Seconds to Midnight
Seconds to Midnight
This is a unique deck building game that simulates the tension of the cold war just before the Cuban missile crisis.
This is a unique deck building game that simulates the tension of the cold war just before the Cuban missile crisis. Read more
Welcome to Seconds to Midnight. We do appreciate your interest in this game. It uses a deck building mechanic and is based on an Alternate History Cold War.
During play each player will be attempting to build their ARSENAL while holding down their opponent using political power. The game is lite on rules but complex on strategy with multiple avenues to victory. The historical aspect of this game is presented within the card art, visualizations, and play style. Play starts with each player gathering their starting decks consisting of politicians, scientists, and physicists. As you draw up your cards you will gather your resources and stretch your political power. Using your research points you will gain more power by purchasing cards.
"This is our STAT bar for the card. Here you will receive the information to be able to play the game. The top number circled in blue is the cost to buy the card. To get research points to buy cards you play cards face up and add the next number with the atom symbol behind it to your research pool for the turn. The last number in the line is the threat value and this will be added to your running threat total throughout the game."
Will you build a political machine to keep an aggressive opponent down using propaganda and blockades, or will you build an ultimate arsenal and annihilate your opponent. Perhaps things fall apart and the whole world ends. Only you can decide.
How to Play
First let’s start with the cards across the top is the title bar giving each card its unique identifier and a little background on each subject. There is also a FLAG present on the title bar these set the cards alliance.
On the left of the card is the Statistics bar in green. On this bar starting from the top is a type icon, the cost of the card in research point, the research point a card produces when play face up, and then the amount of threat that a card produces when it is played face up.
The white box on the bottom of the card is where any extra information is stored. Here you could find a special rule, an Allied ability; that refers to the FLAG that was mentioned earlier, and the survivor points in the upper left hand corner.
How to Win
There are 3 ways to victory in Seconds to Midnight.
The First of these is the Political Victory it is obtained by maintaining a threat value that is 10 higher than your opponent as the research deck runs out of cards. In this scenario no attack occurs and humanity lives on.
The second path to victory is through eliminating all of your opponent’s survivors. This can occur when a strike has been declared, after all the bombs have dropped all cards remaining in arsenals are revealed. If one player has no survivors and the other player does, the player with the survivors wins. should both players have survivors we move on to the third condition which is survivor points.
In the case of no survivors or a tie the world comes to an end in either nuclear apocalypse or continuing and never ending war.
Setup begins with each player gathering their starter cards; which consist of 3 politicians, 3 physicists, and 4 scientists. Then find and set the missile silo cards in the play area face up in reach of each player. These will remain purchasable at any time during your turn throughout the game. The rest of the cards make up the R+D; which is the deck we will be buying cards from, shuffle this and layout 6 cards from the top face up in a line. These will be the cards initially available to buy.
Main Play Phase" The Arms Race"
Each player draws their 5 card hand which will remain the hand size throughout the game.
First player is the person who is, or is most closely related to a veteran.
After determining first player they will begin by playing all of the cards in their hand. Each card may be played either face up or face down. A card played face down must be put in one of your Arsenal locations.
A card played face up will give you each of its incomes to add to your turn total. Cards may also have a special ability which activates immediately when the card is played. One exception to this rule is that if a card has an ally ability that ability will trigger when the card that fulfills the ally requirement is played.
Research points can be found in the second spot on the green stats bar. This is used to purchase more cards for your deck. The cost of each card is the top number on your stat bar. When a card is purchased it is put into your discard pile.
Threat points are derived from 2 sources. The first of these is cards played face up; it is the bottom number of the stat line. When you attain these points they are added to you total threat you have attained thus far in the game. The second source of threat is playing cards face down into one of your arsenal locations, this give you one point of threat per card.
Your treat that is accumulated throughout the game is used to determine the viability of a strike. In order to declare a strike the player must meet two criteria. The first threat level criterion is that your total threat is above 30. Secondly you need to ensure that your opponent’s threat is not more than ten higher than yours or you cannot strike them.
At the end of your turn you may strike your opponent if you meet these criteria and wish to; otherwise, draw back to five cards and it’s your opponents turn.
Each player is able to create up to six arsenal locations. When a card is played face down it is played into these locations. Building Arsenals appropriately is an important strategic element to the game. You need to ensure that you are burying survivors and placing weapons into usable formations. A weapon; in order to be used, must be placed in an arsenal with an appropriate delivery device. Once cards are down in a location they must stay but you may look at the contents of your own arsenals at any time.
Main Game Phase 2"The Strike Phase"
If a player has met both threat criteria as described above they may declare that they are striking. In this event all cards not currently in an arsenal location are immediately removed from the game. Then the player who declared the strike may choose their first weapon from an arsenal location and place it face up in the center of the table.
To fire an ICBM you must Show both the weapon and a Missile Silo from the same location.
To fire an SLBM you must show the Weapon and either show or have showing a submarine that has not fired all of its available SLBM slots.
A bomber attacks as one weapon carrying its full capacity of bombs.
(The SS Sinner does not require a delivery device)
After your first weapon is placed on the table then your opponent may either fire a weapon or use one of their defensive weapons against the weapon, or weapons that you fired.
When play returns to you, and your weapon is still active you may pick an arsenal location held by your opponent. They must discard from this location a number of cards equal to the number of Mushroom clouds on the weapon. A bomber may hit multiple locations if they get to attack one for each bomb.
(Note a anti bomber defense destroys the bomber and all bombs in it)
Then on your second activation you may fire two devices, of either defense or offense, and this back and forth continue until all weapons have been fired or one player is eliminated from the table.
Setup and Cards:
Risks and challenges
The potential issue at this time is this is our first game, so there may be some delays as we figure out manufacturing and shipping. However; we do feel, that we have a good grasp on all this and we will be able to succeed on our goals.
We are so excited by the feedback from our beta testers during development. While this is our first of many games, we have worked closely with other game designers in the industry to ensure that manufacturing and shipping timeline risks are minimal. Thanks for backing Seconds to Midnight - we know you are going to love it!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)