The Terraforming Mars Board Game master page. A complete guide. Review, how to play, editorial, useful links, similar games, FAQ, interesting facts and so much more. Terraforming Mars is the epic engine building game that has CEOs racing to make the most off of making Mars inhabitable.



PLAYERS:1 – 5 Players
DURATION: 120 Minutes
GENRE:Engine Building
DESIGNER: Jacob Fryxelius
ARTIST:Isaac Fryxelius
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Corporations are competing to transform Mars into a habitable planet by spending vast resources, and using innovative technology to raise the temperature, create a breathable atmosphere, and make oceans of water. As terraforming progresses, more and more people will immigrate from Earth to live on the Red Planet.

In Terraforming Mars, you control a corporation with a certain profile. Play project cards, build up production, place your cities and green areas on the map, and race for milestones and awards!

Will your corporation lead the way into humanity’s new era?

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8.2 out of 10

If you want an intense 2-ish hour engine-building battle royal, then this is absolutely the #1 game on your list. It is amazing, one of the greats, and a gold standard in its field. You have several different paths to victory and many different resources to manage, all put together in a way that makes for an intense but great experience. The game is super satisfying with 3 players, 5 players and even the very well put together solo version.

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You are a corporation working with other corporations to make Mars inhabitable, but not in a co-op game way, you are very much trying to defeat others and be the best. You have six resources you can build up and you have countless options you can take and which path to victory you want to strategize toward. The overall goal is to get the most points. Raise the life conditions (oxygen, water, temp), mine, settle, focus on science, focus on nature, many options.

How to Play Terraforming Mars Step-By-Step

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We thought about everything from gameplay to theme, intensity level to overall motivations, the quality and more to determine what are the five most similar board games to Terraforming Mars. The quick recap of the list is below with the link to the descriptions and full article below it.

  1. Imperial Settlers
  2. Scythe
  3. Gizmos
  4. Wingspan
  5. Splendor

Full Games Like Terraforming Mars Article

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**Send in your interesting facts

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If it is a topic that has not yet been covered, you can most likely find more information here on your topic of choice. From official Terraforming Mars useful links to very unofficial ones.

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Do I only get 1 or 2 actions per turn in Terraforming Mars?

No. You can as many actions per turn as you want. The 1 and 2 number is for going back and forth with the other players in a given turn. Once people pass, they don’t play any more actions that turn, but you can keep going as long as you have resources for.

When starting in Terraforming Mars, do I need to choose my Corporation before looking at my 10 Action cards?

No. In fact, it is highly encouraged that you should be basing which of the two corporations you are going to choose based on the ten action cards you will start with.

In Terraforming Mars, if a card has a cost with a negative production and I am at “0” of that production, can I play the card?

No. You cannot go lower than “0” on any resource track (except mega credits you can go -5) and since you can’t pay the cost, you can’t use the card. 

In Terraforming Mars, if many cards were played at the same time, what happens first?

If several effects or triggers are to be performed at the same time, the acting player chooses the order. If it is not in the action phase, the first player chooses the order.

I used a red boxed 2x plant but my opponent only has 1 plant, can I still use it in Terraforming Mars??

Yes. The red boxed costs are completely optional and can be used in full, in any increment or not at all if you want.

Why are the red event cards flipped over when used in Terraforming Mars?

The only difference is that you don’t get to use the “tags” from those cards. A card “tag” is the symbol or symbols in the to the right corner. These are used as costs and bonuses for other cards and are key. 

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How To Play Terraforming Mars By Watch It Played [TRT 29:02]

Terraforming Mars Review By Dice Tower [TRT 16:29]

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