In Episode 1, players are striving to develop and protect the foothold town of Perseverance, besieged by the dinosaurs of the island. By building walls, traps, and settlements; mounting defenses; and partaking in the early political power struggles of a forming community, players gain followers to establish themselves as Leaders.
Episode 1 has two interwoven aspects of gameplay.
In the Community areas, you will be organizing the daily life of the community: gathering resources, training soldiers, building settlements and fortifications, and partaking in early political power struggles.
In the Defense areas, you will be mounting defenses by raising walls and placing traps and soldiers to prepare for the increasingly powerful waves of Dino attacks, the menace of the island.
Episode 1 introduces the signature dice placement/area majority mechanism as Perseverance’s core system that evolves and spans throughout the series. Placing dice as your workers not only grants you actions and benefits, but emptying the dice pool also triggers the Assembly. The game consists of 2 or 3 Assemblies, depending on player count.
Each aspect has its own scoring mechanism: the periodic Assembly rewards players for their influence in the Community areas, while the Dino attacks reward heroic defense against the attacking dinosaurs in the Defense areas. Among other rewards, both scoring mechanisms can give you Followers, which are required to establish yourself as a strong leader on the island and win the game.
Prototype - not final product
Using the core mechanism of the entire series, you take Actions by drafting and placing Specialist dice from a pool. Some Specialists are better suited for certain Actions than others.
Whenever the dice pool runs out, an Assembly occurs. This periodic area majority mechanism scores Followers (the games’ victory points) for establishing a presence in the city’s districts with pieces in your player color. You can do this by building Settlements, placing your Leader, and converting Specialist dice to your player color.
The city and its forming society are developing under the guidance of the Officers’ Council. As an aspiring Leader, a good relationship with the Officers goes a long way and will reward you after the Assembly based on the strategies you’ve been pursuing.
Build Walls, set Traps, and rally Soldiers to defend against periodic Dinosaur attacks against the emerging city. Defense is often a joint effort, but players are rewarded individually based on their contribution. Be careful, though: failure will result in breaching Dinos, trampled Settlements, and lost Followers!