Material World FAQ

This page was salvaged from the defunct website of publisher Strange Magic Games.

Q: What is Material World?
A: It is a historically-based adventure similar in play to Civilization and Diplomacy.

Q: How many can play Material World?
A: Two to five persons.

Q: How long does a typical game last?
A: From one hour for Super Material World to three and a half hours for Classic Material World.

Q: Can trains ever move?
A: Train lines may only be moved when carried by other Transports (e.g. Boats, Caravans, other Trains).

Q: Where do you build military boats, on sea or land?
A: Military boats are built in a Small Sea Space adjacent to a player's Population. They are not moved their first turn on the board (but they may fight in that Sea Space).

Q: May military boats be used to transport other military pieces?
A: No.

Q: You can purchase a Use Fee during the Purchase phase, but you don't place a Caravan or Train until the Place and Move phase. How long does the Use Fee last?
A: A Caravan must be placed before the Use Fee is paid.

We suggest you bry a modification to this rule. Instead of a Use Fee for gathering resources from a Territory, require the placement of an additional Caravan. This way, it is possible to differentiate Territories controlled by a player from those with Trade Routes just passing through. (Territories with Population, as they do not require a Use Fee under the old rule, also do not require an additional Caravan under the new rule.)

Q: At Infrastructure Level 3, populations may build twice as much, right? Does each population require twice as many Treasures and consume twice as much Wheat?
A: Populations may build twice as much at Level 3 Infrastructure. They do not require more Treasures; they do not consume more Wheat.

Q: After a Standard of Living increase is achieved, does the purchase of an additional population require the collection of additional Treasures?
A: Yes. You never lose Victory Points, but to attain your next Victory Point level you must have all Treasures (and Consumer Goods) equal to your current population level.

Editor's Note: At the time of the creation of this FAQ, Strange Magic Games was located at 2529 College Ave., Berkeley, California, 94704, USA. The designers of this 1995 game are listed as Kent Mitchell and Alexis Papahadjopoulos.