve with h which to reveal/explo re, discard that tile an the next tile from the d use stack instead.



When a Gas hazard card is resolved, all cavers on these tiles lose . Additionally, until th e following hazard ph ase, any cavers entering a ga s tile will immediately lose . This includes any ne w tiles placed that ro un d, making Explore actions riskie r. During these turns, yo u can place the gas ma rker on or near the cave tile sta ck to remind you of th is. CAVE-IN


When a Cave-In haza rd card is resolved, these tiles have a one-in-three chance of caving in. This places a rubble marker on th e tile, and all cavers on these tiles lose . Cavers cannot ente r tiles with a rubble marker on them, though they can lea ve them. Rubble mar kers can be cleared using the Di g action ( ). HORROR (x8) When a Horror haza rd card is resolved, a horror is spawned on the ho rror tile that is close st to a conscious caver. Wat ch out! Sharing a tile with a horror immediately causes a caver to lose all . It’s very risky to end your turn on one of these tiles. SQUEEZE (x3) Cavers cannot ente r these tiles using th e Move action. Inste they must use the Sq ad, ueeze action ( ). If a squeeze tile is pla ced as part of an Ex plore action, the exploring caver still moves onto the tile as normal.



e arrow such that th d ce la p e b must ver’s tile. Ledge tiles revealing ca e th m o fr y om either points awa normally fr le ti is th r re ente ove or Explo Cavers can t Reveal, M o n n e ca p y e ro da side, but th e tile has ha th ss le n u e g dg one by usin across the le his can be d (T . it n o d token place ope action) the Place R SLIDE


ced such must be pla s le ti e id sl g les, the revealin Like ledge ti away from ts in o p lly w a o rm that the arr r this tile no rs can ente ve a C . le e ti ov back caver’s ey cannot M th t u b , e d si a rope from either tile has had e th ss le n u g ide one by usin across the sl his can be d (T . it n o d token place ope action) the Place R (x3) RAIN a ROUGH TER must make tile, cavers is th g ly n te ri ia te d me When en y fail, they im e th If ). skill check ( . lose a


The Engineer has a special action th at can place explosives tokens on the board to re move adjacent w These tokens are alls. placed over the sh ar ed side of two neighbouring tiles , turning sides th at are walls into sid that are open an es d thus connectin g the tiles. Alternat they can be placed ive ly, over an adjacent wall that faces a to allow that gap ga p, to be subsequent ly revealed/explo red. Once placed, expl osives tokens rem ain in place for th e rest of the gam e.


Horrors are sp awned onto ho rror tiles ( by the Horror ha ) zard card. Onc e in the cave, they’ll move by chasing their cl osest victim during the horr or phase. If a horror ever occupies the sa me tile as a cave loses all remaini r, that caver im ng mediately and falls uncons cious. There can be at most three horr ors in the cave at any one time.


Horrors move e tile at a time, VATE markeon CA and cannot mov or HEX r from this tile ow ev rub, ble e through solid they ca Remove aer n m ov e walls. th . ro tile ugh floods, rubb acent sqan ueadjez le, ledges, slides es unimpeded. , and The closest vict im to a horror/t ile is the consci number of step ous caver with s between them the fewest and the horror the above mEov /t ile in qu IV em es tion, using TUIT start of the en t ruasid IN lees.theThis will us game, set ually be obviou PASSIVE: At the stack face-up. s! of the cave tile tile top In the case of a place a tile from the cave tile would tie, the cl p. Then Whenever you t tile aside face-u osest instead set tha victim stack, -aside tiles. w set ill two be r you th of e caver with th place either e lowest rank, as indicated on th eir caver board: A caver cannot

be chosen as th

e closest victim

• They are unco ns



• They have su cces • They are on the

sfully used the

exit tile

Hide action this



When a Horror ha zard card is reso lved, if there are horrors on cave til less than three es: 1.

Find the horror til

e that:

• doesn’t yet cont ain a horror, and • is the fewest st eps away from its closest vic tim. If there is such a tile within seven steps from its closest victim, place a ho rror onto it. Otherwise, the horror does not spawn.



2 1


When a Horror ha zard card is reso lved and during th every horror on a e Horror Phase, fo cave tile: r 1.

Find the closest vic tim to that horror.

If the closest victim is more than seven steps away, remove the horr or from the cave.




Otherwise, move the horror one tile towards the closest victim along the shortest path. (If there is m ore than one such tile, the closest victim picks which one)


Usually, the orde r horrors move in won’t matter. In th does, the starting e cases where it player chooses w hich horrors mov e first.






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LLP is a indi g Board Games d on designin Inside the Box K. We’re focuse U , on nd Lo in ny based of themes that design compa across a range es m the last ga ng gi d enga been spending ve e’ W s. ea innovative an id ith us. ies and their games w powerful stor p e lo at ic ve un de m to m s co e designer g fledgling gam year recruitin ss, as a game r in the busine ne rt pa ll fu a , or want to to join us as , videographer er gn If you want to si de c hi hit us up illustrator, grap herwise, then ot or e or designer, as an st e er, gam us as a review connect with ! on our website ill you join us? ome games, w es aw e ak m We’re going to

Acknowledgements Game Design Tim Pinder Illustration Campos David Franco

n Graphic Desig Zak Eidsvoog ement Project Manag rn Peter Blenkha

le, Colin op, Charlie Co n, Simon Bish Beck-Thomse , Christoph er na us An Re n, le to iel bis Al Mar a Advani, Greg Charlie Ringer, cc r, be de Re Pin ni, r va ge So n, phie der, Ro Arun Ad aw, Emily Brow der, Joyce Pin kharn, Lewis Sh rbury, Jon Pin r, en Pa Bl n r Be te , Pe er th h, lliv Gu r, Na an Mille nie Wohlgemut e Savile-Tucke Walker, Stepha y, Ed , Tom Ana, Jak xle ley ck Hu Bu nc ky Du , Schlicht, Jenny Vic ks Stoc thew Usher, n Harvey, Phil ily Silcock, Mat Harrison, Kiera Colverson, Em dy Grant, John An , ar ss -Ja Al Caezar Bez Shahriari, ony Howgeg Norsker, Anth pe Jep y, xle Hu




Sub Terra Draft Rulebook  

Draft Rulebook for Sub Terra, Inside the Box Board Games LLP's latest creation. Game Design: Tim Pinder Graphic Design: Zak Eidsvoog Illust...